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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Greer Column: Vacations then (as a child), and now (as a young adult)

  • There’s nothing more magical than to be a kid at the Happiest Place on Earth! Most of us have had the pleasure to hold the trusting hand of a parent or friend and walk down Main Street USA with a doughy smile and gooey lips – that you received from chomping on a chocolatey treat in the form of Mickey Mouse’s head – and seeing Cinderella’s Castle with a sense of wonder and awe.
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  •     There’s nothing more magical than to be a kid at the Happiest Place on Earth! Most of us have had the pleasure to hold the trusting hand of a parent or friend and walk down Main Street USA with a doughy smile and gooey lips – that you received from chomping on a chocolatey treat in the form of Mickey Mouse’s head – and seeing Cinderella’s Castle with a sense of wonder and awe.        
        That’s right, folks – I’m talking about Walt Disney World. But is it just as important to go to Disney World as an older “kid?”   
        I am currently experiencing the magic of Walt Disney World with my parents in Florida – that’s right, this almost 19-year-old kid at heart is enjoying the theme parks with as much glee and excitement as that as a 5-year-old. This trip is acting as a sort of last big “hoo-rah” before college, and the question that is begging to be asked that has been floating around my mind is this: Is there a shift in magic from going to Disney World as a child compared to going as a – dare I say it – adult?
        Do even the most adamant believers of Peter Pan and Neverland have to face the music of reality and grow up? Or is there a part of us – of everyone – that desires to remain a kid forever, even as the wrinkles form and time takes its toll on our bodies? An even more pressing question can be asked:  Is there a reason we shouldn’t all remain a “kid at heart?”   
        There are some obvious differences in vacation experiences between going to Disney as a child and going as an “adult.” For one, the things you desire to do – attractions, meeting characters, etc. – have shifted dramatically. Suddenly it’s not so important to meet every single character, or go on Fantasyland rides. Sometimes, it can be physically harder to walk the parks, stand in the lines and experience Florida’s famous heat. Depending on your personality, it will either be silly or second nature to skip down the main way towards Cinderella’s Castle. And is it so important to meet your favorite character?    
        Important or not, there are lessons to be learned at any age at Disney World. For instance, Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy and an array of princesses, princes and villains from all of our classic favorites perform a show describing how believing in your dreams can change even the most villainous of situations. Is there a certain age where we
    Page 2 of 2 - just simply forget, where we outgrow the magic that was instilled to many of us as a kid? And if so, how do we prevent the magic from disappearing?   
        The answer to these questions and many more can be found within a smile of a loved one, the happiness of a laugh, the kindness of a good deed. No matter your age, there is something magical about experiencing a common happiness. No act of kindness goes unnoticed, for even the smallest smile can make an impact. As Walt Disney simply put it, “All our dreams come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” So get out there, pursue your dreams, follow your heart and, perhaps most importantly, never stop believing in the magic.
       

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