It’s time to jump into fun at the Disneyland resort as we traverse Disneyland and Disney California Adventure in a search for news you can use.  Yes, Halloween is beginning to creep into the park, with the first signs showing un in the shops on Main Street U.S.A.  Next we see that the Haunted Mansion has closed its doors to make way for Jack Skellington and his crew. There is some great news ahead for the fans of the Legends of Frontierland game. We also found an interesting new offer Disney is making to folks who get their picture taken on Splash Mountain.  All of this, plus a look at the new Ghostly Materials exhibit at Disneyana Gifts, water returning to the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, closing dates for Space Mountain‘s change over for Ghost Galaxy, and a look at the smattering of Halloween merchandise in the exit lobby of Tower of Terror.

We would also like to thank Sean Allice for his photo contributions today as they help flesh out the details as you will soon see.

But first, a special offer for our readers at the Anabella Hotel in September. If you are headed to Disneyland next month, take a look and give the Anabella a call:

  • MiceChat readers get a special 20% discount when they ask for the “MiceChat” special rate.
  • PLUS, during the month of September, in addition to the 20% discount, Micechatters that call in and mention code “B42” receive breakfast for two each day at the beautiful Tangerine restaurant.

Guests must call Anabella directly at 714-905-1050 to reserve their rooms and must mention “MiceChat” and “B42” to receive both offers.

*Offer not available September 7-10 and September 24-27.


Tomorrowplan Crowd Estimates for Disneyland Resort from Mouseaddict

August 29 – September 5


  • We expect this weekend to build up to normal Labor Day crowds.
  • Halloween is creeping closer, with the Haunted Mansion closed as of this week so that Jack can wreck the halls.
  • For two weeks of crowd projections, check out Tomorrowplan in the Mouseaddict app.

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


Halloween Time Galloping into the Parks

Halloween is well on its way to Main Street U.S.A. The first signs are, of course, pouring into the highly detailed shops and displays. Disney Showcase is always the first to see the changeover and they are nearly all set for this year.





















Main Street Cinema Idea

As a nice little touch for Halloween Time, we have an idea. There are some wonderful Halloween themed early Disney animated shorts, Skeleton Dance by Ub Iwerks, Haunted House starring Mickey Mouse, The Mad Doctor starring Mickey Mouse and more.  Why not play some of those wonderful cartoons in the Main Street Cinema for Halloween Time?  Disney, if you are listening, take the idea and run with it. It will cost you next to nothing and would be a delightful addition to the theater. We invite our readers to take a look at the videos below and let us know if you like the idea of vintage spooky Disney cartoons being played in the Main Street Cinema:

Mickey Mouse in the Haunted House

The Mad Doctor

Skeleton Dance



The wonderful Fortuosity shop on Main street has been decorated with a murder of crows in its annual Halloween decor. Alfred Hitchcock would be pleased.













Castle Bros.

While the refurb walls have come down from in front of the Castle Bros. store the sign has yet to return.


China Closet

Along with the construction on the east of Main Street, Halloween has also begun to crawl into the China Closet.


Just inside the China Closet entrance that faces the Corn Dog Cart.
The riot of autumn leaves is perched above the cash wrap.



Windows are decorated already.



Main Street Windows

Along Main Street, more and more windows are becoming festooned with festive pumpkins.






Ghostly Materials at Disneyana Gifts

The Haunted Mansion recently celebrated its 45th anniversary with the obligatory merchandise event and gallery show.  You can check out the new pieces of art at Disneyana Gifts in the new Ghostly Materials exhibit.



Taking up only the second room of the gallery, the exhibit is a mansion fan’s dream.  It is also notably heavy on Hatbox Ghost ephemera. Shall we begin crossing our fingers again for his eventual return?







Legends of Frontierland Extended

The popular interactive game, Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush, has been extended for an unspecified period of time.  To Quote Disney…

 Originally scheduled to ride off into the sunset on September 1, this guest favorite will be around a bit longer


Adventureland Trading Company

© Disney
© Disney

Today is, apparently, the last day for the Adventure Trading Company game in Adventureland.  As a special send off, they will be collecting the stories of the local Juju Traders with story packets, available for sale at Indiana Jones Outpost. Inside each story packet is a Story Tag, which adventurers can use to record their greatest Juju tales. They will then report to Aladdin’s Oasis, where Adventure Trading Company representatives and local historians will be on hand to collect their stories and thank the “head storytellers” of Adventureland with a special mystery Juju. It’s all led to this folks!

Haunted Mansion Holiday

Master Gracey and the usual ghosts and ghouls are now out of the mansion until next year.  The Mansion is currently down until the morning of Friday, September 12th when it returns as the wildly popular Haunted Mansion Holiday.




Splash Mountain

In an ingenious evolution of technology and visitor behavior, Disney began offering digital versions of on-ride photos at Splash Mountain.


