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Memory Lane: Stories From 50′s Prime Time Cafe in Disney World

If you’ve dined at the 50′s Prime Time Cafe in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you probably have a fond memory (or more!) of your server’s antics.

Here’s the storyline (every good Disney restaurant has a storyline, after all!): This restaurant is set up with the theme of a 1950′s kitchen, and “mom” is back behind the wall stirring up some grub! Of course, your servers are all part of the family, so they’re referred to as “cousins” or “uncles”!

Should you make any major faux pas (like putting your elbows on the table or not finishing your vegetables), your “cousin” or “uncle” could very well dole out a little punishment! Guests have found themselves standing in the corner, singing My Little Teapot in front of the whole restaurant, and more! Of course, the experience really does depend on who your server is (I’ve had some duds in my time), but more often than not, this is a really fun experience.

We asked our DFB Facebook Friends to share their fun memories — and send pics! Below are a few of the hilarious responses! We can’t wait to hear YOUR favorite 50′s Prime Time Cafe memories — let us know about them in the comments section below!

Eat Your Veggies

Here’s the story that gave us the idea to do this post! Thanks to Jill for sending over this photo and memory!

“My punishment for not eating my veggies — green beans returned to me with whipped cream for dessert!” exclaims Reader Jill S.

Green Beans and Whipped Cream

Reader Heather C.’s family had to sing! “All we are saying, is give peas a chance“, sung to my father while he was being fed by [server] Uncle Tommy the last forkful of peas from the chicken pot pie.”

Give Peas a Chance

And “[server] Uncle Tommy using a kazoo and flying the “airplane” fork into my son’s mouth.”

Airplane!

No Toys at the Table

Reader Jill S. recalls “my husband had to give our waitress his iPhone during lunch. No toys at the table, she said!”

TV Table

Janna remembers “…the server gave my mom heck because she wouldn’t get off of the phone! She announced to the entire restaurant that my mom was grounded from her phone.”

Reader Pudge the Fish had a similar experience: “The waitress caught my father-in-law on his phone and proceeded to rib him for the entire meal about his new fangled “walkie talkie” (it is the 1950’s in there after all.)”

Keep Your Dinnerware on the Table

Reader Tracy B. reminisces about a November 2011 meal: “During the app, I dropped my knife and [my husband] Chuck gave me his. Then when the entrees came, I asked for a new one. No problem, right?

THEN, I dropped my NEW knife! But it happened while [our server] Mindy was in the room and she looked at CHUCK and said “Seriously?” Everyone in the room was cracking up! “

Birthday Memories

Reader Heather J. remembers a funny birthday experience: “We were celebrating my daughter Meghan’s Sweet Sixteenth Birthday on our last trip. All during our dinner our “cousin” was teasing Meghan about her nose ring.

When our dessert came, she brought out a bowl of ice cream with a candle in it and dragged Meg out into the middle of the dining room. Before she had the whole place sing “Happy Birthday”, she told everyone that the girl had been snagged in the nose by her grandpa’s fishing hook. Priceless!”

16th Birthday

Sports Team Rivalry

Reader Jacqueline M. has a family of good sports!

“In July of 2009 I took my siblings to Disney for their very first trip. One restaurant that I knew they needed to experience was the 50′s Prime Time Cafe!

We are from the Boston area and are huge Red Sox fans! The moment we got “cousin Amy” from New York as our server, I knew we were in for an experience. There is quite the rivalry between the Sox and New York Yankees, and my little brother was still not quite old enough to realize that you should just avoid the whole rivalry thing if you are not at Fenway.

My little brother decided to bring up the question that would create quite the dining experience: “Are you a Yankees fan?” Well, of course “cousin Amy” was! My brother kept talking about his love of the Sox and distaste of the Yankees while he managed to avoid eating his vegetables.

“Cousin Amy” took my brother by the hand and made him hold a packet of pepper with his nose against the wall. When he tried to walk away from the corner, Cousin Amy took him over to a new table and introduced him to his new family from California!

50′s Prime Time is a must on every vacation that we take to Walt Disney World!”

Good Sports!

