News Break! Catching up on walkway construction in EPCOT’s Japan Pavilion, New York cracks down on food and beverage pricing in airports, busting myths about “the best time to buy travel”, the European Union drops mask mandates for airports and planes, a...
News Break! Catching up on walkway construction in EPCOT’s Japan Pavilion, New York cracks down on food and beverage pricing in airports, busting myths about “the best time to buy travel”, the European Union drops mask mandates for airports and planes, and another bizarre food fight festival from Valencia, Spain.
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Dan: Welcome back to another meeting of the gold key adventurous society. My name is Dan Leonard
Jeff: Hi, Dan,
Heather: Every time.
Jeff: you don't have to reply to me. It's funny. Or if I just say hi, Dan, and you don't reply.
Dan: I know because then it, and joining me this week in the studio has had their straight
Dan: Jeff Williams
Jeff: Hey there. Hi there. Hi there.
Dan: and back again, our very special guest Brittany Hughes.
Heather: I Britney.
Brittney: Thanks for having me.
Jeff: Thanks for joining us again, making time in your busy dinner schedule.
Dan: Y our show as always is brought to you by Key to the World Travel. Key to the World Travel is a full service travel agency, specializing in theme parks, cruising and destinations around the world. Head to www.keytotheworldtravel.com for more details and to no obligation quote on the vacation of a lifetime. So man, was that all that was a whole week ago. I think we were talking about all of those construction walls that you guys saw around EPCOT, right?
Jeff: There were a number of them.
Dan: Some of the places and things they're taking those walls, this is something, this is an improvement that totally passed me by, I didn't realize they're doing their they're updating the Japan pavilion in world showcase with a whole new look in the walkways there and they look fabulous. Have you seen.
Heather: They look fabulous, but I just walked right over them just a few days ago. And did not notice didn't notice at all.
Jeff: They should be subtle and nice in there.
You just didn't know.
Dan: Yeah. It's
Jeff: Usually there's so much sweat in my eyes. I can't see anything around there anyway.
Dan: sweat in your eyes and booze running down your chin.
Heather: enjoying some of the comments on this article that I read about the walkway is such as end. If the drunks drinking around the world fall, now they won't get hurt. I'm not sure why the gray concrete would keep them from getting hurt and the pink concrete made them get hurt. But.
Jeff: It is science that gray is a soft.
Heather: Oh, all
Dan: I think the gray stuff is smoother. Like stone.
Heather: Oh, so you aren't scrape your knees.
Dan: Yes. You'll just
Jeff: because of the stone and school wobbly. And you might fall.
Dan: sure. Yes. So they're replacing some of that. Some of that generic concrete with a new texture design, which looks more like natural stone textures, which are a key to the Japanese aesthetic. More authentic to the Japanese pavilion.
Jeff: It looks nice. You got three colors now going up, stonework, gray, grayish.
and this gray, and then that kind of pinkish color too.
Dan: Curious too, because at the top of this article, it says the world showcase beautification project continues. I'm wondering what else they're counting under that project. I haven't noticed anything
what they've done around Morocco. Maybe even though that's less of a beautification,
Heather: that's true. They did redo that whole courtyard with new tile and also
Jeff: they made it pretty, but also took everything out of the pavilion. That thing sucks
Dan: that was at all authentic to the country of Morocco
Heather: interesting at all
Heather: bland. Now. That's sad.
Dan: religious significance.
Jeff: Yeah. It's a sad shell of what it used to be in there.
Dan: Yes. But it would be nice to see if if this is a continuing project, if there's. Spruce up the walkways to make them fit in nicely with the environment of each of the countries and kind of touch things up. That'd be pretty nice to see.
Heather: Yeah. France got a bit of an update with that whole new area for Remy. So that was.
Jeff: And they took the wall down around spaceship earth. That's a little more.
Jeff: getting there.
Heather: Move into getting that center part somewhat finished someday.
Dan: in like
three of a ongoing project. Like we said, what happens first? The space Asian hotel or EPCOT is fully.
Heather: Yeah. That's I would crack. If people could sleep in space before they could drink in the middle of EPCOT again.
Brittney: Yes. I just said, okay. I just had to find that vertical. So I'm a little behind, but I'm with you now. I'm with you now.
Dan: Yes, but she her go just in time for me to segue to the next door.
