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Package and Mail Delivery fee of $5 per item from 12 Feb

Posted on Friday 10th February 2017 by The Sassagoula Sentinel

Effective this Sunday, 12 February 2017, there will be a $5 handling fee charged for every incoming mail item or package delivered to the resort for guests. This follows a (presumably-successful?) trial carried out at the Value resorts over the last few months , during which I guess 'successful' was defined as making more money for Disney than before they started charging? With the current trend of nickel and diming guests at every opportunity, I can’t say I’m exactly surprised though. See https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest ... -services/ for the official announcement (tucked in after the bullet points at the bottom).

The fee is per box or envelope, whatever the size or shape - and regardless of whether it's a single small letter or a large heavy box. However the fee will not apply to deliveries dropped off in person at Bell Services such as Garden Grocer, Owner's Locker, etc. It also does not apply to internal WDW items such as Disney Florist, Disney Vacation Club and purchases made at the parks and sent back to your hotel, nor will it be charged for gifts or items that the guest wasn't expecting (such as items left by other guests, travel agent welcome packages, etc).

To be honest I think the biggest reason for this charge is the massive increase in the quantity of product that people are having shipping to them, which is I suspect due in large part to the prevalence of information, tips and suggestions passed round on the internet (including sites like this one). Also with airlines charging more for bringing stuff along as baggage, and Disney charging ever more for something as simple as a bottle of water, it will probably only get worse.

Ten years ago there would be a few guest items a day delivered to the resort, and this would be handled by front desk staff as needed. Now though, there is a constant flow of delivery people with boxes stacked to the ceiling throughout the day. POR has had to allocate a complete extra room (which used to be office space) solely for package storage, and there is now a dedicated staff member to handle everything.

While this does all seem like another case of biting the hand that feeds, I guess as long as the incremental revenue remains greater than the losses incurred from guests deciding that it’s no longer worthwhile to stay on property, this sort of thing will continue whatever anyone says. The next two charges that I fear we might see before too long will be the implementation of a resort parking fee, and/or the addition a per night resort surcharge - as if that wasn’t already embedded into the extraordinarily high rack rates which went up again by 7% per year. I do hope not, but only time will tell.

However if you are unhappy with this charge being surreptitiously added, I suggest you make your complaint known at the time and see what can be done about it.

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Separate 'Internal Shuttle' Bus Service Ending

Posted on Wednesday 8th February 2017 by The Sassagoula Sentinel

The separate 'Internal Shuttle' bus service that was launched at the start of December will be ending on 12 February 2017 due to lack of demand. The system will revert back to its previous arrangement where the Disney Springs buses also act as an internal shuttle service between the Port Orleans bus stops.

From 12 February, the Disney Springs bus service will stop first at French Quarter, then continue on to Riverside calling at the South, West, North and East Depots, then it will stop again at French Quarter before exiting the resort and heading to Disney Springs.

Reminder: The Port Orleans to Disney Springs bus service no longer calls en route at Typhoon Lagoon after 1pm. Instead, guests travelling after 1pm need to change at Disney Springs for a dedicated Typhoon Lagoon bus. Similarly, there is no direct bus service at any time for guests travelling from Port Orleans to Blizzard Beach, instead you'll need to get a bus to Animal Kingdom first and change there to a direct Blizzard Beach bus.

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Happy 25th Anniversary to Port Orleans Riverside

Posted on Thursday 2nd February 2017 by The Sassagoula Sentinel

Twenty-five years ago, at the far end of the Disney-created Sassagoula River, a new hotel complex was nearing completion ready to become the sister resort for the recently-opened Disney's Port Orleans...

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Disney’s Dixie Landings Resort opened to the public on 2nd February 1992 featuring the charming rustic-styled Alligator Bayou Lodge buildings. Shortly after that, phase two of the resort opened with the more elegant sophistication of the Magnolia Bend mansion buildings, bringing the total number of guest rooms up to 2,048.

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On 1st April 2001, the original Port Orleans and Dixie Landings locations officially merged to form one large resort. The combined complex was now to be called Disney’s Port Orleans Resort, with the area formerly known just as Port Orleans changing its name to Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter and the area formerly known as Dixie Landings changing its name to Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside. The combined resort now spanned some 325 acres and featured a total of 3,056 guest rooms, making it the largest in Walt Disney World.

For more background on the History of Dixie Landings and Port Orleans, please see our History and Backstory pages.


