Two years ago we celebrated my son’s birthday at Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekend(s). It was a complete blast when my sons were then two and four. Between the Hyperspace Hoopla Dance Party and so many characters to meet-n-greet, we were all in awe. So we decided to celebrate my son’s 6th birthday once again at Hollywood Studios for yet another Star Wars Weekend.
We went opening weekend, Friday the 18th. We made sure to get there JUST as the park opened, because we knew it would be a mad-rush of Disney and Star Wars savvy fans. And many of these fans with children would be making a mad dash to sign their kids up for Jedi Training Academy.This is something you do early in the morning – and once all time slots are filled…they are filled.
We had booked a room at the Caribbean Beach resort the night before, so our room keys were also our Disney passes. We arrived at the park at 7:15 am. We stood in line for 30 minutes and then storm troopers came down to entertain the crowd and officially let us in the park. Once we entered, we immediately made a bee-line for the Indiana Jones theater, where they were signing in children. YOU MUST HAVE YOUR CHILDREN TO ENTER. A fast adult cannot run ahead and get entrance or stand in line, Disney staff will not admit you onto the line without the children.
For Star Wars Weekends they seem to have double the shows and admit double the amount of kids into each show. My boys were #20 and #21 to be admitted, without me running. Just walk fast, is my tip. The Jedi Training Academy is intended for children 4 – 12 years of age. They ask them a few simple questions, like are they ready to fight for the force and will they follow instructions. Then we received a slip of paper with their name (non-transferable) and their time slot. We were the 9:45 time slot, but we had to return early to keep out time slot. They wanted us there by 9:15 just to make sure everything was running smoothly.
Now, let me give you this tip. Toy Story Mania fills up FAST. The line wait can be an hour or more. The best way to ride it is with a Fast Pass, which also can disappear by the end of the day. So, if you want to get a good time on Toy Story Mania, head there ASAP. So while I was online with the boys to sign up for Padawan Training, my husband took our tickets to get Fast Passes for the family. It worked out perfectly.
And by the time he got Fast Passes for Toy Story Mania and I had gotten the boys signed up for the Jedi Training Academy, there were still not too many people in the way back of the park by the updated Star Tours ride. So we got on with only a 5 minute (if that) wait! It was AWESOME! The boys LOVED IT! And the 3-D was nice and smooth, no one complained of nausea.
There were also many Storm Troopers walking around the park, really giving everyone a laugh. And we also met up with the Tusken Raiders roaming the area. Chewbacca, and Ewok, Anakin Skywalker, Darth Maul, Darth Vader and a few other characters had lines you had to stand in to meet them. We stood in a quick line for Anakin Skywalker, which the birthday boy really wanted to do.
My family pretty much did everything we wanted to do by 12:30. Star Tours, Padawan Training, Toy Story Mania, Tower of Terror, Indiana Jones, Honey I Shrunk the Kids, meet-n-greets and photo ops, and Muppet 3-D. We ended up getting a Fast Pass to go on Star Tours a second time and I have to say, the second time was even BETTER. I love how they have different story lines and destinations!
We did end up missing this years Hyperspace Hoopla, because they only had 1 showing instead of the two shows they had 2 years ago. And I had to meet up with my sister at T-Rex Cafe to celebrate HER BIRTHDAY too! Yup! We celebrated 2 birthdays there – my sister and my son- so it was funtabulous!
Overall, LOVE Star Wars Weekend at Hollywood Studios. I can’t imagine a better time to visit that specific park. I’ll save the rest of the year for the other Disney Parks. If you are interested in going, there are three more weekends to attend. Star Wars Weekend(s) is every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 18-June 10, 2012. Learn more at DisneytheForce.com.
And if you like the shirts my boys are wearing – I bought them from MyEmmyBaby on Etsy! This is my second time making THIS PURCHASE from her! I bought two personalized Star War Shirts from her in 2008 for our first Star Wars weekend and got SO MANY COMPLIMENTS. And the boys loved them. So I had to buy them again! They are perfect for this event!