Just two months after opening, Disney is hoping to fix the problematic Luigi’s Flying Tires attraction in Disney California Adventure‘s new Cars Land area. The attraction has suffered in guest satisfaction surveys and wait times at the attraction have been long due to notoriously slow load times. Changes at the ride include the removal of the giant red-white-and-green beach balls that added an interactive and kinetic flare to the attraction as well as the removal of heavy infrastructure on the ride vehicles undercarriage that was deemed unnecessary after Disney removed directional joysticks during pre-opening ride testing. Disney hopes the removal of the joystick infrastructure should help to speed up the movement of the ride vehicles, which should help enhance the overall ride experience for Guests. Meanwhile, construction on Disneyland‘s new Fantasy Faire meet-and-greet village continues as the first signs of Halloween hit store shelves.

Get a closer look at today’s update! Click on any photo in today’s column for a large, high-resolution version of the image.

Welcome to Disneyland!

Crowds drop off this week as schools go back in session and tourists head home after the busy summer season.

Annual Passholders previously blocked out for the summer will keep crowds moderately high, but overall this week should be lighter than last week. TouringPlans.com can help you navigate the parks with our per-park Crowd Calendar, Lines – Mobile Wait Times App that gives access to current and estimated wait times for attractions, and Touring Plans detailing the best plan of attack for hitting the attractions. With summer crowds here, it’s a good time to subscribe to TouringPlans.com to plan your strategy to avoid the crowds!

Below are the predicted resort-wide crowd numbers for select days generated by the TouringPlans professional statisticians as measured for the upcoming week. For the access to the full year and per-park crowd level predictions, visit our Crowd Calendar.

— Fred Hazelton, Statistician, TouringPlans.com

[center][/center] [center]Overall
Crowd Prediction
[/center]
[center]TouringPlans.com
Crowd Tips
[/center]
Tues., Aug. 21 [center]4 /10[/center] Here are some quick-hit notes that we hope you’ll find helpful as you prepare your visits for the week:

  • Southern California Annual Passports Summer blockouts are over, so expect more locals in the parks.
  • Partial blockouts on Saturday.
  • Disneyland (park) is a 3.2 on Thursday.
  • Due to its incredibly low capacity, consider riding Luigi’s Flying Tires standby right after starting your day by grabbing a FASTPASS for Radiator Springs Racers.
Wed., Aug. 22 4 /10
Thu., Aug. 23 4 /10
Fri., Aug. 24 5/10
Crowd levels are based on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.

See Disneyland crowds for the next 365 days.
Get Disneyland wait times on your iPhone, Android, or Smartphone.

Do more. Wait less.

Dateline Disneyland is sponsored by TouringPlans.com</span

Last week, Disneyland announced its traditional two-night run of the extremely popular Candlelight Processional would be expanded to a 20-night run this year.

Twenty Nights of Disneyland Candlelight Ceremony Performances Scheduled for 2012
The Candlelight Ceremony and Processional has been a Disneyland Resort tradition since 1958, bringing holiday magic to Main Street, U.S.A., with the help of celebrities like Cary Grant, John Wayne, Dick Van Dyke and, in 2011, Gary Sinise.

This holiday season – for the first time in its history – the Candlelight Ceremony and Processional is being extended to a total of 20 nights at Disneyland park, with two performances each night. The first two nights, December 1-2, will be invitation-only events; however, performances from December 3-20 will be open to Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders and guests booking special, to-be-announced dining packages for the 2012 holiday season. [ FULL STORY ]

A look at wait times mid-day on Saturday.

Last week, Disney also announced the “Glow with the Show” light-up ear hats would soon be brought to Disneyland, interacting with the park’s popular Fantasmic! show. Disney released information for a special Annual Passholder showing of Fantasmic, but Passholders are required to bring their own ears for the show — Disney won’t be giving them out for free like they did for World of Color’s Glow with the Show events.

Disneyland Resort APs: Register Now for Your Chance to ‘Glow With the Show’ at ‘Fantasmic!’ on August 28
Bring your “Glow with the Show” Ears and be among the first to see this magical new experience! That’s right – the premiere showing of this special technology during “Fantasmic!” will be a private viewing exclusively for Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders. Register now to attend, because space is limited and based on availability!