Dan: Cause I was gonna say, obviously it's as expensive as drinking a beer on that face. Hotel is apparently drinking a beer in the airports in New York city. Am I right guys?
Jeff: Right Dan,
Heather: are pretty expensive, but what is, what do you think is the most you've paid for a drink or something to eat in an airport?
Jeff: one time I had a Sam Adams summer ale on draft and it was 2,785 plus tax plus a 10% fee. And that was only when I was at LaGuardia
airport in New York.
Heather: out of this article? Jeff Williams,
Jeff: I am indeed.
Heather: $27 plus a 10% COVID tax.
Jeff: recovery fee.
Dan: Yeah. What and what exactly does that mean? What does that cover? That's just an excuse to take an extra two 70.
Jeff: Yeah. They're recovering the province they lost when they weren't operating.
Dan: that? My responsibility?
Heather: Apparently there were several viral social media posts
Jeff: Speaking of COVID.
Heather: yeah, that just awful prices in at JFK and LaGuardia. And so the. Office of the inspector general for new York's port authority, New York and New Jersey has decided to crack down on it. And they actually ended up having to make a rule that says any of the any of the places in those airport are not allowed to sell their concessions for a price that exceeds 10% of what you would find in local off airport street prices.
Jeff: I love that.
But New York city's stupid expensive for everything. Anyway, so a beer that's six or $7 here is probably 14 there. So that could be 10% over that
Heather: 30 bucks for a peer is ridiculous.
Jeff: 10% plus tax.
Dan: I'll be honest. And obviously this is concert pricing, which people want to complain about pricing at a theme park. Try going to your local arena
Jeff: Oh, dude, just
Dan: Elton John show last month.
A tall boy of Miller light was $15
Jeff: So pre pandemic, maybe even like I went to see Willie Nelson and Alison Krauss at our local amphitheater here. And a beer was it was few, it was like 15 bucks. And then all they had was bud light.
Miller, light, the usual garbage, and not even a huge beer, like for that.
Heather: I've paid some ridiculous prices at airports, but this is really bad.
Jeff: 27 85 plus 10% plus tax.
Dan: I guess
Heather: union new York's idea should apply all over the place and
Jeff: Good luck with that.
Brittney: Kentucky and things are not priced as high here, but it does make me laugh. If I go to chick filet outside of the airport. In the airport and it's twice as much and I'm getting the same eight piece nugget. I just, yeah I don't quite understand
Heather: I can see a small upcharge, but double is ridiculous.
It's not costing them double to serve that
Dan: No. And they claim that it was erroneous, the applied surcharge on top of their say on top of an inflated base price like that surcharge of 10% is not
Jeff: That's not
even the insult.
Dan: right. Even after you take that 10% off, it's still a ridiculously expensive.
Jeff: And I think Disney pricing is terrible. A beer at Disney's like 12.
Heather: Yeah, it's not 27.
Jeff: Mixed drinks are in the $13 range and up usually if Heather's ordering
Heather: There are some fancy beverages that I like to get there, so yeah. That's fair. If you had asked for your margarita to be made. John Julio, 1842. It's probably going to be expensive.
Jeff: You really do that?
Heather: Oh, did I really do that? I seem to recall somebody else ordering the same thing.
Jeff: No clue what you're talking about,
Heather: Where are you saying Brittany?
Brittney: Oh no. Last week we went to happy hour at the four seasons and we felt like, oh, we're going to get a really great deal. And then when we ordered our drink with Hendricks gin, they were like that's no longer on happy hour. And guess how much those three drinks were that I got.
Heather: How much were they?
Brittney: it was happy hour, so you're thinking of three drinks, but it was still
Jeff: Yeah, I want a college town
and a happy hour where it's nickel beer night.
Dan: Nicole deer.
Heather: Yeah those were $16 cocktails.
Heather: Yeah, but the happy hour price without Hendricks would have been seven. So that was a bit of an upcharge,
Brittney: Quite enough grade.
Heather: but it wasn't a $27 be here.
Jeff: Yeah, for a Sam Adams, which isn't even expensive period, but they act there's some kind of fancy craft beer or an import like that's in Heizer Bush.
