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November 15, 2013

Magic Kingdom - Tomorrowland Speedway


Tommorowland Speedway is one of the remaining original attractions at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom. In other words, it's been a part of the park since opening day, October 1, 1971. Due to this singular fact (maybe mixed with a teeny touch of nostalgia), I hold Speedway in the highest regard. I respect the attraction for what it is. 

With that being said, I have barely even taken notice of Speedway in a few years now. It fell off the must-do list as soon as my son was tall enough for Space Mountain. Now, don't get me wrong - I'm only saying that this attraction is not for everyone. I like most anything - from simple, cute and leisurely to harrowing and stomach churning. I am not the biggest fan of go-karts in general, but I really really do NOT like Speedway! 


Guests ride in two-seater vehicles, on a railed, approximately 2,000 foot track that winds and curves, four lanes wide. It really is a putter-er, at 7 mph, and it generally finds most appeal with the younger folks, so imagine a twisty, clanky, puttering track with a squealing 8 year-old repeatedly bump-bump-bumping you along the way, for five full minutes. (Try as you may to make "no bumping" rules stick in karts, it just doesn't work.) And, with their 4 year-old sister in front of you, steering from the wrong side of the car as daddy operates the pedals, clanking along at 2mph... well, you're in an annoyance sandwich, my friend. When your kids are this age, it's adorably cute, and a wonderful experience. Mine are 14 and 17, however... and it's just not cute anymore. This seems to be a rather popular sentiment, so I don't think I'm just becoming a child-hating monster. 

Speaking of the kiddos... children must be at least 54" to drive alone, 32" to ride with an adult. And yes, it's pretty uncool in general to try to cheat that one, people! My kids were too small and disappointed at one time too, but the rules are there for a reason. It consistently amazes me what people do on rides, and the stunts they allow their kids to pull! Don't get me started on my time as a Cast Member in Fantasyland... The behaviors on the Carousel and Ariel's Grotto Water Playground (now gone) made me wonder if parents were TRYING to arrange accidents! Sheesh!
But, I digress... chatty Cathy tonight, I know this! The cars are cute, and cool for what they are. They are actually gas-powered vehicles that could be quite impressive if it weren't for the governors restricting them. This area can get a little crowded and overheated, so if wait times are extensive, it really isn't a massive loss to pass it up, or save it. I'd hate to see the attraction removed, but without my own little giggling minions squealing down the track, it just lost a touch of magic for me. 


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