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In the Parks

New WESTERN Music at Knott's, DCA Nears Relaunch, Six Flags Readies Doom Drop

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by , 05-31-2012 at 09:22 PM
Are you all ready for the biggest theme park summer in years? The madness is upon us and the fun has already begun. Manta at SeaWorld and Transformers at Universal have already opened, and the upcoming relaunch of Disney California Adventure and Disneyland's Matterhorn are just a couple of weeks away. And that's not all, Six Flags Magic Mountain's Drop of Doom and SoCal area water parks are all gearing up for a big summer as well. And there's even an item this week from Knott's Berry Farm which has us singing a happy tune. But first, an amazing opportunity to meet a man who made Disneyland and the theme park industry what it is today.

Bob Gurr Luncheon and Book Signing Event - June 30th

One of our all time favorite Disney Imagineers is Bob Gurr, father of the Monorail, Autopia, Matterhorn, and just about every Disney attraction with wheels. He's a true legend and an all around nice guy. And lucky for us, there is a limited opportunity for you to grab a copy of his new book and join him for lunch at the Anabella Hotel (just behind DCA and next to the Anaheim Convention Center) on June 30th.

Secure your spot and your book today (HERE)

We've just learned that the limited collectors edition (the red edition) of Bob's book, Design Just For Fun, has now sold out! BUT we've got 100 copies of that edition waiting for those who attend this event!!! These are the last 100 red collectors edition copies available.

Bob plans to share some wonderful tales, answer attendee questions, and meet with everyone to sign their book!

Bob Gurr + Lunch + Fantastic Stories + Last Copies Of An Amazing Book = A Once In A Lifetime Opportunity!

Sign Up Today!

Tuesday of this week Knott's management made yet another shrewd change in operations as the park continues on an unprecedented rebound. For the most part, we've been thrilled with the path Knott's has been on lately; however, there is one item which has perplexed us for weeks. We think you'll be as pleased as we are with the happy news we have to share.

On Tuesday, we visited the park and noticed something a little different in Ghost Town.

The entrance music remain pop music and upbeat,
no problem there.

The Ghost Town Playlist.
As we passed under the Ghost town arches everything looked wonderful as we've come to expect, but the one negative in the area, the out of theme pop music was gone! It its place was a mix of Country, Western and Bluegrass! Let us just say that the music change makes a big difference. Here is some of the music we heard during our trip.
For a long while we have noted the area music in Ghost Town was simply not the right fit for the most themed area of the park. Many of you had similar complaints.

But this week, management decided to try something new with the area music. They chose music that upholds their goal of happy and upbeat, but that also fits the overall feel of Ghost Town. The effect is exactly what we were hoping for. Music that enhances the surroundings without intruding on it. Raffi, we want to thank you for making this decision. You should know that the fans have noticed and we are thrilled.

Last week, we asked our readers to take the MiceChat pledge - If Knott's changed the Ghost Town music, we would show our support by buying annual passes. Let's reward Knott's by upholding our end of the bargain. A Regular Adult Season Pass is just $69.99. That's a bargain price to support the tremendous progress that Knott's has been making.

Reader James noted the change of the area music and sent us this recording. Thanks James!

The All Wheels X-treeme stage is returning for some Summer fun. Here is what it looks like so far.

Over in Camp Snoopy the stage is nearly set for the brilliant Snoopy's Starlight Spectacular.

Hooray for Hollywood:
During the day, Knott's will be staging a show featuring the Peanuts Gang. Hooray for Hollywood, a musical stage show that pays tribute to Tinseltown, has opened in the Camp Snoopy Theatre! Watch as Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus and their pal JT try to make it big in Hollywood! A surprise guest, looking snazzy in his Hollywood duds, joins the cast in this fun and interactive show! It is sure to be a hit with kids of all ages!

More alien prep work.

Woodstock's camp site

The store in Fiesta Village has been further stocked and looking good now.

We are also very happy to report that real flowers have replaced the faux flowers in Charleston Circle. Baskets overflowing with impatiens hang from the light polls.


Buckle up! MiceChat, Anabella Hotel, and the Carousel Inn and Suites present a Cars Land Contest which may have you zooming into the Disneyland Resort's newest attraction!

