As children grow, certain moments are cherished forever. A child’s first trip to a Disney park is among the most memorable for both the child and their parents. Many times the parents are just as excited, not just to witness their child’s enjoyment but also to relive that age when they too believed in magic and fairy tales. For many who have made that special trip, the only regret is that it ended too soon. The typical 5-7 day trip seldom seems enough. However, more and more families are finding ways to extend the excitement weeks, even months before the trip by kick-starting the magic at home. Without a doubt, planning for Disney has become part of the fun of the trip overall.
The Big Reveal
A quick search on YouTube will show multiple videos of families who have surprised their children with announcements of, “We’re going to Disney!” These moments hold such emotion and charm that few are unmoved by them. So get the camera ready and plan your own big reveal. Some creative ways to make the big announcement include a scavenger hunt with clues, a family game of hangman or Wheel of Fortune, or simply a birthday or holiday gift with the announcement inside.
A countdown calendar will both allow your children to excitedly mark down the days until the trip as well as forestall those constant, “How long…” questions. For extra fun, make a special Disney-themed calendar. Even better, depict the last month before your trip via a wall-size countdown calendar with days in the shape of a Mickey Mouse head. By using low-stick tape as backing, your child can have the honor of (safely) removing each day as it passes.
As your trips approaches, throw a few Disney-themed nights. Pick a Disney movie to watch, and serve themed foods. For instance, make your own Mickey-shaped pizza, or whip up one of the many famed park goodies. Many copycat recipes are available for free online, such as the celebrated Pineapple Dole Whip or decadent Tonga Toast.
Tinker Bell Visits
Another great idea is to have Tinker Bell bring gifts or notes while your child sleeps, dusting the area with her trademark pixie dust (glitter). Great gifts include Disney clothing or costumes, glow necklaces to wear during the nightly parades, and even spray bottles with mister fans for warm-month visits.
Magical Phone Calls
Anyone who has visited a Disney park knows guests at their hotels can receive funny wake-up calls from Mickey or Stitch. But why wait until the trip? Have a Disney character call your child to invite them to the park. While Donald Duck might be harder for you or a friend to imitate, it’s simple to recreate such voices as Goofy, Jack Sparrow or one of the princesses. Simply utilize a call spoofing service so you can choose the name of the character calling them. Imagine how amazed your child will be when their favorite character says how excited they are to be seeing them “real soon!”
Disney parks were famously created by Walt Disney for the “young and the young at heart.” By taking time to enjoy the excitement of not just your trip, but also of the anticipation of it, you and your child will make memories to last both of your lifetimes.
About the Author: Dave Smith is a Marketing Associate at Itellas, a leading provider of caller ID spoofing services. For more information about call spoofing, please visit www.itellas.com.