One path to stardom as the so-called "American Idol" starts at Disney World near Orlando, Fla.
All you have to do is buy a ticket to the theme park, audition, and compete with other park visitors. The daily winner gets an audition for the popular television show.
Disney operates seven shows each day in its Hollywood Studios Theme Park. The park's "American Idol Experience" theater looks a lot like what you see on TV. At Disney's show, the audience is packed with 1,000 park visitors who watch -- and vote on keypads at their seats -- for their favorite singers. Three judges express their views, and, as you might expect from the TV show, one acts rather smarmy.
At the end of the day, the seven winners compete for a chance at Hollywood. Any park visitor, 14 and older, can try out, but you must be 16-28 to appear on the TV show.
The trio of singing contestants I watched at a Disney show in March showed some talent, but I wouldn't vote for any of that group to reach television.
Toy guns and milk shakes
You'll sit in a two-person moving car, each of you equipped
with 3-D glasses and a spring-action toy pop gun for shooting at moving
animated targets. The game keeps score as you buzz past the targets. I
won over my seatmate, but he had a broken arm, or so he said.
Nearby is the Fifties Prime Time Café, nice for a quick lunch and noted for its peanut butter and jelly milk shake, which does not stick to the roof of your mouth.
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