Silver Screen Collectibles – Universal Studios Orlando

I’m going to try my best and start keeping everyone informed on new Penny machines that become available throughout the Universe Studios resorts.  I must be a glutton for hard work and long hours.

I’ve always been a Disney Fanboy at heart, it’s my favorite vacation spot and now that we live in Florida I had a Disney annual pass within hours of crossing over into the state.  I would never say I get tired of Disney as it’s a true passion for me, the movies, stories, characters, parks, resorts and pressed coins are all things I’m completely obsessed with.  But Orlando is the Theme park capital of the world so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to spread out a bit and see what others may be interested in as well.

My last trip to Universal had been earlier this year during a quick trip (at that time) down from Jersey to Florida doing some house prep before our move later that summer.  I raced through both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure trying to document all the machines and jump on a few rides in between.   After almost 6 months since my last trip I thought it would a good time to check on if anything had changed.  As luck would have it I found a new machine.  Shortly after you walk into Universal Studios you come across a store called Silver Screen Collectibles which in the past primarily specialized in Betty Boop merchandise.  However more recently an area of this store had changed over to a small little cat.

Hello Kitty seems like a strange choice, but even though the picture above doesn’t show it that place was pretty packed with people later on in the day.  Must be more popular than I thought.

As with a lot of new machines I’ve been coming across lately this store has a new 8 Design penny machine.  Touch screen and just like the other machines it supplies penny sized zinc tokens.

Now as you can tell from my above ignorance of Hello Kitty’s popularity I really have no idea who any of these characters are.  But I’m making an educated guess that they are all part of the Hello Kitty universe.  Each coin does list the name of the character and my daughter thinks they all “look soooo cute”.  So I’ll take that as a stamp of approval on this new set.

With all the Hello Kitty merchandise in that store I don’t see this machine leaving any time soon but you just never know.  I’ll keep checking back at these parks to make sure and document any more new machines.

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Click here to see my YouTube channel video on this machine

Old Key West Resort – Lake Buena Vista, FL

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these machines
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Over the years when I would come down to Florida to visit Walt Disney World I always tried to stay at a different Disney resort.  Each of the resorts has their own unique theming and experiences.  It was always on my so-called Disney bucket list to try to stay at all the resorts at least once.  Now as anyone that has stayed on property at a Disney resort knows they can get a little pricey making that type of task potentially out of reach.  Since we have moved to Florida I would still like to mark this off my list as some point, but for now I’ll just stick to driving over and visiting each resort for an afternoon.  With 20 plus resorts this should keep me busy for a while, now I just need to figure out where to start.

Since we are on the topic of places on my bucket list, Key West is pretty high on that list so I figured why not check out Disney’s version of this intriguing locale.  Old Key West Resort was the very first Disney Vacation Club Resort and opened in December of 1991.  You do not need to be  DVC member to stay here, but since the rooms are either a Deluxe Studio, or 1 , 2 or 3 Bedroom Villas (including a kitchenette) these can get a little pricing if not using your club member points.

You can see by the above picture that the style of this place is very Key West, at least from what I’ve seen on TV and in vacation magazines.  There is just a very calming feeling that washed over me as I walked around this resort.  It was pretty quiet, and everything seemed to move at a nice leisurely pace.  Now this could be due to my visit being during the week in the early afternoon, but still it was really a nice environment to enjoy.

There is plenty of waterfront space to be entertained by.  Some of the Disney resorts used to have boats you could rent which looks to be the case here, but during my visit there were none available.

Olivia’s Cafe is the main table service restaurant here serving breakfast, lunch and dinner with a Key West flair.

The pools here are really nice and the kids area is themed like a giant sand castle.  When I visited they seemed unusually quiet and not much activity but I’m sure most days this is not the norm.

Back towards the main entrance to the resort is the Conch Flats General Store.  Really just their souvenir / gift shop.  My daughter always thinks these are her personal toy closet, and I usually have to drag her out even though they have pretty much the same stuff all over the place.  There are a few unique Old Key West items found here like luggage tags, coffee mugs and t-shirts.  Directly across from the General Store is the main registration building.