Here are the details:

  • One night only – Tuesday, August 28
  • 10 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Private viewing of “Fantasmic!” will begin at 11:30 p.m.
  • Select attractions, shops and food offerings will be open for event guests until 12 a.m.
  • Attendees are strongly encouraged to bring their own “Glow with the Show” Ears. Hats are not required for event attendance, but strongly encouraged for optimal viewing experience.

And here’s how you register:

  • Registration applies to Annual Passholder and up to 3 Annual Passholder guests
  • Visit any open ticket booth in the Disneyland Resort Main Entrance Esplanade
  • Present your active Annual Passport and a valid, government-issued photo I.D., as verification of your eligibility to register for the event
  • Based on availability, cast member will complete your registration and give you a voucher, required for admission to the event. Limit one (1) voucher per eligible Annual Passholder; multiple vouchers will not be honored

[ FULL STORY ]

Construction Kingdom

Construction continues on the new steel framework in the upcoming Fantasy Faire princess meet-and-greet area next to Sleeping Beauty Castle.

Views at construction from the Omnibus:

Meanwhile, walls have gone up at the Fantasyland Theater after last weekend’s closure of the Princess Fantasy Faire. Although Disney has made no official announcement for what is coming to the theater, work is now underway to prepare the space for a new entertainment offering.

Signage for the Princess Fantasy Faire is still up for the time being…

The Troubadour Tavern snack stand will remain closed while the Theater is dark.

Nearby, the princesses have relocated to a new “Princess Royal Walk” along Small World Promenade.

Long lines for the princesses even in the heat with spotty shade.

Princesses meet with guests and pose for pictures in front of lightly-themed backdrops.

Welcome to California Adventure

Patriotic bunting has been down for a couple weeks now along Buena Vista Street.

Businessweek had a great interview with Disney CEO Bob Iger about the recently re-imagined California Adventure park. Below is an excerpt, but we highly recommend reading the full interview.

Bob Iger on Disney California Adventure
Iger has committed more than $1 billion over five years to remake the 11-year-old Disney California Adventure. On a hot July morning, he shows Devin Leonard around the park.

Thanks for squeezing me in.
My pleasure. It’s sort of killing two birds. My granddaughter is over in the Magic Kingdom [the original park, California Adventure’s adjacent sister], so she’s going to come over later, and we’re going to go on some rides together.

Where to first?
Well, just to give some perspective, Disneyland, the first park we opened in ’55, is on the other side of this promenade. This opened in February of 2001. And Michael Eisner actually had a good concept, and that was to turn Disneyland into more of a destination resort. To do so, he wanted to build a second park—a second day—so that people would want to stay longer. And it coincided with us building a beautiful hotel, the Grand Californian. Like all of our parks, this one was a work in progress. In this particular case, there was a lot about it that wasn’t working.

You once described it as a “brand eyesore.”
What I really meant—look, to quote a friend who is no longer with us, Steve Jobs, there’s brand deposits and brand withdrawals. Obviously, whatever you invest in, you do so with an eye toward making a brand deposit. Once in a while you do something with a brand that is the opposite. But rather than dwell on that—there were definitely parts of this park that needed changing.

It does seem strange that it was a California theme park with hardly any Disney characters.
We probably underestimated how much people would demand Disney when they come to a park that has the Disney name on it.

Did you imagine the overhaul on a smaller scale? Isn’t it now a billion dollars?
A billion, a billion-one. It’s a big bet. But I was determined to pay off the vision that Michael had. Yet there’s always a bit of chicken and egg to it, too. Even though I may say, “OK, time to fix California Adventure,” until the [Imagineers] come back with great concepts, you don’t say, “OK, let’s do it.” And they blew me away with their ideas. I loved the idea of Buena Vista Street. [ FULL STORY ]

More shops along Buena Vista Street are operating with their doors open in an effort to draw more guests into the shops

Still, not all shops have the same open-door policy…

A look at very reasonable park wait times Saturday afternoon:

Still, despite the low wait times this last weekend, the new offerings across the resort remain popular and the success of the re-launched California Adventure has helped boost hotel occupancy rates in Orange County. More from the Orange County Register:

Cars Land helps fill O.C. hotels, boosts rates
Orange County hotels enjoyed a boost in occupancy in June as the blockbuster “Cars Land” attraction opened at Disneyland’s California Adventure in Anaheim.

