Saturday, December 8, 2012

Caribbean Plaza atmosphere

    Caribbean Plaza was added to Adventureland at the Magic Kingdom in 1973.  This was brought on by the Pirates of The Caribbean attraction being built in Florida; as well as extending the existing Adventureland, which pretty much ended right at the Tiki Room building and included a pathway running straight into Frontierland on the west side of The Country Bear Jamboree.  The addition of Caribbean Plaza allowed a better transition into Frontierland, as well as added a dynamic thematic element to that side of the park.   
      The well themed atmosphere was plussed by the performances of JP and The Silver Stars, a steel drum band that performed around the area.  The locations that they performed changed throughout the years, and ultimately ended in 1999 to make way for various meet and greet areas and character interaction elements that are less atmosphere based, and more product based.
     I have always had an affinity towards this area of Magic Kingdom.  I know as a child I absolutely loved the shop at the end of Pirates.  Back when the rifles sold actually looked like guns that would have been used by pirates, as well as many other treasures to plunder there.  My grandfather loved to stop and listen to the music that emanated harmoniously from their various instruments.  We always took the time to enjoy their performances, so in turn we spent a lot of time around here.  A taco salad was rarely missed at El Pirata y Perico, when it used to be open more frequently in the past.  It is now called Tortuga Tavern, and is only open during the most busy times of the year at the park. 
     Caribbean Plaza was a great addition to the park and is and always has been a fantastic area to spend time.  I do hope that experiences like this, that are strictly for the enjoyment of the guests, play a more prominent part in the expansion of the parks.  Entertainment options like this can span many generations, like JP and The Silver Stars, who brought so much more  to our Walt Disney World vacation experiences throughout the years.

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