Welcome to the Williams Family Blog!

Now that you have found us, we invite you to return often for more adventures!



Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Monday, April 19, 2010

Pirates and Pals Fireworks Voyage

When we were at the Walt Disney World Resort last November, we tried something new. . . the Pirates and Pals Fireworks Voyage. This offering used to be reserved for Grand Gatherings, but just before we traveled in November, it was opened to any guests.

The event begins on the 2nd or 3rd level of the Contemporary Resort (I know for sure it is not the 1st or 4th floor--somewhere in the middle). A conference like room is decorated in pirate fair and all attendees are given a pirate bandanna that must be worn or showing to indicate that you are part of the party.

Goodies are spread on a table and include snacks and beverages. The neat part was that all of the snacks are in portable containers, so they are excellent to take with you, which you are encouraged to do and we did! (See photo below.)

The pirate music plays and soon Captain Hook and Mr. Smee join the party for photos and autographs. When all the photos are taken, the even morphs from character meet and greet to dance party with Captain Hook and Mr. Smee getting their groove on.

When the music dies down, two children are selected from the crowd by our head pirate, who was Patch, to take the flags to the boat. The boy was selected to carry one of the two flags--the Hook flag, down the escalator and out the back of the Contemporary to the boat dock on Bay Lake. The entire party fits into one boat and we sail away while waving to Captain Hook and Mr. Smee on the dock.
While on board Pirate Patch keeps the group entertained with introductions, stories, jokes, and contests. Here's where the extra magic begins. . . after each family/group introduced themselves and told where they were from, Patch asked specifically for birthdays. The boy was celebrating his 7th birthday and after a birthday wish from Pirate Patch, the water lit up right beside the boat from the Electric Water Pageant. Each of the floats (boats) from the Electric Water Pageant sailed within feet of our boat and was close enough that we could hear the music. This happened as if on cue and was magical!

When the Electric Water Pageant ended, we could see the lights of the Magic Kingdom dim and the music of Holiday Wishes could be heard in the boat as the night sky filled with the sights and sound of the Holiday Wishes fireworks display. Now, I don't know how many of you reading this have actually seen a fireworks display at the Magic Kingdom, but all I can say is that the fireworks do not come from one location, but are actually panoramic. We had the full panoramic view from in front of the Magic Kingdom floating in the Seven Seas Lagoon. I can say one more thing and that is Disney has figured out a way to make the fireworks form 3-D images in the sky. For example, when the Nutcracker song was playing, the fireworks formed boxes/packages in the sky. Disney Magic!
The last flare of the finale faded away and we began our sail back to the Contemporary. Pirate Patch, sensing the let down after the grand display, began a Disney trivia contest with winners getting pirate gifts from his treasure chest. I don't remember the question, but the boy ended up with a pirate Frisbee before the end of the voyage.
Just when we thought the magic was done, we could see a small light glimmering on the end of the dock at the Contemporary. The light was coming from a lantern. Could it be. . .? No, it couldn't be. . . It sure was! Tinkerbell was flashing her light to us from the lantern on the end of the boat dock. She was waiting for us to return. And sure enough, she brought Peter Pan with her. He was waiting for us too. The boy grabbed Peter Pan's hand and walked with him down the boat dock to an area where Peter was taking photos and signing autographs.

What a magical voyage! My expectations for this event were much lower than what was delivered. I envisioned a boat ride to see the fireworks with music of course. Never did I imagine such theming, such hosting, such surprises!
If you want to participate in the Pirates and Pals Fireworks Voyage, contact your travel specialist or call 407-WDW-PLAY.


  1. great review. Thanks you so much.

  2. Thanks for taking the time to share this with everyone I was just thinking about doing this for our 2yr old daughter. She just loves Jack Sparrow and cap. Hook. Everyday we talk and sing about pirates. Im glad to read about your wonderful time, Now I feel like its worth the money for this trip. One question, Do you remember what time this started?

  3. Shelley,
    I don't remember the exact time. I do remember that we had eaten dinner at Chef Mickey's with time to spare between and that we didn't go out to the boat until it was dark. . . probably about 30 minutes or so before Wishes. So, if you know the time for Wishes, just subtract about 90 minutes and that would be a good estimate of the start time.

    We were there in November, so Wishes was earlier than it would be in the summer months, so plan accordingly.

    If you've got a 'night owl' you'll be OK, but otherwise your 2 year old may need a nap. Check with the reservation specialist about any possible age restrictions for the event.

    It can get chilly out on the water at night, so be sure to have a jacket.

    Enjoy! And, your welcome!

  4. thanks so much for sharing this! I'm so excited to do this for my parents' 40th now in February! I will keep some of the suprises to myself : )

  5. You are so welcome! Have a magical trip and dress warmly as it may be a bit chilly at night in February.