Halloween Time has arrived at Disneyland with the return of popular attractions including Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy. New this year is the Halloween Carnival at Big Thunder Ranch, featuring carnival games for families and villain meet-and-greets. In Disney California Adventure, Hollywood Land is scaring up the season with the Art of Frankenweenie exhibition, featuring character models, props and sets from Tim Burton‘s upcoming animated film. Meanwhile, Buena Vista Street was cleaned up a bit after its themed window displays were cluttered with piles of cheap theme park merchandise.
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!|
Halloween time at Disneyland spikes crowds slightly, but they’re still very manageable this 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 Halloween and holiday crowds on the horizon, 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
|Tues., Sept. 18||[center]2 /10[/center]||Here are some quick-hit notes that we hope you’ll find helpful as you prepare your visits for the week:
|Wed., Sept. 19||3 /10|
|Thu., Sept. 20||2 /10|
|Fri., Sept. 21||7/10|
|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.
|Scaring up the Season|
Nearby, the French Market has a received a reworked menu. Gone is the Salmon creole and the four-cheese pasta… Added are the corn chowder from the recent Mardi Gras celebrations and the French Dip and Na’Awlin’s Salad from recent special event menus.
|Welcome to California Adventure|
The attraction’s FASTPASS distribution had yet to be used after it was temporarily relocated to the old FASTPASS distribution area for “It’s Tough to be a Bug!” The attraction’s FASTPASS was moved before opening summer to avoid crowding issues at the would-be permanent distribution area next to the ride’s main entrance.
Last week I reported here on a very dramatic change for the themed, period-specific Buena Vista Street window displays that helped set the tone and tell the story of the park’s new main entrance plaza. Large amounts of California Adventure merchandise had been added to the windows, obscuring many of the antique and custom-made props that Walt Disney Imagineering had artfully arranged in shop windows. By Friday, a lot of the damage had been undone, with a lot of the excess merchandise removed from windows, allowing the themed props to shine a little more.
In Five and Dime’s fan-favorite book window, a lot of the Red Car Trolley merchandise that was piled onto stacks of books and other props has been removed. The mannequins remain and there’s still a lot of merch in the display… but believe it or not, the merchandise is notably obtrusive than before.
What’s disturbing, however, is that it appears that some of the original props have been removed along with some of the excess merchandise. Perhaps in a move to make the windows appear less cluttered, the merchandise folks have taken away some of the extra merch in addition to some of Imagineering’s antique and custom-made props. One of the most notable losses in this window is the removal of the antique diving helmet that was on the floor next to a stack of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea books.
Five and Dime’s baseball window is looking a lot better. The three mannequins wearing Cars Land apparel are still here, unfortunately, but the mannequins sporting the custom-made Buena Vista baseball jerseys have been moved up front and a lot of the extra Cars Land postcards and other souvenirs that were scattered on the floor have been cleaned up.
Many of the Buena Vista Street windows remain the same, however. The Big Top Toys window still features a very prominent Disney Parks Candy Land display and Disney character figurines and plush are scattered throughout the display.
The Elias and Company windows are also still cluttered with character merchandise and mannequins wearing ugly Buena Vista Street t-shirts and hoodies that feature Noah Fine Art’s “Storytellers” painting.
While there’s still plenty of merchandise still in crowding the beautiful themed window displays, I’m rather happy to see Disney go in and undo some of the damage. To be sure, there’s still a lot left to fix and I hope Disney finishes the job. It would be ideal to see all of the merchandise removed, but if there must be some on display, then the merchandise team is making a good step toward a fair compromise.
In a recent article, executive Chef Christine Weissman told the OC Register that the new bacon-wrapped “Frank-n-Weenie” is intended to look like Sparky from the movie. Appetizing!
|This & That|
I may have jumped the gun last week when reporting on generic soda cups appearing in restaurants throughout Disneyland restaurants. This weekend Halloween-themed cups replaced the regular sized soda cups which had begun to be replaced with generic Coca Cola-branded cups last week. The large soda cups still feature the red Disney Parks-branded design, although I’ve heard that the large cups have started to go generic at Walt Disney World parks in Florida.
Still, it’s important to note that paper napkins remain blank throughout resort restaurants (napkins haven’t been Disney-branded since at least June) and turkey legs continue to be sold in non-Disney “Hot Food Bags.” Disney typically announces a new global theme park promotion in the fall, after the start of the new fiscal year, so hopefully generic paper items are a temporary issue until new paper goods featuring designs for the new promotion are rolled out.
|Weekly News & Information Round-Up|
|Weekly Theme Park Hours
September 17-23, 2012
|[B]Disneyland Park[/B]||[B]Disney California Adventure[/B]|
|Monday: 10 am – 9 pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm
Friday: 9 am – 12 midnight
Saturday-Sunday: 8 am – 12 midnight
Monday: 10 am – 9 pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm
Friday: 9 am – 10 pm
Saturday-Sunday: 8 am – 10 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]|
[B]1.1—7.1[/B] out of 10[/CENTER]
[B]4.2—6.9[/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
|[center]Closure and Refurbishment Schedule[/center]|
|[b][center]Disney California Adventure[/center][/b]|
|[b][center]Downtown Disney and Disneyland Resort Hotels[/center][/b]|
A quick look at noteworthy Disney theme park headlines from around the web.[/center]
|Alright, that wraps up this week’s Halloween Time edition of Dateline Disneyland. Are you planning on visiting Disneyland during this year’s Halloween Time? Also, what do you think of the Buena Vista Street window revisions — do the windows look better to you? Is more change still needed? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
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!
Support Dateline Disneyland
|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.|