Twenty-five wonderful years of creating Southern-themed magic later, and the spirit of Dixie Landings (if not the original name) lives on.

We'd like to wish all the cast members past and present a wonderful Disney Birthday, and we look forward to visiting for the next 25 magical years.



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February 2017 Recreation Activities and Movie Schedules

Posted on Wednesday 1st February 2017 by The Sassagoula Sentinel

The February 2017 Recreation Activities and Movie Schedules for Port Orleans Riverside and Port Orleans French Quarter are now available. See the main Recreation Activities Schedules page for full-size printable PDF versions.

The main feature swimming pools are currently 10am—8pm, which will be extended to a 9pm closing time from February 12th. These hours are enforced and the feature pools are gated and locked when there are no lifeguards on duty, however the five Riverside quiet pools are generally available at any time (within reason). The evening campfires are scheduled for 5pm—6pm, and the Movies Under the Stars will be screened at 7pm, with both activities occurring on alternating days at the two resorts — Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday at Riverside, and Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday at French Quarter.

The Valentine's Day movie will be Cinderella (animated), presented at Port Orleans French Quarter only

From noon—1:30pm daily there will be Arts & Crafts Activities, and on select days there will be Mickey Tie-Dye T-shirt decoration at 2pm (payment is required for all of these activities). See Resort Lobby signage or a Recreation Cast Member for details.

The format of the Recreation Calendar handouts changed at the end of 2016, with all of the activities for each resort now listed on one side only (a resort map is printed on the back).


Live Evening Entertainment

No visit to Port Orleans Riverside would be complete without spending an evening in the company of the legendary “Ye Haa” Bob Jackson at the River Roost Lounge, playing 8:30pm—midnight four nights a week (Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday).

Port Orleans French Quarter’s Scat Cat’s Club does not currently have official resident musicians, but filling the gap admirably are Jason Thomas and Billy Varnes, two members of the fabulous Off Kilter rock band which used to perform in Epcot’s Canada pavilion. Occasionally when one of the boys is not available, Greg Hayworth (from Mulch, Sweat & Shears) will sit in. The dates are only announced a month or so in advance (generally most Saturdays, Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays) but if you happen to be around for any of their evenings (8:30pm—11pm) do yourself a favour and pop along, they are highly recommended.

Jason & Billy at Scat Cat’s: February 4, 6, 7*, 12, 13*, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21*, 25 [TBC], 26, 27 & 28*. Note: Jason will be playing with Greg Hayworth* on February 7, 13, 21 & 28.



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French Quarter "Doubloon Lagoon" maintenance work from 9 Jan

Posted on Saturday 7th January 2017 by The Sassagoula Sentinel

I've just had official confirmation that the French Quarter "Doubloon Lagoon" swimming pool and the new children's Aquatic Play Area will both be closed for routine maintenance next week, starting on Monday 9th January for approximately five days. Given that this sort of work requires significant advanced planning, and that the dates had already been included in recent press/travel agent information, it seems strange that paying guests are only now being informed about it.

The following communication will be provided in-room for guests staying at the resort:

Starting Monday 1/9/17 French Quarter Doubloon Lagoon Pool and Aquatic Play Area will be closed for cleaning and Maintenance. The French Quarter hot tub will remain open throughout the refurbishment. During this time Guests may see or hear work in progress.

We invite French Quarter Guests to make a splash at the Ol’ Man Island Pool, or any of the five leisure pools, located throughout Disney’s Port Orleans Resort. Recreation activities will also be available in the courtyard near the lobby at Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter.

For Guests’ convenience the following transportation options will be available during the closure:
  • Golf Cart Transportation, from 10:00am-8:00pm, at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter will be located in the courtyard near the Resort Lobby and at Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside at the leisure pool between Buildings 80 and 85.
  • Internal Bus transportation is available to Disney’s Port Orleans – Riverside during pool operating hours.
  • Boat transportation to Disney Port Orleans – Riverside operates from 10:00am-4:00pm.

We appreciate your understanding and apologize for any inconvenience. Should you have any questions or need additional assistance, our Front Desk Cast Members will be happy to assist you.


Update 14 Jan: The Doubloon Lagoon swimming pool and Aquatic Play Area are now open again. The water-slide will remain closed for a while longer while work on it is completed.

The pool hours are currently 10am-8pm, and the Mardi Grogs pool bar will be open from noon until 5pm (hours may be adjusted at bartender's discretion).

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