By The Toy Story Fanatic Devo
Back in old times, people would be sent out into the world for different reasons. Sometimes those reasons were noble and some were not, but every time the person sent out feels that they have accomplished something of great worth to themselves or the world they would pick up important objects along the way. These items have ranged anywhere from important religious artifacts to the severed limbs of their enemies that they then would parade around town as a token of their might and triumph. Picking a souvenir at Disney parks is kind of the same thing.
From the time I was in elementary school, I had a fear of rollercoasters. I remember one rollercoaster in particular at a local amusement park (not a Disney park) that had a ride simply called “The Rollercoaster”. It bragged to be one of the oldest in the country and it looked that way. The paint was chipping, the cars were jiggly, and I could have sworn that the roller coaster was swaying in the wind. I was pretty sure I was going to die within 3 seconds of my dad taking me onto the coaster.
We didn’t crash. I didn’t die, but I also did not want to do a roller coaster ever again.
Fast forward to my second trip to Disneyland and it came time to go on California Screamin’. It went significantly faster than “The Rollercoaster” (by like, a lot) and has a loop in it, which also was not on “The Rollercoaster”. My friends got FastPasses for the ride and I got one too and they gently coaxed me into getting in line for the ride and getting on.
Not only did we go on the ride once. We went on it twice. In a row.
Somehow I still survived and conquered the occasion.
When I got off the rollercoaster I saw a t-shirt stand that was perfect: it had the “California Screamin’” rollercoaster on it with all of the Toy Story characters riding the ride (I love Toy Story. Check my pseudo name at the top). That was the right souvenir for the trip.
Instead, I overpaid for the Toy Story 3 video game for the Wii. This was the wrong souvenir.
The point of a souvenir is to find a trinket that celebrates your achievement. So to help you out with this I have created a hierarchy of questions to ask yourself before you spend money on souvenirs:
I’m a collector of sorts and I do get excited when I find a piece that has been eluding me for some time. At the same time, I understand the worth of something that I could find anywhere.
While at Disney parks, you can find a ton of items that are exclusive to the park in various degrees (I once saw an Olaf pillow pet where the only difference was that Olaf’s mouth was open as opposed to closed). One thing you should ask yourself before you drop big money on an object is whether or not you could find it elsewhere, or find a similar item elsewhere. If so, consider finding a different item to bring home with you.
There are a lot of different people out there in the big wide world and everyone has a different idea of what is “usable”.
I have a sister who likes to collect Pop figurines for instance. These figures do very little and typically just stay in boxes on her dresser. For her though, these figures are a type of novelty item to her and so she keeps them and considers them “usable”. So, when you are off getting a souvenir, be sure to get something that you would actually enjoy. It is a memento of your trip and you can keep the fun with you if you get souvenirs that you would actually “use”.
The most important question and the question that overrules all else is whether or not the item means something to you about the trip.
On my most recent trip to Disneyland with my family, I got to accomplish something I had hoped for my entire life: I got to meet Woody. This was actually a HUGE moment for me and was definitely the highlight of my trip there.
The next highlight was spending a lot of time with my two brothers. As I was hanging out with my brother, we entered the “Mad Hatter” store in fantasyland and he found probably the coolest set of mouse ears in the park (Grumpy. There was a beard attached to the hat. That was cool). Those two events led me to my ideal souvenir:
I collect movie replicas so the hat was usable (I have also worn it to many a Halloween party and event) it was not really available anywhere tying it forever to my Disneyland trip, and it held meaning as it was something I got to do with my brother as well as a reminder of when I met Woody.
So what is your ideal souvenir? I don’t know! You’ll just have to go and check it out yourself!
Do you have a favorite Souvenir? Let’s talk about it in the comments. Thanks for liking and sharing and remember to keep wishing on stars.