The lodging experts at Colliers PKF report that 84.5% of Orange County hotel rooms were filled in vs. 80.0% the year earlier. In the Anaheim area, 85.9% of rooms were full in June vs. 82.3% in June 2011.

And rising room rates didn’t scare off visitors. Orange County hotels in June saw average room rates at $157.46 per night — that is up 7.0% in a year (or $10.28 a night.) In Anaheim, room rates were up 5.9% in a year to $156.40.
[ FULL STORY ]

Tried & Tired

In Cars Land, Luigi’s Flying Tires is getting some notable changes only two months after opening.

The ride’s long queues and notoriously slow loading times have been well documented here and elsewhere online. Last week we showed you that the number of beach balls had been significantly reduced and Cast Members were no longer handing out beach balls to Guests boarding the attraction. Now, the beach balls have been removed completely.

Last week, the OC Register shared more details about the changes coming to the attraction, including the plan to remove heavy infrastructure on the undersides of the tires leftover from turning mechanisms that were removed from the tires in early Guest testing:

Disney already changing Cars Land ride
Disney California Adventure visitors soon will fly faster on Luigi’s Flying Tires.

The Cars Land ride, in which visitors float on tire-shaped vehicles similar to bumper cars on an air-hockey table, is undergoing major changes just two months after it opened with the park’s massive makeover.

Disney recently removed gigantic beach balls that visitors had tossed to one another as they floated along on the vehicles.

Over the next three weeks, crews will remove weight from the undercarriages of the vehicles, said Mary Niven, vice president of Disney California Adventure. This should increase the speed, although Disney has not disclosed what it will be.

Originally, the vehicles were to have a joystick, but it confused riders during testing. Still, the spin-control infrastructure remained below, weighing about 20 pounds, Niven said. The removal of that infrastructure is underway and should be done by September. The ride is not being shut down.

About 90 percent of surveyed visitors have said they plan to return to Cars Land. But Luigi’s has ranked as the least popular of the three Cars Land rides.

The beach balls were added to Luigi’s shortly before it opened as a way to give the attraction a more festive look, as well as add fun for riders.

But the wait times lagged, often lasting an hour or more, usually because people slowed down to pick up balls as they were getting aboard. Also, there were some “minor incidents” when visitors were hit by beach balls, Niven said.

“We just thought it was going to be more fun,” Niven said. [ FULL STORY ]

Keen-eyed riders can see the covered hole leftover from the failed turning joysticks.

It’ll be interesting to see how the removal of the remaining infrastructure will change the ride experience.

Soon, these instructions could come in handy and you might be able to fly a little faster…

Below, video of the attraction from Sunday as the ride is now experienced without the beach balls and in its current speed.

Below, a video of the Flying Tires during the Cars Land media preview, complete with beach balls:

Meanwhile, other Cars Land attractions continue to draw crowds without needing notable changes

Creeping In…

Halloween has started creeping into the Resort with merchandise hitting store shelves in the parks. Below, a selection of this year’s offerings:

Of course, plenty of costumes and accessories…

Also available in the parks is the spectacular new Poster Art of the Disney Parks book. The gorgeous large-format art book was available in limited quantities a couple weeks ago and sold out in days. Book authors and Imagineers came out for a book signing on Saturday that drew big crowds for the highly-anticipated new title. You can find the book in art and collectible stores throughout the Resort. If you can’t make it to the parks to pick up a copy, you can order the book on Amazon for less than $25, a nearly 40% savings over the price you’ll find it in the parks.

Also available now in the parks are the new Disney theme park air fresheners that Disney announced a couple months ago. Yep, there really is a turkey leg air freshener available now… and yes, we agree that the term “air freshener” is a misnomer for this particular scent.

And in California Adventure, we noticed a great new Red Car Trolley big fig a few weeks ago and thought the $160 piece was worth sharing here:

Building Sandwiches

In Downtown Disney, a look at Earl of Sandwich construction:

Restaurant logos are now on construction walls

The old Compass Books newsstand has been mostly demolished


Dateline Disneyland is sponsored by our good friends at the

Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel & Water Playground.

