OH THERE IS SO MUCH. I heard that today the wait for Gringotts is 350 minutes. EIGHT AND A HALF HOURS. Edit - I can’t do math. That’s like five an a half hours.
It will not be so at our park event. I mean, there might be a wait. But nothing like that, oh god. I’d be shocked if you waited 45 minutes.
But yes, the food is going to be amazing. :)
So this is a really spectacular example of why when I say “I am not LeakyCon!” “This is my personal blog!” “what I say here isn’t an official statement!” you should believe me. That said, of course I shouldn’t say things without knowing the whole truth, and that was wholly my bad. Sometimes I get super excited just like the rest of you - but you should never ever ever ever ever take speculation on my personal blog as any kind of official anything from LC. That said, this has made clearer too that after this post I should say less things about LC here too. It always causes confusion, and isn’t necessary; I’d rather no one have to be upset over an assumption that when I geek out I’m doing it knowing all the things. Sometimes I don’t.
So again I AM NOT LEAKYCON THIS IS NOT A STATEMENT ETC ETC DO A DANCE:
SO HERE IS THE THING.
We made an assumption (UGH GOD NEVER DO THAT) that our stuff was going to be like it was in the past (that is, the rides besides Gringotts would be open almost the whole time, and Gringotts closing a bit earlier but not 10pm, because the newest ride always closest first - it was that way in 2010 too). So when we learned it would not, in fact, be that way, well, we were as upset as you are, and a looooooootttt of conversations have happened. Please do trust me though when I say that the Uni staff are completely wonderful and trying very hard to do everything they can. But they come from a place of “promise the least, hope for the most!” and we come from a place of “AAAHHH MAH GAAHHHHD LEAKYCERNNNN…. ALL THE THIRNNNGSSS”
But… here is the other thing.
Open at the Close 2014 is on the exact same time schedule as 2011. You just didn’t notice it because your experience at the park was uninterrupted. 10pm is when the official written “start” time is and also was that year, but that isn’t marked by anything other than the slow leaving of anyone not with our group. The first year there was a fan event there, they herded everyone into an ampitheater and THEN into the park, and it was terrible. People were shouting, they were mad, it was awful. (It will not be happening this year. Thank goodness.)
And here is the other other thing: I was at an event with 2/3rds of the people at it that OatC will have, in HALF the space, and I just realized this TODAY but… I didn’t go on Gringotts. I didn’t leave Diagon Alley. Gringotts was broken so I didn’t ride it. I had the freaking. time. of. my. life. And it was empty. EMPTY. I was the ONLY person in the room at Ollivanders (“Who gets that but Harry Potter?!” Matt told me later). I watched Celestina sing from the very front. I talked with the curmudgeonly goblin at the bank. I danced around the alley. I hugged the Leaky Cauldron walls. I had a 20 minute discussion with the Knight Bus conductor. I skulked in Knockturn Alley and tried spells as I found plaques in the floor. The train… oh, my god, the train. THE TRAIN. THE TRAIN IS AMAZING I WANT TO BE ON IT ALL THE TIME. I RAN BACK AND FORTH THROUGH PLATFORM 9 3/4 JUST FOR THE LOVE OF IT.
I bought a couple things, yea, but didn’t feel I needed to. The point is, when we had to leave I was stunned. I was stunned the time had gone by. And I was sure I hadn’t even discovered half of it. And until today I didn’t even think long enough about it to realize I hadn’t been on Gringotts. It was magical. I wandered down the alley, ate food (and that has to be set up late so that we have no Muggles picking at it!), and just enjoyed being in this incredible, immersive place, and I would go back there in a hot second (a super hot Orlando-in-July second).
In 2011, I didn’t ride anything either. I sat with friends and enjoyed a meal, then walked around and basked in being in the right place with the right people at the right time. And we have twice the amount of park to explore. We have Beedle the Bard (which I didn’t that night), the Celestina show, the TriWizard Rally, the frog choir, all that (frankly pretty damn good) food, unlimited butterbeer AND ICE CREAM IT IS SO GOOD. Ooh,and the Gillywaters. Those are super cool. And three years later we only raised the price $30, which we really didn’t think we were going to be able to do. But honestly, if after that you are really that upset, and don’t think you’re going to enjoy yourself, do ask for a refund. I don’t know when the deadline is, it’s not my department, but I would like to politely suggest you do not wait - there are 850 people on our waiting list, clamoring for a spot here. If you aren’t going to enjoy your ticket then please do let someone else do so! I will say that I am just as convinced as I have been from the start that this is going to be twice as magical as 2011. I know it sounds impossible. But I’m also super confident of it. And that comes from Melissa’s Opinion, not LeakyCon, ok?
Thanks to everyone who has been positive today! I’ve enjoyed that a lot. NOW I MUST CONTINUE ALL THE THINGS.
i’m just excited to be there with other Potter nerds. I understand this is going to suck for a lot of people (especially those with disabilities for whom 3 hour waits aren’t possible) and i feel kinda bad to be so excited when other people feel like this isn’t what they signed up to get.
But i am. i’m PUMPED! i’m going to run around and drink ridiculous amounts and EAT ALL THE FOOD and buy things and take a bajillion pictures. i’m really very excited to do this with other Potter people. Sing Happy Birthday Harry at midnight.
i can’t wait to see you all!