It’s the holiday season, almost, at the Disneyland Resort. Two new princesses, Anna and Elsa from Disney Picture’s upcoming animated feature (Frozen), have taken up residence in Fantasyland. King Arthur Carousel has re-opened and looks simply wonderful. While Holidays at the Disneyland Resort doesn’t officially start until November 12th, running until January 6th, it’s a small world Holiday and the Christmas Fantasy Parade are scheduled to open today. In addition, the stores are fully stocked with all manner of clothes, toys, sweaters, and collectables just oozing yule tide cheer. Let’s find out what’s In the Parks this week.
Holidays at the Resort
Yes, we are sad to see the Halloween Time end. But no sooner had we collected the last piece of trick or treat candy then snow began to collect on the castle and snowflakes landed on the main gate. Even Town Square on Main Street, U.S.A. is blanketed in a sea of red poinsettia.
Frozen Meet and Greet
Monday morning Disney unveiled its newest meet and greet to promote its latest animated feature. Frozen comes out on November 27th nationwide, but you can get a head-start on autographs and meet Anna and Elsa from the new film.
The old Tangled meet and greet location has been turned into a snow-covered house. But one of the things that sets this meet and greet apart is the surprisingly articulated animatronic outside, on the roof. As guests wait in line, the saccharine snowman entertains the crowd as he waxes philosophic from atop the roof.
Blinking, turning, talking, the figure is not operated ala Crush in Turtle Talk. His dialogue is all set, preplanned. But that is of no difference here as it is still very impressive.
it’s a small world holiday
The beloved it’s a small world attraction returns today with the annual holiday overlay. This wildly popular perennial pontoon ride will run through January 6th. There are no major changes this year. But sometimes the familiar charms are just as comforting as anything new and exciting might be.
The first signs of the Jingle Cruise overlay for Disneyland park have appeared. Mostly visible in the queue this morning, guests will continue to see more and more added to the queue and scenery in the attraction as the official beginning date for the overlay approaches on November 12th.
A Christmas Fantasy Parade
The wonderful annual parade returns this year with a few minor tweaks and changes, most of which will go unnoticed by the passive guest. Look for altered choreography on the Gingerbread and Candlelight parade units. Sadly, it seems that the Seven Dwarves may have been cut this year, but new skiers have been added to the Winter Wonderland unit. We also know that the title logo on the first float has been punched out of the wreath and replaced with a ribbon that goes over that. Most importantly, the traditional teddy bear that adorned the first float has returned and Duffy has been relegated to the Mrs. Claus float. But that has in turn caused a cascade effect, sending Pluto to the top of the gingerbread float and Max has been knocked off from there.
There is just something special about this parade that perfectly reflects the holiday cheer like nothing else. If they could only fix the painfully short music loop that plays during the parade, they would have it just about perfect. The parade is scheduled to run at 2:30 and 5:30 today
Believe… In Holiday Magic
This crowd favorite returns tonight at 9:30pm and features the sparkling Sleeping Beauty Castle, choreographed to Holiday music, and of course snoap “snow”.
Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade Taping This Weekend
This is also that weekend when Disneyland tapes the Christmas Day Parade TV special. Yes, the Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade will be taping on both Friday and Saturday this weekend on Main Street U.S.A. and and at the castle and the hub. While we don’t have the names of the talent involved this weekend just yet, we do have the basic time frames for you to be aware of.
If you are visiting the parks this weekend, just be aware that traveling through the park might take a bit more time than normal.
King Arthur Carousel
The King Arthur Carousel has returned after a month-long refurbishment that really spruced things up. Gone are the nasty rust trails draping from the seams in the canopy exterior. In their place are wild shades of fuchsia and gold, supporting a brilliant golden pinnacle.
DISNEYLAND CHRISTMAS MERCHANDISE
Along with the Holidays comes the amazing array of Holiday merchandise. Main Street U.S.A leads the charge with Santa hats and Mickey and Minnie ears of all sorts. But, if you missed it going in, other stores in the park carry the same merchandise, for the most part. Let’s shop.
Starbucks is enjoying its first Christmas this year. Along with that are understudied touches that seem to fit right in.
The China Closet once again looks like Mrs. Claus’ treasure trove suddenly exploded. It’s still lovely though.
Storybook Land Canal Boats
One of the other things that we simply adore at this time of year are the subtle bits of holiday charm that are sprinkled throughout the park. One such example are the tiny Christmas decorations that appear along the riverbanks in the Storybook Land Canal Boat ride.
Goodbye Billy Hill and the Hillbillies
We close out the Disneyland portion of this update by sharing the sad news posted by Disney Parks Blog yesterday. According to Erin Glover, the “crowd favorite” will be performing their last show on January 6th. Are you sad to see the Billies go? Disney doesn’t plan to permanently replace this show. Instead offering seasonal acts in the Golden Horseshoe.
