Have you made a New Year Resolution? If you were able to make one for Disneyland, what would it be?

Yesterday was the last day for the holiday season at the Disneyland Resort. Today’s Disneyland Photo Update takes a look at the parks as they wrapped up a very busy period. The decorations will start coming down right away. Haunted Mansion Holiday and Jingle Cruise begin their transformation back to their former selves today as well. As a result of those two attractions being down, Small World Holiday will remain around for a while longer. It will continue to operate as it is until January 23rd.

This is a huge update folks. We have over 300 photos for you and nearly an hour of video to enjoy.

Disneyland Train Station

The Holidays Depart

It was a beautiful and VERY busy holidays at Disneyland this year. With three attraction overlays, a Christmas parade, holiday fireworks, special treats, merchandise and decorations, Disneyland is really the ultimate holiday destination. And that means crowds, crowds, crowds. The week after New Years Eve turned out to be one of the busiest of the year, with both parks needing to restrict entry. Will the removal of the holiday offerings lead to lowered crowd levels? We can only hope.

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The tree and decorations will all disappear in the blink of an eye.

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And, with the removal of the snowy rooftops on the castle, we’ll see the castle in its plain and beautiful condition for the first time since the 60th anniversary celebration began in 2015.

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They had lots of trouble with the snowy rooftop this year. Lights not working correctly, seams not able to be concealed. Let’s hope that the castle overlay gets a proper refurbishment in time for next Christmas.

 

Disneyland

Shortly after park opening on Friday, Peter Pan already had an hour long wait – and that was on one of the lesser busy days of the week.

Annual passes are unblocked and Disneyland Resort screeches to a miserable halt. BOTH parks are in gridlocked condition….

Posted by MiceChat.com | The Happiest Place in Cyberspace… on Wednesday, January 4, 2017

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But, in the mornings, the pathways remain largely open, especially in the little out of the way places.

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The Castle Heraldry Shoppe closes this week on the 12th. Disneyland ended the lease for the company which runs the shop. Disney has not yet announced what they need the space for. Here’s a Facebook post from the shop owners. We wish them well.

Castle Heraldry Shoppe Disneyland   December 18, 2016 at 9:58am

The store is closing, but the memories will remain.

The Castle Heraldry Shoppe was open in 1994 in the entrance to Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. The store was small but offered a variety of products and gifts for everyone. The shoppe moved to its present location when Sleeping Beauty’s Castle was updated. Still offering some of the original products and the ability to add to the options, we still offer unique gifts.

The experience for the cast members that have worked at the Shoppe are innumerable. Cast members witnessed the placing of a time capsule,meeting Roy Disney, celebrating Disneyland’s 40th, 50th, and 60th Birthday, and meeting guests from all over the world, to name a few.

We will still be here until January 12th, 2017 offering all of our Heraldry. Come in and get the Heraldry you have been waiting for.

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This is a likely space for Fastpass+ distribution, don’t you think?
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Small World Holiday sticks around until later this month. If you find yourself missing Christmas, you can pop in here until January 23rd.

ToonTown looks great at the holidays. Back to normal this week. But the force arises just behind this happy land.

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If you look at that green construction fence next to Gadget’s Go Coaster, you’ll see a dump truck working on Star Wars land. It’s that close.

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In Tomorrowland, the force continues to rule. This is really the temporary Star Wars land until the real thing opens . . . far, far away . . .

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Did I mention how crowded the park was later in the day?

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Someday, that Orbitron will either get fixed or be removed.  Possible New Year Resolution.
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Creepy Santa Yoda knows when you’ve been sleeping . . . he knows when you’re awake . . . afraid you should be.
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This falls into the the MUST POST file. Kid jumps out of stroller and throws himself under it. It’s a talent that we hope he’ll never need to use in the real world.  😉
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Farewell Jingle Cruise . . . until we meet again . . .

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One of the best things about the holidays is all the extra entertainment in the park.

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Love the giant moon in New Orleans Square. I think he’d look great here year round.

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Haunted Mansion Holiday is one of the highlights of the season and really packs in the crowds. Although this is one of the highest capacity rides Disney has ever built, it can still run hour+ waits throughout the holidays.

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A massive line for Haunted Mansion Holiday wrapped fully through and around Magnolia Gardens.

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I couldn’t help myself. I needed to take one last ride. And I recorded it just for you.

The river reconstruction project continues at a rapid pace. Additional tarps went up around and over the Fantasmic stage. All sorts of work is happening in this area. Big changes on their way to Fantasmic.

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Speaking of change. The Columbia refurbishment continues. The new masts have yet to make their appearance.

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Star Wars land construction got muddy this week with a bit of rain at the resort. But a massive crew continues to work on this project.

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The new train trestle with rock-work going up behind it.

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Tiny decorations in Critter Country.

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Meanwhile, behind Big Thunder . . .

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A blue tarp is over one of the big new rocks. Probably to protect it from the rain.

 

 

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Before we head over to DCA, one parting shot to prove to you how busy Disneyland was . . . the guest overflow corridors were open behind Main Street. A secret voice was ringing in my head “Get Out!”

