Disney on Ice – (Dis) Review

Disney on Ice

My last visit to Disney on Ice was quite the memorable experience. It was nearly 10-years-ago and we had a 4-year-old get sick on the way to the show. Yes, we bought a nightgown and a blanket from the souvenir stand and we didn’t miss any of the show. This trip had less puking – which is always a plus.

The Venue – Wesbano Arena

The Wesbanco Arena is home to a few minor sports teams. The Wheeling Nailers have been playing in Wheeling since the early 90s (known as the Thunderbirds). The arena is perfect for hockey. There’s not a seat in the house that is too far away from the ice. 

Parking is super convenient with a garage steps away. Parking was $5 but only accepting cash. We jetted towards the top of the garage and parked near the elevator. 

Entrance to the event was easy. They did a quick security check where you walked through the metal detectors, scanned your ticket, and made it up the stairs to several merchandise booths. There were several photo op props located right before the entry point – but we didn’t stop to try them out. 

Merchandise Stands

They had a few stands setup on each end of the arena. There was a a specific stand that sold the merchandise and another that had the popcorn and snow cones. They were selling lemonade and a few other items at the concession booth. The issue was they only had one employee – so the lines were long and moved very slowly. 

The hack is to head to the in-house concession stands and get some snacks and drinks. I thought we could sneak some popcorn but I’m guessing they had an agreement so they couldn’t pop new corn. I was forced to wait in the Disney On Ice line for some overrated cold popcorn in a Mickey bucket ($20). Because of this, I missed the first “act”.

The Show – Premise

Since I missed the first few segments, I had to turn to my 13-year-old and ask what the heck was going on. Well, turns out that Captain Hook and the pirates have Tinkerbell trapped (my guess). The narrators of the story (just a normal girl and guy) have some giant map and there are clues. If we find the clues, there is some type of meter that increases. When the “clue meter (?)” gets to 100%, Tinkerbell can come out and play.

Easy enough. Captain Hook is the villain. The normal girl and guy need our help to save Tinkerbell.

The Acts

I absolutely missed the “Beauty and the Beast” act. Spoiler alert: all of the main characters show up at the end, so I saw that it was Lumiere and Cogsworth.

I made it in time to watch the Toy Story show – which I might add was entertaining. They had army men doing tricks in the corner, but the inflatable Ham and Rex skating around was quite excellent.

Next we saw Moana and she did some solo work. I honestly just wanted to see Maui come out – mostly to see how they would approach his size. I just imagine the larger character, the harder to sake – thus more impressive.

The use of the screen (blocking off an entire side of the arena) was great. In this scene, we saw Te Fiti – or Te Ka in this scenario – come raging down on Moana. Great visual and use of technology.

From there we saw some Coco action. Miguel came flying out and doing some stunts. We had some super long poles to the side of the ice where ladies waved back and forth – like a pole vault with a person on top. The best part was when giant skeleton puppets came out and skated around.

There was an intermission for about 20-minutes or so. They used the giant jumbotron to get people to use the hashtag #disneyonice with the hopes they would show their picture. FAKE: they used the same 20 pictures the entire intermission and nearly every picture was from a different venue. Oh, we tried to get featured…but the same pictures kept coming up .Not cool Disney on Ice.

Back from intermission had us watching the Aladdin section. The Genie came out and did his thing. We had some acrobats – in which my daughter promptly said “don’t they know they are supposed to be monkeys” – referring to Animal Kingdom’s Legend of the Lion King show.

Once Jasmine and Aladdin finished up, we had Ariel come out. Okay, not the biggest “Little Mermaid” fan – but the act that Ariel and Eric did was quite impressive. Of course, it involved very little skating. They used the cloth that dropped from the ceiling and did all types of acrobatic maneuvers over the ice.

I had a feeling Frozen would close out the show….and they did. But it was certainly worth the final act. Kristoff and his guys came out with ramps and turned this sucker into a BMX style show on ice. We even got a little bit of fireworks. Of course, Elsa and Anna were there…but I prefer to Ice-Daredevils.

Finally, we hit the “clue meter” and Tinkerbell was released. All of the main characters from the show came out for a final number. It was impressive to see how many people are used in this show…and my brain started doing math to see how profitable a show like this would be.

Finally, I couldn’t stop looking at Olaf and what appeared to be “wonky eyes”. Yes, his eyes didn’t seem right. So Lainee and I laughed throughout the final – which is a great way to finish the night.

In Conclusion – Disney on Ice

Disney on Ice is a great time for families. They do a little bit of everything for everyone. It’s not just ice skating – it’s more like a circus without animals.

For a small venue like this, I can’t imagine one seat was that much better than the next.

I would recommend getting there early if you plan on hitting up the merch stands – or plan on ordering ~13 snow cones (like the person in front of me).

I would go again in 5-10 years.

If you want the (Hers) perspective, feel free to check out Lauren’s Disney on Ice Review.

Eric Hersey

Sending Pictures of Food to Chef Adam: November 2023

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