As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.
So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.
Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.
And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.
We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm. You made it all happen.
There are other changes as well.
Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:
We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.
It's time to move on and move forward.
PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.
But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.
So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.
And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.
That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!
If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.
So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!
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Sorry that the flight time didnít work out to be ideal, but itís great to get the best price. You are so smart to get three trips on one annual pass!!
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The times aren't ideal, but saving money was the best choice. Luke came up with the three trip plans a few years ago and it too saves us money.
Originally Posted by Pris
Originally Posted by SuperDave
Some nice pricing on the flights! Although, not the ideal ones for you it seems the plans will work out well for you. Nice going to spend the night before your trip to relax at a hotel and enjoy a good meal together for Luke's birthday! I hope you have a good restaurant nearby your hotel in mind to make it special for Luke!
We used to visit Nashville all the time when my sister and brother-in-law lived there, so he knows of several options he might consider for dinner. I'm letting him choose since it is his birthday.
Great start! I like the idea that you're going to pre-start your vacation celebrating Luke's birthday in Nashville!
We are liking the idea, too!
Originally Posted by cubfancolleen
Nice start. And while the flights arenít ideal times, at least it gives you extra Disney time. Is there a hotel right at the airport?
There are several hotels very close to the airport, and a couple are near our usual parking service that we've used before. We both really like one more than the others, but we haven't booked it yet. We used to make early flights down when Stefanie was with us because she needed park time on our first day to feel that she was at Disney, so for her we've done this before.
Originally Posted by Colexis Mom
Glad you were able to figure out the flights! Hoping for no delays do you make it home okay!
I don't mind the late flight as long as we aren't delayed, so thanks for the pixies.
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It's always nice when the timing AND pricing work out in your favor, but many times you have to choose one or the other. I'm glad it worked out to stay over in Nashville the night before your trip. And of course you can't argue with extra park time on arrival and departure days!
We will typically opt for the best pricing over the best times as it goes easier on the budget. The extra park time has me very excited.
Originally Posted by BriarRose4
Great start! Looking forward to following along.
Originally Posted by Tara O'Hara
Muffin doesn't like to fly super early either. What a great solution to spend Luke's birthday in Nashville instead of getting up with the chickens!!! Even better that you get a full last day in!!
The flight down shouldn't be a problem since we'll spend the night near the airport. I'm still hoping the flight home doesn't get delayed, but one way or the other, we'll have a nice chunk of park time.
Great start! I love fall too. I think the fact that my birthday is in October has a lot to do with it. You'll be at WDW on my birthday on the 18th. Have a yummy treat for me! Actually, I was due on Luke's birthday, which is also my Grandpa's birthday. But I was 10 days overdue. My poor mom!
Your poor mom, indeed! Disney is so beautiful in the fall!
Originally Posted by manticorjenn
Sorry that your flight times are so early, but at least you get extra park time. We are used to the early flights as for us to get to WDW we have to travel most of the day. We either have to go early and arrive late afternoon or go mid day and arrive late at night. I would rather get up early and then get a decent night sleep before our first park day than arrive in the middle of the night. Looking forward to hearing about Luke's birthday celebration and all of your other plans for this adventure.
I think I would be the same as a good night's sleep before your first day in the parks is so important.
With DVC we can book our home resort at the 11-month mark, but we decided to wait until the 7-month mark in hopes of getting Wilderness Lodge/Copper Creek. But when Luke logged in that day, our only option if we wanted to stay in the same resort the entire trip was a studio at our home resort of Animal Kingdom Lodge/Kidani Village. There wasnít more than one day in a row at Copper Creek, and we donít like the hassle of switching resorts. Luke asked me what I wanted to do, and then grinned because he knows I donít mind staying at Kidani, even if we did just stay there in May. We both love this resort and staying here will allow us to unpack and settle in for the next ten days.
Of course, we paid the extra points to get a savanna view room. We noted in May that animal activity seems to be more prevalent in the afternoons and evenings. This may encourage us to take afternoon breaks back at the resort to enjoy our balcony view and rest awhile.
Animal Kingdom Lodge always seems to give us ideas about the dťcor and design of our own home. When we got back home in May, we began planning a major remodel of our master bathroom and laundry room, along with continuing the wood flooring into our front entry halls and painting almost every room. We moved into our house 17 years ago this December and for the past 14 or 15 years weíve wanted to redo the master bathroom, but it took a while to have the money saved up for everything we wanted to do. Our plan from the beginning was to take out the small fiberglass shower unit, making that area into a closet and then to remove the jetted tub and replace it with a much larger shower. But we didnít know if that could be done. We also knew we wanted to model our master bathroom design along the lines of Animal Kingdom Lodge.
We thought we had a guy who was going to do the work for us, but after waiting a long seven weeks, we learned that he had injured his back and wouldnít be able to do the work. He did give us the name of some great guys though who were willing to take on the job. They came by a couple of days after we called and worked up what all was to be done by them (the painting would all be done by Luke). They then left to determine an estimate, including the supplies we had already picked out at a local tile store. About a week later they were back with the estimate and it fit our budget, and they scheduled to return on Monday to begin the work.
Our home was a work zone the last two weeks of August and to a lesser degree still is as we are no where done with all the painting. But weíre not in a rush. The shower door is still not in as it had to be custom ordered. Weíre hoping it will arrive and be installed next week as promised. But I wanted you all to see a bit of the work weíve had done that reflects our Animal Kingdom Lodge design. Luke found some animal tiles online that we both really liked. In fact, the company has made tiles for Animal Kingdom. We showed the guys the tiles when they first came by, but it wasnít until they had them placed, grouted, and then cleaned off that they agreed with us that they were perfect with the other tile elements we had selected. They turned out exactly has we had hoped. Now just a few photos.
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Thanks! The company where we got the specialty tiles was great to work with. The tiles were shown in several different finished, but we didn't see the animal tiles in the oatmeal finish which is what we wanted. Luke sent an email and they responded quickly that they could do the ones we wanted in that finish. So nice!
Originally Posted by SuperDave
Love the new bath as I'm sure you're at the AKL/KV! Love the color of the tiles and especially those custom animal tiles on the walls of the shower and shelves!
Thanks! We felt like our color palette for the bathroom was very much in line with bathrooms at AKL.