By Faith Miller,  Jr. Reporter

My day starts with the surprise of it all. A day-trip to Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon to experience the new Teen Beach Party, the surf, sand, wave pool, slides and even a snorkel experience with the stingrays and sharks. The excitement is overwhelming as my family and I enter this Splashtastic Park full of adventures, and exhilarating thrills.  The parking lot was very full so it was good that we got there early. The Park hours are 9 a.m.- 8 p.m.  The entry was very quick and the staff was friendly.  While entering and looking for a place to put our coolers and stuff down for “home base”, we ran into Lilo and Stich.  After a photo op with them, we headed to Crush ‘n’ Gusher.

Crush ‘n’ Gusher is a thrilling water coaster with three “fruitastic chutes.”  My three-girl team went down Coconut Crusher as we were propelled through uphill climbs and surprised by sudden dips, twists and turns; you cannot go down this slide without screams and thrills.

Next it was off to Shark Reef to snorkel in the 362,000 gallon salt water coral reef filled with colorful tropical fish, stingrays and sharks.  We got our masks, snorkels, and optional life vests and headed to the cold salt water reef.  After our instructor told us the rules (no kicking), we made our way through the reef area.  The views were breathtaking and we could go at our own pace.  We could see “Dory” type fish, sunken treasures and shipwrecks.  There are portholes for underwater viewing for those who don’t want to get wet.

My parents went down Castaway Creek, a “lazy river” full of inner tubes that meander along the entire Typhoon Lagoon.  They drifted through refreshing mists, thundering waterfalls and rainforest landscape.

My Dad and I next did the Typhoon Lagoon Surf Pool where we waited for the Sonic Boom, alerting as the gentle waves become big Kahunas.  With continuous stream of swells, the surf is up all day.

Jeffrey Miller, my dad, said, “The biggest wave of fun we have ever had at a water park.”

And speaking of Surf, the main attraction was the Disney Teen Beach Movie: Beach Party!  There was a DJ with rocking 60’s tunes, relays on the sand, Hula Hoop Spinning, Water Balloon Tossing and Dance Contests.  I can’t wait to see the movie.

“Teen Beach Movie: Dance Party” will continue through September 2 and features a hip DJ spinning remixes of retro tunes, beach-themed games and some really rad “bikers” and “surfers” to party with guests as they dance away the dog days.

“Teen Beach Movie,” a modern take on classic beach party movies, premieres Friday, July 19 on the Disney Channel. Starring Ross Lynch (of Disney Channel’s “Austin & Ally” and Hollywood Records’ R5) and Maia Mitchell (ABC Family’s “The Fosters”) as Brady and McKenzie, surfers who take the last wave of summer, one that mysteriously takes them into a classic beach party movie, Wet Side Story. For more information on Teen Beach Movie, visit TeenBeachMovie. For more information about Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Parks, visit



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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.