09 September 2008

Move on to the hard cash

Change is a good thing. Quarters, pennies, and the occasional dollar bill are all especially good, especially for children in Walt Disney World. Quarters and pennies won’t buy much of a snack inside the parks any longer and their use in the arcades has all but vanished, but they still have their places.

Throughout Walt Disney World there are penny and quarter pressing machines, perfect for a pocket-sized souvenir, though the machines can be spread out and occasionally have little to no connection to the area in which they are presented. On the flip side, your child has a new favorite attraction or has their first interaction with their favorite character, besides a picture this is a great piece of the experience for a child to take home. As for the pressed coins available at the resorts, generally hotels are not as memorable for children, usually the only thing they can recall is if it had a pool or not, but in the case of Walt Disney World’s resorts, they are sure to leave a lasting impression that will be remembered for years to come.

Particularly good uses of change in the Magic Kingdom are the change of pace attractions: Frontierland Shootin’ Arcade (located near the Country Bear Jamboree) and Shrunken Ned’s Junior Jungle Boats(adjacent to the Jungle Cruise). The Frontierland Shootin’ Arcade will take quarters, and for four quarters you receive 25 shots with your very own rifle. Over at Shrunken Ned’s a dollar will provide you with a wheel with which to steer one of eight miniature jungle boats. Both attractions offer change or token machines depending on the requirement of the experience, and either option is a perfect way for a child to feel like they are a part of their own adventure.

Now for a few words of advice. Shiner coins tend to allow the pressed pennies and quarters to show up clearer. If all of your change appears a little dingy, purchase a lemon, squeeze the juice into a small cup, and allow your change to rest in the juices for a while. After removing the coins, rinse them off and you are ready to go. This can also be done after the coins are pressed, but the crisper looking the coin is when it is pressed, the more enjoyable the moment is immediately. As for what to keep this change in while traveling through the parks, I have always opted for an old plastic film canister. I know film isn’t as common as it used to be, but a canister will hold quite a bit of change and seals remarkably well. Gum and mint tins, as well as the Fastpass holders, would all work fine as a substitute.

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