When the feature was first introduced, a sign near the photo screens at the exit of the attraction offered a price of $4.99.


Later in the week the price had dropped.


Instead of stationing a cast member to shoo away guests attempting to take watermarked, bootleg pics at the viewing screens, Disney has gotten clever. Guests can now ask to have a digital copy of their on-ride photos sent to their smart phones. As you can see, however, they are still finding that sweet spot on the price. Put this in the, “Why didn’t they think of this sooner?” file. We LOVE the idea.  But only if the pics are $2.99 😉

Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage

Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage is on track for a September 27th reopening.  The Lagoon was in the process of being filled this week, slowly lifting the brightly-colored tendrils of kelp and seaweed.  What is notable about this refurbishment is that while the ride has been down for nearly a year, very little substantial work seems to have been done.


The bleached surface of the lagoon floor remained virtually untouched while only the accents, like the orange coral and plastic fauna were plucked out and replaced.  According to a recent MiceAge update, the lagoon that holds 9 million gallons of water and is still as leaky as ever.  The subs themselves may have received a light maintenance package, but as we can see, their exteriors were not touched up.







The colorful accents in the lagoon stand in contrast to the ashy looking subs.

The fact of the matter is that the lion’s share of the work, theoretically, has taken place inside the massive show building that sits under the sprawling Autopia track.  Have they replaced the projectors?  How do the show scenes look?  Have they been spiffed up?  Are the dry-for-wet scenes now indiscernible from the submerged ones? We will know on September 27th. Let’s hope they actually did some restoration during this mostly cost cutting “refurbishment.”

Space Mountain

The awesome Ghost Galaxy is returning to Space Mountain this fall for Halloween Time.  In order to spook up the stars, Space Mountain will be closed for refurbishment September 8, 2014 to September 11, 2014.  The attraction will reopen on Friday, September 12th.  You can already see the preparations being made in the exterior areas for the frightening overlay.  Digital projectors and the ear-splitting sound system are visible now.







Halloween in DCA

The Halloween bug is also invading Disney California Adventure.  Here on Buena Vista Street, Julius Katz and Sons has begun selling the usual Hallow-merch.




Gazebo Watch 2014

It now appears that both gazebos are behind wraps.  Will this refurbishment ever end?



Tower of Terror

The exit lobby of the Twighlight Zone Tower of Terror has become a sort of dumping ground for the maudlin merchandise for the Halloween season. But it all works well enough. If they aren’t going to keep this shop as a Tower of Terror exclusive, at least it’s still spooky themed.



Haunted Mansion shirts in the Tower of Terror folks. If you don;t get them here, well, get them at another store.



















Park Shots

As the summer winds down and the parks prep for fall, we stroll around Disney California Adventure for a few pictures.








Presidio Video seems to have had to close its doors. The window has seen better days.

MiceChat Podcast

AN ALL NEW MICECHAT PODCAST IS HERE!  The MiceChat crew returns to Disneyland to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the Haunted Mansion and ponder the upcoming enhancements to the Fantasyland dark rides. As Disneyland prepares to celebrate its 60th anniversary, there’s lots for us to talk and speculate about. So, join Doug, David and Dusty as we take you for a walk in the park. It’s an amazing audio adventure. Then, we’ll transport you to Scare LA, where Disney Legends Bob Gurr and Alice Davis have a few things to say about the amazing Haunted Mansion.  Be sure to stick through to the very end of the show for a special surprise!

Micechat Tickets

Join us, if you dare, in the fog-shrouded streets of Ghost Town for the 8th annual MiceChat Knott’s Scary Farm Halloween Haunt 2014. Leave the real world behind and enter a dream-land of spooky fun with fellow MiceChat readers.


There are two ticket types:

MiceChat Knott’s Haunt event ticket (Basic) – $119.99*

  • Admission into Knott’s Scary Farm
  • Backstage tour of a new maze before the event
  • All you can eat Private Pre-scare Boofet dinner
  • Special insider presentation during dinner.
  • Early entry into Haunt
  • Front of the line access to all mazes (excluding the up-charge Trapped maze)
  • Skeleton Key access to select mazes
  • Priority Seating for Elvira Ring-Mistress of the Park

MiceChat Knott’s Haunt event ticket with TRAPPED VIP Maze – $129.99*

  • All of the above PLUS ADMISSION INTO TRAPPED: The New Experiment – special upcharge maze (Purchasing this ticket will gain you admission into the Trapped maze with the MiceChat group. By purchasing this ticket you will be randomly assigned a return time during event check-in at the beginning of the night. If you miss the reservation time you will forfeit your ticket.)