Don’t Get Distracted

Reader Elissa F. visits 50′s Prime Time Cafe on every trip to WDW! She recalls being seated at a TV table. Her son was mesmerized the entire meal and the waitress was kind enough to go easy on him despite his distraction.

Mesmerizing TV

Make Your Own Fun

Readers Matt & Lani love the Glowtinis! “These drinks at the Tune-In Lounge at 50′s Prime Time Cafe are sure to make your night at Hollywood Studios “extra” fun”, they said!

Glowtini

Remember Your Table Manners

Reader Bethabee gives this warning: “one member of our group had her elbows on the table repeatedly and ended up having to stand with her nose to the wall while the waiter led us in some kind of ditty about remembering good table manners.”

Antics Overview — Disney Food Blog Editor Kim’s Experiences

Wrapping up Memory Lane, I’ll share my own experiences, too! On our most recent trip to the cafe, my tween son was made to set the table in order to earn his keep. We were very amused! His Grandma thought it was about time that Mr. Tween did this chore!

Tween Earning his Keep

Our tired “Cousin” sat to take our order. Then, Mr. Tween was instructed to take the menus back up to the check-in area. The server told him “I’m not doing everything!”

Tired Cousin

After several rides on Star Tours, the Tween was thirsty and asked for a refill. He got three!

Thirsty!

And to prepare our son for his touring day after all of that soda, he was presented with this helpful map!

Bed Wetter's Guide Map

Of course, there were veggies left on Mr. Tween’s plate, so his dessert was made with the scraps!

Veggie Dessert

We were even asked to sign a birthday card for our “family members” across the room (since everyone in the restaurant is “family” after all)!

Birthday Card

Finally, in addition to having to serve another table their soup, our tween was given our bill.

Time to Pay Up!

This humor was perfectly suited for our then-11 year old. He enjoyed every minute of the fun!

Through the years, we’ve had fantastic meals at the 50′s Prime Time Cafe. My advice is to know the color of the soap if you excuse yourself to visit the restroom! We love dining at this restaurant. And it’s even more fun when we bring extended family!

Want to fill your belly with some memorable laughs? Make an advance dining reservation here on your next Disney trip! And don’t forget to check out our review of the 50′s Prime Time Cafe.

What’s your favorite memory from the 50′s Prime Time Cafe? Let us know in the comments below!

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28 Comments

  1. Kelly says:

    My family loves Prime Time. We went there first with all of my Mom’s family. Her brother lives in the house they grew up in and between the basement and the kitchen, it looks so much like Prime Time!

    Then, back in ’03, my Dad’s Mom joined us for a week in Disney and we knew we would have to take her there. Our waiter decided she looked just like his grandmother and completely fawned over her. She was so tickled and laughed through the entire meal. It’s one of those “Disney memories” that I’ll always remember!

  2. Kim LaPaglia says:

    Kelly – it’s truly a place to enjoy with multi-generations!

  3. I’m glad to hear some people are still having a good time at Prime Time. Both my sister and I went in the past year with our husbands (both times as a couple with no kids) and we felt like our tables were just treated like we were in a normal restaurant :-( It seems the servers only play it up when there are kids at the table. I also had a really hard time ordering with allergies at Prime Time.

  4. Jessica says:

    My first trip to WDW was when I was 7, but I will never forget our experience at 50s that year! Our “mom” harassed my cousin the entire meal, but the best part? My cousin tried to get away with not cleaning his plate by stuffing the leftovers into his shake glass…and nothing gets by Mom! He had to stand in the corner while the entire restaurant wagged their fingers at him and said “shame, shame, shame!”

  5. Silvercat says:

    Last November, our server noticed our ‘just engaged’ badges and loudly announced to the whole room that “your cousins just got engaged – everybody clap!” It was mortifying yet funny at the same time!

    She was great, so much fun, and gave my fella a hard time for not quite finishing his dessert. She didn’t quite go as far as the aeroplane though – I had warned him in advance!

    By the way, we didn’t have kids with us but she still made a big fuss of us, so maybe it is just down to the individual servers on the day as to how much fuss they make.

  6. Janna says:

    Wonderful memories! I had a great time (again) with my mom in October. There were no kids with us either – I think it depends entirely upon the mood of your aunt or uncle that day. (I just hope the lettuce wedge is still on te menu by the time I get back! Yummmmmm.)