A short walk from the park, HoJo Anaheim is conveniently located next to Matterhorn Mountain at Disneyland with nearby dining, freeway access, FREE parking and FREE Wi-Fi. For more information on HoJo Anaheim, room rates, or to book your stay today, visit HoJoAnaheim.com/MiceChat

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The HoJo Anaheim is now offering deeper discounts for Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders! On select nights, Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders can get rooms for as low as $59 per night, plus tax. For more information visit the HoJo Anaheim Innsider Boards which features an up-to-date listing of available nights, or call (714) 776-6120 and ask for In-House Reservations to book. If your date isn’t listed, the HoJo Anaheim still offers rooms for 20% off their best available rate if you call (714) 776-6120.

Weekly News & Information Round-Up
Weekly Theme Park Hours
August 20—26, 2012
[B]Disneyland Park[/B] [B]Disney California Adventure[/B]
Daily:
8 am – 12 midnight
Daily:
8 am – 11 pm
[CENTER]For a complete listing of theme park hours,
visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar
[/CENTER]
[center]Expected Crowd Levels[/center] [center]presented by TouringPlans.com[/center]
[CENTER][B]Disneyland Park[/B][/CENTER] [CENTER][B]Disney California Adventure[/B][/CENTER]
[CENTER][B]MEDIUM[/B]
[B]3.2—4.2[/B] out of 10[/CENTER]
[CENTER][B]MEDIUM—HIGH[/B]
[B]4.4—9.8[/B] out of 10[/CENTER]
[CENTER]Crowd levels are based on a scale from 1 to 10,
with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.

[B]For crowd predictions for the next 365 days, visit
[/B]
[center]Closure and Refurbishment Schedule[/center]
[b][center]Disneyland Park[/center][/b]
  • [B]Princess Fantasy Faire at the Fantasyland Theater:[/B] Fantasyland Theater closed August 12. Princesses have relocated to Small World Promenade allowing the Fantasyland Theater to close and prepare for a new show.
  • [B]The Haunted Mansion:[/B] Closed August 27—September 13 to install Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay.
  • [B]Storybook Land Canal Boats:[/B] Closed September 4-18, 2012 for refurbishment.
  • [B]Casey Jr. Circus Train:[/B] Closed September 4-18, 2012 for refurbishment.
  • [b]Indiana Jones Adventure:[/b] Closed September 4 – December 7, 2012 for refurbishment.
  • [B]Space Mountain:[/B] Closed September 10-13, 2012 for Halloween overlay installation.
  • [B]Big Thunder Ranch:[/B] Closed September 10-13, 2012 for Halloween overlay installation.
  • [B]Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes:[/B] Closed September 17-18, 2012.
  • [B]Alice in Wonderland:[/B] Closes early September to install permanent safety rails to outdoor portion of ride track.
  • [B]Fantasy Faire:[/B] New princess-themed meet-and-greet area in former Carnation Plaza Gardens is under construction and expected to open in early 2013.
[b][center]Disney California Adventure[/center][/b]
  • Muppet*Vision 3D: Closed September 10-13, 2012.
[b][center]Downtown Disney and Disneyland Resort Hotels[/center][/b]
  • [B]Earl of Sandwich:[/B] Former Compass Book store and cafe will reopen as the new Earl of Sandwich restaurant summer 2012.
Disney names Epcot chef as Executive Chef for Anaheim parks
Last week the Disney Parks Blog announced that Disneyland is getting a new executive chef from Walt Disney World. This could be interesting for Disneyland’s theme parks…
Meet Chef Christine Weissman, New Executive Chef for Both Parks at the Disneyland Resort
If you’ve been to the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, or sailed with Disney Cruise Line, chances are you’ve seen Chef Christine Weissman – a flurry of energy as she spent her days keeping an eye on all things food and drink.

After 12 years on the East Coast, you’ll now see Chef Christine spending time with her chefs at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, where she says she’s working “to always improve our guests’ dining experience.”

She got her start on the opening team at Disneyland Paris, then headed to Walt Disney World Resort for stints at Seasons Dining Room at the former Disney Institute; as the specialty chef in the Biergarten Restaurant at Epcot; chef de cuisine of catering at Disney’s Contemporary Resort and Magic Kingdom Park; executive chef of Epcot; and executive chef of Disney Cruise Line.