Inside this building the interior is a lot of wood paneling and gave me a very nautical feel.  There was an area to the far end with little chairs and Mickey cartoons for the kids to watch while their parents get checked into the resort.  On display is also a model of a Disney Cruise ship which I will admit I looked at for a least 10 minutes, it was very incredibly detailed.  Also in this area were two pressed coins machines.

The first machine was an older model which you can tell by the marquee.  The penny designs available her included Abu from Aladdin, Iago also from Aladdin, and the Disney’s Old Key West Resort Logo.  If you make a 180 degree turn you will come face to face with the second coin press machine.

This second machine only has one design available and pressed on a quarter.  This type of machine automatically starts to press your quarter as soon as you slide the required coins into the machine.  These used to be more common, but have been getting replaced with newer versions containing 3 designs.

This design is another resort special and has Pirate Mickey with a Parrot on his arm with Disney’s Old Key West above him.

My first adventure of casually visiting  a resort and checking out what they have to offer was a lot of fun.  Plus it gives me an excuse to collect even more pressed coins.  I’ll keep visiting the different resorts from time to time and will be sure to bring you a long.

Saratoga Springs Resort – Lake Buena Vista, FL

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these machines
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When my wife was pregnant with our first daughter we went on a babymoon which I still think is strange.  However a doctor prescribed vacation wasn’t something I was going to turn down so we tried to pick someplace within driving distance but still someplace different that we hadn’t been to before.  After a few nights of online searching we eventually decided on Lake George in upstate New York.  Along the drive up there we made a stop in Saratoga Springs to grab some food and were amazed with this little town.  Everything about it seemed to have popped up around the horse track. It was a quaint place to visit and we ended up spending more time there than we originally planned.

When I was trying to figure out the next Disney resort to explore I saw the Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa and immediately was drawn back to that afternoon in upstate New York.

A soon as you start walking around this beautiful resort the connection to the horse track is clearly apparent.  The resort was originally opened in May of 2004 and was finished over multiple phases.  Currently it is the largest Disney Vacation Club resort.

High Rock Spring Pool is the original main pool of the resort and is situation right near the main registration building.  It was created to look like a natural spring with geysers, trees and other natural features.  Since I wasn’t staying at the resort I couldn’t try out the pool but it definitely looks cool.

Back at the main registration building called The Carriage House you will find the different eateries like The Turf Club Bar and Grill or the quick service Artist’s Palette.  The spa and fitness center are also located here as well and of course there is a resort gift shop.

inside the Carriage House continued the theming which was fun to see all the little details.  The registration area above looked like it should have horses wandering around with their jockeys preparing for a race.

The lobby area in-between registration and the gift shop area was a very relaxing area.  I found myself sitting her for a bit just enjoying where I was, regardless of the fact that I really wasn’t on vacation.  But at that moment it felt like I was.

Just across from where I was sitting was a set of public restrooms, and the penny machine I had been looking for.

There are three designs available here and fit in perfectly with this resort.  The pennies have images of Mickey riding a Horse, Angry Donald Jumping, and Cinderella hugging her Horse.

Part of the charm of the city Saratoga Springs New York was the main street that ran through the center of town with all its little shops, cafes and restaurants.  Obviously this resort couldn’t quite recreate that  setting, but walking around the grounds definitely gave me that tranquil feeling I remember all those years ago.  It may have all been in my head, but this made for a fantastic afternoon even if I was in Florida and not New York.

RunDisney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend – Pressed Penny Set

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these machines
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This weekend is usually one to stay away from the Walt Disney World property if you are not participating in the Marathon as the crowd levels can be a little above normal.

