Thursday, September 29, 2022

#tbt DCL's First Visit to Bar Harbor

Today, we're having a special edition of Throwback Thursday.  Exactly five years ago today, Disney Cruise Line visited my hometown for the very first time!

I remember when I first found out that Disney was adding Bar Harbor to one of their fall itineraries.  I was so excited!  The news was huge for Bar Harbor and big for Maine too since no other Disney ships have ever stopped here before.  We had just taken our first Disney Cruise the previous year, in the fall of 2016, so it was a bit unbelievable to find out they'd be making their way here!

Mom and Dad wanted to go on that sailing as soon as they found out.  Before I knew it, they were booked on the Disney Magic for a 5-Night Canadian and New England cruise from New York City to St. John, New Brunswick in Canada and back to New York.  The cruise left New York on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 and arrived back to port in New York on Monday, October 2nd.  (It's stop in Bar Harbor was the 29th.)

We were all excited about Mom and Dad's upcoming cruise.  In fact, Eliot and I had made special mouse ears for the occasion.  I wanted them to have special ears that had the outline of MDI and said Mt. Desert Island on the other side.  Then, Eliot and I chose to make them in our MDIHS colors of green and white.  We weren't able to get them finished before they left, but we had them ready when they arrived in Bar Harbor! 

On September 29th, the Disney Magic sailed into Bar Harbor and I had to be there to see it.  Nana had stayed with me at a hotel across the street from my chiropractic office.  The night before, Eliot, Nana and I drove up to Trenton to Mom and Dad's house so we could be there to see them arrive.  I remember driving up to Paradise Hill so we could get a good view of the ship.  (Once my parents were close to land, they were texting us to let us know where the ship was putting down anchor.)

Seeing a Disney Cruise ship in my hometown was such a glorious sight!

I was beyond excited.  I'm definitely not a morning person, but Eliot and I hopped right up out of bed that morning, woke Nana up and got ready so we could be in town.  We missed the Magic actually sailing into town because it got there a little early, but we were up on Paradise Hill well before 8 am taking photos of it.

Naturally, I had a special outfit for the occasion.  I'd gotten out my new Disney Cruise Line nautical shirt and some bright red pants.  Then, I also wore my DCL logo earrings from Hokey Donut and brought my new DCL tote bag that a girl I follow on Instagram graciously got for me at the outlet store in Florida.  It was the perfect outfit!

We made our way into town and parked down on the pier.  We were there when Mom and Dad got off of the whale watch boat that was shuttling passengers to land from the ship.  The Bar Harbor Pier was a flurry of activity of cruise passengers heading into town or getting on their tour buses.  Mom and Dad arrived with a Disney Cruise Line shopping bag filled with a few of the plushies I'd asked them to get for me.

They didn't have grand plans that day.  Dad actually made a few work phone calls from home and they checked up on all of the business stuff.  But we did make time to go into town to take some photos before they had to be back on the ship that evening.

We made another stop up on Paradise Hill where we took a bunch of photos.

We took plenty photos of the ship, but we also got a ton of photos with us and the ship in the harbor.  We took a few with Eliot and me.

We took some of our donkeys.  (This was before Meep Meep joined the bunch.)

Eliot and I also got a "family" photo with our donkeys.

We took a boatload of photos of Mom and Dad with the Magic in the background.

We also got a few photos with Nana!

I also tried to get a few photos looking back towards town with the Magic.

Eliot and I also went up to the top of Cadillac Mountain with Dad where we took more photos of the ship, town and the Bar Islands.  (The Magic is the one on the left.)

I made sure to get a few photos up there with my new Captain Mickey Mouse plush!

We got a few photos with Dad and Captain Mickey Mouse too!

I had to get in on the action with one more photo of my outfit and the ship!

At both stops, I also made sure to take photos with the MDI mouse ears we'd made.

Later in the afternoon, we all went down to the pier so Mom and Dad could get back onto the whale watch boat shuttle back to the Disney Magic.  Before seeing them off, we took photos of Mom and Dad with their MDI mouse ears on the pier.  (While there, I also got a few photos of the mouse ears with the harbor in the background.)

Eventually, it was time for them to be getting back to the ship.  We bid goodbye to Mom and Dad as they walked down the dock to the boat.  Eliot, Nana and I waved as they rode off on the whale watch and back to the Disney Magic.  

Eliot, Nana and I sat on the pier for another few hours to see them off.  Eventually, it got dark and we watched as the ship sailed around the Bar Islands and off around the corner and into the night.  It was funny to see the Disney Magic from the shore... you could see the giant television screen above the main deck flashing as it sailed along.

It was such a magical day, but I think the best part was how well it went over with everyone aboard the ship.  Mom and Dad talked to a bunch of people and the overall consensus was that Bar Harbor was amazing and people wished they had more time there.  (Apparently, St. John didn't go over nearly as well.)  We were all pleased about the good reaction, and we hoped that Disney Cruise Line would come back to MDI and Bar Harbor again.  (I believe they had another cruise there in 2019.)

Having Disney Cruise Line visit the town where I grew up was an incredible experience and something that I'll never forget.  I'm so glad that I was able to personally be there for it's maiden voyage to Bar Harbor, and that my parents were able to be on that exact sailing.  The entire thing was definitely a very magical memory.  °o°

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