Visiting the Frontier – Disney Style

This past December, the Witemeyer family escaped Texas for a family vacation several years in the making. With a wedding and college graduation this spring for my son, and my daughter knee-deep in research and conferences for her PhD program, our window of opportunity for family vacations has been dwindling. Thankfully, the stars aligned just right for us to squeeze in a trip to Disney World before we all start going our separate ways. We invited my son’s fiancé and my youngest son’s girlfriend to join in the fun, and we had a fabulous time. So many photos and memories.

Of course, my favorite land to visit in Magic Kingdom is Frontierland. My western-loving heart enjoyed hearing the piped in oater music, seeing the Liberty Belle riverboat, and getting absorbed into the wild west atmosphere. My favorite ride is of course Big Thunder Mountain, and it was so much fun reading all the signs posted around the mining company as we waited for our chance to ride.

If my next book happens to feature a terrible twosome named the Hash Knife Outfit known for tomfoolery and habitual bungling, you’ll know where the idea came from. Or maybe my next heroine will take a job in the Hard Times Café. Lot’s of possibilities there.

Some other fun frontier moments came at Epcot where we visited the American Adventure theater to relive America’s past with Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin as our hosts.

And you know I wasn’t going to miss everybody’s favorite cowboy in Toy Story Land in Hollywood Studios.

So many fun opportunities for inspiration. Like this masked gang of suspicious characters heading to the shooting gallery to stir up trouble.

It’s a good thing I found a pencil to make notes for my next book idea!

Did you travel at all over the Christmas break? Where did you go?
Have you been to Disney World or Disneyland? What are your favorite rides/experiences?

Website | + posts

For those who love to smile as they read, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. Karen is a firm believer in the power of happy endings. . . and ice cream. She is an avid cross-stitcher, and makes her home in Abilene, TX with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at:

31 thoughts on “Visiting the Frontier – Disney Style”

  1. I didn’t travel over the holidays, but I have been to Disney World twice. It’s a place that you need days to see and experience. I liked all of the exhibition-type presentations.

  2. I’ve never been to any Disney park.

    We visited my MIL in NJ for a day trip over Christmas break. My middle flew to our home for part of the week from Dallas.

    I’ve been to Knott’s Berry Farm which has a western theme. We rode a stagecoach there. And one section of Hershey Park has a western section.

  3. When I was younger, I loved taking my family to Disneyland. As I got older and my mobility became a problem, requiring either a walker or wheelchair if much waling was required, it became burdensome to try to navigate the large crowds. Now I stay home with all the doggies when my kids go to WDW.

    • My in-laws took my two nieces a few years ago and they ended up having to rent scooters because they just couldn’t do all the walking. We easily walked 17,000 steps a day while we were there. By the last couple days, everyone’s feet were aching. But no regrets! Too much fun to slow down. Ha!

  4. Oh, you all looked so happy, Karen! This will be a trip you will remember for years and years. I’m glad you could make it happen for your family.

    My husband and I went to Disney World a while back (I won a church raffle!) and I really wished we could have gone when our girls were small. I hope to go to Disney Land some day. Maybe with the grandkids, eh?

    Fun blog. Love the one with you and the pencil! 🙂

    • The minute I saw that pencil, I knew I had to get a photo. Too perfect for an author. 🙂 We had such fun. My son and his fiance are going back in May for their honeymoon. Strange that they didn’t invite the rest of us. Ha!

  5. No I stayed close to home at Christmas. We only went to my brother in laws house on Christmas Eve which is only about 50 miles away. We did go to Disneyland about 30 years ago and I did enjoy it. I never did make it back to there again.

  6. As you know, I traveled to Abilene for Christmas! So, as you left Abilene, I entered Abilene 🙂 ha ha!!!! I’ve been to Disney World twice and enjoyed it but I would love to go back at a cooler time! Both times I went were in the summer and it was just so hot and humid, I didn’t like it much! We did get to go on the Pandora ride last time and that was awesome!

    • The weather was gorgeous when we went in December. Low 80s most days. And not very humid. I highly recommend this time of year. It was our first time to visit in December, and I’m definitely a fan. The Flights of Passage ride is probably my favorite. So amazing!

  7. How funny!! I live in Central Florida, in Brevard County, and I took off for Texas for Christmas!! While you left Texas to come to Central Florida!!! I enjoyed Christmas in Amarillo with friends while you enjoyed the theme parks!!

  8. Haven’t had a vacation in quite a while due to family obligations (weddings, illnesses, work, etc.). Use to travel every summer. I like to drive not fly, so that I am able to check out all the places we drive through. Been to Grand Canyon, Ski slopes in Colorado and New Mexico. Driven all the way to New York from Texas but have not been to Disney World or Disneyland. Kids are all grown with children so a trip might be in the future. Glad you were able to get the whole family together for your trip, it does get harder to do as they grow up.

  9. We travel to my mom’s house but that only 20 minutes from where I live. I have never been to Disneyland or Disney World. Wait…hold on… I’ve been to the Disney store in Asheville, NC when my kids were little. That should count for something. Haha!
    I’m glad all of you had a wonderful time.

  10. Hi, no we did not travel at all, we stayed home. We went to Disneyland a long time ago, and we loved it. I think my favorite was It’s a Small World. Looks like you all had fun, that is really good. Have a great week and stay safe.I enjoyed reading your post.

    • Thanks, Alicia. My daughter is very nostalgic and always wants to ride Small World even though no one else does. 🙂 I always volunteer to ride it with her. It’s a very soothing ride and a nice break from walking.

  11. We went to the beach in North Carolina. Our choice because it was off season and nearly deserted. We went with our daughter and her family and just wanted to relax and stay away from other people. We walked the beach, went to Fort Macon, hiked out there, went to the Aquarium (the only time we were around other people.), and hiked some more. We have all tried to maintain our bubbles and stay safe.
    The first time we went to Disney World was right after their grand opening 50 years ago. We were lucky enough to have friends who worked or retired from there. Sadly, they are no longer with us. They were able to bring in guests except for a few holidays, a policy that has since changed quite a bit. We went in on one day Park Hopper tickets, so tended to go to our favorites in each park. Haunted Mansion and It’s A Small World were first, plus a few others. We spent much of our time in Epcot since they dealt with science and countries around the world. The last time we went, was the first time our granddaughter (10), so we were spread a bit thin throughout the parks. The new Star Wars section is something we all want to see.
    So glad you and your family were able to enjoy Disney. It really can be a magical place.

  12. We have not traveled in many years. We are disabled so traveling is difficult. I have never had an opportunity to go to Disney. It looks as if you had a wonderful time. Thank you for sharing.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.