In celebration of the opening of Cars Land at Disney California Adventure, we are giving away two fantastic vacation packages to visit Disney's newest land for yourself. There’s no cost to enter, just visit this link and let us know why you’d like to visit Carsland. You’ll be automatically registered for the contest.

Sponsored by the fantastic:

Put the pedal to the metal, because this contest ends on June 8th!

Enter to Win One of Two Grand Prizes

A two night stay at the Carousel Inn and Suites or the Anabella Hotel
including 4 one day park hopper tickets!

Entering is easy. Just follow these two simple steps:
1) Click the Enter To Win button below and let us know what visiting Cars Land would mean to you or why you'd like to win a trip to visit Cars Land at Disney California Adventure.
2) Click the Facebook "Like" button at the top of this article.

We're sure you've got some creative entries. What are you waiting for? Disney's most popular cars are waiting to meet you!

Winners will be selected at random from the pool of eligible entries on June 8th.
No purchase necessary to enter. Contest may be altered or canceled at any time.


The newly expanded La Brea Bakery opened this week and it looks great.

It's a really yummy change. Nice to see an increased selection of reasonably priced items in Downtown Disney.

Greetings, Programs! Disney XD's exciting new animated series TRON: UPRISING starts on June 7th, but you can see the pilot "Beck's Beginning" at Downtown Disney starting on Sunday, June 3rd.

Viewers will have the opportunity to see a prelude episode of the new animated series “TRON: Uprising” in a state of the art, high definition theatre on wheels. The 91 seat theatre provides an immersive viewing experience with digital surround sound and stadium seating. The continuous screenings are made available at no charge.

You can catch TRON: UPRISING at these times:

Sunday, June 3: 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Monday, June 4 - Thursday, June 7: 12:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

“TRON: Uprising,” is CG animation with a 2D aesthetic, focusing on an era of the “TRON” storyline that transpires after the 1982 feature film and before the story in Walt Disney Studios’ “TRON: Legacy.” It follows the journey of Beck, a young program who becomes the unlikely leader of a revolution inside the computer world of The Grid. His mission is to free his home and friends from the reign of the villainous Clu and his henchman, General Tesler.

“TRON: Uprising” stars Elijah Wood as Beck, Bruce Boxleitner as Tron, Mandy Moore as Mara, Emmanuelle Chriqui as Paige, Nate Corddry as Zed, Lance Henriksen as General Tesler, Reginald VelJohnson as Able, Paul Reubens as Pavel and Tricia Helfer as the narrator and omnipresent voice of The Grid.

There's so much going on at the Disneyland Resort right now that it's hard to keep up and almost all of it is great news. These are golden days for Disneyland fans.

Memorial Day bunting has been installed.

The Matterhorn is testing regularly and the walls should be coming down any day now. There is speculation about early soft openings, but we have not heard anything firm yet.

The new Carnation Cafe sign made its debut and we think it turned out great.

The first signs of change can now be seen inside the Princess Fantasy Faire meet and Greet.

The Shootin' exposition has also returned in time for Summer fun.

Did Disneyland's massive price increase catch you off guard?

Our friends and sponsors at Discount Tickets and Tours have a very special offer which will allow you to take advantage of the old pricing for a limited. The savings are listed below:

So Cal Select Passes:
Disney's current price: $269
Our price: $199
Savings: $70

So Cal Regular Passes:
Disney's current price: $329
Our price: $269
Savings: $60

Deluxe Passes:
Disney's current price: $469
Our price: $379
Savings: $90

Premium Passes:
Disney's current price: $649
Our price: $499
Savings: $150

This offer expires June 8th or when sold out.

Special pricing is available here: Disney® Print @ Home Tickets « Discount Tickets and Tours « Theme Park and Tour Tickets

Be sure to take advantage of this deal while you still can. Save up to $150 per pass!

With just a couple weeks left until opening, Buena Vista Street is finally shaping up. Things are looking great.

The Mad T Party soft opened last week and we were there to cover it. Read our review and discussion about the Mad T Party here.

During the Day it's kind of a mess.

But as night falls, it all starts to get interesting

Have you experienced the Mad T Party? What did you think?

Queues have been installed near Tower of Terror for the Red Car Trolley.

