Pixar Pier, Pixar Fest and Pirates redressed are in today’s news. Plus a little extra. The first of the new Pixar offerings hits next month as the festival launches in BOTH parks, along with nighttime spectaculars new and returning. Then the new/old Pixar Pier opens in late June. Let’s take a look at all the new information and the status of construction.

More of Pixar Pier Revealed

Set your countdown clock to June 23rd . . . that’s when Pixar Pier officially opens. Some new visuals (mostly of the fast food kiosks and the carousel) have been released by Disney. Some of this looks like an upgrade from what was there before, the Incredicoaster for example, and some just look a bit too much like DCA 1.0. But we’ll let you take a look and tell us what you think.

Artist rendering of the Incredicoaster provided by Walt Disney Imagineering, part of the upcoming changes to the new Pixar Pier development at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, as of March 8, 2018. The pier is still under construction.
This is older concept art for the Incredicoaster queue building, which is in the process of getting a new roofline now.
Edna Mode will greet you just after dispatch. She’s watching baby Jack Jack and has managed to let him slip through her fingers. And away we go . . . .
Edna is being fully modeled at WDI.
Mrs. Incredible is stretching through the launch tube to catch her baby.
The scream tubes are being enclosed. That will allow for sound and lighting effects as well as Mrs. Incredible and Jack Jack props.

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There are workmen all over the coaster at almost all times. They were working even in the rain.

Artist rendering provided by Walt Disney Imagineering of the upcoming changes to the new Pixar Pier development at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, as of March 8, 2018. The pier is still under construction.

Next up on the Pier is the Toy Story redo of King Triton’s Carousel of the Sea. Jessie’s Critter Carousel has nine new characters for you to ride: Rabbits, raccoon, deer, skunk, and even cuddly rattlesnakes.

Pixar Pier concept art 5

Pixar Promenade will host performers while the nearby Bing Bong’s Sweet Stuff will feature candy and treats.

Artist rendering provided by Walt Disney Imagineering of the upcoming changes to the new Pixar Pier development at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, as of March 8, 2018. The pier is still under construction. Photo by Marla Jo Fisher, the Orange County Register, at Walt Disney Imagineering in Glendale, CA.

But here’s where things fall a bit flat.  Did you ever play Rollercoaster Tycoon?  These new fast food joints look like boxes plopped down in a carnival. Perhaps it’s just the concept art, but the images remind me a lot of the punny DCA 1.0 “design by sign” aesthetic.

Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats replaces Catch a Flave.

Artist rendering provided by Walt Disney Imagineering of the new Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats store, part of the Pixar Pier development at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, as of March 8, 2018. The pier is still under construction. Photo by Marla Jo Fisher, the Orange County Register, at Walt Disney Imagineering in Glendale, CA.

The columns on the top corners are new. You can see that those segments of the building have been shaved down to the sheetrock.

I just can’t get into this next one. This really looks like a booth you’d see at the local fair. The funny thing is it isn’t far from the original chicken strips place that opened with Paradise Pier and quickly closed.

Behold the Poultry Palace (Between Jessie’s Carousel and Midway Mania):

Artist rendering of the new Poultry Palace quick service restaurant, provided by Walt Disney Imagineering, part of the upcoming changes to the new Pixar Pier development at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, as of March 8, 2018. The pier is still under construction. (Disney•Pixar)

I don’t have words for this next one . . . someone help me here. Senor Buzz Churros is ______.

This next one isn’t so bad. Mostly new signage for the old Don Thomas. It’s a cute enough representation of Anger from Inside Out. But it’s just a tent with outdoor vending hotdogs.

One thing we aren’t hearing about is the following hint at an Inside Out attraction:

The Inside Out spinner is conspicuously missing from the Pixar Pier model that Disney showed off to the press. That doesn’t mean it isn’t coming. It still appears in the concept art they share.

From a distance, it looked like there were orange flies on Mickey’s face. I had to zoom with the camera to figure out that it was workmen.

Ariels Grotto is becoming a “Family Lounge” called the Lamplighter. I didn’t know that Family Lounges were a thing. But I am glad to hear that bar space is essentially being expanded with the old Cove Bar space remaining mostly the same and the downstairs transforming into a casual dining space inspired by Pixar animators. 

The Cove Bar is supposed to reopen temporarily for Spring Break beginning tomorrow.

The finials on top of the shop and Lamplight Lounge are being reworked and will return with a curvy new design.

The Luxo Lamp at the top of the Pixar Pier sign is rumored to be animated.
Our thanks to the amazing Marla Jo Fisher of the Orange County Register for letting us share this photo of what the lounge will look like. You can find all of her recent articles here: Marla Jo Fisher


 

Pixar Fest – Starts April 13th

Pixar Fest will begin mid-April at both parks. The celebration will feature special foods (color changing noodles), treats (like signature funnel cakes), merchandise, kid craft stations, entertainment and lots of Pixar character meet and greets.