I am not currently a runner, but would like to participant sometime in the future hopefully if I can get some proper training done first.  Of course I’m always up to get out of the house and run (fast walk) when there is a rumor of a new penny machine.  Of course on Friday I read online that a machine with some runDisney designs had been placed for the event at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

As I mentioned above crowd levels can be a bit crazy for these special events.  Parking at the ESPN Complex can be a little challenging on normal days, and next to impossible during marathon weekend.  My plan of attack was to park over at the All-Star Sports resort, hope on the Wide World of Sports bus and just cruise on in.  To be honest this worked perfectly and my daughter and I were the only passengers.  Then we got off the bus and encountered the crowd.

The information I received about the new penny machine was that it was in a building called the “J Center”.  Thankfully I could see it from roughly the area where the bus let us off.

We walked up the main path with the crowd and I will say the energy of everyone, runners and spectators was really infectious.  People were walking around with their medals and everyone was congratulating each other which was nice to see and partake in.

The above banner was up in a lot of different places.  I wish it was on a t-shirt or something as I really like this design.

Eventually we made our way over to the J Center and entered into the Wine & Dine Half Marathon Health & Fitness Expo.

Lots more people.  This was basically a trade show for health and fitness, which included tech gadgets, trainers, and all matter of things along with lots of free giveaways.  There was a specific path down to the lower level with you heading down a set of stairs to the left, and then coming back up on the right side of the building.

We walked around for a bit and eventually found the machine over by the “up” stairs.

This was not a special cabinet, but rather just a plain wood version.  It was a three design electric model and was pressing the designs very nicely.

The designs were themed around runDisney which was a nice touch.  Images were of Marathon Mickey, an Outline of Mickey’s Head, and the runDisney Logo.  All of the designs include the phrase “Every Mile is Magic” which I think is a really nice touch.

Now there is no way to know how long this machine will be available.  There are other runDisney events throughout the year so it may be available moving forward.  However the J Center is only open to the public when events are taking place.  If you go on a day with no events this building is usually locked up tight.  Make sure you plan ahead if you are looking to try to get a set.

Gatorland – Orlando, FL

A Long long time ago when I was much younger I remember a family vacation to Florida.  Some of our extended family also came down to join in the events, and one of those days my sister and I went to a scary but amazing place with our grandparents.  Recently I decided to take my daughters to this very same place and in the 20 some years since my first trip it was not what I remembered which is actually a good thing.

Gatorland is exactly what the name implies.  Everything gator related can be found within its walls.  As a child I remember big pits filled with gators jumping out of the water to try to grab a snack.  But perspective is interesting how it can change with age and as you get taller.

As you first walk in past the ticket window area there are various boardwalk style pathways that allow you to see different areas with various sizes and ages of gators.  The railings are solid, and secured with fencing to prevent any too close for comfort encounters.  There are also a lot of staff on hand to answer your questions and give you all sorts of information about these creatures.

As with most of the tourist attractions in Florida there are my favorite souvenirs Penny Presses.  This machine was close tot he area with the smaller sized gators.

This set includes images of a Gator head, a Bear, a Flamingo and a Snake.

I was curious how my two girls would take to this place, but they really enjoyed it.  Being new to Florida I figured any safe encounters with gators I’ll chalk up to a learning experience.

Remember that memory I mentioned earlier about gators jumping out of the water to catch a snack?  Well that actually does still happen, but it’s not in the form of a deep pit.  Instead there is a pool of water with some pretty large gators swimming around and as part of a show called Jumparoo they leap out to try to eat pieces of chicken from a wire.

Seeing those large creatures snap up those chicken pieces is really quite a show and my girls were cheering them on throughout the whole show.

One of the extra experiences here is to get your family picture taken with a large snake.  I am not a snake fan so this was not something I was going to do, but nearby was the second penny machine.  I pressed these coins with my eyes always on the snake making sure he didn’t escape from the handler.

This second set of pennies had the following designs: the Gatorland Logo, Gatorland Park, a Gator and a Snake in a tree.  Along the way we found other interesting activities like feeding gators, and a bird aviary.

