Disneyland unveiled its new First Aid facility last week, revealing new fully-themed facades at the end of Main Street, U.S.A. The new facades replace simple, minimally-themed facades that had been up since the early 1960s with lovely brickwork, faux second-story windows, and more. Meanwhile, other refurbishments continue in Disneyland on Main Street, in New Orleans Square, and in Fantasyland as Halloween Time continues. And in Downtown Disney, Elsa and Anna from Disney’s hit Frozen have opened up shop with a new boutique for kids ages 3-15.

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’ve got a quick Disneyland update for you today, so let’s get started!

Welcome to Disneyland!

Disneyland continues through was was previously its traditional fall off-season with big crowds for the annual Halloween Time festivities. Despite Halloween Time, refurbishment and construction projects continue throughout the park before the even busier holiday season gets underway in early November.

Pumpkin carving continues at the Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree Halloween Carnival, with a lot of fun creations being carved up by Disney artists.

Construction Kingdom

[center]Compass Cleanup[/center]
In the Main Entrance Plaza, the terrazzo compass rose between Disneyland and Disney California Adventure is still behind walls.

It looks like it has been partially fixed, with the points of the compass removed altogether and filled in with plain cement. This makes sense, considering the points of the compass are the most problematic areas of the terrazzo installation, suffering from nightly pressure washings.

Hopefully this partial restoration of the terrazzo is a temporary fix until Disney can install a fountain or landscaping here, which has been in various plans over the years but never made it off the drawing board. A fountain or some sort of landscaping in the esplanade would go a long way to help the space feel a lot more welcoming.

[center]Main Street Makeovers[/center]
On Main Street, work continues on the new Guest Flow Corridors which are nearing completion and set to open this fall.

You can spot equipment over the fence…

Meanwhile, signage is returning to the Disney Showcase, Main Street Magic, and 20th Century Music facades following those shops recent exterior refurbishments.

No Disney Showcase marquee yet

Magic Shop marquee is back

Signage for 20th Century Music (now a pin shop) is back up

Meanwhile, work continues in the Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor and Refreshment Corner facades

Meanwhile, the new First Aid location at the end of Main Street opened last week. The new, expanded and slightly moved First Aid and Wish Lounge facility has fancy new fully-themed facades for the first time in six decades.

The new First Aid and Wish Lounge building is wedged between two access gates — one for Cast Members and the other leading to the new Guest Flow Corridors, which will be used to alleviate Main Street traffic on during peak attendance periods. Below, the path leading to the Cast Member entrance, between Plaza Inn and First Aid.

The path leading to the new Guest Flow Corridor

Is this the new “themed fencing” that will line the rest of the new Guest Flow Corridors?

The new First Aid and Wish Lounge facade looks great, though, and is a significant improvement over its predecessor.

New First Aid sign

Upstairs windows on the First Aid facade pay tribute to Walt Disney’s boyhood doctor, “Doc” Sherwood.

Nice new lighting fixtures on the First Aid facade

The Wish Lounge facade pays tribute to Disneyland’s old INA Carefree Corner, which was housed in what is now the Main Street Photo Supply Co., and featured guestbooks for Disneyland guests to sign.

New streetlights were installed in the redone area, replacing two of the traditional Main Street gas lamps that were back here.

With the new First Aid facility open, the temporary location in the Main Street Lockers building is now closed.

Locker service is expected to return here by the end of the month.

[center]Royal Remodel[/center]
In New Orleans Square, the stairs in the Royal Courtyard is still missing as more scaffolding seemingly goes up.

Scaffolding can be seen coming from the courtyard and rising above New Orleans Square rooftops. What are they doing with this space?

Across the street, the temporary barricades that were added to keep an emergency exit route for Club 33 clear are still temporary and still ugly.

[center]Riverboat Refurbishment[/center]
Nearby, the Mark Twain Riverboat’s refurbishment continues through late November.

[center]it’s a refurbishment world[/center]
Back in Fantasyland, scaffolding has come down along portions of “it’s a small world” after a quick refurbishment.

It doesn’t seem like anymore refurbishment will happen now that the facade is getting string lights installed for the annual holiday overlay.

In Small World Mall, Frozen-themed photo ops are up. Elsa and Anna continue to meet in their indoor meet-and-greet in Fantasyland, but guests can pose for Frozen-themed photos without the princesses here.

Across from the Village Haus, walls are now up around the Fantasyland outdoor vending area.

Love Is An Open Store

In Downtown Disney, the new Frozen-themed Anna and Elsa’s Boutique opened up after a quick two-week conversion from Studio Disney 365.

It’s clear the shop isn’t heavily themed, retaining much of the furniture, mannequins, and fixtures of the old shop, often just with new paint.

The shop is now exclusively stocked with Frozen merchandise and offers Frozen-inspired makeover packages for kids ages 3-15.

Tons of Frozen and Frozen-themed merchandise, just in time for the holidays.

Celebrating 50 Years
of Retro Fun at HoJo Anaheim

I’m a big fan of the Howard Johnson across the street from Disneyland. The folks at HoJo Anaheim run a great, affordable property and have been longtime supporters of Dateline Disneyland. Starting today, we’ll periodically be running special featurettes on the Howard Johnson Hotel and Water Playground here in Dateline Disneyland. To kick off this special new feature, we’re taking a look back at HoJo Anaheim’s great history as the hotel gears up for its 50th Anniversary in 2015!