Disney California Adventure

With the closure of the Festival of Holidays and associated entertainment at Disney California Adventure yesterday, there aren’t going to be as many reasons to visit the park. DCA is very short on main draw attractions right now. When it’s cold, folks aren’t really interested in Grizzly River Rapids. Not everyone can ride a looping rollercoaster like California Screamin’. Sorin’ is very popular, but a very slow loader as well. The really strong family E-Tickets are Radiator Springs Racers and Toy Story Midway Mania (which isn’t really an E-Ticket). And that’s it for major attractions in the park. It’s a shame that Disney didn’t build a brand new Guardian’s ride in this little park and keep Tower of Terror as well. DCA is going to seem boring for a while.

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Disneyland started to fill up, but DCA’s attendance was enjoyable for a couple more hours until it also filled up.

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That’s Walt’s Barn under the tree. You can see the real thing in Griffith Park up in LA. It’s open to guests one Sunday every month.

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DCA’s minimal holiday decorations shouldn’t take long to remove.

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Disney is wasting no time preparing the Tower of Terror for its new Guardian overlords. The cocoon is now fully in…

Posted by MiceChat.com | The Happiest Place in Cyberspace… on Wednesday, January 4, 2017

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Do you find this mural appealing?
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Or is it just peeling?

 

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Best decorations in the park are in Cars Land. Really clever!

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$8 for a tiny turkey slider. Disney’s guests may be willing to pay abusive prices for park tickets and sit down dinners, but there are limits. Hopefully Disney is learning that you can’t charge guests the maximum price for every single thing and get away with it. The food is great, the festival was fun, but guests just aren’t buying this delicious but overpriced festival food.
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Just steps away, the Corn Dog Castle was PACKED! Yes, you are still being overcharged, but the portion size is huge. This is a meal. The festival foods are barely a snack.

 

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We met the Disneyland Today folks at DCA.
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Going to miss Viva Navidad, not really going to miss Elena and her strange back-story. 😉
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Want to get a drink at Cove Bar? You’ll be waiting a really long time. They doubled the size of the seating area and it’s more popular than ever. What is it about this place that folks love so much? It’s the lobster nachos, isn’t it?

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Seeing this line in person was shocking. I’ve never seen so many people queued up for California Screamin’.

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Multiple switchbacks before you even get to the normal queue.

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Midway Mania was also slammed.

Something new! Friday was Three Kings Day and DCA celebrated with a special performance by singer/storytellers. The celebration lasted through the weekend.

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Three-Kings-MiceChat

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Dusty takes you on a tour of Disney California Adventure and shows you some of the changes coming to the park.

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Ginger Cat was playing hide and seek at the winery. She’s the sweetest cat and came running when I called to her.

This and That

 

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There’s some strangeness in the area where the old security booths were in the Esplanade. Why do they have a road sign set up in front of the Info Booth? I’ve you’ve gotten this far into the resort, you already know you are at Disneyland.

 

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And what’s the deal with this one security tent still up?
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House of Blues will soon be Splitzville. There’s one at Disney Springs at Walt Disney World. We love it. Should be a really fun place . . . and they have great sushi. Yes . . . I eat bowling alley sushi.

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There’s a major pool refurbishment going on at the Grand Californian Hotel. The pool deck has been removed and the pool jack hammered.

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MiceChat Events

MiceChat Anniversary Weekend Jan 27-29

MiceChat Anniversary weekly is January 27th through 29th. We have all sorts of amazing things lined up for you, including a cocktail party with Bob Gurr and a blockbuster panel featuring David Koenig and the original Disneylanders! Enter your email HERE for more information.

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Click HERE for more information

Get Disneyland Wait Times with Mouseaddict

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Get Mouseaddict Here You can keep track of the wait times and even where in the park people are congregating by downloading the app (iPhone only at this time).

Thank you !
All of us on the Disneyland Photo Update crew would like to thank you for joining us today. Today’s MiceChat Disneyland Update was shot and assembled by Dusty Sage.

Are you a member of the MiceChat Sunday Meet-up Facebook group? If you are interested in meeting up with fellow theme park lovers in the parks, please be sure to follow this group: MiceChat Sundays in the Park. And please follow the MiceChat Facebook Page for news and updates from the Disneyland Resort and beyond:

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That’s it for this week’s Update.Are you a photographer? Do you love the parks? Would you like to contribute to the Disneyland Update or other MiceChat columns? Contact Dusty Sage: [email protected]

And please share your comments below. Remember that New Year Resolution for Disneyland we asked about at the top of the update? What one thing would you have the resort do if you had the power?

 

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Dusty is the founder and CEO of MiceChat.com. When he's not visiting theme parks and writing, editing or speaking about Disney and theme parks worldwide, Dusty stays busy as the Executive Director of both the Walt Disney Birthplace AND the Dick Van Dyke Foundation. He also runs O-Zell Soda (the company originally operated by Walt Disney's father and at which Walt once worked). If you've got news or photos to share with the MiceChat community, or would like to book Dusty for an upcoming event, please contact [email protected]