Next up – Universal Studios, where we headed straight for Hogsmeade.
It was a really exciting place for all of us, especially Dennis and Gavin who are huge fans of the books and movies. One of the most anticipated events for us was tasting ‘butter beer’, a mythical treat from the story.
It tastes like really sweet cream soda with extra vanilla and butterscotch foam on top. $10.50 a glass got us two nice souvenir mugs full! 😉 We took some time to send some of our most vehement Potter fans some ‘owl mail’ with a ‘Hogsmeade’ postmark on it.
There was a sweet shop filled with authentic story goodies – chocolate frogs and Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean. When we got home we found out that ‘vomit’, ‘earwax’, ‘boogie’ and ‘earthworm’ really ARE included! Wands were procured by all the kids at Olivander’s.
Universal Studios also boasts Suess’ Landing. We ate lunch at Circus McGirkins and rode the rides there.
The most exciting part of the park for our family was the super heros. The kids love them all, and the scale on which they are reproduced here is fantastic! They run through the streets, good guys chasing bad guys roaring around on Can-ams that match their costumes – really thrilling for boys.The whole set up is really larger than life.
As I was standing with the boys after one of the appearances of the ‘heros,’ an employee walked past us all and asked if we were enjoying our day at Universal. Everyone replied in the affirmative. He kept walking, but quickly turned around and backed up. He asked the boys if they like super heros, who their favorites were and would they like to meet them all at the same time (as opposed to having to find them ‘catch-as-catch-can’ throughout the park?) Um, would we – yeah!
The guy was is in charge of where and when the heros appear. He explained where to wait and when to meet him. Our family, alone, was granted back-stage access of hang out with the heros, chat with them and take lots of pictures. The park’s professional photographer was also snapping photos that we can purchase for our personal collection!
The ‘heros’ were gracious and interested in the kids, asking lots of questions and listening to everything they had to say. We were not rushed and were asked several times if we got all the photos we wanted. I loved that we all got this experience.
Sometimes it can be a real detriment having a ‘super-conspicuous family’. There are times it is a little stressful. Not in this case. I think we stood out of the crowd – ya think?! – but this time, it really paid off. 🙂