A big deal when it opened in 1965, Howard Johnson’s Motor Lodge was the the first HoJo property on the west coast. The hotel opened on July 16, 1965 — 10 years and one day off Disneyland’s grand opening and is still owned and operated by the original family that bought the initial 7-acre parcel. Today, the HoJo Anaheim property covers 10 acres, including a Mimi’s Cafe and the site of a new hotel under construction now, set to open 50 years after the HoJo on July 15, 2015.

The original hotel, designed by famed architect William Pereira was a friend of Roy and Walt Disney and known for his fantastic futuristic designs. His style can still be seen in the HoJo Anaheim’s unique vaulted ceilings, barrel arch roofline and charmingly futuristic lobby building. Pereira also designed the Disneyland Hotel, the Theme Building at LAX, the TransAmerica Pyramid in San Francisco and other iconic buildings around the world.

At opening, HoJo Anaheim featured one tower and four two-story pavilions, referred to as “casitas,” surrounding a fountain feature. Upon opening, the hotel won an architectural award for “Best Public Space.” The beautifully landscaped grounds feature Canary Island pine trees, which were planted as saplings by the owner in 1964. Today, the pine trees rise alongside the main HoJo tower.

HoJo had the very first trolly shuttle to Disneyland which quickly became an icon for 1960s and 70s-era Disneyland visitors. Well regarded by the community and travelers alike, the HoJo was the first hotel to be part of Disney’s Good Neighbor Hotel program. That long history of high standards is why, nearly 50 years later, the HoJo is still the leader in rate and occupancy among its competitors. Consistent and good management through the ages has grown and kept a very loyal following throughout the world, earning it the title of the “other Disney property” by travel agents in many countries.

Enjoy retro fun just steps away from Disneyland at
Howard Johnson Hotel & Water Playground

A short walk from the park, HoJo Anaheim is conveniently located next to Matterhorn Mountain at Disneyland with nearby dining, freeway access, FREE parking and FREE Wi-Fi. For more information on HoJo Anaheim, room rates, or to book your stay today, visit HoJoAnaheim.com/MiceChat

Save with MiceChat & Passholder Discounts Every Day!
The HoJo Anaheim is now offering daily discounts for MiceChat members and even DEEPER discounts for Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders! For more information visit the HoJo Anaheim Innsider Boards which features an up-to-date listing of available nights, or call (714) 776-6120 and ask for In-House Reservations to book. If your date isn’t listed, the HoJo Anaheim still offers rooms for 20% off their best available rate if you call (714) 776-6120.

This and That

The seagull buoy has returned to the Submarine Lagoon

Downtown Disney is sort-of celebrating Halloween and fall with a few random decorations up…

Weekly News & Information Round-Up
Weekly Theme Park Hours
October 13-19, 2014
[B]Disneyland Park[/B] [B]California Adventure[/B]
Monday: 9 am – 11 pm
Tuesday: 8 am – 6 pm
Wed.-Thur.: 9 am – 9 pm
Friday: 8 am – 7 pm
Sat.-Sun.: 8 am – 12 am
Monday: 9 am – 9 pm
Tuesday: 8 am – 8 pm
Wed.-Thur.: 9 am – 8 pm
Friday: 8 am – 12 am
Sat.-Sun.: 8 am – 10 pm
[CENTER]For a complete listing of theme park hours,
visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar
[center]Closure and Refurbishment Schedule[/center]
[b][center]Disneyland Park[/center][/b]
  • Hose-Drawn Streetcar: Reopens October 16, 2014.
  • Fantasyland Fruit Cart: Reopens October 17, 2014
  • [B]Mark Twain Riverboat:[/B] Reopens November 29, 2014.
  • [b][center]Disney California Adventure[/center][/b]
    • [B]Blue Sky Cellar:[/B] Closed indefinitely.
    [b][center]Downtown Disney and Disneyland Resort Hotels[/center][/b]
    Tomorrowplan Crowd Estimates for Disneyland Resort from Mouseaddict

    October 13-19


    • With Utah schools out for the annual Utah Education Association Convention, this weekend will see an uptick in park attendance.
    • Hotel rooms are still widely available during the week, but they’re more scarce for the weekend.
    • Get constantly updated crowd projections – for two weeks into the future – with the Tomorrowplan feature in Mouseaddict.

    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.

    [center]Headline Roundup
    A quick look at noteworthy Disney theme park headlines from around the web.[/center]
    • The teaser trailer for Disney’s upcoming sci-fi mystery movie “Tomorrowland” has been released. (YouTube)
    • America’s Funniest Home Videos will celebrate its 25th Anniversary by joining Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration with a special prize giveaway. (Disney Parks Blog)
    OK — that wraps up this week’s edition of Dateline Disneyland. What do yo think of Disneyland’s new First Aid facility? Good or bad? Will you be shopping at Anna and Elsa’s Boutique for your little ones this holiday season? Let us know in the comments section below!

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    For more Disneyland news, be sure to read MiceChat’s weekly In the Parks blog. And be sure to check out our sister blog, Dateline Disney World – a fantastic weekly photo blog covering Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida!

    Thanks for reading. See you at Disneyland!
    [B]- Andy[/B]

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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.