On the first weekend in February, many brave souls took on the Main Street 16 Challenge at Walt Disney World Resort to raise money for Give Kids the World Village. This year marks the second year for this event to support critically ill children and their families.
The event kicked off Thursday Feb. 2 with a Main Street Challenge 16 social event at the Oasis Bar at Wyndham Lake Buena Vista. Participants gathered to collect shirts and other items in preparation for tackling 16 rides at four different Walt Disney World theme parks on Saturday. This social event showed how these contestants have bonded as Walt Disney World fans. Yet, they also want to win the challenge as well as raise money for Give Kids the World Village.
Members of this event purchasing VIP level tickets received a guided tour of Give Kids the World Village Friday morning. During this tour, participants enjoy seeing the campus, a ride on the carousel, and seeing several of the excellent recreation opportunities for week-long guests of Give Kids the World Village. Most of all, everyone learned that their time and effort this weekend matters. As a result, families facing incredible stress brought on by a critical illness to a loved one receive one week of “Yes!”
Of course, Give Kids the World Village comprises an 89-acre nonprofit resort in Kissimmee, Florida. This complex provides week-long, cost-free “wish” vacations to critically ill children and their families from around the world wanting to visit Central Florida. Give Kids the World Village strives to tell critically ill children “YES” since so much of their life involves being told no about things. The reason the contestants compete in the Main Street 16 Challenge revolves around giving these kids one week of YES!
On that rainy Friday afternoon of the Main Street 16 Challenge weekend, Stargazers Lounge at Disney Springs hosted a trivia contest and podcast recording. People who bought tickets to this special event on Feb. 3, received a two-hour appetizer buffet also. Stargazers Lounge, located outside of Planet Hollywood, made a nice venue for this portion of the event. Mark Daniel hosted the trivia portion of this event. Michele and Scott of The Main Street Mouse appeared on the podcast also.
After this afternoon event, contestants prepared for a long day on Saturday. On Saturday, they would need to race from park to park and attraction to attraction.
On Saturday, the participants navigated their way through all four Walt Disney World theme parks. The teams raised money based on their daring race to ride the 16 pre-selected designated attractions. If you think this will be easy, do not forget about the current 2:00 p.m. park-hopping rule slowing this exercise down. The Main Street Magic Travel team won the contest again this year. However, most importantly, everyone won by raising money for Give Kids the World Village.
After the long Saturday for the Main Street 16 Challenge participants, they arrived on Sunday morning for an awards ceremony. So, they met at Everglazed Donuts and Cold Brew. Awards were given out to the top three teams.
Many people worked very hard to raise money through this event to support critically ill children. They donated time and money to support this cause. Also, Give Kids the World Village creates unity in the Orlando area theme park world in ways almost nothing else does. In addition, all the major theme parks and entertainment options in the Orlando area come together to support this great cause.
Also, for full disclosure, PiratesAndPrincesses.net helped sponsor this event along with several other theme park related sites. Once again, helping critically ill children remains something we all can support.
Dates for next year’s event have not been set yet. However, the Main Street 16 Challenge will return to raise more money for Give Kids the World Village again next year. The website for this event continues to accept donations. More information can also be found there. Please look for updates there for next year’s event.
Are you interested in participating next year in the Main Street 16 Challenge? Let us know in the comments below.
Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.