Christine Weissman is also a certified Master Chef (Meister Pruefung I.H.K.), and is certified at Level One by the Court of Master Sommeliers.

Her love of cooking started as a child in Bielefeld, Germany, where her family owned a restaurant. She started out as a dishwasher, then learned culinary skills from her father and grandmother. Her favorite kitchen gadget still is a spaetzle board, an old-fashioned way of making German soft egg noodles. “I like to make spaetzle the old fashioned way, ‘scharped from the board,’” says Christine. “I often do this with my daughters at home.”

Full story: Disney Parks Blog: Meet Chef Christine Weissman, New Executive Chef for Both Parks at the Disneyland Resort

So, what do you think of the changes underway at Luigi’s Flying Tires? What do such big alterations mean for such a young attraction? Let us know how your ride experience at Luigi’s has been and if you liked the beach balls. Will you ride again now that the tires will fly faster?

We’re only here because of your continued support. If you’ve enjoy Dateline Disneyland over the last five years, please consider helping us out by donating a buck or two so we can pay the bills and keep the updates coming! You can donate with a click of a button via PayPal — click here!

For more Disneyland news, be sure to read MiceChat’s weekly In the Parks blog. And be sure to check out our sister blog, Dateline Disney World – a fantastic weekly photo blog covering Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida!

Thanks for reading. See you at Disneyland!
[B]- Andy[/B]

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FTC-Mandated Disclosure: Promotional consideration for this edition of Dateline Disneyland was provided by TouringPlans.com | Do More. Wait Less. and the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel & Water Playground.
  • Lonnie0616

    Did I somehow miss the announcement that Indiana Jones was closing in the fall for 3 months? I don’t see BTMRR on the list yet but if it’s closed as Al Lutz reported, that is 2 major rides closed when I come visit in October.

    • BC_DisneyGeek

      People on Micechat are saying that the Big Thunder closure has been delayed until January.

      I’m not sure why they waited until the last minute to announce the Indy closure. Disney used to be pretty good about getting that sort of information out. If I were planning a once-in-a-lifetime trip, I might plan it around certain ride closures, and could be upset at the last-minute closure.

      • produceguy

        This makes me very very sad. I was sad that Big Thunder RR was going to be down, but could handle the news…. but Indy? I was going with people that will never be able to go again and it’s what I wanted them to see the most. Damn!

  • mratigan

    Thanks Andy

  • whamo

    I’m glad to hear the crowds are down. I’ll have to go to the park again, soon.

  • Erik Olson

    Thanks for the RoundUp! Did anyone get a price on those bat and teardrops candelabras?

  • DisneySam

    It seems interesting to me that Disney would go back to something that had originally failed in it’s inception so many years ago. You would think that with updates to engineering and technology that they could have come up with something to make it work better but as far as a ride goes it’s still basically just bumper cars riding on air, just as the Tow Mater rides seems to be a scrambler ride with better theming. I can’t judge too much because I haven’t been on either, however watching the video I saw people leaning in the vehicles but it was having no effect at all. It would be comical if it weren’t for all the money that was spent building the ride. Perhaps John Lasseter was just a little too nostalgic and let his love for a “classic” Disney ride get the better of him.

  • Hildy

    Umm. You said that the Luigi ride is faster now? My goodness it must have been practically at a stand still if that is faster. I was there in July but didn’t ride Luigi’s because of the wait time and we thought we would pick it up after all the grand opening rush had worn off a bit. I agree with DisneySam. Why would they re institute a failed ride from the 50’s? If it failed to engage people in the 50’s surely they couldn’t think it would please people in the 2000’s. I hate to be critical I loved Cars Land. It is truly amazing. Those rocks. My 12 year old daughter thought they were real. We live near red rock mesas and she couldn’t believe these were man made. It is truly a wonderful land. Themed so well. The cozy cones. So like the real ones. The sign Here it is. If you’ve ever traveled down the original 66 and seen all the real live things that this land is fashioned after – it is just amazing.

    Any word yet on what they will do in Hollywood Land? Needs something. Especially back there by Monsters Inc. Lots of property back there and it is almost always empty during the day. Needs a major ride and rethemed. Another roller coaster please.