The gators had already been fed so that wasn’t available when we were in the area, instead we checked out the birds.  Once inside you can buy a popsicle stick covered in birdseed.  Then as you walk inside with all the birds they immediately flock to the stick and start chowing down.  My daughter Hanna didn’t like when they would stand on her hand, but it was still a cute thing to do.

After we finished feeding the birds we made sure none escaped and continued on our pathway and found a little gift shop called the Bayou.  Outside this store was the third and final penny machine to be found inside the park.

The third set of coins is my personal favorite, and are pretty detailed.  Each has a gator as part of the design, but the slogans on these are what make them great.  3000 lbs of Bone Crushing Jaw Power! Oh Snap!, Drop in any time you’re in Florida, Trespassers will be Eaten, and Gator X-ing.  By this time everyone was getting a little hungry so we decided to stop for some lunch.

They have a BBQ style quick service location here with things like chicken fingers, pulled pork sandwiches and if you can believe this Gator nuggets.  We couldn’t resist getting some and trying them.  I really hate to say this but they really do taste like chicken, and my girls didn’t mind them either.

After lunch we checked out a train ride around the park, and also spent some time with a couple large tortoises.  The park also has a nice kids playground and water park-ish area.  Before leaving we had to stop for one last photo-op you can see above.

Other than having gators this place was not at all like I remembered, but was still a lot of fun.  Everyone had a great time, and he entrance fee is pretty reasonable for everything you get to experience.  The penny designs were a nice addition to my ever-growing Florida collection.  These are some really extraordinary reptiles and everyone should learn a little more about them, especially if you like visiting Florida.

Date Night in Canadian Pavilion – Epcot

It’s been a few months since our move down to Florida, the moving boxes have all been put away and we are getting comfortable with our new surroundings.  We have taken little adventures around our area to try to get familiarized with our locale, and of course finding new doctors and a vet for our cats is always an adventure.  My wife and I both work for the same company and they allowed us to continue working remotely from our home after the move which was a big help.  But spending so much time in the same house can drive you a little batty.  With our two young daughters, getting some time just to ourselves can be a bit of challenge.  We decided as a lot of couples do to start having date nights every so often so we can just get out of the house for a few hours.

With so many options it can be a little daunting to figure out where to go.  We had recently visited Epcot and I saw a restaurant I hadn’t been to in years so I checked the myDisneyExperience smart phone app and was able to get a reservation for about 7pm.  Before that we did have some time to waste so I grabbed a fastness for one of our favorite attractions.

The new Soarin’ around the World movie is a nice update.  I was really hoping to get a purely Florida version but flying over the Great Wall of China, and the Eiffel tower is still a pretty cool experience.  Once we were done with Soarin’ we headed outside so we could make sure we arrived in plenty of time for our reservation.

I was originally born in Canada so the Canadian Pavilion was always a stop my family would make on vacations when I was young.  In the lower area of the Pavilion is the very popular Le Cellier steakhouse.  You could try just walking up for a table but be prepared to wait.  Reservations would be highly recommended to ensure you get a table.

As the name suggests the restaurant is themed like you are in a Wine Cellar.  It’s a little dark inside and usually very noisy, but on this trip it was still dark but actually kind of relaxing inside.  Even though we were only two for dinner, we were sat at a larger table for four.  This allowed us to spread out a bit as some of the Disney restaurants do crowd you in together with all the other guests.

For an appetizer my wife and I split a Canadian favorite poutine.  This has become quite the phenomenon in a lot of areas through the US with each place putting a bit of a spin on it.  The classic is french fries, covered with a thick beef gravy and squeaky cheese curds (yes squeaky that’s how you know they are authentic).  The version we had this time was called the Montreal Poutine.  It included fresh-cut french fries, Montreal style smoked brisket, french onion gravy, Gruyère cheese with a mustard cheese sauce.  This far from a classic version but was very tasty.  The brisket was also nice, but was layered on top in long slices which made it a little difficult to each with the fries.  I would have preferred it was cubed up and mixed in a little better, but still very nice.

