Tag Archives: Fort Wilderness

All Ears update: Fort Wilderness changes campfire policy!

It used to be that you couldn’t have a campfire at the sites, because they worried about people letting them get out of control etc.  But!  This has changed.   The new policy is this:

You can now bring in your own contained campfire unit.  Typically, stores call them firepits or outdoor fireplaces.  Something like this:

You need to have one with a solid metal bottom and a solid metal top; the mesh can only be on the sides.  This is to better prevent embers from spreading to the trees and brush.  After all, none of us wants to this:

You’ll see this info on an updated All Ears FW FAQ.  I just sent it to the Debs, so be patient.

Of course, they also have the Campfire Program up by the Meadows area too.

And now I’m off to find an inexpensive fire pit.  I’ve always wanted one, and it will be a great end to a Disney day!


Birth of a Mickey lamp!

This post has everything!  Men!  Doing Manly Things!  With Power Tools!

Actually, this is the second time this had to be done since the first time, as our friend Gary said, “the rodent got his head smashed”.  So it’s actually a Born Again Mickey Lamp.

Mickey lamps got popular at campgrounds a few years ago when someone figured out how to make one for their site in the Fort Wilderness campground.   It immediately got all the other guests attention, but instead of keeping the trick to themselves and being all “seagull” about it, they told 2 friends and they told 2 friends…

… meaning they posted it on the web in Fort Wilderness forums.

Last year, Gary told us how he built one for he and his wife, Carol.   As he mentioned things like wattages and something-or-other clamps and globes, we begged him not to let us set ourselves on fire when we hooked something up wrong, and instead build it for us.   He nicely agreed.

He gave it to us last December; it looked so fantastic!  We decorated it with garland — it was beautiful!  And then breeze — timber! — smashed Mickey.

John said we’d fix it.   Oh, wait, he might have been serious about that.  Oh well…

… we were soon begging Gary again…. … and he said yes!  Again!   We couldn’t believe it either.

So now we’re up to date!  And so we begin….

Unpacking the pieces

Unpacking the pieces

Gary even nicely gave the technical names.  The piece above is called a “plug”.

John adds a subtle piece of Fort Wilderness advertising.

One Mouse head: check!

One Mouse head: check!

Time for manly actions!

Men using tools: check!

Men using tools: check!

I asked Gary if he drank all the case of vodka so he could have the box.  He muttered something about no, since he swore off vodka following an incident with the Orange County, Florida police department when he was 17.  You know, that’s got to be a great story.

Sooner or later, someone has to ask: What the hayle is that?

Sooner or later, someone has to ask: "What the hayle is that?"

Things progress nicely:

This should work.  I saw it on This Ol Mouse.

"This should work. I saw it on This Ol' Mouse."

John then took a moment to let me know, quietly, how much he loves me:

I love you too, honey.

I love you too, honey.

Now, you can’t do such sensitive work without some sort of protection, even if you think you can.  John and Gary thought they could, but saner minds prevailed.  Which is why Zoe took it upon herself to guard us from the rear:

The Few, The Proud, The Guard Dogs

The Few, The Proud, The Guard Dogs

And Elphie guarded the front:

Judge me not by my size

Judge me not by my size

Gary and Carol’s other dog, Zac,  took the heavy responsibility of relaxing and then going inside to enjoy the air conditioning.  Which is what Morgan and Casey were doing.



Meanwhile, I promised you power tools:

If this doesnt work, well get out the duct tape.

"If this doesn't work, we'll get out the duct tape."


(…after I bought a lightbulb and put the pole and head together when we got home….)


I put the bulb in all by myself!  BEAMING PROUDLY!

I put the bulb in all by myself! BEAMING PROUDLY!

Like I said in the beginning, these lamps rule the campgrounds, but Gary spread the joy around to more of our friends who plan to use them in their outdoor decorations.  So we can’t gloat everyone gets a piece of the magic!

Right now, ours is shining outside, like a beacon to Narnia!  And I didn’t even think about the fact that our neighbor across the street is a big Fort Wilderness fan, frequently going there, and can see our lamp from their house. Okay, maybe I thought about it a teeny bit… …which is why the spirit of Walt Disney made Mickey’s  ears go out.  But it’s fine now.  I shouldn’t screw with those neighbors anyway; she’s my doctor.  Never tick off your doctor. 

We did ask Gary if he’d make us a third one if we broke this lamp post too.  He said:

Just kidding, Gar!

If you would like to make your own lamp or have a friend who will it for you, please read How to make a Micky Lamp Post.  Good luck!

Disney’s Fort Wilderness resort channel

It’s no secret that John and I love this resort.  And I’ve already posted before the videos from the resort channels such as the Zip A Dee Doo Dah Tip of the Day, so naturally I wanted the Fort Wilderness Resort channel. Unfortunately, I didn’t have outputs to go right to the camera, so it has background noise like our AC, the dogs’ tags, and the best part, my husband’s cough.  I hope to get a better recording on the next trip.

Still, it’s gives me a Fort Wilderness fix in the meantime and I thought some other FW geeks would like to see it!

Update on vacation blog

First, thank you to everyone who voted on the vacation blog designs!  I appreciate the feedback.  I decided to go ahead and do a blog for this trip, because I had gotten excited about it.  If you are someone who prefers Twitter, both blogs – this and the vacation one – feed to my twitter account so you’ll see posts there.

The votes were close when I added the ones from here to the ones on tagrel.  So!  I went back to the design board and combined the best elements from both designs into a new one.  You can see the results on http://disneyfest.blogspot.com/ if you’re interested.  If you do go to see it, please scroll to the bottom to see the footer graphic.  I think it turned out well!

Our friends, Gary and Carol, are setting up a wi-fi router; the last time we talked about, I was chipping in on the costs and hopefully having Internet on the trip!  That means I can post more AND hopefully have the webcam, at least for every once in a while.   I’d really like to get people on our Fort Wilderness Lights and Dogs tour on the webcam!  You’ll see a link to the webcam page on the blog in the right hand column.

Like last year, I’ll post live from my phone with text, photos, and video. So you’ll have that to see if nothing else while I’m away!

And really if nothing else: I can feel Steve Allen cursing me already.  And I love it!  (He also has every reason to curse; when he was on vacation, he called us from Trails End Restaurant, one of my hubby’s favorites.  John said, with all due manly fondness of course: “Jerkoff”.)

All Ears Net: Fort Wilderness and Kennels updated

You’ll see it in the newsletter, but I thought I’d give all ears fans a heads up.

Fort Wilderness: The pet section on the FAQ is updated, including information on the new Waggin’ Trails Dog Park and its marked paths.  The photos text link page has new photos of the marina, the beach, and the Settlement, not to mention the dog park.  And the slide show page is now updated to include all the new photos from this year.

The Kennels: All the new prices are now listed, plus special notes about the Animal Kingdom and Disney Hollywood Studios kennels.  Under the AK Kennel, you’ll find a link that takes you to Photopass photos of pet families.  Very attractive pet families!  OK, I’ll fess up.  It’s me, John, and one of my sisters with the dogs. 😉  It’s to show the great opportunity at this park with the Photopass photographers.

If you are a “Disney pet family”, would you like to see information on what to do in an emergency situation?  I’m thinking about putting together something about it, but didn’t know if it interested anyone.  Please post in the comments if you are interested and what you would like to know.

How did I not think of this before?

Of course YouTube has videos Fort Wilderness, our favorite Disney World Resort!

Here’s a short one of the train that used to run through the campground.  The only thing that would make John love Fort Wilderness more is if the train was still there.

That and if they had a Fort Wilderness DVC!