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8/08/15 - Thoughts and observations from Saturday at the Disneyland Resort
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Welcome to the disneygeek.com Geek Speaks section. In this section I will post my comments on trips to the parks or other Disney related events.

8/08/15 - Thoughts and observations from Saturday at the Disneyland Resort

Hello everyone,

I spent a full day at the Disneyland Resort on Saturday. The goal/plan was just to enjoy the park and visit with some family and friends who were visiting. The weather turned out to be a tad on the warmer side than I had anticipated from the forecast but it was still mild for August. The crowds in the park felt much heavier than the wait times supported. By this I mean the walkway felt like a crowded day at many points but the wait times were in the mild range with many well under an hour most of the day. I seemed to run into a larger number of foreign tour groups than recent visits.

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

Thoughts and Observations:

  • Parking - Arrival was extremely easy for me. I showed up around 7:15 and was able to pull right into the structure from Disneyland Drive and found an empty tollbooth and head to park. They directed me out to the Pinocchio lot which again was easy to get in and head for the trams. When it came time to leave it was substantially worse. This week they had the exit road blocked and a cast member there so you could not exit through the structure. So instead of spending a few minutes to get to the freeway I was forced to exit into the madness of Magic Way which took a very long time and was backed up. Then onto Disneyland Drive and through the light at Ball which was mild. Others I met parked in Toy Story since they came from the south and had no problems. A third group arrived later, closer to 8:15am and they were directed to the Simba lot and had to hike to the parks. Then to top off my frustration heading home traffic was miserable on the 5 and I got stuck in the backup from a recent accident on the 405 and did not move for nearly half an hour. Always a fun way to end a day.

  • Spent some time roaming around Disney California Adventure in the morning visiting with friends as they explored the park. One had not been to the park since the first year for World of Color so Buena Vista Street and Cars Land were all new. Always interesting to hear a fresh perspective. A couple of quick notes. Soarin was operating at a reduced capacity at park opening leading to longer delays. Also one group reported they thought one of the screens was damaged, it looked ripped to them already. I used a FastPass for Radiator Springs Racers around 9:40am and the FastPass line was slow going, the single rider line only had a handful of guests in it and looked faster. Still no sign of the Bugs Land Diamond Celebration Photo Spot. I talked to a Cast Member and asked if they knew when it was to open.. they said no idea.. they were originally scheduled to work there on Saturday.. which did not happen.

  • I caught the Disneyland Band at 11:30 and the set was more or less the same as the one I saw on the 17th. Thanks to the repetitions the band is loosening up a bit. I then watched the 12:30 performance. This one starts off at Sleeping Beauty Castle with the band, the characters join in, they all march to Town Square and the Dapper Dans join them for a sing along. The concept seems great and the photos came out well. The sing along was a bit awkward. They choose to sign Live the Magic, the theme song from Disneyland Forever. The problem with this is most day guests/tourists have no idea what the song is from or anything about it. So that leads to some head scratching and not a lot of participation. Seems a song more guests know would be better. Also I wish the Disney Times Guide and the Online App actually said where the sets were so guests would know.

  • Speaking of the new Official Disneyland App. I looked at it a couple times, but due to the poor data connections I was experiencing I really did not push it. One member of our group had a premium pass so she linked it and it worked with no problems to get into the park. Not sure it saved her any time since she had to keep logging in and pulling the phone out vs card seems a wash in my mind. On the wait time side they seemed to read slightly higher than the line board and what we saw around the park, maybe lag in updating? I did not really study it too much. Also I overheard quite a few others making the same comment I did about it being helpful to see FastPass return information.

  • Buzz Lightyear still has FastPass (or has it again if you did not know). All this appears to have done is make the standby wait longer, confused guests since it distributes from right next to Star Tours machines and the area seems more congested to me (which is hard to believe since it was already a chokepoint in terms of the crowd. One interesting note is the machines were not counting against your FastPass quota.. meaning you could hold one at the same time as another. It said this right on the ticket.

  • For all you All-American College Band fans... the band is performing through Tues-Friday this week then done for their season. Hard to believe summer is almost over! Speaking of which as you saw in the photos Halloween merchandise is showing up in the stores around the park. Wonder where the Halloween head quarters will be in Disneyland? Guessing the 60th is staying in the Showcase.

  • Some in our group waited for Toy Story in the afternoon only to have the attraction go down after half an hour in line. They issued a FastPass good on any attraction in either park, nothing abnormal there, but the interesting note is it was digital. They scanned their park ticket (annual pass) and that was used for the attraction of their choice. They used it for Radiator Springs Racers in the evening and had no trouble at all. The cast member scanned the pass and let them right in. So it seems the next phase of digitizing the park has happened. First up the accessibility passes and now these. Interesting to see what is next. Would be nice to see Premiere Passes actually swipe for discounts vs having to make the cast members type in the long code.

  • I watched World of Color Celebrate! this evening, just behind the preferred viewing area. Being a Disney geek I enjoy the show and the tech from World of Color from a nearly show center viewing location is great. I had two first time viewers of the show with me and they both enjoyed it too... I surveyed them and they ranked Disneyland Forever from Main Street as their favorite of the new offerings followed by World of Color then Paint the Night.

  • Do you visit our pictorial updates using a mobile device? If so we would like your feedback. I have created a beta of a more mobile version of our Disneyland Picture sets at https://disneygeek.com/mobile Please give it a try and share your thoughts.

Interesting Web Finds/Notes:

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

Send comments, questions, any other email to: disneygeek@disneygeek.com

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