View RSS Feed

Dateline Disneyland

Give a Day Get a Disney Day, Disney Gallery opens, DCA progress, Downtown Disney,MORE

Rating: 4 votes, 3.00 average.
by , 10-05-2009 at 12:10 AM
What a week! Last Monday Disney announced its new "Give a Day, Get a Disney Day" theme park marketing campaign for 2010. The new campaign is led by the Muppets and will give free tickets to Disney theme parks for 1 million guests in exchange for a day of community service. Meanwhile, in the parks, Disneyland has opened the doors to the new home of the Disney Gallery and the newly re-worked lobby of the Main Street Opera House. Elsewhere in the Resort, construction continues to chug along at Disney's California Adventure and new stores get ready to open in Downtown Disney.

More information and ongoing discussion on many of the various construction projects featured in today's update can be found in the Project Tracker threads on MiceChat. Simply click on a photo with a Project Tracker watermark and you'll be linked up to the latest news and discussion on the various projects underway at the Resort.

A quick thanks to MiceChat's MacDaddy for his help with some Disney Gallery photos in this week's column. More of his photos can be found here.

We've got a big update today, so let's get started!

Inside Dateline Disneyland

Disney unveiled its 2010 DisneyParks marketing campaign in a flurry of press releases, television spots, and YouTube clips on Tuesday. The new campaign focuses on volunteerism, and rewards guests who volunteer for a day in their community with a free ticket to a theme park ticket for either the Disneyland or Walt Disney World Resort. Desperate Housewives stars Teri Hatcher and James Denton were on hand with Disney CEO Bob Iger and the Muppets to announce the new campaign at a Habitat For Humanity site in Los Angeles.

The Disney Press release explains the new campaign in detail:
Give a Day of Volunteer Service in 2010, Get a Day of Disney Theme Park Fun - Free
Disney Parks is launching a program that celebrates the spirit of volunteer service with a simple proposition: “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day.”

Disney hopes to inspire families to volunteer in their communities during 2010 through this first-of-its-kind program. One million people who perform volunteer service for a participating organization will receive a free one-day admission ticket to a Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort theme park.

While the “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day” program kicks off Jan. 1, right now guests can learn more about the program and how to get their free one-day admission to a Walt Disney World or Disneyland theme park by visiting Disney Parks | Travel & Vacations | Family Vacation Getaway | Disney (for the United States and Puerto Rico) or Disney Parks / Where Dreams Come True / Dream Family Holidays (for Canada).

In the past year, guests have been celebrating all sorts of special moments in their lives at Disney parks – from birthdays and anniversaries to reunions and graduations – as part of the “What Will You Celebrate?” campaign.

“In 2010, we want to recognize and add one more reason for celebration: the contributions people make to their communities every day,” said Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “We want to inspire 1 million volunteers – people who will invest time and energy to make their own communities and neighborhoods a better place.”

To enable people to sign up for an eligible volunteer project, Disney is working with HandsOn Network, the nation’s largest volunteer network. Part of Points of Light Institute, HandsOn Network has 250 on-the-ground volunteer action centers across the country and connects volunteers to more than 70,000 nonprofit agencies that need their help.

“Wherever we live, our communities need our hands-on help to thrive,” said Michelle Nunn, CEO of Points of Light Institute. “We are thrilled at this unprecedented effort by Disney Parks to help mobilize 1 million volunteers into action. ‘Give a Day, Get a Disney Day’ has the potential to reach so many families and instill the volunteer spirit in a new generation.”

Bob Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, said, “‘Give a Day, Get a Disney Day’ fits perfectly with our long history of supporting and participating in volunteer efforts. It’s a great way to honor guests who are making a positive contribution to their communities.”

Starting Jan. 1, 2010, guests can go to Disney Parks | Travel & Vacations | Family Vacation Getaway | Disney for the United States and Puerto Rico or Disney Parks / Where Dreams Come True / Dream Family Holidays for Canada to search for volunteer opportunities available in those areas through HandsOn Network and sign up for a day of volunteer service. Many of the opportunities will be for projects that entire families can participate in together.

To raise awareness for grass-roots community volunteerism and the “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day” program, Disney VoluntEARS and volunteers from Southwest Airlines are joining with local volunteers on projects coordinated by HandsOn Network in cities across North America this fall and winter. Southwest Airlines also is providing transportation for the initiative.

“Southwest Airlines strives to make a positive difference in the communities we serve, from protecting the environment to supporting a local cause,” said Linda Rutherford, vice president of Communications and Strategic Outreach, Southwest Airlines. “Southwest employees give back both locally and nationally through volunteerism, with individual and personal efforts, serving together as teams or through companywide efforts. The opportunity with Disney unites two companies that are devoted to the spirit of volunteerism.”

