Get to Disneyland now if you want one final holiday fix.  Starting Monday morning, Haunted Mansion and it’s a small world will be going down for the removal of their popular holiday overlays and you only have this final weekend to enjoy them before the next holiday season. And, since the rumor is that Christmas will be a special ticketed event next year, this may be your final chance to catch the wonderful Christmas fireworks and parade without paying extra for them. Also, Big Thunder Mountain will be going down for a major refurbishment on Monday that is scheduled to last until October 2013.  That is three major E tickets all going down at once.  But there is still plenty to do and to look forward to in the park.  The Fantasy Faire village construction is coming along and is well on schedule for a Summer opening.  We also look at the minute progress visible for the Fantasyland Theatre.  But beware, if you do decide to hit the parks this weekend expect big crowds as well.

BIG THUNDER MOUNTAIN TO GO UNDER THE KNIFE

This weekend is your last chance to take a spin on Disneyland’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad before it goes down for a major refurbishment and changes which will last through most of the year.  The high-speed, Tony Baxter designed, roller coaster will benefit from a full reconstruction of the track, a reconfiguring of the load/unload station, and a rebuilding of the iconic Rainbow Ridge townscape facing the queue.  Included in the refurbishment will be key story elements which are part of a new television series based on the attraction.

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad’s last operating day will be Sunday January 6th.  The refurbishment will last for approximately 10 months and will begin this Monday (January 7th).

FANTASY FAIRE VILLAGE

In the meantime, we have more pictures from the construction site of the upcoming Fantasy Faire Village Princess meet and greet.  The design pulls greatly from the Bavarian village style Fantasyland 1983 redo and looks as if it will be quite charming.

The canvas over the stage is being installed.

The facades are quite detailed.

Looks a bit like the entry to the Pinocchio ride, doesn’t it?

LIMITED TIME MAGIC

As part of the awkwardly titled campaign, Limited Time Magic, Disneyland is presenting, “A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Review”  This homage to the classic original stage show will run Thursdays through Mondays from January 10th to February 4th.  Guests interested in seeing the show during its run will have to reserve their seat by visiting the reservations podium in front of the Golden Horseshoe on the day of the show.   A cast member will issue a ticket for their preferred showtime based on availability.  But, of course, there is also a special dinner package available for Annual Passholders at http://disneyland.disney.go.com/special-offers/golden-horseshoe-review-dinner/for $35 a pop. That $35 includes corn chips in a souvenir Golden Horseshoe boot mug, ham and roast beef sandwiches, raisin and carrot salad, potato salad, and berry fruit salad.

Inspired by the world-famous Frontierland show that Walt Disney himself began in 1955, A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue features a variety of songs and dance numbers from past productions and is an homage to fun-filled, family friendly musical entertainment.

In other words, this isn’t exactly like the old Golden Horseshoe show, but rather a show inspired by it.

Are you planning on attending this show?

FANTASYLAND THEATRE

New light posts were installed near the Fantasyland Theatre that reflect the ongoing celestial theme and rustic atmosphere.  Just this morning Disney Parks Blog has announced the Mickey and the Magical Map show for the Fantasyland Theater. It is slated for late may/early june.

THREE KINGS

Starting today and running through Sunday, Disney will be holding the second annual Three Kings Day celebration in the Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree area from 10am-6pm.  The area will feature Latin themed music, food and characters ready for special photo opportunities.

CROWDS

While the New Years holiday brought lower than anticipated crowds to the resort, the following days have seen a resurgence.  Wait times on Wednesday this week were hefty for the e-ticket attractions.

80 minutes for the Matterhorn?!?! Holy moly!

Adventureland is always horrible when it’s crowded. The pinch point at Indy and the Treehouse tends to block things up.

The holidays will mercifully end this weekend and things should simmer down for a while.
Even when the park is packed, there are still quiet spots to be enjoyed.

INNOVENTIONS

Rumor has it that Innoventions will be closing in February to make way for a new, yet to be announced attraction.  Here’s to hoping that the space won’t sit unused for years again.

Go get your trip to future’s past in now.

 

The Disney parks have ushered in 2013 with crowds and pending construction. Happy Three Kings Day everyone. We’ll see you in the parks!