Dan: Speaking of speaking of looking for good deals on expensive stuff guys have some kind of magic Juju. You look for flights does 7:46 AM on a Tuesday morning to get the best deal or a book, your hotels on a. And a Wednesday night when the moon is full and the cows are running
Jeff: Yeah. Last night during the during the eclipse is when they were really some good deals on kayak.
Heather: There are so many myths about that. There is this the right day of the week to book a flight or the best time to, to snag a hotel room. And most of those are just absolute garbage it's, there's a, the one I always hear is that you should look for flights on a Tuesday and that's actually really not true.
Jeff: Flying on a Tuesday through. Thursday is better, but not when you book it
Heather: exactly. Airline
Jeff: businessmen tend to fly on Mondays and Fridays,
Heather: and airline prices are dynamic. So they change as the flight fills up.
Jeff: like cruise pricing.
Dan: and they go up and then they go down and then they go up again.
Heather: I would. I always tell people. To buy flights at least a month out for a domestic trip, maybe up to six to eight weeks. But anything before that, it's probably not necessary. And anything closer in than three weeks, you're going to be paying a lot more because it's going to be the closer you get. A week before your flight is probably the highest prices you're going to see.
So try to look for. Midweek flying times. And the same thing really with that goes with hotels. There's not really a great day of the week to do the booking, but it's cheaper to stay in the middle of a week than it is over a weekend. Particularly if you're talking about a vacation destination, like Walt Disney world has a surcharge on the weekends and a lot of places like all-inclusives and things like that are more expensive over a weekend than they are.
In the middle of a week, but it doesn't matter what day of the week you're looking for it.
Brittney: Yeah, you're exactly right. It's more expensive on the weekends and typically more crowded, especially because most people that don't have a lot of vacation time or. I don't want to be away from their children or home for a full week. They're are going to go a Thursday to a Monday or a Friday to a Tuesday.
Brittney: and and I had heard all of those myths too, but I think all of that, especially now in this post COVID or as we shift away to back to normal life businesses Jack, you mentioned it earlier they're just trying to recover and as thanks, Philip and people get more.
Durable traveling. All we're seeing is prices increasing, and increasing. And I have clients that say, when should I book? When should I book? And the answer is now because everything, if you, if I quote you something today in a week, your airfare that airfare has gone up. No questions asked.
It's not going down. It's just going up.
Heather: And I think it's going to be that way for awhile, really until a lot of things stabilize.
Jeff: Joe Biden's in office.
Heather: It's chill, chill things like the war in Ukraine until all of that situation stabilizes, it's going to stay high. Fuel's going to stay
Dan: Until we get enough stickers had gas pumps to turn around fuel prices.
Heather: right. Zell, peeling those off the bumps.
Heather: What about cruises? Cruises is
Jeff: I like.
Heather: I say book them as soon as the sailing is released, because those go up as well.
Jeff: Other than other than Disney cruise line, because they only have so far the four ships and they almost always sell full. But the other cruise lines you want to book early, or you want to book near, cause they'll start Dell start discounting to fill up a half full ship, closer to sale time. Disney never does that cause they always sell
Heather: 90 day mark. When final payments are due, you might on other, on some of them will cruise lines with bigger ships. Although right now, not everybody has all of their ships sailing and they've
Jeff: And but soon enough, they'll all be back in the water.
yeah, especially with the news that came out last week.
Heather: What was that? Oh, we're
Jeff: this will be next
week when we hear this.
Heather: that right now. So
Brittney: Oh, gosh.
Heather: we don't talk about Bruno.
Dan: Yeah. Now I can include that SEL bringing into the bump.
Brittney: Airfare is a little bit different because the price you pay is what you're locked in at most cruise lines do allow you to lower the price if the promotion came out. So your risk for booking early is not really a risk as long as okay. Do I have a rate that will allow me to change if a promotion comes out?
I always tell people book early, so you can get the cabin. The deck that you want. And then if if Royal Caribbean releases kids sail free, or carnival comes out with a promotion, almost always, they're going to allow you to get that lower price as long as it's before final payment. So if there's something that you want, you should go for it.
Jeff: That's another tip too, is. Make your final payment right away. Just let it ride a minute so you can adjust or cancel. And that's another good reason to use a travel agent,
Heather: And buy trip insurance, all of
Jeff: let your travel agent make that phone call to apply any discounts.