New Cars Land themed Outdoor Vending Carts have appeared in the area near Mermaid that is still referred to as San Francisco. they look great, but what are they doing here?

Breakfast Burritos from a cart. A small clue that they are expecting HUGE crowds in the early mornings this summer.

As the first guests begin experiencing Cars Land we will have up to the minute coverage. And we ask you to help us keep your fellow MiceChat readers in the know. Contact [email protected] with your photos and reviews (or post them directly to the MiceChat forums) if you are lucky enough to catch an early preview of the new attractions.

The Fast pass location for Radiator Springs Racers is still under wraps (Near It's Tough to be a Bug"

There's just one street light in Radiator Spring (it blinks yellow)

Luigis' Flying Tires:
It appears that the beach balls are going to stay as they have now installed Red, Green and White, colored balls.

Ghirardelli soft opened today and we were there to bring you the info. Each guest gets a free sample of yummy chocolate!

There are six registers and six soda fountains. Guests place their orders then proceed to their window to get their order. They have a goal to take and fulfill each order in under 4 minutes.

You can see more pics here...

Lastly, the Cove Bar reopened with a new period specific look. It's a nice change.

The huge styalized dolphin stature in the middle of the bar has been removed.

Everything is a lot more period specific.

With references that tie the location into the surrounding story.

They even created images of the "construction" of the pier.

The scale seems a little off here though, lol.

The bar is a lot more open

The bar even includes a lower counter for disabled guests.

There are also two new drink items!

New billboards have also popped up along the bridge over the launch of Screamin'.

One of the new signs promotes the Paradise Garden restaurants on the other side of the DCA lagoon.

But what is going on here?

and here??? Thanks to Jeff Heimbuch for pointing this out

And we just thought it was an after effect of visiting the Cove Bar

Over the past few weeks a lot of work has been done on Lex Luthor: Drop of Doom. We were pleased to find out that the walls around the entrance have come down. This doesn't mean the ride is close to being done though. As you will see in the pictures below, there is still a lot of work to be done. We also have a general park update for you as well.

The walls have come down around the entrance and you can now see the work they've done on the existing buildings to convert them into the queue for Lex Luthor.

The entry sign for the ride has also made an appearance.

A peek inside the entry door shows some theming going on inside the queue.

As you can see, they are still doing a lot of work, even tearing up concrete as late as yesterday. We are guessing the walls came down to allow equipment to move in and out of the entry area easier.

The old Guest Necessity Center, presumably the exit/gift shop has been completely refurbished. Some additional painting/theming will likely be going on prior to opening.

The old Paintball Alley is being worked on. No word if this is going to be part of the queue or still a gaming area.

A look at the tower reveals that the crew are still hard at work.

Tower overview. This is going to be a REALLY tall ride (it takes up the whole back side of the Superman ride tower).

With the walls down we were also able to get a look at the base of the ride and the future station area. The gate around the corner (near Colossus) has been removed, again likely for construction equipment and we were able to get a shot of the ride vehicles on the tower.

A new show "My Generation Music Light & Laser Light Show" is now running on weekends in the Magic Moments theater. It's a great place to beat the heat. We'll be checking it out during a future visit.

Grad Night's are still going on at the park

The park also had some nice Grad Night merchandise available.

A new stage has been erected near Gold Rusher for the Acapella group Perfect 6.

What the Fried?:
If you've been following In The Parks for awhile, you'll know about the saga of the old Johnny Rockets "Shakes and Fries" stand. Well, the saga continues this week. If you'll recall, on our last update the What the Fried sign was gone.

We are happy to announce the sign is back.

What's odd though, is that there is another sign on the other entrance that is for "Loaded Dogs".

And even more odd is the sign out front when approaching the eatery from the front entrance (you know, the one everybody is likely to see first) still says "Shakes and Fries" even though the location doesn't sell Shakes and Fries.

Let's hope the identity crisis for this location is resolved soon, and that we actually find it open. We are excited to try a Mango Dole Whip one of these days.

Because of the sharp turns, twists, and dramatic drops, SeaWorld doesn’t allow any loose articles during the ride – ex. bags, purses, cameras – which can’t be put in your pocket. So, they have been kind enough to allow you to stow them away in a locker. These lockers are free, but they also have some which you have to pay for.

