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 The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk.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!
Welcome! We're happy you've found the PassPorter Community -- the friendliest place to plan your vacation to Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland, and the world in general! You are now viewing the PassPorter Message Board Community as a guest, which gives you limited access. As our guest, feel free to browse our messages by selecting the forum you want to visit from the list below.
To post messages and ask questions, join our FREE community today and you'll get access to tools and resources not available to guests, such as our vacation countown timers, "living" avatars, private messaging system, database searches, downloads, and a special PassPorter discount code. Registration is fast, simple, and completely free. Just click the Join Our Community link.
Taking inspiration from the recent staycation TRs I thought I would give it a shot from the Pa side of things.
This trip came about rather spontaneously. DH and I were driving home from work Thursday when I mentioned we had to figure out what we were going to get ODS and YDS for Easter, candywise that is. (A girl has to have priorities.) DH thought we should get them the "good" stuff and pick up Hershey candy from Hershey sometime before Easter. He was completely clueless as to when Easter was and was surprised to find out it was in 10 days.
Anywho...I was speechless when he suggested we drive out to Hershey the next day and pick up some stuff. How romantic. A nice car ride out, a nice lunch, some chocolate shopping and a quiet ride home. What more could a girl want. DH never suggests stuff like this so I was floored.
Fast forward to next morning. Alarm goes off. I ask DH to get the boys up and roll back over and figure I've got another 30 of relaxing. DH comes back in and I ask how the boys are doing. Imagine my surprise when he says they are playing Wii. "Why aren't they getting ready?"
And all you women out their in relationships will love this part...
"Oh, I asked them if they would rather go to Hershey with us. They said yes."
But the boys were so thrilled and did such an effective job kissing up that I got over it pretty quick.
Now....I figured I could have done the whole day as part of this TR, but really...the thing we spent the majority of the time doing and the focus of the day ended up being the "Create Your Own Candy Bar" attraction so that's what you're getting. Oh, and that attraction is right outside the bakery so there's some pretty good food porn to boot.
PassPorter's Free-Book to Walt Disney World Itís hard to believe anything is free at Walt Disney World; but there are actually a number of things you can get or do for little to no cost. This e-book documents over 200 free or cheap tips to do before you go and after you arrive. You could save a considerable amount of money following these tips. Perhaps more importantly; you can discover overlooked attractions and little-known details most people whiz by on their way to spend money. Click here to see free sample pages from the e-book! Get this popular e-book free of extra charges when you join the PassPorter's Club for as little as $4.95. A club pass includes access to all our other e-books; e-worksheets; super-size photos; and more! This e-book is also available for separate purchase in the PassPorter Online Store for just $5.95.
Okay, so we'll skip a lot of the stuff there are no photos of. It was a quick trip on the PA Turnpike, a lovely ride through some dairy land and the best parking spot ever. I HIGHLY recommend going on a non-holiday Friday when the amusement park is closed. It was relatively empty.
So...in we go to Chocolate World. For those that have never been, it's a building outside of Hershey Park. It's got a few mini attractions: a chocolate tasting, a 3D show, Create Your Own Chocolate Bar and a little History of Hershey ride. Only the later is free. And you get a free sample when you get off...gotta love free.
But back to the point of this thread...
When you enter the building the ticket counter for this attraction is to the right. When we got in line a pleasant enough lady handed us a clipboard where we filled out everyone's name and our zip code. Then Ira, the last pleasant employee we dealt with, walked me through the ticket purchases. It is $14.95 a person...no matter child or adult. No children under 8 can go without an adult. We had to verify the spelling of everyone's names and were given out tickets. We had the 1:30 tour, but Ira recommended getting in line by 1:20 so that the attraction would take 30 minutes as opposed to 45. I didn't get this at first but it will make more sense later.
With the exception of some rude families, the line experience was just fine. Let's be honest, it's Hershey...not exactly themeing heaven here. They handed out aprons, as modeled by the boys above, and checked out tickets. No tickie no apron.
We got in line around 1:15. We were the second family and it can make a big difference timewise so that's something to keep in mind. We got through the factory floor in about 30 minutes and the people at the end of the line spent almost an hour from start to finish because they had to wait.
They let families enter together and it's hair net time!!! You know how fashionable those are
Then it's off to the room where you can put any items you don't want to carry in a locker. Easy to use and loved it. In went the purse. Cameras are allowed and welcome, although I was the only person taking photos...obviously no Passporters on this tour.
They aslo check you for nail polish as you need to wear gloves if you have it and remove any jewelry from hands and wrists. DH had to cover his goatee and earrings.
After listening to the instructional video (no Gary Sinise damn it) you move to the first work station. Here you will scan your ticket and pick your fixins. There are 6 possible additions to your bar and you get to pick up to three. Our choices were:
Through the mystery swinging doors we went. That's where the magic happens...okay, not magic, but yummy goodness. I did appreciate that you could watch every step of the process. A pre-made "shell" is picked up.
and it even has your name on it
Then you watch as it s-l-o-w-l-y goes through the assembly line
and then the best part...the waterfall of chocolate....everyone's dream come true.
While the candy bars are going through the cooling tunnel
you can go to another work station and design your own label. I'll have photos later since they are printed and assembled somehwere else. After the rude family moves through you can watch the bar come out of the cooling tunnel and be gently pushed along into a personally laser coded box (really debated over the order of those words, but you get the idea).
Then the bar slides down to the less than thrilled employees who put it in a cute tin that is wrapped in your personalized label.
Tada...you are now the owner of your very own personalized 5.5 ounce chocolate bar. When the boys found out they could have had a 5 POUND bar for the cost of their tickets they didn't see the value, but we all agreed it was great to do once. As in one time...as in not again. It was novel and cute, but it's note exactly "fun." But as ODS pointed out...not everything can be run by Disney. (Although I don't see why not...wouldn't we enjoy filing our taxes more if they ran the IRS...okay, maybe not.)
If you don't go to Hershey much this is definately worth it. It's fun and where else can you create your own candy bar. They did take a lesson from Walt in one regard. When you exit the factory floor you are let out right in the bakery. YUMMMY. Most of the cupcakes are based on a candy bar. Some just use them as ingredients, but some try to re-create the experience.
I tried to photo the descriptions as well, but sorry if they are blurry.