slide show

September 9, 2011

DGTG Splurge: A Voyage Walt Disney World's Pirates League

With Halloween and  Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party right around the corner, I found it extremely fitting to share with you this guest post from DGTG correspondent, Molly B. a.k.a The Real Disney Mom!  Being Mommy to 3 little pirates and wife to a full-grown one definitely makes her qualified to take you on this journey!  Enjoy Matey!

Our family really likes pirates. We especially like any pirates having to do with Disney. Captain Hook, Jake and his Neverland crew,and of course Captain Jack Sparrow and the rest of the Pirates of the Caribbean. Our obsession, eerrr, love for pirates stems from my husband who is a Captain Jack fanatic. He has two Jack Sparrow tattoos and has an amazing Jack costume that he amazes people with every Halloween.


We started taking our children to Walt Disney World in 2009 and have not stopped since. When I was planning our first trip as a family I came across something called the Pirates League on the WDW website. I soon as I read about it, I knew this was something that my oldest son, Jake, just had to experience. He was only 2 at the time, and the minimum age is 3, but since he was only a few weeks away from his 3rd birthday, they made an exception for him. He has now been transformed into a pirate 3 times and I’m sure that this past time was not his last.

The Pirates League can be found in the Magic Kingdom to the right of the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction in Adventureland. You can call ahead to make reservations, and they also will except walk-ins if there is a free spot. If you reserve over the phone ahead of time, you do not have to pay in advance, but they do require a credit card guarantee. The League is open to children and adults, boys and girls. You can choose between three packages. The First Mate Package includes a bandanna, a “pirate face transformation”, tattoo,fake teeth, an earring and eye patch, a sword and sheath, and a pirate coin necklace. The Empress package is a favorite among young ladies and includes a bandanna, sparkly makeup, face gems, a tattoo, a nail painting, earring and eye patch, sword and sheath, and pirate coin necklace. The third package is the Captain's Package in which you can purchase a costume. We have always gone with the First Mate Package. The second year we participated in The League, we brought Jake’s pirate costume from home which was much more affordable! You can also choose from a plethora of different “pirate looks”: Empress, Cursed Pirate, Smokey-Eyed Jack, Black-Eyed Jack, and Captain Hook. Jake has always chosen Smokey-Eyed Jack, and this year my husband got transformed for the first time into a Cursed Pirate.

Your journey into becoming a pirate begins after you check in at the desk located outside of the Pirates League. You are then escorted to the doors. If you happen to be the first potential pirate of the day as we were for Jake’s first time in 2009, then you get to stand in front of the doors and sing “Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me…” Doing this wakes up the pirates and they open the doors to welcome you inside.

Once you are inside, you will be told to turn a wheel that will overturn a set of dice inside of a treasure chest. These dice, and your day of birth will determine what your new pirate name will be. On our first visit, Jake turned into “George Guncheese”, which to this day is still his favorite alias. The second time, his name was “Charles Shorepaddler”, and this most recent time, he was dubbed “William Truesilver”.

As soon as you have been renamed to the standards of Jack and his crew, you will be brought to your station and your transformation will begin. You will sit in what resembles a barber chair, and will be covered with a smock. If you have long hair, your “pirate trainer” will clip it back.Everything that is used during the process, such as makeup applicators is individually packaged, and thrown out after use. You will first be “branded”with a pirate tattoo. Your make-up will then be applied, and finally you will be given your bandanna and other finishing touches. After you have taken your “pirate oath” your “trainer” will then call out “WE'VE GOT A NEW PIRATE!” and of course every one in the room will hoot and holler for you!

This year little middle guy Ben was just about a half a year too young to participate in The Pirates League this year, but he was dying to join in on the fun. I brought some face make up from home, and some of Jake’saccessories from years passed, and performed the transformation on Ben myself! The wonderful pirates had absolutely no problem with me doing this, and even provided Ben with his own sword, which we did not bring with us. They also let him be photographed with Jake and Daddy.

Finally you will be taken to a secret room where your photo will be taken. In order to find out what happens in this secret room and where exactly it is, you will just have to become a pirate yourself!

This has become a favorite tradition for me family and I know that we will continue to enjoy it for years to come. Jake talks about it all the time and can not wait until next year when he can do it again. Until then, “Drink up, me hearties, yo ho!”

This post was written by DGTG correspondent, Molly B.

For reservations and further information:

The Pirates League is accepting reservations when you call (407) WDW-CREW (939-2739). Theme park admission required. Open 7 days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The last reservations will be taken at 3:30pm. Costume selection and sizing may vary. No discounts apply unless otherwise noted. Guests must be at least 3 years of age. Reservations are strongly recommended and can be made up to 180 days prior to arrival. A valid accepted credit card number is required at time of booking. A $10 cancellation fee will be applied to such credit card for all no-shows or if reservation is cancelled within 24 hours of experience. Children must be accompanied by an adult at least 18 years of age or older during the entire experience. Subject to restrictions. All prices, package components and information are subject to change without notice. Pirate Parade-weather permitting.

No comments: