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9/19/14 - My thoughts and observations from Fridays visit to 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.

9/19/14 - My thoughts and observations from Fridays visit to the Disneyland Resort.

Hello everyone,

Friday was a much cooler day at the Disneyland Resort. The highs topped out in the low 80s and cooled off to the 70s by the time I left. The crowds started off extremely light at Disney California Adventure where as Disneyland felt about normal and both parks built as the evening went on.


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

Thoughts and Observations:

  • Oswald the Lucky Rabbit has started making daily appearances on Buena Vista Street near the service station that shares his name. For those of you unfamiliar with the story Oswald was created by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks and appeared in several cartoons starting in 1927. In 1928 Disney lost the rights to Oswald to Charles Mintz and Universal. The story goes it was on the train ride back from learning he had lost Oswald, Mickey was born. In Feb. of 2006 Bob Iger led an effort to regain the rights to Oswald in exchange for releasing Al Michaels from his announcing contract. This is the first time Oswald is appearing in a stateside park. Earlier this year he started to appear daily in Tokyo. Note Oswald was not listed in the times guide Friday but is scheduled to be out daily until 7pm.

  • The new Fall issue of the Buena Vista Bugle is out on news stands so if you are in the park be sure to pick one up, they are always a fun read!

  • When I arrived, just after 1pm, DCA was the least crowded I have seen it on a Friday with good weather in years. I was really shocked by how quiet the park was. It was great! I was actually able to get a FastPass after 1pm for the Radiator Springs Racers for 8:10pm. Most lines were under 30 minutes throughout the park. Even the Racers had a posted 35 then 25 minute wait. I went through the single rider line and there were only a handful of guests in front of me. By the time I boarded there were probably a dozen guests behind me. Toy Story had a posted 25 min wait only. Soarin you could walk through the door. Screamin was a 10 minute posted wait. As the sun set the normal crowd did show up and the park became much more crowded with wait times returning to normal.

  • The landscaping changes around the Resort continued.. This week the large trees/bamboo around the entrance to Fliks Fun Fair had been replaced with new/smaller plants. This really opened up the view.. I always thought the large trees helped with the transition to being bug sized. Now it reminds me a little of the original DCA.. almost want to look around for the tractors again.

  • Caught an Instant Concert on Paradise Bay and while watching started to wonder how much effort it would be if they swapped out the songs more frequently. For example a Halloween or Christmas theme.. or even a summer one. I think that would be a fun touch to the show.

  • In the Esplanade between the two parks walls are up and they are working on the compass in the middle. It would be great to see the entire Esplanade redone and made to look more interesting vs the large flat area. I am surprised Disney does not put trees and other obstructions in. It would cut down on the number of guests filling the area for free fireworks each evening and clogging up the path between the two parks and would make for a much better first impression too.

  • Once inside Disneyland renovation projects seem to be rolling along. The most visible progress on Main Street is the replacement of the curb and fence around a planter near City Hall. It appears they are making it larger. Should be interesting to see what changes are in store there. The scaffolding is down from the Photo Center, the interior work is still ongoing. No real visible progress on the new Main Street corridors.

  • The project along the walkway to Sleeping Beauty Castle is moving along. So far a new bridge and railings along the bridge area have been installed. The new posts are set in the concrete and the bridge is now in a permanent down position. All the seating areas along both sides are currently covered as work goes on. It is being reported that they are taking out all the seats and will be raising the barrier as part of the safety enhancements around the park. I really find all this dummy proofing to be out of control. The park is spending a lot of money on things that people should have enough common sense not to do. I understand the fear factor of lawsuits but it is really sad to watch the changes to the park to work to stop some random future guest from doing something dumb. I think people will always find a way to do something you had not intended. At some point you cannot save people from themselves. I have not heard stories of guests accidently falling into the moat. Have you? I did find it humorous that I saw a couple of different groups of guests put their children on the now flat surfaces with no railings to take pictures.

  • Stopped by the Halloween Carnival - The crowd was light again, but the Conjure a Villains line was long and slow moving. The pumpkin carvers and painters have been hard at work and there were several new creations to look at. There was a different magician this week. The only two tricks in common with the last were the levitation and finale switch. The Pirates League was dead again too, no guests. Surprised they were not doing something for Talk Like a Pirate day, which was Friday.

  • While eating dinner I glanced through the Times Guide and noticed they have a description for the new Frozen meet and greet system. It says "This Character Experience has a virtual standby line. Visit the location for a return ticket time beginning at Park opening with your valid Park ticket or Annual Passport." Wonder why they do not call it a FastPass? Seems introducing new vocabulary could only lead to confusion. I guess they do not want it to be confused with the attraction tickets but still seems odd to me. At one point in the afternoon even with the return tickets the line looked to be a half hour or so.

  • A Brass Band from West Point was on hand for a pre-parade performance on Friday. I always enjoy the guest groups. This was a small seven member band and they ended up making a couple stops along the parade route. I found it funny that there were a fair number of guests around Town Square, on the flag poll side, waiting for them to arrive and the band marched out then played into a corner, so we saw their back. The cast member escorting them down the parade route was nearby and she had no explanation of why they stopped short of the center and why they are facing away from most guests. At least they were able to stop a couple of times and perform vs just marching right by. Also interesting to note they played the same music at each stop.

  • Even with the crowds picking up for the evening at DCA the waits for some attractions were minimal. After sunset I was joined by some friends and their kids. In about an hour we managed to visit Maters, Luigis, the Drive Em Buggies, and the Lady Bug Boogie. They went on to the Flyers and Monsters Inc while I caught the Mad T Party Band finale.

  • I closed out my evening with the Mad T Party Band. For Halloween each set they add more to their costumes and makeup leading up to their final set of the night. Then at the last set they close it with Thriller and are joined on stage by the Tweedles as well as the dance crew. It is a well done production and a crowd pleaser. At the earlier sets they add in a Halloween inspired song too, usually This is Halloween.

  • Video featuring my pictures:

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

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