Author: Stephen

I'm Stephen Ashley. My wife and I are huge fans of Disney World. I'm the author of Walt Disney World With Disabilities. I also wrote a book called Walt Disney World Made Easy for Everyone, but rather than have it published, at this point we've decided to place all the material from the manuscript on this website so everyone can have access to it! I hope you enjoy it, and I hope it makes your day just a little bit brighter and easier.

This article will cover Disney World’s new Disney Genie and Disney Genie+. Though Disneyland will also have the new app, there will be some differences, so keep in mind that we’re dealing with Disney World here, unless Disneyland is specifically mentioned. This fall Disney World will be adding Disney Genie and Disney Genie+ to their My Disney Experience app. Fastpass+ which was put on hold for COVID changes will not be coming back. In addition, Disney will add the option of purchasing Individual attraction selections which we’ll talk about below. So guests will be able to choose to go on…

Read More

Header photo by professional Orlando photographer Candi Hall Location: Magic Kingdom area. Address: 4510 North Fort Wilderness Trail, Lake Buena Vista, FL., 32830  Phone: (407) 824-2900, Fax: (407) 824-3508, Kennel: (407) 824-2735, Check-in: 3 PM for cabins and 1 PM for campsites. Check-out is 11 AM. Parking fee: $20 per night for the Cabins. Guests staying at the Campsites get complimentary standard parking for one vehicle. Check-in: 3 PM. Check-out: 11 AM. Resort Type: Moderate. Overview of The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness and The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness While the Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness are considered a Moderate Resort, the campsites are considered a…

Read More

With some planning and strategy, Disney World can be a wonderful experience for those with ADHD (Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder), ADD (Attention-Deficit Disorder) and ODD (Opposition Defiant Disorder), and their families. We interviewed Jim West LMHC, NCC of the Total Life Counseling Center in Orlando, Florida (www.Totallifecounseling.com). Jim specializes in ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), ADD (attention deficit disorder) and ODD (oppositional defiance disorder) and he’s also a frequent visitor to Disney. He had a lot to share. We recognize that ODD is different from ADHD and ADD, but we’ve included it in this section (you’ll see the ODD topic label) since…

Read More

Disney World is a wonderful but very strange place to visit for anyone! For those who need a little assistance with adapting to the change in environment, making your own Story Book can be a huge help. Many have used this technique over the years with great success. Now with the unusual changes at Disney World due to COVID safety changes and the phased re-opening, creating an appropriate Story Book for your person is more important than ever. One of the members of our Facebook group called Walt Disney World Made Easy for Everyone shared a Social Story Book that…

Read More

Header image by Kat Jones-Shank Visiting Disney World while the changes are in place for COVID is new territory for everyone. During their phased re-opening things are changing. We recently got a great trip report from Diana Shelton, a member of our Facebook group (Walt Disney World Made Easy for Everyone). We’ll take Diana’s observations and tips and expand on them where appropriate. We’ll also add some other details that you’ll want to know to plan a visit during COVID related changes and the phased re-opening. Also if you have special needs and are concerned about how they’re handled currently, check…

Read More

Header Photo by Gillian Fisher Location: In the Magic Kingdom Resort area. Address: 901 Timberline Dr. Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830. Phone: (407) 824-3200 Fax: (407) 824-3232. Parking fee: $25 per night Self-Parking, $33 per night Valet Parking. Check-in: 3 PM. Check-out: 11 AM. Resort Type: Deluxe & Deluxe Villas. Overview of Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort As you pull up to the hotel entrance notice that the trees lining the driveway are mostly pines. Disney has taken pains to remove any tropical influence here. The peaceful and beautiful resort is modeled after Yellowstone National Park’s Old Faithful Lodge circa 1904, though more upscale. The…

Read More

By Katie Penn Disney Announcement: Disney has announced that park reservations dates now run through January 14, 2023. You’ll want to make your park reservations immediately after linking your 2022 vacation package in the My Disney Experience app.   Since announcing its reopening plan following the Covid 19 shut down, there have been a number of changes to the way people attend the Walt Disney World parks. This includes safety measures such temperature checks and masks, but also changes to the way guests plan a WDW trip. In the past, the main concerns for guests would be to get their…