    Wonderful update always the best part of my Monday morning.

  • ben1utah

    Wow. Luigi’s looks totally lame in that video. What a dud. Reminds me of the Tuck and Roll Buggies. Maybe they could keep the tire cars and put them on a track for use in some sort of dark ride built in the same spot. Most anything would be better.

  • FredSimmons

    “We probably underestimated how much people would demand Disney when they come to a park that has the Disney name on it.”

    Well, duh! That may be the biggest understatement of the century.

    If people wanted a non-Disney park, they could always go to Knott’s, Universal, Sea World, Magic Mountain…

    Is is really a surprise that people come to Disney parks for… Disney?

  • ayalexander

    well the thing about the tires is, they did fix a lot of the technological problems that they had in the sixties such as maintaining enough air pressure, proper air dispersing and the ability to hold up to two or three guests on one vehicle whereas the original saucers relied on air valves built into the floor to maintain the pressure, the vehicles were too small and heavy for proper air dispersing, and could only support one guest at a time. Plus since everything back then was operated manually, the air pumps had to be constantly checked during operation for faults, and the attraction operators had to operate the arm that pushed guests up against the side. Now the air pumps and ride mechanisms not seen by guests are all computer controlled with one touch of a button. They fixed some things, but I agree they should have foreseen safety issues like the easily unbuckling seat belts, the no step zone on the tires and the SLOW loading and unload process, plus the limited ride capacity. I had to give credit where credit is due.

  • ayalexander

    oh and another thing I wanted to add to my comment above, was that I think the tires are a success, but the only thing stopping people from not liking it is the HUGE line. If the line were under 30 minutes and somehow the vehicles went a little faster, then guests would be more satisfied. Otherwise it honestly was a good idea.

    • Actually, I don’t think anyone in the company really thinks that the tires are a success. Marketing and PR may be spinning it that way, but the guest research shows that the ride is not popular with the majority of guests. Cute? Yes. But not even close to being a success.

      This ride needs some major fixes, including perhaps a whole new ride system. Or better yet, a complete replacement. There is no failure in trying something new. Walt had many attractions not succeed. The ideas may have been good, but it just didn’t work out. That seems to be the case here as well. And I’m fine with that.

      Rather than dwell on fixing a ride that will likely never really be a success, they should go back to the drawing board and come up with something else. Something which enhances Cars Land and the story of the characters.

  • Wreckless Abrandon

    Is Glow with the Show Fantasmic! going to be a permanent thing? And same with WoC’s Glow? I would hope that it works with every show going forward.

  • TodAZ1

    I wonder if Bob Iger would adopt me?

  • disneymademoiselle

    Perhaps I needed a really good laugh, but the video of Luigi’s Tires had me in stitches!!! It’s scary to think it went slower than that.

  • [email protected]

    I guess we can finally say it. “I told you so !” From the very beginning alls I heard was that the flying tires was a mistake waiting to happen. They did not make it the first time. What in the world made you think they would make it this time ? Here we could be enjoying a dark ride, like ” The Ghost Light” or something. No…. We get a remarketed early 1960s flop. Cars land is such a great success for DLR and to put a negitive mark because of this ride is unfair. But, it is what it is. Ohh. almost forgot, Great Update Andy !!!

  • whitestrat

    Hatbox Ghost t-shirt!!!

  • Tinkbelle

    I’m so excited about more days for the Candlelight Ceremony! I’ve always wanted to be there for it and hope we will find a way to make it now that there will be more opportunities.

    I don’t really see a difference between the speed of the tires in the two videos. It does look more plain and boring without the balls, though. (We haven’t been yet, so I’m basing this all on the videos).

  • Myahlove1

    It shows both Casey Jr. and Storybook refurbs from Sep. 4-18th. Is this correct??? I thought they weren’t reopening until November?

  • Swisskapolka

    I guess I rode Luigi’s with low expectations, but I had fun when I rode it for the first time a few weeks ago. The line theming is great and I enjoyed watching folks try to move around and chase each other. Obviously a shorter line would make it more enjoyable — so hopefully the removal of the beach balls will help with that. Faster would be cool and maybe retooling the ride vehicle will help with that.

