Disneyland Update: Candy Canes, Classics and Cars

Written by Norman Gidney. Posted in In the Parks

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Published on November 23, 2012 at 5:02 am with 42 Comments

Have you recovered from your tryptophan coma?  Because we have a lovely update from Disneyland and Disney California Adventure for you today.  This week saw the return of the classic attractions Storybook Land Canal Boats and the beguiling Casey Jr. Circus Train.  We also catch up on the newly refurbished restrooms near the Fantasyland theatre and check in on the other projects around the park.  But that’s hardly all.  We also skip over to Disney California Adventure to look at some of the notable bits of Cars Land Christmas Merchandise and we take a peek at the Christmas Tree in the Grand Californian.

Christmas and the Holidays are here folks and the parks have suddenly seen a huge increase in the number of guests. Al Lutz noted that the Disneyland Resort saw 100,000 guests on Monday (nearly evenly split between the two parks). With the holidays just getting started, we can expect this to be a record setting season for the resort.


As late as last night, Cast Members were handing out postcards to guests listing the dates for the famous candy cane making on Main Street.  They are listed below.

NOVEMBER 23, 26, 30

DECEMBER 3, 7, 10, 14, 17, 21, 23, 24


The big news this week was the return of the Storybook Land Canal Boats and the Casey Jr. Circus Train.  These two attractions, at the heart of Fantasyland, share the same space and intertwine through one another.  So, usually when one is down the other benefits from a refurbishment as well.  This time the main reason for the down time dealt with more OSHA requirements for Casey Jr.. The trellices used by the charming train ride were widened and railing was installed.  While the new railings are a bit of an eyesore in our opinion, the wider bridges actually work to hide some of the lighting fixtures shining down on the canals.  It’s good and bad, but nothing terrible.

The Storybook Land Canal Boats commanded a long line upon its return.

The same with the Casey Jr. Circus Train.

The smell of freshly stained wood filled the air.

We enter the canals through the iconic mouth of Monstro the whale.


Everything looked great inside the canals.

Note the new railings on the bridge.

But, elsewhere, things just look just as adorable as always.

If one looked close enough one could see the Christmas decorations throughout each scene.

Meanwhile, the bridges above were widened, but not distracting.

What do you think of the new railings?

But, in the end, both attractions are just fine.


Moving on to the back of Fantasyland, we see that the newly refurbished restrooms have opened.  This seems to be a bit of a head scratcher, leaving us to wonder why they bothered in the first place.  The pathway is slightly modified and wider, but they really did nothing else.

We would love to see them finally remove the glass block wall, which is a leftover from the Videopolis days, inside the men’s room.

We also noticed the progress on the control room for the new Fantasyland theatre.


Now for even more angular and swooping rooflines.  The ornate and sorted facades for the Fantasy Faire Village are forming up nicely.


Another recent development is the return of the Big Thunder Fast Pass location.  It is half the size of the original, with only 5 total machines.


There is also a bit of work continuing on the area adjacent to the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad exit.

Maintenance is a good thing folks.

Just across the way, the big thunder trail remains as green and beautiful as ever. It’s lovely right now in Southern California folks.



The best place to go when you need to get away from the stress of the real world is the Disneyland Resort.  Here, you can forget your worries and just have a bit of fun. Apparently this sentiment rang true for former presidential hopeful, Mitt Romney, as he and his entourage were spotted flitting about the resort laughing it up and having a great time on Tuesday.

Thank you to MiceChat reader, Mr. Ratigan, for sending us these cell phone photos.


Moving on to Disney California Adventure, we find that the last remaining construction walls have finally come down.  The 5 year redevelopment of Disney California Adventure is now, totally done.

All that remained to be done after the opening of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street was closing the temporary entrance and create a garden and new backstage gate. That work is now complete.


While strolling through the stores at Disney California Adventure we noticed a pretty bizarre bit of merchandise.  Is this what the “One Disney” initiative will ultimately lead to?

Need a yard Flag?

Too bad this one is from Walt Disney World.


Since taking in all of the remarkable decorations around Cars Land, we decided it would be fun to look at the Cars Land Christmas Merchandise as well.  Some of this stuff is actually pretty cool, if a little too expensive.

Ornaments, 3 for $50. Ouch.

Great new design

Available on sweaters too.