AT D23 EXPO 2017, DISNEY PARKS CHAIRMAN BOB CHAPEK ANNOUNCES PIXAR FEST COMING TO DISNEYLAND RESORT — Starting in 2018, this limited-time offering will include a new fireworks spectacular as well as special characters and entertainment moments.

The bakeries will have character cookies, caramel apples, and treats. Restaurants will have special selections, some of which are really out there. Apparently, the color changing noodles are blue but change to a more yellow color when you squeeze lemon on them.

Most folks will likely be drawn to the two nighttime spectaculars. Together Forever is Disneyland’s new fireworks show and will use the projection technology from the 60th-anniversary show to project on the buildings of Main Street USA.  Also exciting is the return of Paint the Night, but this time around at DCA. The parade will feature a new Pixar unit later in the year.

Plus, DCA gets “Pixar Shorts” in the Sunset Showcase Theater in Hollywood Land. So you can see favorite Pixar short animated films such as Lava and For the Birds on the big screen. Likely with in-theater effects as well.

Countdown to Pirate-geddon

A date has been set for the alteration of the auction scene on Pirates of the Caribbean. The ride will close for renovations on April 23rd. Disney has not set a date for the return, but we don’t expect it to take more than a month or so. Concept art shows that the connotations of rape and human trafficking in the scene will be scrubbed. In their place, the characters will be at an auction for loot they have stolen from the village. The iconic Redhead will also have a new look. Instead of standing seductively in a tight red dress with a low-cut neckline, she’ll be dressed as a pirate with a firearm and less of her cleavage on display.

Fan reaction is split and highly charged politically and emotionally. Imagineering is in a difficult position. It is never easy to alter a classic attraction. Fans were outraged when the chase scene was altered two decades ago to have pirates lusting after plates of food instead of the women carrying them. But today, you never hear anyone complaining that scene was changed. It was just the right thing to do, even though it might not have felt like it at the time. The addition of Jack Sparrow is less beloved. While it may have been a fun movie tie-in for a while, most fans now argue for the removal of the Jack Sparrow character from the ride. How will guests react to the revised auction scene? The jury is out on that. But, if it is done right, Imagineers can only hope that folks will stop complaining and come to see the scene as normal after a few years.

Pirates of the Caribbean begins its transformation on April 23rd. Have you made peace with the changes, mad as hell, or somewhere between? Click To Tweet

More Parking on the Way

Half of the old tram loading area has been removed and most of the surface lot is now dirt.  Tram loading and security remains inside the structure on the bottom level.

 

Drop off is still outside the structure.

Mickey Vans continue to run but pick up is at the end of the two zones.

This is the tram crossing for the few guests parked in Chip and Dale

Trams are now running clockwise
Looks like a new Mickey Van loading zone in the middle of the Tram loading area at Downtown Disney
And part of the tram loading zone at Downtown Disney is also under construction.

Not far from the trams, we noticed that a lot of the popcorn lights on the ticket booths seem to be burned out.

It’s hard to tell in a daytime shot, but about 1/4th of the bulbs are out.

Return of the Challenge Trail

Things are looking beautiful in the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail.  Everything has been repainted and looks fantastic.

I remember there being a single deer in the past. There are now three. Am I remembering this wrong?

This and That

Across the way at Grizzly Mountain, things are also looking great.

There’s a bit of spring/Easter items

The only St. Patrick’s Day item I could find in the park was this sugar cookie.

Need an AP Food and Wine Festival tasting card? Kingswell Camera Shop might be a good option. This is located not far from the lockers on Buena Vista Street.

That’s a wrap. Do you like what you see for Pixar Pier? Does the concept art live up to the hype? Looking forward to new Pixar fireworks at Disneyland and the return of Paint the Night?  We look forward to hearing your thoughts below!

MICECHAT BOYSENBERRY FESTIVAL EVENT – March 18th!

Join us at Knott’s Berry Farm on Sunday, March 18th as we enjoy the tastes and entertainment of Knott’s Berry Farm’s amazing Boysenberry Festival.  Information on our Facebook Events Page HERE.

THANK YOU FOR READING!
All of us on the Disneyland Photo Update crew would like to thank you for joining us today. My thanks to Brian Pinsky for additional photos on today’s update and to Scott Attula for some logistic assistance.

Do you live in SoCal or plan to make a trip soon? Want to meet up with your fellow MiceChatters in the parks and tourist hot spots all over Southern California? Join our new MiceChat Sunday Fun Days Group today! We have a GREAT Knott’s Boysenberry Festival Event coming up next week!