  7. Val says:

    I was praised by my “cousin” for finishing my plate. She then picked up the plate and announced to the entire room I was in the “clean plate crowd”. I was feeling good until she began announcing she saw tongue marks and said she saw me licking the plate clean…ha ha, although the pot roast was so delicious that I can’t say I wasn’t tempted to do that!

  8. Melissa says:

    I love eating a different restaurants when I visit but Primetime Cafe is the one restaurant I have the hardest time NOT going to every trip. It’s amazingly themed, the castmembers are hysterical, and the food is great. I can’t praise this place more.

    And I’m still laughing about the bed wetter’s guide map LOLOLOL

  9. Lisa says:

    When my husband and I were there, he pointed out the fact that my elbows were on the table so our “cousin” would scold me. Instead, she announced that he was a tattletale! And we witnessed the guests at the next table being forced to eat their vegetables with the airplane game.

  10. Marisa says:

    The first time my family and I went to DIsney World, November 2005, we ate at the 50s Prime-Time Cafe. I remember laughing through our entire, delicious meal. My mom, who ordered a meatloaf dinner, didn’t want to finish her salad, thinking it would spoil the rest of her dinner. Our waiter, whose name was Uncle Tim (I remember because I, too, have an Uncle Tim) told her to finish it, and he’d be back around to take her plate. When he returned, my mom still hadn’t finished the salad. Uncle Tim pulled a chair up and sat next to her, picked up her fork, and started feeding the salad to my mom. I thought it was hysterical. My mom was a little mortified and a lot embarrassed. She didn’t want to finish her meal, so Uncle Tim said he wasn’t going to bring her dessert. And when he brought the rest of us, our desserts, my mom’s was missing. Overall, I had a blast laughing at my mom. :)

  11. Jenny says:

    One of my favs! I have either seen or expereinced most of the antics that fellow readers have described! My favorite thing that happened to my family was when my mom had to lean her nose against the wall.

  12. Anne says:

    My husband and I dined at Prime Time on our honeymoon. Our “cousin” announced to the dining room that we got married and didn’t invite any of them. He then had us recreate the cake cutting with a cupcake. He had another diner take pictures of us smashing cupcake in each others faces. We have hilarious action shots of the smashing. We also got a certificate for it being a Magical Moment and the moment written down was “to losing your freedom.”

    I also did not finish my chicken pot pie so my dessert was the leftover topped with whipped cream and sprinkles. Yum yum! Such great memories from that experience!

  13. Robin says:

    In 2008 we were at 50s PTC and our server was Lookili (who we liked so much we waited for him in 2009 and 2010). He really bonded with my then 9 year old son over being the only boy with two older sisters. My favorite part was making my then 13 year old daughter pick up the dirty plates and march them to the bus area and singing “Follow the Yellow Brick Road”….not knowing she had just played a munchkin in her school production of “The Wizard of Oz”!
    He also had her stand up and had the room call her a “Bossy, bossy girl”! :)

  14. AJ says:

    Hmm… I wonder why I’ve never had my leftovers returned to me as a dessert… Oh, wait, I KNOW WHY — there never ARE any leftovers (guffaw, guffaw ;-D)

  15. Cait says:

    I love 50′s. I don’t know how I missed this! One trip there for dinner, I had to sing “I’m a little tea pot” I believe it was playing with my cellphone!

  16. James says:

    My favorite place to dine at DHS! The fun atmosphere and great food make it hard for me not to eat here on every trip. My favorite memory was in 2007 when my wife didn’t finish her salmon and our “aunt” fed her “just three more bites.” My kids still talk about it 5 years later.

