This winter when my family explored Orlando one of our dinner experiences included the Orlando Pirates Dinner Adventure. As we turned into the parking lot we couldn’t believe our eyes, people were standing in the longest line we had seen since being in Orlando. We joined the line and waited. Honestly, with two little ones the wait, about 30-45 minutes, seemed like a long time. What was helpful was when the “pirates” came out to heckle each other and jest with the crowd.
Eventually we made it to the front of a line. We were asked if we would like to upgrade for an additional fee (the dollar amount escapes me – maybe $15 per ticket?). The seats looked better on the map and there were several other perks that went along with this VIP status, such as joining the Governor in the Governors VIP Lounge for drinks and snacks beforehand and the opportunity to be part of the show. Because we wanted the little ones to be able to see and these new seats looked much better than what we originally had we said yes.
As soon as we walked inside we were whisked away to pose for a family photograph (surprise!) which ended up being so cute that we bought it. In the meantime, entertainers were performing for the group as people trickled in. At first sight the inside was a bit chaotic and very crowded. We found a little stand with tropical fruit so the kids snacked on that while Jeff went and bought us some adult beverages.
In the meantime we were supposed to be in the Governors VIP Lounge, but we somehow missed that. We watched the entertainers for a while (the gymnast was impressive I must say). Before long the employees began herding the group into the show room. Everyone is color coded (we were red) so the groups filed in as their color was called. Finally, I felt some organization. It was then, as we were making our way to our table, did we see the Governors VIP Lounge and realized that was where we were supposed to be.
Once to our table we saw that there isn’t a bad seat in the house, the tables are station style, but the good new was we were very close to the front which meant the kids did have a better view. Looking around, I was impressed. In the center of the round stage, with the the six-sided show room surrounding it, sat an 18th-century Spanish galleon measuring 46 feet long, 18 feet wide with 40-foot masts. The the ship is anchored in a 300,000-gallon indoor lagoon – yes, water and all. Each “table” has its own ship and pirate to cheer for – thus the color coding. We also received our own pirate hats.
Once the show began so did the dinner service. Servers provide family style dinners. All the while the actors sang, danced and performed daring stunt while keeping a storyline going. At one point the server asked people in the VIP section if they would like to participate in the show. My husband wended up joining the crew and went to work on stage.
Overall, the experience was fun, though confusing at first. The food was good, the entertainment was fun service was great and the kids seemed to enjoy it – and for us that’s what it’s all about.
If you go to the Orlando Pirates Dinner Adventure: arrive early so you don’t have to wait in line and don’t feel like you’re missing out if you don’t upgrade unless your family wants to be part of the show.
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