Nope, this isn't a plant convention. It's all the landsaping just waiting for someone to install it (And on opening day no less.)

While the front half of the ride is heavily themed, the whole back half has been left unthemed and unfinished. Even if they plant some trees, this is a missed opportunity to build some visual interest (a lagoon with water fountains, a rocky mountain to zoom through, a sting ray pool, anything).

Opening day guests were given a free pair of SeaWorld Manta sunglasss

While smooth, the ride has a lot of twists and turns which keep it fun.

And at the exit of the ride, you can buy your photo (of course)

Here's more of the unthemed back half. A disappointing collection of dirt mounds. Great ride with a great first act. Then if looks like they gave up on doing anything ambitious with the last half of the attraction. What a shame!

But don't get us wrong. We LOVED this coaster. It's smooth, unexpected, and with just enough pizzazz to keep guests of all ages smiling.

The store has tons of unique merchandise for sale.


The park president introduces two city counsel members

Another part of Manta which isn’t finished is the aquarium. There are hardly any fish inside and it all seems to be needing a lot of work still.

Stingrays swim above you.

The flamingos should be here any day now.


More last minute mid day planting.

Although it is located next to Manta, you have to walk all the way around the entire area to get here

Inside, they have installed lots of expensive textured and glass tile.

Classy glass tile

It seems SeaWorld isn’t slowing down with the number of new dining options. A newly opened “Manny Rays” serves sandwiches and salads…

…and allows guests to have a great view of the beginning of the ride.

Also new is “Fusion Smoothies” and “Boathouse Sausages”.

“All FIRED up” – from the Viva La Musica event – has become a permanent landmark at SeaWorld.

Cirque De La Mer resurfaced once again with their new enhancements – including the new trampoline wall sequence. During the week, you can catch this show twice a day. But during the weekends, it shows about four or more times.

It still puzzles me why SeaWorld would put the new trampoline wall in front of the set. It seems like a huge block for guests sitting in the center of the stadium.

In the next update…

In the next update, we’ll be covering Cirque De La Mer, Wild Arctic, and check in on construction on Club Atlantis.

The Communicore Weekly guys put Ridley Pearson, author of the wildly successful Kingdom Keepers series, in the Hot Seat! Learn where the idea for the Kingdom Keepers came from and more!

Speaking of Jeff and George, don't forget to take in the latest from the Communicore weekly team as the guys discuss the D23 Faniversary event in New York City, Our Kingdom of Dust, Narcoossee's, and Splash Mountain.

Then there is the new Just Ask Alex. Turns out he wants to be a ride tester.

And last but not least, is the lovely Sarah with a new MiceChatter

If you like what you see, please visit our Youtube page: MiceChat - YouTube and click the SUBSCRIBE button at the top of the page

AND MiceChat has a brand new monthly PodCast for you that's now in iTunes: MiceChat Podcast on iTunes or we have an RSS feed if you'd rather use that: MiceChat Podcast RSS

This week, Al Lutz, Doug Barnes, Dustysage and Fishbulb discuss Cars Land, Transformers and the epic fight for your tourist dollars this summer.

Today's In The Parks Update Has Been Brought To You By The WONDERFUL Folks At . . .

Located just across the street from Disneyland’s front gate, the Carousel Inn & Suites offers MiceChat readers some very special deal on a great hotel.

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We'd like to extend a huge thanks to today's contributors: Joseph, Sir Clinksalot, Coheteboy, CaptPhoebus, Fishbulb and Dustysage. (If you've got breaking news or photos to share, we'd love to hear from you too! Contact Dusty today

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Updated 06-02-2012 at 08:44 AM by Dustysage



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  1. Baloo's Avatar
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    Glad to hear the music has been changed, will be going to the park in a month if the music is playing country i will keep my side of the pledge and buy passes for the family
  2. TodAZ1's Avatar
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    I thought there was a third color for the bobsleds on the Matterhorn. Wasn't there going to be a red in addition to the aqua green and blue sleds?
  3. ImagiNERDing's Avatar
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    Fantastic photos! Thanks. Those of us many thousands of miles away appreciate it.
  4. In the Parks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xadllas
    Would've been nice if you would've taken some interior photos of the Cove bar. Disneyland Live did. You kinda missed something big there...
    You know what? You are totally right. We just updated the post with more pics and info.

