Disneyland gets ready for Candlelight as the busy holiday season continues

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

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Published on December 02, 2013 at 5:40 am with 47 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 writes the weekly Dateline Disneyland column, which can be found every Monday on MiceChat.

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  • MikkiandtheMouse

    I have incredibly fond memories of the Skyway, but it gone. Seeing the Skyway Station go isn’t really a point of sadness for me. It’s a shame they haven’t used it for a Meet and Greet because it’s a beautiful building and could be nicely utilized but since it’s gone so long without a guest inside, tearing it down is the way to go.

  • Indy Fan 1

    Really upset about losing the Skyway station. But it does make sense because it likely has fallen into disrepair and has been eaten by termites. If it were up to me, I would try to bring the Skyway back in some new form that is ADA compliant.

  • Country Bear

    Great update Andy. Thank you for the wonderful pictures and especially the videos. It’s nice to be there without actually “being” there. I have ridden the skyway many times and really enjoyed this station because it was a unique area and building. It always felt like when you got off at this station you had been transported to another time and place. Part of the old Disney magic. I’m nostalgic about it, but the gondola really took you away from the show at Disneyland. You could see generic roof tops and behind the scenes of several areas. A delight for a Disney geek, but probably less so for your average guest.

    Thanks again for the update.

  • parker4fm

    The Skyway area is clearly large enough to hold another flat ride of some type, Meet & Greet, or light snack stand. I’m looking forward to seeing something happen with that…whenever that may come. Disney World received beautiful restrooms…that could always happen…

  • Algernon

    What a great ride the Skyway was. Imagine going all the way through the Matterhorn, coming out on the other side and looking down to see the Peoplemover, the non-Nemo Submarine Voyage, the elevated Astrojets, the smooth, colorful pavement, and then going up the old (and much nicer) entrance to Space Mountain, before going on the very uplifting Carousel of Progress, and the Adventure Through Inner Space. If only somebody would open up Yesterland for real! Maybe when virtual reality arrives….

  • pattimarie

    I MISS THE SKYWAY MOST OF ALL!!!

  • msjstricker

    I love the holiday decorations in the hotels and at Trader Sam’s. They actually make me want to make the trek to see them in person! I just might…

    I’m not super sad to see the Skyway chalet go, either. I mean, WE know it’s there, but to the casual guest, it probably goes unnoticed for the most part. It would have made a great character meet-n-greet area, but… it is what it is.

    I am getting a little scared though about this seemingly slow process of demolishing pieces of Disneyland history, though. I was unfazed by the Court of Angels closure, but now there’s the Skyway chalet… What’s next? Tom Sawyer’s Island? Makes me nervous :/

  • EC82

    Was there ever a time when the general public could view the Candlelight Procession? It seems so wrong to have the seating area be open only to invited VIP guests and media.

    • stevek

      The general public can see Candlelight. Every year we’ve gone, we have not been in the seated section. We just get early and either A) get one of the green benches they put out first come, first served or B) find a place on the curb to the side over near the Opera House.

  • EC82

    BTW, why not just use Aladdin’s Oasis as a stroller parking area, away from the crowds and the walkways? (My own opinion is that the stroller set are incredibly short-sighted and fail to realize their kids don’t even CARE that they are at Disneyland — perhaps I’m just tired of having my foot run over by strollers or having strollers block so much of the walkway that grown-up types can barely even get through.)

  • stitch1085

    I’d like to take the time to complain about the new system over in Florida. I recently went over to Florida and upgraded my Premium DLR pass to a Premier pass. When I returned from my vacation, the Premier pass I had just acquired was not valid at DLR. The cast members simply rolled their eyes and called a lead, it would seem that because this new AMAZING system that is being rolled out over in Florida is not able to connect with DLR’s system and results in some passes not being recognized. For three weeks now I have been unable to get access to the park without calling a lead nor have I been afforded my 20% discount without either waiting for a lead or simply just saying “forget it I don’t need the discount.” It’s really ridiculous that I shelled out over $1000 for this new pass and the damned thing doesn’t work properly because of Florida’s new “State of the art” system. Hate to say it but it is a complete bust! If something is broken DON’T FIX IT! *RANT OVER*

    The Skyway station going away makes me sad, maybe they will level it and convert it into a Rapunzel meet and greet with a gorgeous new tower (similar to the one in WDW). That would be awesome!!!

    • LBJeff

      It’s not the new system. Last year, during my visit to WDW, I accidentally brought my expired Premium annual pass, instead of my current one. WDW ticketing people told me directly that their ticketing system has never been tied into DLR ticketing. They could not upgrade my pass without having the current one, even though they could verify I had a current Premium pass, nor could they replace my pass. My husband went through the same experience, though, that you describe after he upgraded at WDW and then we tried to enter DLR.

      Between us, it took Guest Services at DLR to get our situations corrected. They ended up cancelling the WDW Premier pass, and issuing him a new Premier pass from DLR.

  • Will G

    I don’t know if this has been noted or changed more recently, but Saturday night I noticed from the Train that the 3 geese on the top deck of the Zip-A-Dee Lady in Splash Mountain are once again animated.

    I would have taken a picture – but what would have been the point?! ;-)

  • KCmike

    Glad the WDW magic pass is a bust. I hated the thought of this idea of planning out my vacation to the last second. Is the magic band really over or are they still toying with the idea?

    The Christmas tree and garland at the GCH looks great. Still really sad about Billy Hill. We got to see them a few weekends ago but missed Elvis Billy as he was off that day. I see he’s not in your picture as well. Is he already gone for good or are we just both missing him on his off days?

    Thanks again for the great updates.

    • Wendygirl

      No Elvis Billy is not gone. He was out for awhile due to some medical stuff. He has been back since – he was there today for instance. Billy Bald (Duane) is on a two week vacation right now. Also, The Billy page on Facebook is being renamed to Kirk Wall and The Billys. That would be Kirk, Dennis, Anders and Rick. The other group of Billys is called Billy and the Hillbillies and is John Eaden, John Marshall, John David and Duane. In Disneyland both groups are called Billy Hill and the Hillbilles. Hill was added by Disneyland. The two groups do gigs outside the Park – looks like they will be trying to do more of that in the future. Disneyland is making a big mistake in my humble opinion!

  • raidermouse

    Hey that’s me in the Carthay Tour pics in Red! How cool! Great tour by the way and my 2 daughter’s really enjoyed it too!

  • Tinkbelle

    I loved the Skyway. If there was one “yesterland” ride I could bring back, it would be the Skyway. I’m very sad to hear that the historic building will be demolished. I’ve not been impressed with many decisions made at Disneyland in 2013. Every Dateline leaves me more at peace that we have no plans in the works for a future visit.

  • Mark Wilkinson

    Oh my god. I get depressed just reading how sad everyone is that an abandoned building is being removed. Even people who never went on the Skyway! Huh? I’m sorry but I have had enough real tragedy in my life to be overly sadden by this.