  • Hildy

    Man, I sure wouldn’t want to be in Disneyland that 2nd week in September. Looks like a lot of the rides will be closed.

  • Aaebert67

    Luigi’s seems so boring without the beach balls! It really livened it up. Now it seems like you just slowly drift around for a minute and a half.

  • Susan Hughes

    It’s nice to finally see some substantial progress on the new Fantasy Faire. I thought they were only going to build facades of the buildings, but it looks like they’re bona fide structures.
    Kind of makes me a little sad though. For the past few years the Princesses would make the long walk from Tomorrowland over to the castle. That was always an unexpected surprise for park guests. But it looks like the walk will be a thing of the past. And even sadder…no more Princesses by the castle. Throughout the entire resort, there is no more magical backdrop for a Disney Princess than the castle. Even the old (and new) Fantasy Faire can’t come close to the look and feel of a Princess by the castle.

  • SpectroMan

    As many have said for the past year….Luigi’s will be gone within 2 years. So, let’s just enjoy it now and document it so we don’t have to scrounge to find evidence of it 50 years from now like we’ve been doing with the Saucers.

  • Orange Co Native

    Luigi’s Flying Tires. A ride with a total lack of imagination. I don’t know. I can see that ride being ripped out within a year or two. The wait time is not going to be problem fairly soon as people ride it, experience it and go “I won’t being that ride anytime soon.”

  • Orange Co Native

    What I was meaning to say was “I won’t be riding that ride anytime soon.” That is what happens when you get distracted while you are writing.

  • GoneAway562

    It is a disappointment to not even be able to ride Luigi’s with the joysticks since I work in the shop that made them. I even took an extra one opening day to play a joke on the Castmembers, only to find out they werent there. :[

  • dsnygrl13

    Perhaps a viable alternative to the tires would be a standard bumper car ride with the vehicles shaped like tires?

  • Marko50

    Gee. There are sure a lot of negative remarks on here by people that haven’t even ridden the ride. I love it. Sure, I’d love a shorter wait. I’d also love a shorter wait for RSR, but I don’t see people saying, “Let’s rip it out because the line’s too long.”

    There are also people that don’t seem to understand why the Flying Saucers stopped flying. It’s because the mechanisms wouldn’t hold up. Not because they were unpopular. They weren’t. Every time I went on them, every saucer on the floor was in use. They weren’t brought back just because JL was nostalgic.

    • miceagefan

      We just visited Cars Land for the first time last week. Loved it all. Luigi’s was great. Loved the theming. No line first thing in the morning. Fun to figure out how to make it go. How many of us go on Snow White every time we are in the park? Not the fastest most exciting ride, but great theme and makes you feel good. I look at Luigi’s as the same. Kids love it and adults can too. The biggest surprise of Cars Land was Maters and Larry the Cable Guy. Loved him speaking spanish and LOVED the songs. So much fun. And of course Racers was amazing.
      My favorite part was Buena Vista Street. Can not believe it is the same place. Thanks to Disney for finally doing it all right.
      And pick up the Hat Box Ghost Halloween shirt quick! It is awesome. Will wear it all year.
      Finally Huge thanks to Andy Castro!! Love your column and the photos that are always in it.

  • Spongeocto4

    Thanks for the update!

  • AvanteGardens

    Im thinking the problem with Flying Tires isnt what they replicated from the Flying Saucers, its what they changed. Perhaps it was a GOOD idea to just have one rider, so you dont have to rely on your partner who is leaning the wrong way, and an even BETTER idea to have an arm that clears the air table of one set of vehicles so they can load while annother set of vehicles is in use. Would that also have just been too inauthentic to the cars land theme for JL?

  • pattimarie

    the pictures here are fantastic!
    i rode luigi’s twice a few weeks and and loved it. it doesn’t move consistently fast the whole time, but when it does fly, it’s really fun. when it doesn’t, it’s usually because people are leaning in different directions, or too far over. i loved the balls too. they were fun to watch and play with.
    as for the guests complaints, it’s really easy to nitpik when asked to do so. the fact that the line remains long says something about it’s popularity. i agree with whoever said that if the line were slower, people would like it better.

  • pattimarie

    meant to say if the line were shorter, of course.