Winds in the east, mist coming in. Like somethin’ is brewin’ and bout to begin. Can’t put me finger on what lies in store, but I fear what’s to happen all happened before.
The Disneyland resort experienced an eventful time this past week as the Santa Ana winds made their way through Southern California in the usual fashion. But the magic doesn’t stop for a little wind. And although some attractions had to be closed, and many more were already closed for refurbishment, there was still plenty to see and do at Walt’s original park. With Alice in Wonderland, Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye, Gadget’s Go-Coaster, it’s a small world, the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, Pirates of the Caribbean, Grizzly River Rapids, and The Little Mermaid: Ariels Undersea Adventure all down for refurbishment, the parks do feel the pinch of reduced capacity . . . especially on busy Sundays. The refurbs will continue as the parks get ready to celebrate Disneyland’s 60th anniversary next year.
One Blustery Day at the Disneyland Resort…
As any California Native is painfully aware, the Santa Ana winds are a very dry down-slope of wind that blows from the high deserts inland out to the coast. The Santa Ana winds usually kick up around autumn and winter but the resort area recently got a nice healthy dose of hot, dry winds that called for the usual change in procedures. And along with those winds came heat of nearly 100 degrees in the park yesterday. Today should bring more heat with less gusty conditions.
It’s nothing that a park guest would notice, per se. But for our readers from out of town, it’s fun to point out the little things that have to change quickly when the Santa Ana Winds come to town.
Over in the Hollywood Pictures Backlot, we see that access to Monsters Inc. Mike and Sully to the Rescue is closed off. Why? Because of all the “temporary” rigging and decorations for the Mad T Party night time party are a risk in super windy conditions..
It really is a fascinating study in operations when the Santa Ana winds blow through. Thankfully it isn’t too much of an inconvenience for guests and Disney is a pro at keeping the show going.
Now for an update from Disneyland park.
MUSIC PIN Company
It was mentioned by Andy Castro in Dateline Disneyland this week, but we thought we would share it with our Friday readers too. It is a sign of the changing times that the inventory in the 20th Century Music Company has become decidedly less musical. With the advent of electronic downloads of both music and movies, there was no real reason to continue to stock this little store with items that simply weren’t selling.
They have, for now anyway, resorted to stocking pins and lanyards.
The only music and video to be found is in the far corner of the shop.
It’s not Disney’s fault here, and this is more just an observation of a changing market.
Alice In Wonderland
Alice in Wonderland continues with refurbishment through July 3rd, with a 4th of July reopening. Reinforcements are being installed on the existing exterior structure and it appears that the leaf work will be extended much further out along the ride track to construct exit platforms.
As we reported in the recent MiceAge update, Alice is the first of the Fantasyland dark rides to go down for refurbishment, as it requires OSHA mandated fall protection on the exterior portion of track.But inside, it’s getting some enhancements including a fancy new animatronic Queen of Hearts. Shortly following will be Peter Pan, Mr Toad’s Wild Ride, Pinocchio and Snow White, all with enhancements of their own, in time for Disneyland’s big anniversary.
it’s a small world
The classic boat ride continues along its OSHA related refurbishment until the last week of May. More fall protection and platforms are being built along the sides of the flume to assist guests and castmembers with emergency exits. It is set to reopen on May 23rd, 2014.
Mickey and the Magical Map
The popular stage show at the Fantasyland Theatre is down through May 17th.
As the Month of May begins, we see that much of Toontown is behind walls.
Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
Nothing to see here. It’s the biggest non-project in the park, as Disneyland saves operating costs by shuttering the attraction.
Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean is now closed, but will return in three weeks. The attraction is set to reopen on May 23rd. But don’t worry Blue Bayou fans. The riparian themed restaurant is still open and serving, despite the lowered water level in the adjoining lagoon.
More Club 33 progress shots for you too. A late June opening still seems a little too close to call. We wish them the best of luck.
ALL NEW MICECHAT PODCAST
Doug Barnes, David Yeh and Dusty Sage bring you a unique and refreshing MiceChat Podcast today. They leave the studio and head out on a field trip to Disneyland! Along the way we discuss what’s going on in the park, history, Imagineering and more. We also run into lots of MiceChat readers and get their thoughts on their day in the Happiest Place On Earth. We wrap things up with a discussion on which Disney resort has the most rides . . . Walt Disney World or Disneyland. Join the conversation and enjoy the show:
Grizzly River Run
Good Ol’ Grizzly River Run is now closed for a refurbishment that will continue through June 19th. The water ride is scheduled to reopen on June 20th.
Nothing major is expected for the attraction during this closure. It appears to be just normal maintenance. Despite the ride being down, the Fast Pass machines are still in use for World of Color showings as they normally are.
The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Undersea Adventure
We are just about one week away from The Little Mermaid’s scheduled return on May 10th. While the ride has received aesthetic adjustments, the Under the Sea sequence is said to be getting the most attention. We can’t wait to see what surprises are in store.
Paradise Pier Gazebo Work
The wooden gazebos used for meet and greets on Paradise Pier are getting much needed attention right now to paint and repair wood rot. It is great to see these little things being addressed.
More of the exterior refurbishment has been made visible as the screens on the Boudin Bakery’s construction scaffolds recede. The facade has been made more visually interesting, with a more colorful exterior and new painted signage.
The Ghirardelli Minis have arrived in DCA. These are also the free chocolate sample they now hand out at the door.
That closes In The Parks this week on a rather sweet note. When visiting the Disneyland Resort, just be aware that there are a number of closures in both parks as they get the resort ready for Disneyland’s milestone celebration. It’s a necessary evil until next year, so be prepared.
We would like to take this moment to wish all of the teams playing in the 2014 Gumball Rally the very best of luck. if you aren’t signed up for the Rally on Saturday, you can still join us on Sunday for a MiceChat post-Rally meet at Disneyland. We’ll see you at the Disneyland Hub at noon (next to the Walt and Mickey statue in front of the Castle). We’ll meet with the winning Rally teams, share a few laughs, take a photo, and give away a 2 night stay to the Carousel Inn and Suites to one lucky attendee. Have a great weekend everyone, we’ll see you again soon, In The Parks.