Some much-needed rain hit Southern California over the weekend, washing the recent crowds out of the parks. The rain storms resulted in some standard attraction closures in both parks, the cancellation of parades, and even brought down a tree on Tom Sawyer Island. In Tomorrowland, Disneyland’s new Captain America meet-and-greet opened for Annual Passholder previews and added another Avenger to the roster inside Innoventions. Meanwhile, Disney is continuing its new trend of 24-hour theme park parties with the announcement of another all-nighter event over Memorial Day weekend.
Don’t miss your weekly Disneyland Resort crowd forecast — provided by our friends at MouseAddict — in the Weekly News and Information Roundup at the end of today’s update!
Get a closer look at today’s update! Click on any photo in today’s blog to see a larger, high-resolution version.
We have a quick rainy update for you today. Let’s get started.
|Welcome to Disneyland!|
Storms brought some necessary rainfall to Southern California late last week. The wet conditions impacted the theme parks by closing down several theme park attractions and thinning crowds in what has otherwise been a very busy off-season.
On Tom Sawyer Island, a tree fell over during Friday’s storm and the news quickly found its way on Twitter…
— MiceChat (@MiceChat) February 28, 2014
— Izabelle (@izkosti) February 28, 2014
Unfortunately, Twitter users reported that the incident repeated itself on Sunday, prompting the cancellation of that evening’s Fantasmic! performance.
A tree fell on Tom Sawyer Island again today, and it blocked the performers path, so they tried to do Fantasmic!, but aborted due to it.
— Hastin Zylstra (@hastin) March 3, 2014
On Friday, Disney officially announced its plans to host another bi-coastal 24-hour party at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Like last year’s “Monstrous Summer” theme, the announcement came alongside the Parks and Resorts division’s latest marketing message. A photo of 140 Disney characters arranged in the shape of a hashtag announced the “Rock Your Disney Side Party,” which will take place over Memorial Day weekend, feature numerous Disney heroes and villains, and run from 6 a.m., May 23 to 6 a.m., May 24.
From the press release:
The Magic Kingdom Park in Florida and Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park in California will be filled with great Disney heroes and villains from 6 a.m., May 23 to 6 a.m., May 24, 2014, local time** marking the beginning of a summer of fun at Disney Parks. The celebration on both coasts will feature a cavalcade of events showcasing the good-vs.-evil of classic Disney stories including character meet-and-greets throughout the parks, special entertainment, event merchandise, and food and beverage offerings. Along with the entertainment guests have grown to love every day, they’ll discover surprise additions and special events throughout the 24 hours.
Mickey and pals announced the 24-hour party in their own inimitable style – with a 140-character-strong “Mega Tweet,” sending a #DisneySide message to all their fans on social media to come see them on May 23.
You can also enter-to-win a coast-to-coast 7-day, 6-night Disney Parks vacation where you’ll enjoy the 24-hour Rock Your Disney Side Party. To enter, you have to Tweet how you show your “Disney Side” by using the hashtag #DisneySideSweepsEntry.
Off-season refurbishments and construction projects continue throughout the parks…
Splash Mountain reopened this week, just in time for the rain storms that hit the region over the weekend. It was a good opportunity to enjoy a ride with a short wait time…
[center]Reopening the Wilderness[/center]
The Big Thunder Mountain Railroad refurbishment is quickly wrapping up, with Cast Member previews approaching and soft openings possible as early as next week.
[center]Out to Dry[/center]
The Submarine Lagoon remains dry as its major refurbishment continues. Disney is now trying hard to quash any persistent rumors that the attraction is being quietly closed forever with new construction wall panels that promise a fall 2014 return.
Imagineering and Team Disney Anaheim are definitely interested in redeveloping the Sub Lagoon real estate but with construction walls now going overboard with promises to reopen in the fall, it looks like whatever Imagineering would like to build here didn’t get the green light, giving the Submarine Voyage yet another reprieve.
Nearby, work continues on the new safety addition on top of Space Mountain. The voluntary addition will satisfy Cal/OSHA safety requirements but that comes at the expense of changing the original design of the iconic mountain.
|The Living Legend
and Symbol of Budget Imagineering
The new meet-and-greet officially opens to the public March 7 and replaces the embarrassingly outdated Nanooze Labs exhibit on the upper level of Innovetions. The new character location comes with a rather wordy official title, Captain America: The Living Legend and Symbol of Courage and mostly amounts to a lightly themed queue area that ends at a photo opportunity with a Captain America face character on what resembles an economy version of The Colbert Report‘s set.
Ultimately, the Captain America photo-op is probably just another harmless addition to Innoventions’ Marvel line-up. It’s just a simple character meet-and-greet. Unfortunately, it’s only that – a character meet-and-greet, and a pretty cheaply-designed one at that. There’s nothing wrong with bringing Marvel characters to the park, but with lots of folks beyond the average Disney fan watching what Disney is doing with Marvel inside its parks, these Marvel additions are more than just simple meet-and-greets. It’s too bad that Disney is introducing such lucrative and important franchise characters in its parks with budget-Imagineered photo-ops that with just a bit of scrutiny end up reflecting kind of poorly on the Marvel brand. With “The Avengers” and “Iron Man 3″ ranking as Disney’s first and fourth highest-grossing films of all time, it’s worth noting that the Iron Man Tech exhibit originated as a temporary display for Comic Con until it became the quasi-permanent installment it is at Disneyland. The Marvel presence has certainly breathed some new life into Innoventions but like the rest of the attraction, it feels half-baked and mediocre. Is this really the best way for Disney to leverage the Marvel brand in its U.S. parks? Are these Marvel exhibits the kind of “brand deposits” that Disney CEO Bob Iger is looking for?
|This and That|
|Weekly News & Information Round-Up|
|Weekly Theme Park Hours
March 3-9, 2014
|[B]Disneyland Park[/B]||[B]California Adventure[/B]|
|Mon.-Thur.: 10 am – 8 pm
Friday: 9 am – 11 pm
Saturday: 9 am – 12 am
Sunday: 8 am – 12 am
|Mon.-Thur.: 10 am – 8 pm
Fri.-Sat.: 9 am – 10 pm
Sunday: 8 am – 10 pm
|[CENTER]For a complete listing of theme park hours,
visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar[/CENTER]
|[center]Closure and Refurbishment Schedule[/center]|
|[b][center]Disney California Adventure[/center][/b]|
|[b][center]Downtown Disney and Disneyland Resort Hotels[/center][/b]|
A weekly look at projected crowd levels at the Disneyland Resort.[/center]
A quick look at noteworthy Disney theme park headlines from around the web.[/center]
|Did you enjoy the light crowds at the parks over the rainy weekend? What’d you think of the Captain America meet-and-greet – Was I too hard on it? Let us know in the comments section below! Thanks for reading!
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