    We try to do our very best with the column here. But when we overlook something that big we aim to fix it.
  5. SpectroMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dustysage
    I'd imagine it won't take them long to print out a new billboard now that you've brought this to the world's attention. It should be a quick and easy fix.
    But what's really pathetic is that noone caught this pre-installation. A big LOL at Disney for that. Then again, in the old days had this been hand painted instead of printed out on a printer, it wouldn't have :|

    P.S. "Counsel" should be "Council"
  6. michael darling's Avatar
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    So the 'town hall' at the end of Radiator it just a facade? the photos look like the garage doors are halfway up, and you can see thru to desert.
  7. weeble's Avatar
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    love the up to the minute info. on the parks! love, love, love the western themed music over the pop at Knott's ghost town! we were there wednesday and have passes. (:
  8. mondo's Avatar
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    I don't have Disney XD, is there any way I can see TRON: Uprising?
  9. DisneyDrums's Avatar
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    If you have an annual pass, you could have bought a ticket to see it the weekend before. They also had a lottery for annual passholders to sign up for, but that is already closed. If you look at the timeline for the opening, there really isn't any days that are available, unless they open within the next week, which would probably get a LOT of people upset because they paid for the privilege of being one of the first.
    Look, this is vital to me. I'm going back on the 14th for Grad Nite (Day) and I just wanna know if Cars Land will be running a soft opening​ for that day, you know, like the Mad T Party.
  10. sir clinksalot's Avatar
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    Magic Mountain has announced the opening day for Lex Luthor. June 30th.

  11. Polar33's Avatar
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    Slight typo, the name of SeaWorld's new food location near Cirque Stadium is actually "All FRIED up!", not "All FIRED up!" Also The Boathouse Sausage Grill isn't new, but it has received a face lift. The flamingos returned to their home on Wednesday. A video of the effort it took to move them is on YouTube.
  12. tigger001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyDrums
    Look, this is vital to me. I'm going back on the 14th for Grad Nite (Day) and I just wanna know if Cars Land will be running a soft opening​ for that day, you know, like the Mad T Party.
    I GUARANTEE that DCA will not be open for you on June 14th. It has been widely publicized that this day is going to be only for press and invited guests. All of DCA is going to be closed to the public that day. You can try and win tickets to the press event from Clear Channel Radio Stations, but other than that, you are going to have to wait until June 15th or go to an annual passholder preview.

    I hope this cleared the air for you!
  13. DisneyDrums's Avatar
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    I GUARANTEE that DCA will not be open for you on June 14th. It has been widely publicized that this day is going to be only for press and invited guests. All of DCA is going to be closed to the public that day. You can try and win tickets to the press event from Clear Channel Radio Stations, but other than that, you are going to have to wait until June 15th or go to an annual passholder preview.
    For high school graduates, that is a STUPID idea. I can't, and WON'T bring myself to believe it until I see the proof. you have it, by any chance?
  14. Quentin's Avatar
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    For high school graduates, that is a STUPID idea. I can't, and WON'T bring myself to believe it until I see the proof. you have it, by any chance?
    Yes it is on Disney's website. DCA will be closed the 14th.

    Disney California Adventure Park | Disneyland Resort
  15. DisneyDrums's Avatar
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    Yes it is on Disney's website. DCA will be closed the 14th.
    Do you think this includes GRAD NITE​?
  16. tigger001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyDrums
    Do you think this includes GRAD NITE​?
    Yes I can guarantee it includes Grad Nite.
  17. DisneyDrums's Avatar
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    Yes I can guarantee it includes Grad Nite.
    We'll see about that. When lunch hits on Monday, I'm getting to the bottom of this situation. (You can bet I'm hoping for good news, and not bad. Don't respond... just yet. Give me some time to figure it out, okie-dokie?
  18. clippers6's Avatar
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    I'm not sure how accurate the park map I got this weekend is (it says Lex Luthor will open in spring on the cover), but the paintball gallery is still listed under the games section and shop at the exit is listed as The Daily Planet Gift Shop (the description says it will have "basic necessities and an ATM for your convenience). Also listed as new is a chicken restaurant across from Apocalypse and a food location called Dogs and Snack in the What the Fried? area.
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