For our main course we both got the Signature Filet Mignon, which was a AAA Canadian Tenderloin, Mushroom Risotto, Asparagus-Tomato relish and a Truffle Butter sauce.  I’m not a big mushroom fan but this was really tender and fantastic.  For dessert my wife got the Maple Creme Brûlée, and I tried their Maple Sugar-Pecan Doughnuts with a Coffee mousse.  The doughnuts were okay, but my wife’s Creme Brûlée was definitely the winner.  With our wonderful meal complete we headed outside.

The Canadian Pavilion at night when it’s all lit up is really pretty.  The native decorations and totem poles are a nice touch as well giving some details on the rich history of the country and its people.

Of course there is also a gift shop located here called the Northwest Mercantile.  These gifts shops around the world showcase are fun to walk through as they have items directly from those countries.  Inside the mercantile I saw candy and other items that I haven’t seen since my last trip to visit family in Canada.

I always like to talk with the cast members working in these stores as they are usually on the college program and are from the country you are visiting.  I visited with Nick who was from the Toronto area and chatted about how my father’s side of the family were all from that area.  It always makes the world seem just a little bit smaller.

Tucked away in the back by all the shirts and sweaters is a penny machine.  There is some native decoration on the cabinet which was cool.

The machine was electric and pressed three designs The Canadian Pavilion, Mickey wearing a Mountie Hat, and Canada Duffy Bear.  As we continued looking through the gift shop we hear an announcement from outside in the park that the fireworks show would be starting shortly.

Thankfully the park was actually not that busy and we were able to just walk right up to the fence surrounding water where the show takes place.  It’s called IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth, and is a Fireworks and laser show.

Some of the show pieces move around on the water, and the lasers  can be seen from all around the showcase.  The fireworks are some of the best on property.

This was a great way to end our date night, and we had a great time just spending some time together at the park.  Dinner was great and of course I was still able to squeeze in a penny machine.  Now I just have to figure out where we are going next.

Goofy’s Candy Company – Disney Springs

With all the changes that have gone on over at Disney Springs it has really turned in to a great place to visit.  Most of the new “outlet” style retail stores are not really my scene, but the restaurants are right up my alley.  Of course sometimes when you are walking around you need a quick fix and what is better than a Candy Store.

Over on the Marketplace side of the springs right near Rainforest Cafe is a fun place called Goofy’s Candy Company.  I have visited this from time to time especially when my daughters are with me.

Inside this place is like Wonka’s factory.  The walls are covered with bags of candy, and the center of the store is where some cast members create all types of chocolate covered treats.

Once you have chosen what candy to indulge in (if nothing you are a stronger person than I), right beside one of the check out registers is a new penny press.

This may come as a shock to some, but Disney is a very busy place and Goofy’s Candy Co is no different.  The unfortunately layout of this place with the large area in the middle with the hand-made confections makes walking around in here very difficult.  Having this machine near one of the registers doesn’t help, but with a little patience you can press your set without too much difficulty.

The machine has four designs all themed around Goofy.  The images include Goofy with some Balloons, Goofy eating a Sundae, Goofy tossing popcorn into his mouth to eat, and You Friend! Goofy.

When I first hear about this new set I couldn’t get over to the candy store fast enough.  I thought this was a fantastic place for a machine (even though it’s busy) and each design is really fun and unique.  I look forward to having even more new penny press machines show up in Disney Springs.  It will allow me more time to visit Disney Springs allowing me to get a little exercise walking around, and then sitting near the waterfront with a Ghirardelli ice cream, or a chocolate covered Rice Krispie treat from Goofy’s Candy Co.  Thankfully they have some cheaper versions than the ones pictures below.

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these new designs.

Old Town – Kissimmee, FL

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these machines
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Continuing my journey down Highway 192 I came across another interesting little place called Old Town.  It’s a little back from the Highway, but not hard to find.  The side street kind of winds around a bit before you find a parking lot.  This place does get busy on weekends, but I was here pretty early on a Saturday and Old Town seemed to be just getting going for the day.

