Cars Land gets repaved as Disneyland goes to Fullerton Railroad Days

Written by Andy Castro. Posted in Dateline Disneyland, Disneyland Resort, Features

Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Published on May 06, 2013 at 5:05 am with 31 Comments

About Andy Castro

Andy is a Southern California native, raised with Disneyland and a life-long fan of Disney theme parks and animation. Andy wrote the long-running weekly Dateline Disneyland photo, news and opinion blog here on MiceChat from 2007-2016. Andy continues to make occasional special guest contributions on MiceChat.

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  • michael darling

    This is a superbly put-together report.

    What significance are the 3 items in the “Great Moments” lobby? (Carousel horse, bench and buggy?)

    Windows: yes, the Big Top window is a mess. I’ve been to rummage sales set up better. Odd how the windows on Main Street don’t get some type of indoor scrim plussing, to look like window displays.

    Enjoyed the Kalamazoo cart closeups! I grew up just down the road from there. Love seeing things up close, that are normally off limits.

    Great job. Especially on some of your staged photos….like the trolley conductor.

    • The significance is that those items belong to Tony Baxter, along with the ticket books which have been removed. Since Tony no longer works for the company, it’s interesting to see what he’s taking back. Good for him!

    • Westsider

      The three items (carousel horse, bench, and peanut vendor cart) are very significant, for without them there would be no Disneyland.

      In the 1950’s and 60’s, Walt often told the story of how he came up with the idea for Disneyland. You’ve probably heard that story; In the 1940’s, Sunday was “Daddies Day” and Walt would take his two girls to Griffith Park and sit on a bench eating peanuts while they rode the Carousel, and while sitting there alone he thought there ought to be a place where children and parents could have fun together. The rest is history.

      The three items were obtained by the Walt Disney Company from Griffith Park and are all original to the 1930’s-40’s period. The carousel horse is from their Carousel that his girls rode, the bench is an actual park bench used in the 40’s in the area around the Carousel, and the peanut vendors cart is one which Walt likely bought bags of peanuts from on his Sunday outings.

      This is all explained in the little exhibit just as you step inside the Opera House doors. And what a better way to tell the story of Disneyland than using these three original pieces of history. It could only happen in Disneyland, as it’s the only park that Walt ever built and planned and expanded and walked in himself. All the other parks are just corporate clones of Walt Disney’s original Magic Kingdom of Disneyland.

      • michael darling

        Thank you! I knew the story of Disneyland’s inspiration….but didn’t put two and two together. What a great display.

  • eicarr

    Knowing it takes 2-3 years to build attractions at DL, its dissapointing to see no non-referbishment construction. Hopefully they’re learning from guest interest in the non-Pixar non-Old animated movie live action Iron Man exhibit. Hoping for tron, marvel or Star Wars construction walls before any more of the countless Main Street and frontierland ones. Building attractions on movies that make billions would bring a major return on investment with LA crowds.

  • garyman

    Great Update as always

  • Curly Kyle

    Awesome update!
    Is there any 2013 graduation merchandise out? I’m heading there this weekend!

  • Gregg Condon

    Did they change any of the pictures in the Opera House exit?

  • WheresMickey

    Nice update!

  • DobbysCloset

    If Stitch is in the middle of something, there’s bound to be trouble…

    Kodak…end of an era. RIP, film. Onward, digital…

  • Chernabog

    Saturday afternoon we were on the train and they refilled at the New Orleans station just fine. Unless DOSH did something that just happened yesterday.

    And whoever put together that window on Buena Vista Street needs to be put in another job NOT doing those windows. It looks like a 2 year old’s collection that mommy haphazardly picked up and threw on a shelf — complete with mutilated plush toys.

    • Good to hear that things must have changed with DOSH’s decision on this. Thanks for the correction/update!


  • Sue Kruse

    The Big Top Toys window display is “just bad.” Oh Andy, you were too kind! That window is a fail of epic proportions. It looks like someone regurgitated plush all over the place and then didn’t bother to tidy up. I shudder to think about how they disposed of the vintage toys and Steiff animals that made up the display when Buena Vista Street opened (most of which were worth $$$$$). That display lured me into the shop & I spent money. This display looks like an untidy child’s room. There’s not one single thing about it that beckons me to explore the shop and let loose of some of my money. Au contraire, it makes me feel that the store will be a mess & that I should not set foot inside, let alone buy something. Whoever did that display should be fired.

  • It is such a disappointment that those beautiful window displays on Buena Vista Street are being butchered by the Merchandise team. They clearly don’t have the ability to do their own windows and this needs to be turned back over to Imagineering. It’s almost shocking to see such a tacky display in a Disney Park.

  • melissafent

    When Big Top Toys opened I was really pleased to see the little circus pieces that had been on display in the Emporium Toy Store,they are charming and fit the theme perfectly. I imagine the tin toys were a problem because everybody wanted to buy them.The new window does look like a 3 year old arraigned it,they need to fix it.

  • villagecreator

    Has anyone noticed that the temporary restroom sign in Condor Flats says Ariels under water adventure? Is Ariel’s showbuilding sinking as well? Bring your snorkel!

  • Tinkbelle

    Nice update. I especially like your picture of the Hungry Bear. I’m not used to seeing it from that angle since we usually ride the Mark Twain up front.

