The Disneyland Resort kicked off the new year with festivities in both theme parks including new entertainment options at the recently-relaunched Disney California Adventure. But the New Year’s Eve festivities weren’t the end of new offerings for the new year. Throughout the year, Disneyland will be hosting various pop-up entertainment offerings and special events as part of the larger Disney Parks “Limited Time Magic” promotion. First up was the second annual Dia de Reyes Celebration at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree, celebrating the Latin American holiday with special entertainment, food and activities. The Dia de Reyes celebration capped off Disneyland’s ever-popular holiday season, making this last weekend the last chance to enjoy the popular holiday offerings in both theme parks. With the holidays wrapped up, Disneyland will now embark on a series of construction and refurbishment projects including a major overhaul for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, construction on the new Starbucks location on Main Street U.S.A., and the completion of the under-construction Fantasy Faire meet-and-greet area.
Get a closer look at today’s update! Click on any photo in today’s column for a large, high-resolution version of the image.
Did you miss our 2012 Year in Review over the holiday break? Check it out (in two parts!) below:
The busy holiday season is finally past us but crowds will unfortunately remain for this week. TouringPlans.com can also help you navigate the parks with our per-park Crowd Calendar, Lines – Mobile Wait Times App that gives access to current and estimated wait times for attractions, and Touring Plans detailing the best plan of attack for hitting the attractions. Now more than ever, it’s a good time to subscribe to TouringPlans.com to plan your strategy to avoid the crowds!
Below are the predicted resort-wide crowd numbers for select days generated by the TouringPlans professional statisticians as measured for the upcoming week. For the access to the full year and per-park crowd level predictions, visit our Crowd Calendar.
— Fred Hazelton, Statistician, TouringPlans.com
|Tues., Jan. 8||Here are some quick-hit notes that we hope you’ll find helpful as you prepare your visits for the week:
|Wed., Jan. 9||8 /10|
|Thu., Jan. 10||7 /10|
|Fri., Jan. 11||8 /10|
|Crowd levels are based on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.See Disneyland crowds for the next 365 days.
Get Disneyland wait times on your iPhone, Android, or Smartphone.Do more. Wait less.
Dateline Disneyland is sponsored by TouringPlans.com.
For the second year in a row, Disneyland’s New Year’s Eve festivities was broadcast live by Univision. The Univision presence included a large control booth just behind the Partners statue. Not the most crowd/Guest-friendly place to set-up.
California Adventure was a much easier place to navigate with lighter crowds than Disneyland and new entertainment made it a good option for those who didn’t want to deal with Disneyland’s crowded walkways. Below, swing dancing in Carthay Circle:
On New Year’s Day, Disneyland’s impressive “Destination: Cars Land” float made its debut at the Pasadena Rose Parade.
|End of the Season|
Sunday marked the final day of Disneyland’s busy holiday season. Crowds will persist into this next week while many schools are still out for winter break, but the holiday season has finally come to an end. Below, a last look at the 2012 holiday season.
|Limited Time Magic:
Dia de Reyes & Golden Horseshoe Revue
A look at the Dia de Reyes live entertainment
The next up in Disney’s Limited Time Magic will be a limited run of “A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue” from January 10 to February 4. Disney describes the show as: “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.”
Disney has opened reserved seating for the show to Annual Passholders via special dinner performances.
Annual Passholder Dinner Show Dates:
Thursdays through Mondays, January 10 through February 4, 2013
$35 per Passholder, per show
Call (714) 781-PASS (7277) and select option 0
Starter: Corn chips in a souvenir Golden Horseshoe boot mug
Entrees: Black forest ham and roast beef sandwiches
Sides: Golden raisin and carrot salad, Yukon golden potato salad, Very Berry fruit salad
Children’s Menu: 2 PB&J sandwiches with sides
Vegetarian Option: Vegetable and cheese sandwiches with sides
Beverages: Mint Julep, water, coffee
Dessert: Walt & Lilly’s 30th Anniversary Celebration Cake
If you want to attend a performance but aren’t an Annual Passholder or interested in the dinner package, you should visit the podium at the entrance to the Golden Horseshoe where a Cast Member will issue a ticket for your requested show time, based on availability.
|On the Horizon
2013 will bring some notable changes to Disneyland. Below, a look at some of the big projects coming our way this year:
Disney recently confirmed to the OC Register that Main Street’s Market House will close “sometime this year” to be converted into the new Starbucks location.
The new Starbucks shop will open by late 2013 and will likely bring big changes to the interior of the Market House, one of the few remaining Main Street interiors that hasn’t seen much change since opening day.
The Market House is significantly smaller than California Adventure’s Starbucks location, which sees massive lines. Will the Market House location need to utilize Center Street as extended queue space once Starbucks moves in?
At the end of Main Street, the new Fantasy Faire princess meet-and-greet area is progressing quickly toward its May 2013 grand opening.
Back in Fantasyland, the Fantasyland Theatre is getting ready to host its first full stage show since the end of “Snow White — An Enchanting Musical” in fall 2006.
The marquee is ready for signage for the new show, “Mickey and the Magical Map,” which is set to debut this summer.
Disney announced the new show last week with the following description:
The wise sorcerer Yen Sid tells of a wondrous map – one unlike any other – with the power to take dreamers to any place imaginable. But when young apprentice Mickey Mouse attempts to paint the map’s one unfinished spot, he stumbles into a fantastic adventure through worlds of music, color and beloved characters, as he discovers the mystery of the map’s magic!
Some concept art for the show:
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is now closed as it begins a major refurbishment that will span most of the year.
The refurbishment will cost around $4 million dollars and include the repainting of the mountain, new ride vehicles and show enhancements. A crane will loom over the Frontierland mountain January through April.
Take a final ride on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad with our video from last fall.
|This & That|
Disney recently made it easier for parents to help choose healthier options for their kids when eating at the parks by introducing the “Mickey Check.” The Mickey Check indicates complete meals that meet Disney’s nutrition requirements. The Mickey Check is now present on quick-service restaurant menus and will soon be added to sit-down restaurant menus as well.
The viewing areas are pretty good, particularly for World of Color where Glow with the Show guests get a roomy central viewing section. The new reserved viewing areas were quietly rolled out and promoted mostly by Disney’s @DCAToday and @DisneylandToday Twitter accounts.
|Weekly News & Information Round-Up|
|Weekly Theme Park Hours
January 7 — 13, 2013
|Disneyland Park||Disney California Adventure|
|Monday-Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm
Friday: 9 am – 10 pm
Saturday: 9 am – 11 pm
Sunday: 8 am – 11 pm
Monday-Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm
Friday-Saturday: 9 am – 10 pm
Sunday: 8 am – 10 pm
visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar
7.5—8.8 out of 10
3.4—6.9 out of 10
with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.
For crowd predictions for the next 365 days, visit
A quick look at noteworthy Disney theme park headlines from around the web.
Okay, that wraps up our first Dateline Disneyland of 2013. Thanks, as always, for reading! I hope all of you had a fantastic holiday season! Happy New Year!
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|FTC-Mandated Disclosure: Promotional consideration for this edition of Dateline Disneyland was provided by TouringPlans.com | Do More. Wait Less. and the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel & Water Playground.|