Crazy Cat Lady
Loved all of your night photos at the After Hours event!! So nice that you had a relaxing, rewarding evening with your sister!
That's crazy that your boss knew more thousands of miles away than you did on the scene! Oh my goodness, truly ironic about the fire escape construction being the cause of the fire. Glad everyone was okay!We’ve done an after hours event once at DLP and everything was a walk on. Lighting is lower than at WDW, which added to the experience (some areas are downright creepy when you are the only two walking through them!)
Sorry to hear about your experience with the lack of information and the fire alarm. We had a similar experience last year at work. My takeaway was that even though fire drills are meant to help us prepare for the “real deal”, when the “real deal“ comes it isn’t “pre-prepared” and many people aren’t good on the fly. Took at least 15 mins before we were told anything, and even that was coming from one person on a megaphone in a different area. Because the fire was in an unoccupied and closed off area of the building (one-third of the building was being renovated) and because the fire happened on the hottest day of the year, the recommendation of the fire department was to keep us inside on the opposite side of the building. Even before the announcements started being made, we learned it was a fire because I got a message from my boss asking about the fire - he was away at a meeting (thousands of miles away) and someone in that meeting was informed. They did at least recognize all the shortcomings in an organization-wide email the following day, so that at least is something. The irony of the whole situation: it was started from a spark from a welding tool ... that was welding the new fire escape stairs to the building!
I would definitely do another After Hours event. One of my favorite park nights ever. Makes sense about the fire alarm. Thanks for the insight!Glad you enjoyed After Hours! It’s definitely 100% worth the money in our book! As far as the fire alarm...I work for a fire protection company, and I can almost guarantee you that they forgot to disable their system before doing “hot work” (the welding you referred to in the food court area). They probably set off their smoke/heat detectors, which caused the building system to alarm. Happens all. the. time.
Thanks! We absolutely loved After Hours! It was definitely a magical evening.Loved all of your night photos at the After Hours event!! So nice that you had a relaxing, rewarding evening with your sister!
As soon as you began this post, I knew exactly where it was headed!May 30, 2019 continued...
Well technically it was now May 31st, but since our day wasn't quite over I'm opting to just call it May 30th !
We walked back to the Contemporary and started to get ready for bed. I took these photos of our After Hours event brochure while Tina took her turn in the bathroom.
I think I mentioned this earlier, but when we picked up our refillable mugs on our first day, the CM told us that we could get drinks from Contempo Cafe 24/7. We did not find this to be true, but checked almost every night anyway. One night they were cleaning the drink machines and every other night they were doing some sort of cleaning or light construction work in the area. We were thirsty so I decided to grab our mugs and try to grab some drinks. I opened the door to our room and could see that they were doing some sort of welding or other activity right above the drink machines and the area was blocked off. I also noticed that it smelled a little funny. Luckily we had water and juice in the room so it wasn't a huge deal. Tina grabbed some water and hit the bed while I took my turn in the bathroom.
While in the bathroom I thought I heard a bleeping noise, but Tina wasn't saying anything so I just ignored it. A minute or two later when I came out of the bathroom I could still hear it. Curious about what it was I opened the door to our room and discovered that what I was hearing was the fire alarm going off on the other side of the A frame! It seemed to only be alarming in a small area of that side of the resort and I could see some people exiting their rooms. People on our side of the A frame were looking out the doors, but the alarms on our side were not going off. I decided we weren't taking any chances so I woke up Tina and we threw on clothes and our shoes and headed for the stairs. I noticed that it was still only a small area with alarms buzzing and it didn't look like everyone was evacuating. I also noticed a lack of CMs. We headed down the stairs and outside. When we got outside we saw some guests and only 1 CM who wasn't really directing anyone. No fire equipment.
Thinking better safe than sorry, we stayed outside and walked across the way to some outdoor seating.
No one was telling us anything, and a few of us were asking one another for information. At some point I heard that it was a false alarm, maybe something with some maintenance equipment and that the fire department had okayed people going back in. I didn't see the fire department from where we were, but no one else was leaving the building and all seemed calm. Those of us who were outside started to head back in. Tina and I decided to take a sleepy selfie to help us remember our Disney fire drill.
