Best Gift Shop: Rock Around The Shop

WDW Magazine - - Contents - BY JEREMY LEIGHTENBERG

Its time to Rock! You just got out of the su­per stretch limo af­ter go­ing up­side-down, side­ways and ev­ery other di­rec­tion pos­si­ble on Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Star­ring Aero­smith. As you walk away from the ride and try to make sense of what di­rec­tion you are now go­ing (I prom­ise you are not up­side down any­more), you head right into Rock Around the Shop—aero­smith mu­sic videos play­ing, Aero­smith mem­o­ra­bilia ev­ery­where, with the store set up like a record­ing stu­dio to some de­gree. You’re still rockin'.

I may be show­ing my age here, but Aero­smith is a band from my child­hood and, in my opin­ion, they were awe­some. My daugh­ter has no idea who they are. Tak­ing a walk around the gift shop is some­thing that we al­ways do when com­ing out of an at­trac­tion. Some­times, it’s only a minute, as a lot have the same mem­o­ra­bilia as the last gift shop. When we were walk­ing through Rock Around the Shop, my daugh­ter ac­tu­ally thought that the mu­sic was good! She found a few things and said, "Dad, take a look at this.” She found an Aero­smith shirt that she liked, but I knew my wife would not ap­prove. We took a look around some more and she found a pin she liked in­stead. She loves pins! I found a few more things that made me flash back to a younger me. Things way more in depth than the av­er­age T-shirt you’d buy at a rock ‘n’ roll con­cert. Pins, hats, photo frames—you got it!

Jack Skelling­ton has his own lit­tle sec­tion in here as well. You won’t catch me buy­ing any­thing with Jack on it but the guy is very pop­u­lar in the Dis­ney com­mu­nity. Pil­lows, purses, shirts, and heck, even his own shoes are sold in here. He is quite the guy in this store. I saw as many peo­ple check­ing out Jack’s col­lec­tion of items as the Aero­smith items.

Some­thing that you don't al­ways see is Mickey rock­ing! I found a pretty neat shirt with Mickey play­ing a gui­tar. He wasn't just play­ing the gui­tar; he was rock­ing out on the gui­tar! You will find your var­i­ous items in here with their own Dis­ney touches, such as the Mickey shirt, but the over­all feel of the store gets your blood flow­ing. Dis­ney items, with a rock ‘n’ roll twist. I al­ways try to find my­self a unique item to pur­chase on my trip. This was it.

My daugh­ter and I headed for the check­out line, bought her pin and my shirt, and we were on our way with the blood still flow­ing from the ride. As we made our way out of the store, I had a lit­tle smirk on my face. My wife asked what was go­ing on. I showed her my new pur­chase as she shook her head. This tends to hap­pen a lot when I am at WDW. I pro­ceeded into the bath­room just out­side the ride to change into my new shirt.

To me, this wasn't just an­other Dis­ney gift store af­ter an­other ride; it was one of my top stores I was in on my trip—thanks to the nos­tal­gia I felt of a time when all that I wanted to do was Rock! Rock Around the Shop has helped me go back to that time when­ever I wear my Mickey shirt with him play­ing his gui­tar… with a smirk on my face, and my wife still shak­ing her head.

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