Heather: Exactly. Really all of these things are better to book through a travel advisor because they know all of these guidelines and work with it every single day and you don't have to keep it all straight and it's best to let someone else do the work for you and then advocate for you.
If you need to get a refund
Jeff: so if you book a firstname.lastname@example.org, they're not going to call you and apply Oh,
a discount for you, let you know how much they saved you.
Heather: they're also not gonna no. You know what? Costco is also not going to do. They're not going to help you. If you are in Mexico and you test positive for COVID and you don't know what to do now, they aren't going to care and you can figure it out yourself.
Jeff: I don't know, they do have a lot of toilet paper for cheap. You can still get that without booking your travel there.
Dan: If they can sell toilet paper for cheap though, imagine what they can do for travel prices.
Heather: know what? It's not even usually a much of a saving. Usually what they're not, you're not saving money on your trip. What they're doing is giving you a free bag of toilet paper and it's not worth it when you're stuck somewhere, trying
Jeff: give you they give you incentives, but instead of like onboard credit or other things like that, they just give you a gift card for their own place. So you can buy that toilet paper to take on you on your trip with you. I don't know.
Heather: Or stockpile in case everybody has.
Dan: plus the fees for the extra bag to bring your extra toilet paper down to Mexico.
Heather: Yeah, that
Jeff: Costco is the flow's VA cafe of travel
Heather: that is correct.
Jeff: Let's see a t-shirt in the future
Dan: this is two weeks in a row that we've accused other establishments of doing the flow's VA cafe of
Jeff: was something. else.
Jeff: That's a comparison. No one wants.
Dan: I feel like it's safe going after Costco though. There they're probably not going to get litigious with this particular podcast. Yeah. Very good. Speaking of things, getting back to normal. Because I'm sure that we're not at all tired of saying this over and over
Heather: Over and over.
Dan: global pandemic, but we got one more major step back to normality here.
From Europe, the EU is going to drop its mask mandate for passengers on flights and in airports starting Monday, today, Monday,
Jeff: Starting just in time for me to go to Europe on a plane and not have to wear a mask.
Heather: This one was exciting because I had forgotten about the fact that even though I don't have to wear a mask in the U S if I so choose. That when flying to France next month, I was going to be back in a mask for that nine hour flight. And not any more. As of the time you hear this podcast masks, the mass mandate has been dropped in the European union.
I'm excited. Most of the places that you're going to be traveling in Europe already do have a vaccine mandate or guests coming in. It's an it, and everybody needs to make up their own mind about their own risk tolerance. If you're a little bit higher risk, keep it on while you're on the plane.
And if not, you don't have to wear it anymore. I've noticed that in the U S it's there's been every flight I've been on, there's been a handful of people who are still choosing to wear them. And even among the flight attendants, some of them will, and some of them won't, and it's great to be at that spot where people can decide.
What they're willing to risk and know their own health and whether or not they're at a high risk for COVID complications and should keep it on. And if the guy sitting next to me starts coughing, I will have one in my bag to pull out and put it on immediately.
Dan: Might also want to put that on, at least during the boarding
process for all those crutches rubbed in your face.
Heather: man, this
Jeff: That's just when she's flying with me.
Heather: This has been a trend recently, I was talking to these folks earlier about the fact that I have had on my last several flights. I'm always pick the aisle seat and I have
Jeff: Because your legs are so long.
Heather: Mostly because I'm afraid I'm going to have to get up and pee, but I've had so many dudes that decide they're just going to climb over me to get to the window seat instead of giving me two.
Jeff: Nope. That's when you Give them a sec, tap on the way through.
Heather: me two seconds to stand up and I'll let you in the row. You do not need to climb over someone. You don't know
Jeff: And that you need to tackle them just,
Dan: not like you're a small child.
Heather: Seriously. I'm punching them in the privates next
Jeff: throwing arms, stiff arm and block him, knock him down, make him look stupid. Oh, I'm sorry. I was trying to get up to let you in. I had no idea you would be So rude as to climb over.
Dan: See if the flight
Heather: elbow just hit you.
Jeff: How about, I usually like the window seat so that I can lean into the window in a way from the person I'm sitting next to, and I'll go that's my seat. And they sit there, like they expect me to climb over them. Ah, no, get your ass up.
Heather: they want you to climb over them.
Jeff: I can do a lap dance, but it's going to cost. I'll back it up.
