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6/30/06 - Pirates thoughts and more from Fridays Disneyland Resort Trip
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6/30/06 - Pirates thoughts and more from Fridays Disneyland Resort Trip

* After you read this report you may want to check out the pictorial updates in our Disneyland Resort Pictorial Update section

Hello all,

The goal of this Friday's trip was to see the newly re-opened Pirates of the Caribbean and the Disney Gallery Exhibit, survive the heat and crowds, and to just relax. I managed to succeed on all fronts. I went into the day expecting long hot waits to get on Pirates and was pleasantly surprised to find the line under 30 minutes most of the afternoon and inching upwards to 35 minutes later in the evening. Other lines around Disneyland were on the light side for a holiday weekend, but still healthy as you saw in the line board photos. DCA on the other hand was empty/dead feeling. The waits for GRR and Soarin were both 45 minutes which was long, but not too long for summer. Where as Tower and Monsters where walk ons.


Trip logs and mileage reports are in the Park Miles section.

DCA & Disneyland Notes:

  • Pirates have definitely taken over the Resort. You are greeted by a large Pirates sign at the M&F Tram stop, Pirates Banners at Downtown Disney and a Pirates Guide map @ Disneyland. The slogan is "The Classic Attraction Returns" and the Picture has the Castle, Jack Sparrow, and two ships.. I think its a great campaign. Also you cannot go into many gift shops on property without coming across Pirates related merchandise. Its everywhere... I think its a little too much, I really miss the days when there was more unique merchandise for each land but at least the merchandise now is somewhat park related and not the same stuff you can find at your local Disney Store.

  • OK time for some thoughts on the Enhanced Attraction. I really enjoyed the trip. It appears that a lot of time and effort went into making the new characters, set pieces, sound track, and dialog fit within the existing attraction without altering it too much. For those who have never ridden or those who do not ride that frequently the show is seem less. For those who are Disneygeeks and know the attraction like the back of their hands its a blast to ride through and see the little tweaks and changes. For a listing of the big changes check out the press release that details them (click here).

  • My favorite enhancement has to be the sound track/speaker system. They have replaced all the speakers and installed several new locations too. Also now the parts of the movie score are integrated into the soundtrack. The most noticeable scene for this is the bombardment scene where the Wicked Wench is shooting at the fort. This scene is incredible now. With the base of the cannon fire, music, and the new dialog Barbosa uses that combines some of the classic phrases with new demands for Jack Sparrow to really set up the story.

  • As you ride through the attraction you will find many little touches now too such as a sunken dinky near the storm scene, a Parrot skeleton in the Captains Quarters, or some extra "burning" lumber near the finale. All of these really add to the attraction and make it fun for those who visit alot and add to the already incredible detail found throughout.

  • The new AA figures of Jack Sparrow and Barbosa are incredible. The Jack Sparrow ones look to be among the most lifelike in any park I have seen so far. The movements and gestures match the character so well and are so fluid its great!

  • The crowd control for the attraction seemed to have things under tight control during the afternoon and my first two ride throughs. There were plenty of CMs along the queue to help keep the line moving, guests from cutting in line, and to just make sure everything was orderly. By evening this seemed to deteriorate a bit and there was a bottleneck near the entrance and it seemed as if the Fantasmic crowd control CMs and the Attraction Crowd Control CMs both ignored the area for some reason. The other crowd issue we noticed was with the wheelchair/disabled entrance. You still have to go through the exit and line up along the 2nd boat in the loading area, but now there are CMs outside holding the line so it does not bunch up inside and to keep the flow moving. There were at least two, many times more CMs handling the line outside and it started at the exit, went down the ramp then broke to allow other guests into the store then continued on down the street. With it being so long it really caused the traffic to bottle up but the CMs working the area did a great job of keeping guests moving most of the time.

  • Speaking of slow moving lines... when the lazygeek arrived in the early evening the parking structure had a line that stretched outside from the toll booths and then it was a crawl up the ramp to the roof and to the far parking spots. It took him well over 30 minutes from when he pulled onto Disneyland Drive until he had his car parked. That seems crazy to me...

  • The College Band had a different director this week, as you saw in the pictures. I believe his name was Ron, but I missed the last name and where he was from. I was glad to see them back to playing different sets at each spot (except the pre-parade where they played a sort of greatest hits from the other sets). I believe the person I saw last week was filing in or a guest director and this week they were back to the regular show.

  • Snow White has returned for the summer and I have not seen the show yet, but I did notice they were allowing you to enter the theater during the show (which before they would not) so I walked up and grabbed some pictures of the in progress production. From the short segment I saw nothing had changed.

  • A first for us, we were stuck on Buzz Lightyear. The attraction stopped, then started, then stopped again and then the lights came on. About 10 minutes later they came through and evacuated us. Seems one of the cars had a problem with the door not staying latched and it shut the entire attraction down and it had to be reset. It was kind of weird to walk through the scenes with the lights on and sound effects off. I was really surprised with how quiet the motors are. The large Zurg near the entrance is completely silent.. you couldn't even hear the motors.

  • Seems they now have the crowd control for Remember Dreams Come True down. When we were trying to get from NOS over to Tomorrowland we had to circle around a bit but everything kept moving then when we came out the show was going on but the crowd kept moving around the hub and down the street, just as it was drawn up by someone I would think.

Be sure to check out the picture update that goes with this Geekspeak column, it can be found in our Disneyland Resort Pictorial Update section

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