Sunday, April 10, 2005

WDW 'Hat' Travel Guide: Adventurer's Club

Since my time in the WDW College Program, I have become known to my friends (and their friends) as the "Unofficial Tour Guide for the Magic Kingdom." I know many of you have experienced this in some fashion... I'm also the "Reluctant Guru of all things Compter and Tech-Related" because of my job in the tech field, even if it is related to something that I have no knowledge about (usually something related to a printer not working or AOL problems... you know... things that software developers have intimite knowledge of...).

So... on the WDW topic... I have given touring, lodging, dining, and travel guidance to many people that I have known through work, family, or other relationships. It's gotten to a point where I have compiled ever-evolving documents of information related to what to bring, what to see, when to go, and where to stay or eat that I can easily whip out and tweak to meet the particular families needs. I really should figure out a way to charge for this stuff!!! That d@%# Tour Guide Mike beat me to it!!! ;) [TGM actually is highly recommended by me... I bought his service on a whim on one of my trips just to see if he could provide me anything I didn't know... He got me on a few newer things, and I found his info on the things I knew intimitely to be complete and pretty darn accurate.] But since I thoroughly enjoy helping people out and pointing them to the off-the-beaten-path attraction or locale that most people miss, I really have had no problem giving out this information. Thus, I figured I'd throw one or two of these out on the blog here and there and solicit feedback and gather insight and advice from others on the topic.

So here goes...

Pleasure Island: The Adventurer's Club

The place that I send people to the most that they had had no idea about prior to my recommendation has to be the Adventurer's Club. Many who had heard of it had maybe stuck their heads in, saw little to nothing going on, wondered "WTF?", and then walked over to 8-Trax or the Comedy Warehouse, never to think of the place again. I know because I did this the first one or two times I used my oh-so-cheap CM season pass (usually the comedy club for me... me with the "white man's overbite" was not a pretty sight). One time, though, I decided to stay and became hooked on the place after that to the point that I visited one to two times a week for most of my time with the Mouse.

For those who haven't visited (or have done the "peek in" but haven't stayed), the Club is basically a 1930's adventurer's club in the vein of Indiana Jones or the like. Plenty of relics and such on the walls make it a pretty interesting walk-thru... the Imagineers went all out on the theming here. The catch here is that you'll see people dotted here and there that are in period garb. If you see one of them, start up a conversation or listen in on what they are talking about. These people are the actors that are the "club members" and are expert at improv comedy. The club has some of this improv as well as staged shows in the Library (and to a lesser degree in the other rooms, such as the Mask Room, Treasure Room and the Main Salon). There are also many props that interact in various ways, including Fingers (the ghost who plays the piano that has crashed through the ceiling), the masks in the Mask Room, the mysterious sinking barstools, and (of course) Babylonia and the Colonel in the Main Salon.

The permanant club members include the likes of Graves (Club butler), Samantha Sterling (resident adventuress), Hathaway Browne (resident adventurer), Pamelia Perkins (Club President), Fletcher Hodges (Club Curator), Otis T. Wren (Club Treasurer), and various maids and other characters. They put on various shows in the Library, including talent shows, radio shows, the Balderdash Cup, and other shows that include various amounts of singing, dancing and comedy. There is a schedule posted in the Main Salon detailing the times and locations of various shows. Make sure to check this schedule and catch a show or two. Most who "don't get it" haven't sat in on these shows and thus have missed on some of the main entertainment offered here. Note: sit at the benches up front (on either side of the stage) to get a good opportunity to get involved in the show. Most of the times I made it on stage were when I sat in these seats. Alternatively, if you want to avoid getting brought on the stage, avoid these seats at all costs!!! ;)

A few other things to make sure to experience: The Coloniel's initiation ceremony (become a member!) . Make sure to learn the club song (complete with the salute):

Marching Along, We're Adventurers
Singing the Song of Adventurers
Up or Down, North, South, East or West
An Adventurer's Life is Best!

Also, make sure to try the Kungaloosh, the Club's official club drink, named after the Club's official greeting. Of course, this drink may be the reason that I like the Club so well! From the Club's menu:

Spot your fellow adventurers by tipping a glass of this frozen concoction made with Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum, blackberry brandy liqueur, orange and strawberry juices. This is the official drink for all visiting adventurers during our new member induction ceremony.

To wrap up, I will say that this is a hit-or-miss attraction. People either love it or hate it. As noted before, I would contend that many who don't like it just haven't experienced it properly yet, but I'll concede that this isn't everyone's bag. I'm batting about .675 on this attraction by the feedback I've received, which isn't bad for such a niche-type attraction. I will continue to recommend that everyone take a night off from the kid activities (bring a grandparent, or hire a good babysitter... many are available... I would be glad to recommend a few) and experience PI, and in particular experience the Club. Be sure to learn the salute and drink one for me.


One final note: the guys or gals at offer a nice website with pictures and descriptions of the goings-on at the Club. They do a much better job of describing things than I do...


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