In the middle of the December crazies, one of my blogging buddies invited me to join the newest Disney blog hop, Kill Refurb Marry, hosted by Mouse on the Mind. The mere thought of adding one more thing to my schedule in December made me laugh hysterically, but I promised to get on board in January, so here we are!

This month’s theme is Aerial Spinner Rides. The theory is to choose three attractions – one that just needs to die, one that could use a touch-up, and one that is perfect just the way it is. Before I get started, let me get one thing out of the way: All three of these rides are essentially the same attraction. You ride in a circle, you control whether you go up and down, and they’re aimed at the low-thrill crowd. So what I’m really looking at here is the theming and the experience, rather than the actual ride mechanics.

Kill: TriceraTop Spin

TriceraTop Spin

Photo courtesy of Walt Disney World

Located in the DinoLand U.S.A. area of Disney’s Animal Kingdom, TriceraTop Spin has a couple of strikes against it:

First off, it’s blatantly just a copy of the classic Dumbo the Flying Elephant from The Magic Kingdom. Put a grey coat of paint and a different head on these “dinosaurs” and you’ve got elephants.

Secondly, there’s absolutely no shade at all, so you’re going to be hot if you’re at Walt Disney World during the summer or early Fall.

And finally, it’s right next to Primeval Whirl. I get it, they needed a ride for the younger kids. But it’s hard to get excited about this ride when there’s something so much more exciting right next door.

I’m sure Disney could come up with something more creative to do with this space!

Refurb: Astro Orbiter

Astro Orbiter

Photo Courtesy of Walt Disney World

I love the theming surrounding Astro Orbiter. You really get the sense that you’re flying your spaceship through a solar system. The placement is great too – not right next to Space Mountain, which would overshadow it, but close enough that one parent can hang out at Astro Orbiter with the younger kids while the other takes the older ones on Space Mountain.

So what improvements would I suggest for Astro Orbiter? There’s an opportunity to really bring younger riders into the solar system by changing this from a simple “go in a circle” ride to one that tilts (but not too much!) and gives riders the sense of flying through 3-dimensional space.

Marry: Magic Carpets of Aladdin

So why is Magic Carpets of Aladdin my “don’t change a thing” choice? This one’s personal. The theming is great, and the spitting camels are wonderful on a hot day, but that’s not why I chose this ride. I will always smile when I think of Magic Carpets of Aladdin, because of this picture:

Patrick on Magic Carpets of Aladdin

Very Magical Carpets!

This little boy is my son with autism. He doesn’t make eye contact very often. He doesn’t usually answer when I call his name. Most of the time, that’s ok. I know he’s listening, even if he doesn’t look like it. But on this day at the Magic Kingdom, my little boy was so engaged! He wasn’t in his own little world, because the outside world was so interesting. And at this moment, I was riding in the carpet ahead of him and called his name – and he looked up and smiled. Those are some magic carpets, all right. I wouldn’t change a single thing.

Now you know my picks for Kill Refurb Marry. What are yours? Did I kill off your favorite attraction of all time? Tell me about it in the comments below.