Disney California is, once-again pulling out all of the nostalgia and charm they can muster and lavishing it upon Buena Vista Street.
The tree is already up and there is still more to come. The windows along Buena Vista Street are nearly all decorated for the holidays and, aside from that nasty Big Top Toys window, it all looks pretty good!
Inside the Five and Dime the shelves are stocked with festive hats and the like.
Inside the children’s department of Elias and Co. we find a nice collection of light-up Perrys and stuffed Santa Mickeys
Ladies wear here shows some fun pajamas to get you into the holiday spirit.
While Men’s wear has some nice clothing along with Red Car ornaments that were so popular last year.
The Jewelry department at the end of Elias and Co. is also in the process of setting up the Santa photo op and meet and greet. The rotunda is already decorated and covered in holiday merchandise.
The detailed, almost messy-looking strings of holiday candy are in place above the confectionery shop.
A more generic garland has appeared over the counters at the Fiddler, Fifer and Practical cafe.
Kingswell Camera Shop
Th usual holiday fare is in the shops here.
World of Color – Winter Dreams for Annual Passholders
Disney is inviting annual pass holders to come and take in the brand new World of Color Winter Dreams during select performances.
- November 15, 16, 17, 22, and December 6. 9:00pm showtime
- November 18, 19, 20, 21 and December 2, 3, 4, and 5 7:00pm showtime
To register for this event, you must show up at Disney California Adventure on the day of the show you would like to see. You will then need to get your special ticket at the normal Disney FASTPASS ticket distribution area for World of Color near Grizzly River Rapids FASTPASS distribution kiosks. Currently DCA is scheduled to open at 9:00 AM on November 15, 16, 17, 22 and December 2, 3,4,5, 6; and 10:00 AM on November 18,19, 20, 21.
The Christmas lights are strung up at Pacific Wharf
Cars Land Christmas
The fun, automotive Christmas decorations have returned to Radiator Springs along with a wide array of very custom merchandise. Let’s walk the area and see how the decorations turned out this year
Flo’s V8 Cafe
There really aren’t any holiday offerings inside Ramone’s. Regardless, they still went through the trouble of decorating it. This is one of our favorites.
Radiator Springs Curios
This is where you will find the lion’s share of holiday/Christmas themed items. Included in the bunch are a few special Christmas Cars toys, mugs, and stockings.
Cozy Cone Motel
Once again the orange cones midway through Cars Land stand as bright sentinels of holiday cheer. We just love the tacky charm of the decorations inside the office.
There isn’t too much here that is Holiday themed, aside from a few bits here and there.
It is wonderful to see the recurring attention to detail and theme in this area during the holidays.
Radiator Springs Racers
The big E-ticket of Cars Land is set to return this morning with a new set of load gates at the station that will attempt to keep folks from diving down into the tracks to retrieve lost items.
Duffy Likes Christmas too!
Stop by and say hi to Duffy. He is all ready to go for Christmas and has plenty of accessories for you to buy too.
Check back with us Saturday as we will have full video and pictures of all of the Holiday offerings this year along with an updated Christmas Day Parade taping.
One last thing! Don’t forget to grab your tickets for the first big event of the Holiday Season!
Join us for a very special holiday event on November 16th (Breakfast, Panel Discussions, Book Sales and Signing). Meet some Disney celebrities and authors, get your holiday shopping done early, and enjoy a festive breakfast at the wonderful ESPN Zone in Downtown Disney Anaheim. Oh, and bacon, bacon, bacon!
- Marty Sklar (DREAM IT! DO IT!)
- Roy P Disney representing Dave Bossert’s book on his father (REMEMBERING ROY E. DISNEY)
- Mindy Johnson (TINKER BELL: AN EVOLUTION)
- Terri Hardin - (TERRI: A DISNEY SCULPTOR’S LIFE)
- Sam Gennawey (The Disneyland Story)
- Don Ballard (Disneyland Hotel books)
- Nancy Rodrigue (Hidden Mickey Adventure Books)
- Dusty Sage representing Alain Littaye (Disneyland Paris from Sketch to Reality – new edition)
- And some VERY special surprise guests!!!
Join us in saying farewell to Halloween time! Discussion on multiple haunted experiences and attractions for the season including Halloween Horror Nights Universal Studios, Empty Grave, The Purge, Blackout, Delusion, and more, plus a big review on the MiceChat event at Knott’s Scary Farm and post-Trapped talk! Tons of Disney news involving future Star Wars attractions, Iron Man in Hong Kong, and the new Disability Access Service at Disneyland.
That’s it until tomorrow and we will see you In The Parks.