When circling the World Showcase Lagoon at Epcot, there comes a moment when the fife and drum begin to fill your ears and things start to take a turn back in time some two centuries. Buildings are colonial looking. An old school atmosphere is everywhere you look. Flags blow in the wind as the stripes and different numbers of stars adorn them around the American Adventure pavilion.
The American Adventure sits between between Italy and Japan. There is one main attraction with three restaurants (so to speak), and one merchandise location.
At the focal point of the pavilion is the American Adventure show itself. It is a 29-minute attraction that mixes music, movie, and audio-animatronics to take guests on a trip through the beginning of the nation up until present day. It is a fantastic journey through time with your hosts Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain as the United States grows and prospers from day one and looks forward to the future.
One of the most memorable things that you’ll take away from the attraction though is the song “Golden Dream” which showcases the finale and will most likely be in your head for the rest of the day and years to come. It is a song that signifies true patriotism for the U.S.A. and is actually one I listen to many times every 4th of July. Prepare for the goosebumps as images of some of America’s greatest figures flash across the screen and the words “Flying high…flying High!” echo in your ears.
Looking for something to eat? Well, there isn’t much variety but there are three locations to eat in all-out American style. The first is Liberty Inn which is a Disney quick-service location featuring burgers, hot dogs, salads, chicken tenders, and the like. Common fare for the Disney QSRs.
Outside is a stand called the…wait for it…Fife & Drum that also has hot dogs but serves smoothies and the traditional Disney turkey legs as well.
Perhaps my favorite is a very small location as you’re about to leave the American pavilion area and get into Japan territory. It is the Funnel Cake Stand and it serves literally some of the best food around even if there is virtually only one selection. Get one and just let the taste do the full explanation.
As far as shopping goes, some may consider Heritage Manor Gifts to be disappointing due to its severe lack of size and limited merchandise. Then again though, you are actually in America as a whole, so it doesn’t truly surprise me that Disney used little space for merchandise here.
While in the American pavilion though, keep an eye out for shows and performances that can go on at the America Gardens Theatre which sits right on the water. Numerous musical acts, readings, and great holiday celebrations happen on the stage throughout the year so make sure to pick up a time guide so that you’re up to date on all the happenings. One of my favorites is when celebrities do a Christmas narration during the holiday season.
Oh, there is one other thing that must be checked out when spending time in America (at Epcot). Yes, the Fife and Drum Corps that does sporadic shows during the day is awesome and you’ve got to witness the playing of the National Anthem, but there is one big time sight to see and hear while in America and that is the Voices of Liberty.
Perhaps some of the most beautiful and moving songs in American history and you can hear every single one of them sung a capella. Believe me that when they hit that first note, you’ll want to find your way near them even if you aren’t even close. They can usually be found performing throughout the day before viewings of the American Adventure show.
There’s no mistaking the awesome patriotism shown forth throughout the entire American Adventure pavilion and it must be seen, heard, and felt to truly be believed. Experience a culture that takes you back in time instead of letting you just see all that it has become today. So spread your golden wings, sail on freedom’s wind, and experience the American Adventure that “will last a long…long time.”