With my daughter Hanna along for the trip we started at the far end furthest from Highway 192 so we could make sure we didn’t miss anything.

There appear to be old roads running through the middle, but no actual cars can drive here so its open for just the pedestrians.  Buildings line both sides of these walkways and have shops of various types selling anything you can image.

One of the first places we stopped into was the Black Market Minerals which was a place I don’t think I’ve ever seen before.

Inside the shop sold all types of rocks, and minerals, jewelry made from these beautiful stones and a lot of very unique gifts.

Just inside the main door was a four design electric penny machine.  I’ve only come across this style of machine in a few places and think the last time I found one like this was in North Carolina at a zoo.

These designs are actually kind of a great set for this type of store.   They include images of different dinosaurs: A Triceratops, Pterodactyl, Brontosaurus, and a T-Rex.

My daughter Hanna was fascinated by the large bins of very colorful stones.  You could sort through them and pick out the ones you liked to fill a bag for a set price.  I convinced Hanna to just pick a few as a souvenir before we headed back out to the street.

You can also find some restaurants, and a few bars here which seem like they would be quite the hang out after dark.

There was even a Haunted House attraction if you dare.  It was closed when we passed by, but Hanna didn’t like the looks of it so we crossed to the other side of the street to be on the safe side.

We kept walking and eventually came across a Leather Shop at the far end of Old Town.

They sold bags, and wallets, belts, and all sorts of products made from genuine leather.  Most could be customized if you had the time to wait or come back.

I will admit I didn’t come her to buy and leather, I’m not particularly fond of it myself but decided to check it out as they had two penny machines inside.

The designs from the first machine seem to be more of the generic rest stop variety.  I’m still new to the area so these are still new to my collection, but get the feeling I’ll be seeing more of these along the way.  The designs included an Alligator, My Lucky Penny, I Love You, and a Florida Sunset over the Water.

On the other side of the door was the second machine which is always nice to have close by.  This was a hand crank model with 4 additional designs.

This set included another design of an Alligator, The Lord’s Prayer, an American Eagle with USA Map and Flag, and finally another cool Florida Beach Scene.  Hanna didn’t seem to impressed with the leather shop (not enough bling she mentioned) so we headed outside and back towards where we parked.

Along the way we did pass by Tiki Jim’s which sounded right up my alley.  I love all that Tiki stuff and would decorate my house like the Polynesian Village Resort if I could just figure out how to convince my wife.  One last stop was for Hanna to get some Strawberry flavored popcorn from the Kissimmee Popcorn Company.  FYI they give out free samples of all their many different flavored popcorn so be sure to try it out, they have some really fun flavors.

This was a really cute little area to just leisurely walk around and so some window shopping.  I can definitely see how it can get busy and crowded as it’s not a very big area.  Plus with the bars around it may get a little rowdy, but when we visited before lunch it was very peaceful, and worth a visit.

Moved – Big Hero 6 Pressed Penny Set now at Epcot

Flashback to 2014 when Disney released a new animated movie  called Big Hero 6.  It is not one of my favorite movies, but the story is interesting and who doesn’t like Baymax.  That same year there was a set of pressed pennies placed in the Magic of Disney Animation building at the Hollywood Studios theme park.

I remember years ago there used to be a show where an animator would walk the audience through how to draw certain Disney characters.  At the end of each show there was one lucky audience member that would get the drawing from the animator, but I was just never that lucky.  More recently this was a meet and greet area where at one point you could meet Baymax and Hiro from Big Hero 6.

Near this meet location was where the original penny press machine was located in a nice wood grace cabinet.

A short time after this machine was made available the Magic of Disney Animation building closed down as it was being redesigned as the Star Wars Launch Bay.  During this closure the Big Hero 6 penny machine was nowhere to be found.  Then in 2015 the machine showed up.

