Will you be my Valentine? Today’s Disneyland Update was mostly shot on Friday. We rushed to get as many photos as we could before the forecast rains arrived. But I assure you that there is a lot to share with you. Disneyland ticket prices have gone up again. AP Days delivers little, but is just enough to convince swarms of APs to line up for over an hour. Refurbishments, killer merchandise and the search for Valentines Day.

Tickets Go Up Like Clockwork!

It takes 365 days for the earth to orbit the sun. In that span of time a few things are certain . . . the Sun will rise and set, the seasons will change, and Disneyland will increase ticket prices. This year’s increase wasn’t really all that bad. Day tickets went up by a few bucks and annual passes had a modest increase with the most expensive passes remaining flat. Disney had been set to begin phasing out the annual pass payment program this month, but got cold feet at the last minute. Still, with Star Wars and Marvel Lands on the way and the parks bursting at the seams from overcrowding, the day of reckoning will eventually need to come.

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We posted a full rundown on the new prices HERE yesterday.

Welcome To Disneyland

Let’s take a look through the park to see what’s new, what’s news, and look for evidence of cupid.

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It’s hard for folks who aren’t from Southern California to understand that we just don’t get Winter here. For us, Fall just ended and Spring is starting to burst into bloom. It’s warm during the day, cool at night and we are getting occasional rain showers. But it’s really starting to look lovely.

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The Alice characters are a delight. Alice stopped us to say that someone had given her a cutout of herself. She wanted to know if her face really looked that round.

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Peter Pan was signing autograph books with a green pen because the color reminded him of boogers.

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AP Days got its own garden this year. More on that in a bit.
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Not sure who it was filming the garden.

Matterhorn is down for a refurb which will also install FastPass infrastructure.

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The waterfalls are turned off at the moment. Makes it easier to get rid of the algae.

 

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A brief history of Disneyland’s Matterhorn is affixed to the construction fence.

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Having Matterhorn, Pirates of the Caribbean and all the River/Train attractions closed at the same time is a HUGE impact on the resort. Waits are much higher than necessary at the remaining attractions as a result.

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Space Mountain is starting to look disgusting on the exterior. Nothing says “Tomorrow” like a grimy and yellowing building.

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This isn’t just a little dirty, it’s an embarrassment.
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But wait times for the attraction itself remain high.

 

Meanwhile, in Fantasyland . . .

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A surprising amount of work is going on around Snow White’s wishing well.

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The rock grotto which supported the Snow and the Seven Dwarfs statues has been completely removed. It’s likely coming back, but it sure does make your heart skip a beat when you see it looking like this. Many a Disney fan has been proposed to in this very spot. Hopefully Snow and the boys are getting a good bath and we’ll never notice the difference when this beloved little spot reopens.

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File this next one in the “Adorable” folder . . . Merida was playing duck, duck, goose with the little ones in Fantasyland. SO cute!

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Peter Pan is ALWAYS busy. Imagine how much more insane this line will get after FastPass is installed.

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The little shop between Pinocchio and Village Haus has reopened as the “Royal Reception.” It’s pretty basic inside with an uninspired product line, but it’s really nice to see this tiny shop return.

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A door connects the shop to the Village Haus restaurant dining room.

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Over at the former Heraldry Shop, that empty water bottle remains lodged above the door. It’s been there for months.

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Yes, that’s trash lodged above the door. It’s been there a very long time. I first noticed it when shooting an update months ago. I didn’t post about it because I was sure it would just get cleaned up and thrown away. Guests do all sorts of disrespectful things to the parks. However, I couldn’t help but notice the bottle on every trip through Fantasyland since. I even pointed it out to custodial more than once. It’s become a pet peeve.

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Remember when I spoke about SoCal Spring earlier? The trees throughout Disneyland are green and many of them in full bloom right now.

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A new covered entrance has been built at Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.

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Behind Big Thunder, work is progressing at lightspeed on the new back end of the river and Disneyland Railroad re-route.

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The scrims are down around the Fantasmic stage and most of the Tom Sawyer Island construction projects also appear to be wrapping up.

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The Columbia continues her major refurbishment and re-rigging.

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Although the trains aren’t running, it’s still a pleasure to visit them and interact with the Conductors.

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They pulled the Lilly Belle into the tunnel for protection from the rain.

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New Orleans Square is decorated for Mardi Gras.

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Pirates is down for refurbishment. That places extra pressure on Haunted Mansion to fill the void.

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On Sunday, Mansion was running a 100 minute wait and Splash was 120 minutes. Yikes!

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For some reason, they have left the Christmas colors on the spears under the Jungle Cruise sign. They look a little out of place.

 

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The refreshment stand at the exit of Jungle Cruise has a special Moana themed treat.

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Moana greets guests on the outdoor patio at Aladdin’s Oasis.
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The Adventureland bathrooms are closed for refurbishment. Your best options on the West side of the park are the Rancho Zocalo bathrooms (which are always overcrowded) and the bathrooms behind Pirates of the Caribbean (near the New Orleans Square train station).

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AP Days Dazed

AP Days are being held at Disneyland instead of DCA this time around. The celebration features the Main Street Electrical Parade.

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AP Days runs daily February 10 to March 9, 2017, from 11:00 AM to 8:00 PM in the Tomorrowland Starcade. The queue is in the Path of the Jedi (Captain EO) extended queue. The wait was well over an hour when we stopped by, so we don’t have interior shots for you. But they were handing out buttons near the exit to Star Traders. Passholders must present a valid Annual Passport to receive buttons or access the AP Welcome Center.

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The line was super long and slow moving.

So, what’s the payoff? They are giving away buttons and recipe cards and rare characters are available for meet and greet.

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©Disney

Additional AP happenings are taking place in the Main Street Opera House, where a video is shown in the Lincoln theater at 5 PM, 6:30 PM, and 8 PM daily. You’ll also find a meager selection of merchandise at Disneyana,

I’m not a big fan of the AP Days merch. Step and repeat of the AP Days logo is just about the easiest thing they could do. Pass Holders would surely appreciate classic characters and attractions and merchandise featuring them would be very popular.

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©Disney

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Safety First – Merchandise Recall

Alternate title: “What you don’t know about Disneyland merchandise that could kill you.”  LOL. Disneyland has recalled one of the Christmas night lights that can cause a fire. Yikes! I just saw this walking by, but what about all those tourists who will never return to the resort to see this? When you think of the thousands of items Disneyland sells, it’s amazing that you don’t hear about more recalls.

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Valentines Day

I did my best to search for Valentines Day items in the parks for you, but they didn’t decorate this year. There are a smattering of merchandise items which might be considered Valentines related and there are some treats in the bakery.

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The baked goods

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Not really Valentines Day, but too cute to pass up.
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Those roses are cake pops!

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I miss seeing Disneyland decorate for this holiday.

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Rain, Rain Go Away

We’ve been getting a lot of rain lately. It’s unusual for us and something for which the parks weren’t built. We have very few indoor queues and dining spaces. Disneyland was made for that beautiful SoCal weather I was bragging about earlier. Still, there’s a magic quality to the rain and the way the lights of the park reflect when the streets are wet. As we were leaving the resort on Friday, the sky opened up. Here are just a few photos of Main Street as we conclude part 1 of our two part update.

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The flash makes the rain look like snow. This is the worst winter gets in Anaheim. 🙂

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So much left to share. Join us again tomorrow for more from the Disneyland Resort as we look at DCA, Downtown Disney, and Star Wars Land construction!

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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.

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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]

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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]