* Plus tax and PayPal processing fees

That’s right. You could buy your own ticket and wander around, aimlessly from line to line, starving to death from hunger, without a single person to hang out with. OR, you could pay one simple price and get an entire night of food, entertainment, friends, frights, and fun and exclusive insider opportunities!


Don’t forget to return next week as we explore the construction and Halloween preparations being made over at Universal Studios Hollywood.  See you soon, In The Parks.


  • SoCalFan

    That book in the window looks like the spell book from Hocus Pocus! How cool! And to be fair, the Tower of Terror is generally pretty darn full of exclusive ToT merchandise for the rest of the year, especially as of late (well before the Halloween takeover).

  • amyuilani

    I love the idea of the Cinema showing classic Halloween shorts. It’s true that this is a space that is underutilized and has great possibilities for holiday tie-ins.

    Why doesn’t Splash Mountain just do what Buzz Lightyear does, which is let you access your photo and email it to yourself? It would involve spending money on upgrading the photo access in a bigger area (perhaps outside the exit instead of that cramped little room), but the photos are not the sellers they once were, so put the money into something better.

  • Stormy

    Oh YAY!! Lagoon refill pics! If I could I’d pitch a tent and just watch it being refilled.

  • I’d also like to see the films in the Cinema changed out seasonally. Putting in those AWESOME vintage spooky cartoons is a no brainer and a low cost way for the park to add a little extra Halloween flair to an often overlooked area. Great idea Norman!

    Glad to see Splash Mountain testing the sending of photos to your smart phone. At the $4.99 I’m not so interested, but at $2.99 I’d probably use this service all the time. And it would help Disneyland’s social media as far more guests would start posting on-ride photos on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest . . . . . 😉

    I’ve got to say that while it may seem strange to see Halloween on Main Street before Labor Day, It has been a slow transition and doesn’t bother me at all. Especially since most kids in the LA area have already gone back to school. That’s the real official start to fall anyway.

    I’d really like to know what is going on with those gazebos in Paradise Pier. We reported on their deterioration for months before they finally went down for refurb. But they’ve remained under wraps for months. There must have been much more damage than we thought. But even so, why would it take so long to rebuild or remove something so simple?

    • TodAZ1

      What do your sources say about the ongoing gazebo repairs?

  • Susan Hughes

    Can’t wait for my favourite “times” of the year to begin. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s. Let’s hope everyone behaves themselves too. Did you hear about the crazed “Passhole” who smashed the window at Frozen? Apparently her “one hour wait” (yes, just one hour) pissed her off so she shattered the window.

    • amyuilani

      Really, a passholder had a problem with an hour wait at Disneyland? Did someone recently move the rock? Most of us consider an hour wait to be a gift on some days!

    • stevek

      Glad to see you are back spouting more of your troll-like “Passhole” drivel. You are truly a gem that all of Micechat should cherish.

      • Susan Hughes

        You’re right. I apologize. Being an Annual Passholder certainly gave her the right to destroy Disney property. What was I thinking? Disney should apologize for over-reacting and give her AP back so she can continue to enjoy her “privilege” to do as she pleases.

      • RemainSeatedPlz87

        As a passholder I agree 99% of the time that the passhole is a horrible sterotype….but someone smashing a window (for a wait that is actually not unreasonable for that attraction) is beyond inexcusable…there is no reason and that person is most likely a passhole!

      • stevek

        Nobody is condoning the smashing of the window. It’s your continued bashing of pass holders aka pass holes that is the proverbial beating a dead horse. We all get it. You work there and hate pass holders. Time to move on.

    • Susan Hughes

      Let’s use your stat of 99% RemainSeatedPlz87, and say that’s how many Annual Passholders are polite, civilized, and treat Cast Members with respect. But even if only 1% are “Passholes”, that still adds up to thousands (maybe tens of thousands) who invade the parks and behave like the “window smasher”.
      Other Annual Passholders don’t have to deal with them. But those who work at the parks do. It’s a problem with literally no solution. So when CMs throw around the term “Passholes”, it’s because they’re abused by them daily, and there will be no end to it.

      • wmatzner

        Perhaps Disney needs to change to just Deluxe, Premium and Premier passholders. I am a Premier passholder and have heard nothing like this at WDW where they don’t have tiers of APs, just one level (unless you have a premier which also gets you into DL).

  • michael darling

    This was thorough, thanks! The pumpkin blowing a trumpet in the window…..are the bookends behind it actually covering their ears? If so, cool.

    • victoriaskitten

      I caught that too and found it hilarious.

  • frollofan

    The Haunted Mansion deserves to be in its original glory at least for the Halloween season. Its darker tone and spookier atmosphere fits Halloween perfectly. To those who say that HMH works for both Halloween and Christmas, this attraction relies far more heavily on the Christmas aspects of Nightmare with the snow and the bright, tacky gift boxes, making it unsuitable for Halloween time at Disneyland.