  • JCSkipr79

    Wow. MKs Main Street now has better period window displays that DCA!! JUST WOW. Lasseter really needs to step in and stop the DCA Merch reign of terror

  • Bongo

    While everyone else is fidgeting about the other stuff, please please PLEASE tell me I’m not the only one that is now a bit huffy over the railroad not being able to water up at New Orleans Square anymore. I can’t really explain why in much detail, but NOT using the water tower at that station due to regulations is just really really REALLY aggravating my nerves. I know I shouldn’t be huffed up over something that small, yet I am…

    • Haven

      I agree Bongo. STOP the insanity. Someone in the CalOsha office has it in for Disney right now. My company (Wynn Resorts in LV) experienced a similar meltdown of common sense by building inspectors about 4 years ago, but we chocked it up to the sluggish economy and that they had to “find” anything wrong they could since there we so few new building projects happening to keep them busy. Not the case anymore. Hopefully the staff at CalOsha will change again soon and this will all be a memory.

    • Quentin

      Word is it’s back to using NOS station. At least was on saturday.

  • danyoung

    I’m not sure when or if procedures are changing, but I can tell you that as late as this past Friday, 5/3, the Disneyland trains were indeed still getting water from the New Orleans station. Even though the station was closed to people entering or exiting the train, we made an extended stop there to take on water.

    • Thank you for reporting this. DOSH must have changed their stance on the issue, which is good to hear. Thanks for the info!


  • Soulquarian

    1) DOSH sucks…

    2) The Monstrous Summer event sounds like a DISASTER. The One More Disney Day challenged my patience more than I thought possible, don’t know if I want to even bother with this one with Grad Nite mixed in!

  • RodeToad

    Wow – that Stitch with bowling pin in his mouth – wow.

    Exceptional photos, thanks!

  • QPerth

    Great update Andy, what a gorgeous train and what a chance to be able to see it so close

    • jcruise86

      Yes, thanks for the update, Andy!

  • jcruise86

    Having worked at Disneyland’s Grad Nights, I think this mixing in Disney fans of all ages with the teens might make improve the grad night. Teens tended to focus on the coasters, so they can focus on their thrills and have less competition (from an almost all teen scene guest list) over the same few rides.

    Actually as I get older the idea of staying up all night seems like a mild torture. Disney should exploit this brain-bending all-nighter with extra aggressive Disney Vacation Club seminars.

  • [email protected]

    Great update Andy. Nice angle of the Hungry Bear. I was a bit confused that there was no wake on the water.

  • DisneyDrums


  • darkamor

    These pictures are beautiful (even if they also reveal the faults that Team Disney Anaheim us committing) …

    Exhibit Hall on Main Street looks fantastic (& I look forward to something spectacular for Disneyland’s 60th). Should it really be taking this long to change the Main Street Market House into a Starbucks? (I know its an old building, but where there some “building code” issues that necessitated such a l-o-n-g time being spent leaving Main Street USA a construction zone?). I hope there will be new paint, because things are starting to look Six Flags shabby …

    I am really sad to see KODAK leave Disneyland (from sponsoring the maps, to an actual Shop on Main Street USA). Times have changed as we no longer rely on printed images when our smart phones and tablets allow for instantly sharing directly from the Theme Park (I hope these Historic parts of Disneyland are saved for exhibition in the future). Refurbishments, CAL-OSHA shut downs, zero improvements to Tomorrowland – the main reasons I am not going to Disneyland until 2015 (60th Anniversary) when I hope things are finally dealt with properly ….

    I wonder if the New Orleans Square’s railroad station closure for repaving also involves dealing with the Water Tank issue that CAL-OSHA has? Cast no longer being allowed to stand on objects over 30 inches from the ground without adequate fall protection CAN and WILL effect every single Theme Park (TDA knew this was an issue but they shouldn’t be sitting on their rears about it waiting to be shut down by CAL-OSHA). Tom Sawyer Island was originally deemed inadaquate for handicap access and this was dealt with over 5 years ago. I wonder if CAL-OSHA also had issues regarding safety hazards at that time? (if so? Again, why did TDA wait so long to handle this situation?) ….

    Thank gawd Space Mountain was re-opened (I can only imagine how l-o-n-g-e-r the lines must have been for the other Rides / Attractions in Tomorrowland (again, this was an issue dating back to November 2012 – why did TDA wait 5 months later to deal with it?). As much as I <3 the concept of an ALL NIGHTER @ DIsneyland / DCA, I think having it occur during GRAD NIGHTS is ridiculous (more then just the extra crowds, look what Cast Members are going to have to endure! Grad-only zones within DCA is going to piss off Park Guests who schilled out extra money for their 24 hour experience – can you say one more reason why I don't like "up-charging" park guests? I guess the suit n' ties in Burbank don't care about the testing of patience for park guest and cast members) …

    Repaving Radiator Springs – too soon? Well with projected park guests estimates more then double what TDA assumed they would be? I shouldn't be surprised that Radiator Springs needs plenty of TLC! But Radiator Springs isn't the only section that needs TCL – most of the Anaheim Resort needs continuous maintenance on some level. Glow with the “Magical” Show – yawn – cheap mouse ear hats that break easily. Thank you for covering Fullerton's Railroad Days (and thank you TDA for participating). This is a wonderful family friendly event. Fantasy Faire, its nothing more but another toddler zone where Disney can schill out cheaply made overpriced merchandise that parental units will be forced to buy their toddlers (as if Pixie Hollow wasn't enough?) …