On my last trip to the Magic Kingdom I knew that I wanted to ride Dumbo the Flying Elephant. It is one of my staples each trip! I had heard about the playground before but not the actual waiting process. Read on to learn more about my not so fun adventure!
Dumbo the Flying Elephant
Dumbo the Flying Elephant attraction first opened on opening day of the Magic Kingdom in 1971. However, the attraction was designed differently from the Dumbo the Flying Elephant that is located at Disneyland in Anaheim, California.
Originally, the elephants did not were hats, and Timothy and his disco ball were not featured. Both elements were not added until later in 1972.
In 2011, Magic Kingdom’s Fantasyland underwent a large renovation and expansion which allowed the Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride to be expanded. Another technological advancement at the time was that it would include an interactive que and children’s playground.
Are you interested in learning more about the history of Dumbo the Flying Elephant? Make sure to read Jaelyn’s article as she takes you through time and gives you all the unknown facts regarding this fan favorite attraction.
You can read it HERE.
When guests first enter the queue, they are provided with a pager. It looks identical to the pager that one would receive at a local restaurant for waiting patrons waiting to be sat at their table.
However, the pager for this attraction resembles a Circus ticket. Disney and their attention to detail is seen in every little thing!
While guests wait for their pager to go off and it is their turn to ride, adults can sit and relax inside the air conditioned playground while children can play under the big top of the circus tent.
The nice part about this waiting area is that there is plenty of seating around the play area for guests to sit while waiting for their pager to buzz.
When the pager goes off, it plays a little song! Guests will walk over with their party to the Cast Member at the podium and you are then asked to join the regular line that will take you to the attraction.
Play Areas Inside the Playground
One of my favorite scenes from the animated film is when Dumbo is performing in the circus and the clowns are dressed as fireman as Dumbo jumps from the burning building.
This area of the playground represents this scene from the film as children are able to slide down two slides. Kids can climb inside the building and then walk across a rope net.
One of the slides is called “The Human Cannonball.” It is also meant to accommodate smaller children who may be afraid to climb to the top. It contains a shorter set of stairs that leads directly to the slide.
The other slide located in the burning building is themed to look like a doghouse for “Sport” the dog.
Traveling with a toddler who is under three years of age? Then the center ring of the tent is the place to be as there are many play structures for the littles. There is also ample seating available for adults in this section.
There is definitely a variety of fun entertainment for the children to keep them distracted instead of waiting in a line.
Do not forget to look for the pretend box of fireworks and pull the string! A thunder of fireworks explosions will occur!
Keep in mind that guests can utilize the playground without riding the attraction. There are exits directly located from the play area for easy access to enter and exit the playground.
To be honest with you, I thought the pager system was brand new as I have always ridden this attraction either through utilizing a FastPass (RIP), or the line was never long and therefore the system was not being utilized.
I could not leave my trip without riding Dumbo, so I ventured on my own.
Sitting in the kids area for about twenty minutes gave me the biggest headache that I was so close to just turning in my pager and leaving as it was so loud inside the tent.
Even after my pager went off and I returned it and joined a line that would take me onto the attraction, I felt a little bit disoriented.
I don’t know if it was because of the heat outside, although it was nicely air conditioned in the tent, or because there was just so many people – especially children running around enjoying themselves on the play structure.
I can honestly say that I don’t think I will ever utilize the pager system again especially if I am on my own or even with my children who are too old to enjoy the playground.
To me, it was just a high sensory overload of too much happening at the same time and it being too loud. I can see how some adults and children would not enjoy partaking in this system of waiting to ride the attraction.
Children are definitely the ones that benefit from this experience because time will pass in no time as they are not aware that they are waiting to ride Dumbo. I can also imagine some kids not being too happy that the pager went off as they are having so much fun!
I personally prefer waiting in the line itself outside of the big circus tent away from all the noise and action! Next time I visit the Magic Kingdom, if I see that the line is short for Dumbo, then I will ride the attraction. If not, I’ll come back later!
Were you aware of the pager system that is utilized at the Dumbo ride? What has been your experience with the system? Do your children enjoy the play area inside the tent while waiting to ride the attraction? Let us know in the comments on Facebook and in our Facebook group.