Heather: It's good to know.
Dan: Heather, maybe when you get on the flight, you can get one of the flight attendants to give you a cup of that botulism coffee. And you can have a terrible accident, when they're rubbing their balls in your face.
Heather: Maybe worth the bachelors in coffee. No, actually no, it
Dan: No, and that's it. You're not.
going to drink the bachelors of coffee.
You're just going to
Heather: it on there. Oh, that's genius. Yes. That's happening. Oh, I'm
Jeff: You know what? Just put a bear trap there between you and there. See? And then if they climb over you, they get where they get.
Heather: Oh dear. That's I will take that under advisement
Jeff: think TSA would have no issue with you going, through there. The bear trap.
Heather: not like that guy with the 27 knives and his disposable scalpels. My bear trap would be fine.
Heather: Okay, I'll give it a try.
Dan: Yeah. Reproduction. That's why we can bring lightsabers right. That stuff makes me mad. I find myself more often lately just saying no to people that are trying to do something.
Jeff: like that. And I can become pretty intimidating. You saw me recently. I said no to somebody Disney or wherever we were. And they were like, Ooh
Heather: Sorry. Nevermind.
Dan: You're imposing enough of stature and the octave of your voice that carries a little more weight than with Heather.
Heather: this is true. And they don't take me seriously. They know they can take me,
Jeff: That's why you got to just work their sack, like a speed
Dan: That's all clear. And we're talking about this. I was wondering how many different ways we scrapped inflicting pain on the test testicles.
Jeff: the bear trap could go there too. And
Dan: wasn't going to go on the testicles, no, just step into it. When they climb over you.
Heather: I was taking that in a different direction.
Dan: yeah, I'm going to take this discussion. Actually it's not that much of a different direction.
Dan: Yeah. Cause things are about to get even weirder.
So as we're getting closer to summertime we're back on this series, the Dan favorite series of weird festivals around the world since summer time is kind of
festival time. Although this festival does not take place in the summertime. It takes place on December 28th. And we're going to a tiny little town in Valencia, Spain, the town is called Eby IBI, and every year they have this absolutely batshit crazy festival called ELLs and Phaedra nuts,
Heather: Oh, does it have something to do with
Dan: yes, it translates to the flowered one, the flowered ones.
And I think, see it's. It takes place on during a traditional biblical. Feast day, I guess the commemoration of the massacre of the innocence. This is really uplifting when king
Heather: Yeah. Yeah.
Dan: all the baby
boys. So I think that this might be a weird Spanish, like PON on like infants and Farrah knots.
That sounds so we're going to go with it. I don't know. This is a day long, basically like epic cosplay event that goes on. So the town and any tourists they're divided up into two teams, one team is the inferior knots. And the other team is like the local police called LA And.
Jeff: when you read foreign language.
Dan: I have no schooling in four languages. I think I've said before. I'm the smart ass who decided to take Latin in high school so that I wouldn't have to learn something useful. That was a
Heather: I know people like that,
Dan: I make excellent life choices.
Heather: but what does the flower have to do with it?
Dan: Okay. So what happens is after they split up into teams, ELLs and Faron arts data, say that their stage occurred at tar and take over the town for the day. And they came up with the most ridiculous new laws, whatever ridiculous crap they want to tell you to do. If they tell you that you can only walk backwards.
And make right hand turns while you're singing a song about how much you love your chicken, they can do that. And if you don't follow their new laws, they can take you to jail in the center of town. They also go around town begging for collecting taxes, basically and collect fines for people who break their, not their laws.
But then at the end of the day, the opposition team the police team. Meets up with the crazy people in the center of town. And they have an epic, massive battle where they finally act out overthrowing the city. They throw flour, bombs, eggs, and firecrackers at each other. Like bags of flour
Yeah, like bags of flour and just, there's like a picture of
guys throwing those like those three, three dozen, like a restaurant size pallet of eggs just
Heather: is just another festival. That's basically a giant food fight.
Dan: Yeah. fight. Plus
Heather: There are
Jeff: I want to be in a giant food
Heather: so many of these, there's the ones that throw, they throw tomatoes at each other. There's the wine
Dan: wine one.
Yeah. There's one in Spain, too, that they throw candy and baked goods at each other.
Heather: I want to go to that
Brittney: Yeah, like a
Jeff: especially the big kids. Oh yeah.
