What happens when you share your Walt Disney World vacation with a hurricane?
Keep an eye on the weather predictions and plan ahead!
On our way to our happy place we heard about the devastation Hurricane Matthew was causing in Haiti and the Bahamas. We made the decision at that time to rearrange some of our plans to allow for some in room time during the worst of the storms. After looking at the radar, we decided that Friday, October 7, Orlando would probably see the worst of the weather. Before we even arrived on property, we had already changed a few of our reservations to allow us Friday as an off day.
DIStracted Tip: If you see that bad weather could put a damper on some of your park plans, the My Disney Experience App makes it simple to rearrange those plans and reservations right on your mobile device.
Never fear, Disney handles hurricanes with faith, trust and pixie dust!
After checking into Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, we were able to enjoy two days of peaceful weather. That is when things began to get interesting. Disney announced that all parks would close at 5:00 PM on Thursday, October 6th. Thankfully, we had already completed our plans for the day, and were ready to head back to the resort. This is where we will begin the story of how Disney found ways to bring pixie dust even when Hurricane Matthew tried to ruin our vacation.
First of all, when we got back to our room we had a flashlight and a letter from our resort manager waiting in our room.
In addition, there was a voicemail letting us know that we would receive periodic updates on the weather and special arrangements made by Disney.
Stay calm and be prepared!
Next, we were informed that in the anticipation of power outages, the resort food courts would be selling boxed lunches for everyone to keep in their rooms. Since we had driven down for vacation, we chose to visit the nearest discount store to purchase our own food supplies. We were glad we chose to do this, as this was the line for the boxed lunches that evening.
Curfew began at 6:00 PM on Thursday evening, and then we were left to entertain ourselves and our children for the next 18 hours. We had brought movies, and a laptop, so that was great entertainment to pass the time.
DIStracted Tip: If there is inclement weather in your vacation forecast, consider packing a deck of cards. This is a small item to add to your luggage, but could provide hours of entertainment to pass the time indoors to wait for the weather to improve.
We were able to get a good night’s sleep. As we awoke, all seemed calm and serene around us.
But, alas, we were greeted with this:
Parks would be closed for only the fourth time in the 45 years Walt Disney World had existed. As noon approached, the curfew was lifted. We were finally able to walk around to see what Matthew had done to our beloved resort. We were happy to see, not much damage was incurred.
Riding out the storm Disney style!
Disney found some great ways to bring pixie dust our way while we spent the day at our resort. Games in the arcade were FREE all day to resort guests.
Next, we had some pretty special friends come and visit!
Cast members were leading games and activities in the food court. There was an overall sense of relief and joy that the worst was over, vacations could resume.
Friday evening some restaurants and stores in Disney Springs opened up to resort Guests. And, boy did folks show up in droves! There were long lines for dinner, and long lines in the popular stores.
Good-bye Matthew, Hello Sunny Days!
It just felt great to be out and about again. Saturday, business resumed as usual. For the remainder of our vacation the weather was PERFECTION! After Matthew’s visit ended, we could not have asked for better temperatures, along with blue skies and sunshine.
As you can see, Hurricane Matthew was no match for the magic of Disney! We still ended up with another wonderful vacation. Matthew just gave us an extra day to relax and enjoy some quiet family time in our room.