The new television spots feature the Muppets and celebrities James Denton and Taye Diggs
27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000width="545" height="327" id="viddler">

27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" width="545" height="327" id="viddler">

It wasn't a slow week in the parks, either. The Disney Gallery opened its doors in its new home in the former Bank of Main Street on Friday, after being evicted from its charming New Orleans Square location back in 2007.

A nearby lamppost banner advertises the current Gallery exhibit

At first, you might think that the Gallery is just another gift shop. Afterall, the signage out front says "GIFTS" and the first thing you see upon entering is retail space.

A couple remaining teller windows from the former Bank have been repurposed as a cash wrap.

The popular Disneyland Olszewski miniatures are all on display (and for sale) here.

The old vault from the Bank is still here, and is now accessible to guests. It's rather tiny, though, and is used to display "featured" art pieces for sale. Currently, two original paintings by Shag are on display, leftover from the Haunted Mansion's 40th Anniversary.

Disney says the new Disney Gallery had roughly the same amount of space as the former Disney Gallery above Pirates of the Caribbean in New Orleans Square. It seems hard to believe, though, with only two exhibit rooms as opposed to the New Orleans Square location's three exhibit rooms. In any case, the new Gallery's inaugural exhibit focuses on enhancing classic attractions. The first half of the show, however, is spent showing pieces by past and present Disney artists and Imagineers based on favorite Disneyland attractions.

It's a nice enough display, but with the merchandise display cases in the middle of the room, and the price tags on every piece on display here, it isn't hard to be a cynic and see the new Gallery as less of an art gallery and more of an excuse to push high-end art and collectibles.

Sure, the old Disney Gallery had plenty of pieces on sale as well, and had a gift shop, too. But it always seemed like the art on display actually stuck to the exhibit's theme, even if it was for sale.

An window into an interesting faux office is part of the Gallery's second room/first exhibit room. A nice thematic touch.

The third room in the Gallery, or the second exhibit room finally gets to the point and stops trying to sell you souvenirs. This room features original and new concept art for attractions recently enhanced, including the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, Haunted Mansion, Jungle Cruise, and Pirates of the Caribbean.

There isn't too much here that diehard Disneyland fans haven't already seen, but it's a nice display anyway. The only thing missing are placards explaining which pieces were original concept art and which were done for the recent enhancements.

Oh, and it would be great to see the names of the artists for these pieces.

The Gallery features really great wood work throughout, and the third room even has a couple benches. A great touch.

After it's all said and done, it's nice to once again have a Disney Gallery open to guests in the park. It's a great opportunity for Disney to display a sample of its incredible selection of artwork for park fans to enjoy. Is the new location a suitable alternative to the original? It's a beautifully-designed space, and Kim Irvine and the rest of the Imagineering team who brought it to life did an outstanding job well done. The leftover Bank of Main Street references are questionable, thematically, but generally insignificant to the experience. For longtime fans of the Disney Gallery, it's far too easy to go in the new location with a bad attitude. It is without question that the new location pales in comparison to the original location. There is simply no way to recreate special magic of climbing the graceful, curved stairways to the old Gallery and looking at rare artwork in the rooms that Walt Disney had designed for himself as his own personal in-park retreat. How could the new Gallery possibly live up to that? Simply put, it can't, and if you expect it to, you're going to be sorely disappointed.

Next door to the new Disney Gallery, half of the Main Street Opera House lobby has reopened with the new "The Disneyland Story" exhibit. The Disneyland Story is part of the new pre-show for the upcoming (December 2009) return of "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" and tells the history of Disneyland in wall displays, scale models, and the 50th Anniversary film starring Steve Martin that was previously shown in the main theater.

The 50th anniversary mural with Walt and Mickey is gone from the Opera House foyer, and in its place, the bench from Griffith Park, where it's said Walt originally came up with the idea for Disneyland.

The exhibit discusses the park's history, from Walt's days to present-day.

The "New Generation of Dreamers" wall showcases artwork from modern classics like Splash Mountain, Indiana Jones Adventure and Star Tours. It's kind of funny how all three of those projects, and just about everything else on this wall are projects largely credited to Imagineer Tony Baxter, the man who is also responsible for bringing back "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" here in the Opera House.

The "Disneyland: The First 50 Magical Years" movie starring Steve Martin now plays on a continuous loop on a small screen at the back of the Disneyland Story exhibit.

The small alcove that previously had a video montage of Disneyland Cast Members through the years has been closed off to accommodate the huge Opening Day model of Disneyland, which is now propped up at an angle behind glass for guests to see. A clever way to keep the model on display without sacrificing valuable space on the lobby floor.

A display called "Living in Disneyland" shows photos of Walt Disney's firehouse apartment on Main Street, as well as photos of the Disneyland Dream Suite, which evicted the original Disney Gallery. It probably isn't meant to be a slap in the face, but with the smaller Disney Gallery now open next door, and the Disneyland Dream Suite off-limits to park guests, it does sting a little.