Then there is the Dashing through the snow shirt.


Hats and scarfs

Christmas mugs for $12.95 a piece.

Care to send out Cars Land Christmas Cards? $20 for 12

These mugs are a little bit more pricey at $14.95


As Ramones readies for the expansion into the old Fastpass location that was never used for Radiator Springs Racers, we are seeing a lot of merchandise shuffled around.

Ramone has gotten into the art business now.

The door should be open any day now.

The have even changed the old Fastpass sign to reflect the new store.


Finally we take a look at the beautiful tree that was recently installed int he lobby of the Grand Cal.


It is always a strange thing to see Disney attempt to be hip and edgy.  Frankly, they rarely do it right.  Case in point is the ridiculous t-shirt we spotted in World of Disney this week.

So, here we have a Mickey Mouse that not only uses modern slang, but is lanky and off-model as well.  What do you think of this shirt?  Do you like it or don’t you?

And that’s all we’ve got for this week’s Disneyland Resort update. We got home from the resort late last night, where we had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We want to wish all of you a safe and happy holiday season and hope you find all those Black Friday deals you’re looking for. We’ll be back again next week to share more of Disneyland’s holiday season with you.

About Norman Gidney

Norman Gidney, also known as Fishbulb, produces and edits many of the articles on MiceChat. Tune in every Tuesday for the Orlando Parkhopper and every Friday for In The Parks. But you'll also find his photos in the Weekly Round Up, SAMLAND, and numerous other columns on the site.

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  • skoolpsyk

    On next years shirt Micky says, “Whuddup N***a”

  • Algernon

    I hate the Casey Jr. safety railings as much as I hate the Matterhorn safety railings, the Nemo subs, the Tarzan Treehouse, the paving stones…

    How long before everybody is required to wear Star Wars storm trooper body armor, in the name of safety?

  • Algernon

    If every day they took away a little piece of Disneyland and replaced it with something else, how long would it be before it quit being Disneyland and started being someplace else? Perhaps it has already…

  • Disney Vault

    i would buy the shirt if it came as a tank top

  • RatherBeAtDLand

    Lol, hipster Mickey Mouse. Some people will buy it though, and you know what? That’s okay.

  • Awe_inspired

    Great update. Thank you! Regarding the “sup bro” t-shirt, who is it at Disney that seems convinced that Disney is reaching some niche with offering something “hip?” Why have they been able to keep their job for all of these years?!!

    Disney should stop attempting to be hip. First off, they are usually a decade behind any trend. So expect a Mickey Gangnam Style t-shirt around this time next year. Secondly, I have NEVER seen anyone wearing one of these type of shirts. I’m sure they are out there, but I’ve never seen one.

  • fravitmonk

    I like the shirt. While I wouldn’t wear it personally, I’ve seen people wear shirts like them. There’s definitely an audience.

  • Skimbob

    I love the Sup Bro shirt. I agree Disneyland should not have WDW merchandise. Bad show.

  • Bee14

    Thanks for the info about the candy canes. It is so fun to watch them being made!

  • tcsnwhite

    The shirt is harmless…and the complaining by the usual folks never ceases to amaze me.
    I would say lose the “Sup Bro”…and just have the laid back Mickey on the shirt. That part isn’t bad.
    And I don’t think other artistic interpretations of the characters “off model” is a bad thing. It’s all in how it’s done. This is ok, pretty harmless…but nothing special.
    Do you guys make these same complaints about the various different interpretations of the characters in the artwork in the WonderGround Gallery, Vault 28, Off The Page, and places like such?

  • Park Hopper

    The Walt Disney World merchandise at Disneyland has been happening for decades – long before One Disney.

    Just to be clear, I am not defending One Disney, but that particular blunder has nothing to do with it.

  • Wreckless Abrandon

    Great update. That shirt is horrible. Disney got it right with some of the DJ shirts, but this one just plain looks ugly. They’re trying too hard.

  • jbm500

    Enjoyed to tour and update about Storybook Land. Fond memories and the tradition continues.

  • GhostHostJeff

    Who says “Sup Bro” anymore? I think that was high school 2005.

  • DisneyGoof

    Disney is high (both metaphorically and in price) if they think it’s OK to sell ornaments for 3 for $50! I just don’t get it.