  17. Julie says:

    Our first time at 50s Prime Time I was really young, maybe 11 or 12, and wearing a shirt my junior high boyfriend gave me that said something along the lines of “My boyfriend thinks I’m pretty.” Our amazing waiter, Topher, started asking about my boyfriend and I said that we had been dating for two years and since we were in elementary school when we started dating, I asked my parents permission to kiss him (keep in mind we’re kids here, so we’re talking a peck on the lips). Topher pulled my chair out into the middle of the restaurant and screamed the story for everyone to hear. I’m not sure I’ve ever been more embarrassed, turned brighter red, or laughed harder! Humiliating and amazing all at the same time! I’ll never forget that incredibly funny dinner :)

  18. Shannon says:

    This place was a riot! We went there this past September and my sister likes to draw so she drew an evil mickey and something else on the napkins…..well the waitress made her put them up on the fridge at the front of the restaurant. We laughed so hard and she was so embarrassed. Also my husband had to help clear the table and brought our dishes back to the kitchen. :)

  19. Heather says:

    I guess I’m weird because this post is exactly why I could never eat here. I don’t go to Disney to get humiliated & yelled at. It’s just not in my personality to enjoy that. Which is sad since it looks like a cute place to try.

  20. Marisa says:

    I came across this website while jotting down information for my guide book to Disney that I am making. I can’t believe I have never eaten here! In my defense, we don’t go to Hollywood Studios as much as we should, but this is definately a must-do for our next trip! I’m a little nervous though because I want our server to interact with us like in someof the stories! If they don’t my entire experience will be unsatisfactory! I’m 13 and my younger brother is 11 so I hop the fact that we are kids will entice the server to interact with us some more….

  21. AJ says:

    Marisa — Good luck on your visit!

  22. Gabriella says:

    Our 13 year old son loves their fried chicken but hates the “schtick” because he’s reserved, so my husband kept taunting the waitress who in turn fired back one-liners and completely ignored my son, who happily ate his chicken in peace. If you have a timid person in your party, make sure an outgoing one keeps the servers from pestering him. We even ate his greens first and reminded him to keep his elbows off the table so he wouldn’t “get in trouble”. Good times!

  23. Susan says:

    Does anyone know why they dropped the sandwiches off the menu? Sometimes I can’t eat a heavy meal in the heat, especially at lunch time, but others in my group want togo there. Thanks!

  24. Becky says:

    One time we were there we tried to turn the tables on them a little bit ;) We went with a big group of friends when I was in high school. There were about 12 of us. The waitress kept yelling at us “use your beverage napkin!” because we would put our glasses directly on the table instead of on the little napkins. So after she left we collected all of the beverage napkins and hid them under the table. She comes back, sees a cup on the table, and says, “use your… where are your beverage napkins??!” She was appalled at our behavior and gave us extra helpings of veggies as a “punishment”!

  25. Peggy says:

    On one trip years ago I was dying of thirst and apparently asked to have my water refilled one too many times. He “graciously” offered to run a hose out to the lake for me. {:–)

    We’re eating there again in a few weeks after having one disappointing experience with being seated at a regular table with a waiter who was just being a waiter. This time I’m hoping to be seated at a TV table again – its great fun!

  26. Rose says:

    My grandfather was a big practical jokester, so Prime Time was a must for him. Little did our waitress know that when she brought out his pot pie, he quickly slipped a fake cockroach into it while she wasn’t looking. When he pointed it out to her, our poor waitress went pale as a sheet and swooped it back into the kitchen before my grandpa could say another word. less than a minute later, the chef comes out with a butcher knife in one hand and the fake cockroach in the other, screaming “Who did this?!” I’ve never seen my grandfather laugh so hard.

  27. Tina says:

    We went with my sister’s family to Prime Time in 2007. My sister hid her green beans under her potatoes so she wouldn’t get picked on. Our “Mother” came back to the table and asked where my sister went to. I told her that my sister was in the bathroom. Well, our ‘Mother” marched right into the bathroom and started giving my sister the business (while she was doing her business). She was completely embarrassed. She was so mad at me for telling our “Mother” on her. She still talks about it.

  28. Alex says:

    I’m still amazed that they did it, but my boyfriend and his brother did manage to sneak one by the server on one of our trips to Prime Time Cafe. His brother’s not a big veggie eater, so he wrapped his veggies in a napkin, handed them to my boyfriend, who stuck them in his pocket and went to the bathroom. He threw the napkin-wrapped veggies away in the bathroom, and our sibling/server/cousin (I can’t remember “who” they were) was none the wiser. My bf’s brother even got dessert!

    Another time, though, their dad had to sing “I’m a Little Teapot” in front of the whole restaurant.

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