There were a number of people lined up to talk to the one or two CMs at the desk. While we wanted to know exactly what had happened, we decided that we wanted sleep more. We headed back upstairs to bed. I was expecting to hear something the next day via a note to our rooms or something, but we were never provided with any information. It definitely wasn't good show, but since "all's well that ends well", we didn't spend much time dwelling on it.
Up Next: Hollywood Studios
Tuesday, August 27
I awakened a little after 5 am to use the bathroom. I debated going back to bed, but decided to shower since we had a busy morning ahead ~ packing, checking out of Coronado, checking into Grand Floridian (to stow luggage until room was ready), and then catching the bus from GF to the Studios where we had morning FPs and a lunch ADR at Mama Melrose.
Suddenly I heard a constant, rhythmic beeping. I opened the big barn bathroom door and listened. The noise was coming from the hall. I opened our room door and discerned it was the fire alarm! A female voice kept repeating, "This is a fire emergency. Please evacuate the building."
I wondered why there was no fire alarm in our room. I'm not sure I would have heard that hall alarm had I not already been up. Woody was sleeping peacefully. I was trying to remain calm but my insides felt like this:
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I woke the anti-Woody, who said it was likely a false alarm. I picked up our room phone to inquire. Of course the room phone connects to a call center, not the actual front desk, so the CM put me on hold while she contacted the resort directly.
“Ma’am, you need to GET OUT!!”
Okay so now I am in full freak out mode. Woody kept reassuring me that it was a false alarm, that false alarms in hotels have happened to him numerous times over the years, blah, blah, blah.
All I can think about is The Towering Inferno.
I was tempted to throw everything into my suitcase (since we were checking out later anyway), until Woody reminded me we were on the 9th floor, we’d have to lug that suitcase down many flights of stairs....and possibly back UP said stairs if the elevators hadn’t resumed operation.
Right. So I stuffed all our electronics into a bag (priorities!) and we headed for the stairwell. The alarm was still beeping and the voice kept repeating, “This is a fire emergency. Please evacuate the building.”
We were the only ones on the stairs. We exited the building into darkness. No one else was around.
Woody and I walked towards the front of the Tower and were met by a CM in a suit who directed us to a staging area to wait for the fire department. He was giving out no other information.
I didn’t see any smoke or flames which I took as a good sign!
There weren’t nearly as many guests in the staging area as I expected considering the number of rooms in the Tower. Were the rest still sleeping?
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A Magical Express bus arrived and dropped off a family toting their luggage. Another CM in a suit prevented them from going towards the entrance and directed them to the staging area.
“Can you imagine what they’re thinking?” Woody said to me. “Great, the hotel we booked is on fire?”
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What in the world took them so long?
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And why the truck parked beside a Cabana instead of the Tower, I have no idea!
We waited almost 30 minutes longer until the “all clear.” Fortunately we were able to ride the elevator back to the 9th floor. A man who rode with us joked that we should all be given extra Fastpasses for the inconvenience.
The reality was:
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At least our stuff didn’t burn!
So sorry you and Woody had to begin your day that way! As I read about your experience I remembered that Tina and I both made sure to grab our phones, chargers and park bags on our way out of the room. As you said, priorities!As soon as you began this post, I knew exactly where it was headed!
You see, Woody and I had a similar experience in August at Gran Destino Tower in Coronado Springs.
We were excited about the army man magic shot, too! 50’s is now one of my favorites! It will definitely be a go to ADR in the future!I love the magic shot with the army man!! I've never seen that one before.
You can't go wrong with 50's!! That's the same meal I always get--never been disappointed with it!!
I'm bummed for you that you didn't get a feisty waiter.I'd really been looking forward to the interactions with the cast members. Our server was friendly and efficient, but not interactive. We did enjoy the hijinx at some of the other tables.
That’s a great story! Fingers crossed we’ll have a more energetic server on our next visit!I'm bummed for you that you didn't get a feisty waiter.
One of our favorite meals there was when my son was 12 or 13 and a pain. He had his phone out and the waitress scolded him and said "Scooter, what did I tell you about toys at the dinner table? You put that away"!
He was mortified, I laughed my head off. And you know what his name was for the remainder of the trip!