This time it was back in the Muppet’s Courtyard at the Pizza Planet quick service restaurant.  During this time Pizza Planet was a bit of a dumping ground for penny machines and I believe the Big Hero 6 was the fifth or sixth machine there.  But that wouldn’t last long as Pizza Planet got closed down not too longer after.  This closed down so it could be redesigned as PizzeRizzo’s, and this penny set disappeared again for almost two years.

Flash forward to 2017, and I read online that this missing machine thought to have been retired shows up in Epcot of all places.

In-between Spaceship Earth and the Fountain if you head towards The Land pavilion where Soarin’ is located you pass two Character Spot’s with meet and greets.

Once of these locations is where Innoventions West used to be and is now where you can meet Joy and Sadness from Pixar’s Inside Out.  Also in here is Baymax (no Hiro anymore for some reason).

   

Just inside the doors to this Character Spot is where the penny machine can be found.  The cabinet has been repainted.

But the designs are still exactly the same.

The images on these coins include Baymax, Hiro, and Fred all with the BH6 logo on them.  It’s took bad they didn’t issue different designs when they brought back this machine.  But with all the movement this machine has had I’m sure there are a lot of people who weren’t able to press these coins the first few times it was available.

I hate to mention this but, there are a lot of changes coming to Epcot over the next few years.  This character spot is in a location that seems to be unrecognizable in the concept art that Disney has released.  This is a nice place for the machine, but who knows how long these designs will be here.  Go get them before they disappear again.

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on this move and the designs.

Main Gate Flea Market – Kissimmee, FL

Highway 192 is a pretty touristy main drag running just south of the Disney World property, and straight through the neighboring town of Kissimmee.  There is just something about that name that sticks in your head.  Even as a child I remember numerous vacations staying at a Howard Johnson in Kissimmee as we never stayed on Disney property.  Coming down from Canada, as much as we wanted to spend an entire week at the parks, there was just so much more to do in Florida we had to keep moving.  But Kissimmee was a name I never forgot.  Now that we are down in Florida we have slowly been trying to find our way around and go further and further from our house to see what’s out there.

I will admit up front that I have been checking pennycollector.com to try to collect some new coins around town, but there’s been so much to do with the new house that I don’t have as much time as I want to go on penny collecting trips.  This past weekend I had some errands to run and the stores I needed to head to just happened to be in Kissimmee right along Highway 192.  This is where I knew there were some penny machines I needed to check out.

The Main Gate Flea Market was one of these stops.  It’s right along Highway 192 surrounded by Hotels and over the top souvenir shops.  The flea market consists of two buildings A and B.  Both are very similar just obviously with different vendors in each.  We really weren’t looking for anything specific, and really was just here for the penny machine but I figured we may as well see what’s available.  We headed into Building A to start walking around.

There are a few kiosks with boiled peanuts, and “fresh” made candy, but most of the other stuff is the classic souvenir items.  T-Shirts as far as the eye can see, snow globes, orange tree starter kits and tons of cheap sunglasses and umbrellas as must for Florida visitors.

Down one of the aisles we found the restrooms and for some reason the penny machine was located.  I guess this ensures a lot of traffic past the machine but who knows.

This was an interesting machine.  It was an electric model but in a very dates looking cabinet.  But I don’t mean it was beat up, rather just looked kind of link an antique which was pretty cool.

The designs here are ones I’m sure I’ll get used to seeing throughout Florida.  These seem very similar to ones I used to find along the Jersey Turnpike or other roadside rest stops.  The designs included Orlando FL – World’s Vacation Center, Souvenir of Florida The Sunshine State, My Lucky Penny with Horseshoe & Shamrocks, and A Penny For Your Thoughts.

With the pennies safely stowed away we finished walking around the Flea Market but didn’t buy anything this time.  As much as I say the stuff is pretty standard it’s still hard to resist some of it.  This was a nice little stop and they do have some cheap souvenirs if that’s what you’re looking for.  Plus the pressed pennies are some of the cheapest souvenirs you can get, and will last a lot longer than the knockoff Mickey plush.

Click here to see my YouTube channel video on these new designs.