Read More

Written By Katie Penn (Header photo by Alexi Michelle Peres and Deron Shackleford) Update: This article was written just as Covid-19 hit. With the reopening of Disney World, new policies have been temporarily enacted for safety. At this time, there are no character meet & greets. Characters can be seen around the parks but there is no physical interaction with guests. Hopefully, this is temporary! In the meantime, this article covers everything you’d need to know about characters at Disney World. Hopefully, everything will be restored eventually. This article will look at: Can adults meet characters? Things to do when…

Read More

Disney World has reopened, and we’ve got some answers to questions about the handling of special needs in the parks. Although things can change swiftly at Disney, here’s what’s happening now. Thank you to Autumn Barnes, Gordon LaGrow, Janey Schell, Grace Flanary, and many others in my Facebook group Walt Disney World Made Easy for Everyone for researching and generously sharing! Are masks required, even if there is a disability that makes it difficult to wear one? Anywhere and for as long as Disney is requiring them, then yes. No exemptions. Even if you’re wearing a face shield, a mask…

Read More

With all the changes due to covid-19, you’ll need to make a decision on whether to go to Disney World or not. The following are Disney’s changes. After those, I’ll add my thoughts on who should consider going and who should consider canceling. Now here are Disney’s changes: Update added 8/25/21 – Finger scanners coming back. Disney is adding back finger scanners at the entrances of the parks. So far we have had it confirmed that it’s at Animal Kingdom and Epcot. We hear that Cast Members are not sanitizing the scanners in between guests but there are hand sanitizer…

Read More

We interviewed two professionals in the prosthetic health care field who are both amputees themselves, and we spoke with a cast member from the Services for Guests with Disabilities department at Disney. We’ll share their interviews, along with some additional suggestions for amputees. Interview 1 with Karen Hughes: Tips for Amputees & Prosthetics Users We spoke with Karen Hughes, a Patient Advocate for Prosthetic & Orthotic Associates in the Orlando area (www.poacfl.com). The company is a prosthetic repair resource for out of town visitors, and Karen a Disney fan herself. She had above the knee amputation at the age of 13,…

Read More

Cover photo by Amanda J-c Location: Between the Animal Kingdom area and Hollywood Studios. Address: 1000 West Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, FL., 32830. Phone: (407) 939-1000 Fax: (407) 939-1001. Parking fee: $20 per night. Check-in: 3 PM. Check-out: 11 AM. Resort Type: Moderate. Overview of Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort This is Disney’s largest convention center resort, but families enjoy it as well. With 2,385 guest rooms, the resort is themed after Spanish-Colonial Mexico and the American Southwest. This resort is spread out around a beautiful 22-acre lake named Lago Dorado. The resort was named after Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, a Spanish explorer. He set…

Read More

By Katie Penn (Cover photo by Sue Welsh Guindon) This article will look at: Rain in Florida – What to expect Rainy Days in the Parks and Disney Springs – How to have fun anyway Alternative Activities for rainy days Rain in Florida – What to expect when you’re visiting Disney World Probably the most asked question for anyone planning a trip to Walt Disney World is: What will the weather be like? First of all, the caveat for anything to do with the weather in Florida is that it is changeable and unpredictable at any time of the year.…

Read More

By Sarah Ashley For decades I’ve used natural alternatives to deal with health issues, so it was natural for me to research when this Coronavirus thing came up. I’ve found some great info coming from various medical professionals, and thought I’d share this with our Disney readers. Keep in mind that what these doctors are suggesting comes with the caveat that there have been no formal tests on COVID-19. However from what I understand, these doctors are planning to use herbs and vitamins that have worked with viruses that have similar structural features and behaviors. This is all speculation and…

Read More

There are various options when it comes to hiring assistance while you’re at Disney World. Here is what’s available: Babysitting in-room Babysitting in a club format Parent-free Child adventure (Captain Hook’s Pirate Crew) Pet sitting Elder Care & Companionship Mother’s/Father’s Helpers Using Babysitting services during your visit to Disney World is an option. You may want to plan in advance to get some adult time in, such as going out to dinner or enjoying the adult options in the parks. Or you may even want an extra adult to help you manage your children in the parks. If you have…

Read More