Disneyland‘s classic Haunted Mansion celebrated its 45th Anniversary over the weekend as the theme parks entered the final stretch of the long summer season. Around the park, refurbishments continue from Main Street to Tomorrowland as the first signs of Disney’s popular Halloween Time season quietly emerge. Today, we take a look at the latest progress on those refurbishments and take a look at new Haunted Mansion and Halloween merchandise. We also head up to Los Angeles for a look at the ScareLA convention, — a special expo and trade show for all things Halloween — where a couple of special presentations celebrated the Haunted Mansion’s 45th birthday.
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.
Thanks for bearing with us this morning as some technical issues delayed the publication of today’s blog. Without any further delay, let’s get started!
|Welcome to Disneyland!|
The final couple of weeks to enjoy Main Street in its traditional summertime patriotic bunting is now here. Soon, the red, white and blue will be swapped out for orange bunting and Main Street will be lined with jack-o-lanterns.
Their supply is often pretty limited but if you’re lucky and ask nicely, you might just be able to get one as well. They’re small, but like the Buena Vista Bugle, they’re a great, unique, and free souvenir!
Back at Disneyland, the Main Entrance Turnstile rolling refurbishment continues…
Walls have come down at the stairs-to-nowhere in Adventureland after they were rebuilt.
Over in New Orleans Square, a few more props have gone up on balconies while a little bit of extra “detail” has been added at the new off-centered window.
In Tomorrowland, the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage continues its refurbishment. There’s a lot of work underway in the lagoon, as it gets ready to reopen late next month.
|Haunting the Kingdom|
With summer winding down, Disneyland is now gearing up for the launch of its increasingly popular Halloween Time season, which will debut earlier than ever this year on September 12. The first themed jack-o-lantern has popped up in the China Closet window on Main Street, with seasonal merchandise starting to take over the Disney Showcase shop in Town Square.
|45 Years of Happy Haunting|
On Saturday, Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion officially turned 45. To mark the occasion, Disneyland released a special t-shirt and is offering special prints on canvas with meal purchases at select restaurants.
The special t-shirts were released on Saturday. Despite the insistence by Disneyland’s social media team that the shirts would only be offered for one day, the shirts are still in stock at the Haunted Mansion souvenir cart and in the Port Royal gift shop. They are limited edition, though, and won’t be restocked as they sell out.
Special commemorative prints of Mickey and Friends in the Haunted Mansion’s stretching portraits are available for a limited time at select Disneyland restaurants. Only one print is available at each location and it costs $5 with a $30 food purchase. For more information, see the Disney Parks Blog post.
A family also stayed overnight in the Haunted Mansion as part of a local KTLA sweepstakes. Below is the morning report on it.
|Scaring up Halloween in Los Angeles|
Over the weekend the folks at ScareLA hosted a fantastically horrific two-day Halloween expo and trade show in Los Angeles. With Disneyland’s Halloween festivities far more cute and friendly than what the Halloween Haunt-loving ScareLA serve up, this blog would have normally skipped this event. This year, however, Disneyland’s classic Haunted Mansion celebrated 45 years and we were invited to attend to check out all that ScareLA had to offer, along with a couple great Haunted Mansion-related offerings.
The highlight for Disney fans at ScareLA was the filled-to-capacity When Hinges Creak: Celebrating 45 Years of The Haunted Mansion, a panel discussion led by Doombuggies.com‘s Jeff Baham with Disney Legends Bob Gurr and Alice Davis.
Baham’s discussion with the Disney Legends talked about the attraction’s history, Bob Gurr’s role in developing the ride system, Marc Davis’ (Alice Davis’ husband and fellow Imagineer) role in designing much of the attraction, and more. We live-Tweeted the discussion, which you can read through on Twitter.
We also checked out the Chilling Tales of the Haunted Mansion LIVE!, a charming live performance of Disney’s classic 1969 “Story and Song from the Haunted Mansion” LP by Captured Aural Phantasy.
Knott’s Scary Farm’s Director of Entertainment Production, Lara Hanneman and her Haunt designers also held a very special panel previewing their 2014 Haunt season
The new maze will feature two distinct paths that groups of twelve will take through Camp Snoopy, both on missions to kill as many zombies as possible with laser guns that will keep track of players’ scores.
And returning this year after a long absence is the Headless Horseman and Haunt guests will be invited to submit photos (if they’re able to snap them fast enough!) of the Horseman to Knott’s via social media for a chance to win prizes.
In addition to panel discussions, lectures, classes and more, ScareLA also featured a huge show floor with countless booths, product demos, mini haunt walk-throughs, roaming monsters, and more. Below, some photos from the show floor.
One of several themed mini walk-throughs
The full-contact, psychological Alone haunt was giving a mini-preview of its upcoming full haunt experience
Terror Trucks gave guests the opportunity to experience some Halloween walk-throughs on wheels.
And a display case inside previewed an upcoming group art show inspired by Disneyland’s never-realized Museum of the Weird. The opening reception will be attended by Disney Legend and Museum of the Weird designer Rolly Crump.
Overall, ScareLA was a ton of fun. If you’re a Halloween or Haunt fan, be sure to check out ScareLA next year! For more information, visit ScareLA.com.
|This and That|
|Weekly News & Information Round-Up|
|Weekly Theme Park Hours
August 11-17, 2014
|Disneyland Park||California Adventure|
|Daily: 9 am – 11 pm||Daily: 9 am – 10 pm|
visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar
The free Mouseaddict app for iPhone and iPad features more than five dozen categories of searchable resort information, weather forecasts, park and show schedules, the latest news and articles from MiceChat, and more. Download free on the App Store or at mouseaddict.com.
A quick look at noteworthy Disney theme park headlines from around the web.
|Alright, that’s all for this week’s Dateline Disneyland. Did you celebrate Haunted Mansion’s 45th? Let us know how in the comments section below!
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Thanks for reading. See you at Disneyland!
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|FTC-Mandated Disclosure: Promotional consideration for this edition of Dateline Disneyland was provided by the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel & Water Playground.|