    • lnsemsf

      If your opinion wasn’t outnumbered by the casual guest by 10s of thousands to 1 then it would likely not change. I think it works great and makes October a time to visit Disneyland.

      • frollofan

        Just because my opinion is outnumbered does not make it invalid like you suggest.

  • MinnieTheSmoocher

    Don’t hate, but I think that the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage should have been where they placed the new Star Wars area. The Imagineers – and the Financeers they have to appease, could have extended it to include the wasted space that was the Motor Boat Cruise. The original Submarine Voyage is Yesterdayland anyway, so really there’s no love lost. Another advantage is that it’s adjacent to Tomorrowland, where Toontown (still a rumor, as far as I know) is NOT.

    • michael darling

      any post that begins with ‘don’t hate, but’, I’m gonna read! This is a very good idea.

      • MinnieTheSmoocher

        Ha! Thanks, Mike!! 🙂

    • amyuilani

      I’m sure it will be. The subs are not as interesting to me anymore. They’re slow and claustrophobic, and they make my neck/back hurt from having to lean forward the entire time. I imagine that when the Tomorrowland changeover finally happens, that area will get something major. I wonder if they’ll keep only the B-side of the Matterhorn queue (west side, near Fantasyland) because if an E-Ticket goes there (and presumably another E-ticket in the Innoventions building), then that’s a major traffic jam.

      • billyjobobb

        lose the subs, save the lagoon. And take polute-opia with it.

  • Ken Goldenberg

    Just last weekend we went on Splash and sat in the front, so the photo was worth — taking a photo of! I said to my wife I wonder if anyone buys these any more with everyone just taking a phone-photo of them. Yes, for $2.99 I would do that for a good image quality. We did however opt to purchase the Splash photo when we were at Disney World because there were 6 of us in one log, so it was worth it (actually I got the digital version so I could copy it to my sister).

  • Skimbob

    Great update. I see we are still waiting for NOS to be finished. Hummph.

  • Muppetmama

    That Minnie Halloween sweatshirt at the tower of terror store is so cute! we have tickets to the Halloween party oct 3 but of course they aren’t good for DCA 🙁

    is it at Disneyland too does anyone know??

  • jawknee

    they were doing the digital photo thing at Screamin’ this past Sunday and the sign said it was for that day only. I believe it was also $2.99

  • PDSchweitzer

    The lagoon is NOT 90 million gallons of water – it is 9 million gallons of water.

    • Norman Gidney

      LOL Sorry about that typo. fixed.

  • Jayce

    Knotts eh, where’s the Universal Halloween tickets Dusty 🙂

    • Norman Gidney

      We LOVE our friends at Universal. The problem is that they are a little tricky to work with when it comes to the Halloween event. We have certainly tried though.

      We will soon be announcing a few more MUST-DO events for Halloween soon. Promise.

  • Lobot

    It seems that Miceage was right: The Submarine Voyage “refurbishment” was simply a clever tactic to save money on the ride’s high operational costs? I’m sure that halfhearted paint job cost far less than running those subs during that time period.

  • IzzyInWonderland

    Man they really enjoy that creepy smiling moon in the Main Street Halloween decor! It’s everywhere. Also, splendid idea about the Mickey shorts in the cinema. I just watched most of them last Halloween at the Walt Disney Family Museum where they show them in the theater for a month or two leading into the season. That would be such an easy and awesome switch too. I approve this idea 100%!

  • victoriaskitten

    I would like to see the different holiday cartoons shown, it would be fun for the younger crowd to watch what we did back in the old days.
    I really liked the pictures Norman and Sean took now I’m really ready for my Halloween trip at the end of October.
    I’m also starting to think it’s time to put dad’s submarines in Davy Jones locker for their eternal rest.

  • I am optimistic that the inside portion of the Subs will see a significant upgrade. Regardless, I am just happy that they are filling the “Leaky Lagoon”. It is such and eyesore to see the walls around it. Not as bad as seeing an empty Rivers of America, but close. As for the Nightmare Before Christmas layover. It is like your favorite Uncle coming for a visit, and overstaying his welcome by 2 1/2 months. Norm, great work, as usual.

  • MyFriendtheAtom

    more watermarks please

  • gimackenzie

    LOVE the idea of classic ghostly toons showing in the theater! Honestly, I’ve never understood why the theater is so poorly utilized. It would be a great place to escape the sun and enjoy some classic Silly Symphonies but they play the same old loop all the time. Easy place to plus up the show, if they cared.

    And I’ll probably get skewered for this, but am I the only person who thinks that Ghost Galaxy is just “Meh” and prefers regular Space Mountain? The soundtrack is okay, but the visuals look like arcade game renderings from 1993. It could be really fantastic if some effort, and CGI from at least the last decade, were used. As it is I’m just really not a fan.