Or even softer things.
Heather: Yes, please.
Dan: yeah, but if you look at these
pictures in the national geographic
Heather: Where's this?
Dan: That I linked. There's cake all over the place. Once these people get done throwing eggs and flour at each other,
Heather: It's just the
Jeff: Street cake.
Heather: I don't
Dan: I forgot to mention,
Heather: cake though.
Dan: I forgot to mention that they all get dressed up in like military uniforms and they're running around. They're literally, if you look at the pictures, there is a lot of flour on the ground
Heather: looks like snow, but it's not it's flowers.
Dan: Yeah. It's ridiculous.
Heather: don't have enough ridiculous festivals in the United States.
Dan: No. We've said that before, when we were talking about oh, is the Mummers on Newfoundland. We need more excuses to go
Door to door, demanding drinks
Heather: right. We've got like the weird butter festival in Wisconsin in the summer, but we
Dan: pie tossing
Heather: We need more food fight festivals in the United States.
Jeff: I've always wanted to be in a large-scale food fight.
Heather: Sounds fun.
Dan: I think part of the problem is that if we decided to start one up in America right now is we're trying too hard to be trendy
Heather: Yeah. Or people would complain about the
Dan: Meeds. And so we'll
Jeff: Yeah. Is there gluten in my food fight?
Dan: Whereas these people have been throwing flour and eggs at each other for 200 years. So they've got the weight of history
behind them to lend a sense of legitimacy
Jeff: you have to start somewhere Dan,
Heather: That's true.
Jeff: in 200 years from now, we could say the same thing.
Dan: All right get on it. And let's have a planning meeting
Heather: Perfect. And I'll just start throwing food at you guys.
Jeff: Let's have a food fight at our next company conference.
Brittney: Somebody just has to make the first toss. Like you have to scoop your hand in the pudding and blatant,
Jeff: Oh, yeah,
Brittney: I would participate, but I don't know if I have the balls to start it.
Heather: Oh, pudding
Jeff: I'm sure you do not.
Heather: like it. I think where you're going with this. All right. I will do that. Let's order a order of a VAT of putting it our next catered event.
Can we have this food fight outside so we don't have to pay a cleaning fee?
Jeff: Yeah, I think you might still have to.
Heather: Yeah, probably. We'll try anyway.
Jeff: When I still had my catering business where I did the I did the school lunches for a local school here and they did an. Fundraiser auction thing every year. And I propose that one of the auction items for the kids could be to do a food fight in the lunch room. And I would. I would facilitate it. And what I wanted to do is tape it off Dexter style with plastic shading just hanging plastic sheeting everywhere in the whole place and just go to town and then we could take it all down and it would be great, but just everybody eat.
And like part of the thing that you auction item to bid was that everybody would eat and then you'd have a humongous food fight And the kids would love that, but they said,
Heather: that sounds
Jeff: I propose this every year. They said no, every
Heather: they never let it
Jeff: they never went
Dan: Maybe it's when you mentioned taping it off, like a
Jeff: I didn't mention the Dexter part of it but I thought part of it would be, I would bad goggles for everybody. So nobody's going to get hurt and make sure the food was all, nothing that could hurt anybody.
Heather: My kid's elementary school. What, one of the things that they did for, if they made their goal for their walk-a-thon every year was that they got to throw paint at the. they would put this giant, they put this giant canvas behind him and they would have super soakers full of. And he would stand in front of the canvas and the kids in the winning class would get to take turns, squirting him with a super soaker of paint.
One year it was water balloons full of paint, and then they would hang these canvases in the school. It was the
Jeff: That's pretty
Heather: Yeah. But they did that outside and it was just throwing it as paint. The principle is what it was called. I didn't get to Chuck paint at each other, which also would have been.
Jeff: They never went for any of my auction items. The other one was kill a hobo.
Heather: Gosh, they wonder why not?
Jeff: Yeah. That never went over.
Dan: Do you have have a hobo problem down there in Alabama, where
Jeff: not anymore. Not since the auction.
Dan: we'll give you a big salute for keeping the streets clean of that moment.
Heather: Hey, how are we going to go to the hobo festival? If you kill all the hobos
Jeff: Okay. The views expressed on this show do not reflect those.
Heather: Anyone else?
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