Conveniently, the new Disney Gallery is accessible from the Opera House lobby via a new doorway.

A look at the latest construction progress at Disney's California Adventure...

Construction continues on the new Paradise Park area, which will accommodate up to 9,000 guests for the new World of Color show. The project was scheduled to finish later this December, but was recently pushed back to February 2010.

Looks like some cosmetic work is being done on the new World of Color light houses. Not a bad idea, these things look very plastic-y right now.

The railings along the new Paradise Park waterfront are being painted dark green.

Over by the former Orange Stinger, half of the tacky S.S. rustworthy water play area has been completely removed. Good riddance!

The pit being dug for the new Little Mermaid ride continues to get deeper...

And work continues prepping the space for Cars Land in the former Timon parking lot.

Walls have come down near the Paradise Pier parade gates.

Looks like the work was to carve out some space for outdoor vending that was displaced by the Silly Symphony Swings construction across the walkway.

Out in Downtown Disney, a new tenant is moving into the former Department 56 space

And work on the permanent location for Little Miss Matched is coming along nicely. The new signage looks all finished and ready to go.

Back inside Disneyland, Tomorrowland has finished up its latest round of repaving.

And construction walls have come down from the Frontierland entrance. Some some TLC on the fort facade.

And we missed it last week, but if you make it to the Resort for Halloween Time this year, be sure to check out the mesmerizingly cool lighting makeover they've given to Space Mountain for its Ghost Galaxy overlay.

It's pretty impressive

Disneyland's publicity department put up a preview of Ghost Galaxy on the DisneylandNews YouTube channel. It includes a glimpse of the snazzy nighttime lighting.

The DisneylandNews YouTube channel also released a preview video of the new Halloween Screams fireworks show on Monday, after we had already "gone to print," as it were. The new show is great, visually, especially if watched from the hub and features some excellent effects, but that soundtrack is unbelievably obnoxious and annoying (not to mention, has a terrible Jack Skellington voice actor). Hopefully they'll rework it next year.

And finally, we'll finish up the photo update with a few photos from around the park.

For a complete listing of theme park hours, please visit the Theme Park Calendar
Disneyland Park
Monday - Wednesday: 10 am - 8 pm
Thursday: 9 am - 10 pm
Friday - Sunday: 8 am - 12 midnight

Disney's California Adventure Park
Monday - Tuesday: 10 am - 6 pm
Wednesday - Thursday: 10 am - 5 pm
Friday: 10 am - 6 pm
Saturday - Sunday: 10 am - 10 pm

Disneyland Park
  • Sailing Ship Columbia: Closed October 5 - 7, Closed October 12 - 15.
  • Indiana Jones Adventure: Closed October 5 - 8.
  • The Enchanted Cottage: Closed through November 4.
  • Casey Jr. Circus Train: Closed through November 19.
  • Gadget's Go Coaster: Closed through October 26.
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats: Closed through November 19.
  • "it's a small world": Closed October 26 - November 12 to instll holiday overlay.
  • Disneyland: The First 50 Magical Years/Main Street Opera House: Closed. Reopens as The Disneyland Story: Featuring Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln December 17, 2009.

Disney's California Adventure Park
  • Orange Stinger: Closed for retheming. Reopens Spring 2010
  • Jumpin' Jellyfish: Attraction remains open while towers rotate through refurbishment.
  • The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure: Under construction.
  • Souvenir 66 and Corn Dog Castle: Store and dining location closed for remodeling through May 2011.
  • Paradise Bay: Drained for construction of upcoming Disney's World of Color show.
  • Disney's World of Color Nighttime Spectacular: New show under construction. Debuts Spring 2010.
  • Golden State Park and Amphitheater: Closed. New, larger amphitheater for Disney's World of Color viewing under construction in same location. The new amphitheater scheduled to open February 2010.

From the Orange County Register's Around Disney blog:

Disney’s free birthday tickets draw millions
More than 3 million people have signed up for Disney’s free-on-your-birthday deal, but only about 30 percent of the registrants actually have gone to a theme park to celebrate so far.

This year, Disney is allowing guests to get free admission to a park on their birthdays. Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, discussed the popularity of the free birthday tickets as part of a conference call Tuesday about next year’s theme-park promotion: Volunteer for a day and get into a theme park for free.

Guests have taken advantage of the birthday program more heavily at the Disneyland Resort, compared to Walt Disney World in Florida, because the Anaheim parks have a larger, local clientele, Rasulo said.

The birthday promotion has helped drive up attendance at the two Anaheim parks — Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure.

Disneyland Resort attendance jumped 10 percent in the most recent quarter ending in June compared to the same period the previous year, despite the lagging economy, according to Disney’s financial statements.

“Certainly, I think that a program that inspires people and is relevant always impacts our attendance,” Rasulo said.
For the full story, visit the OC Register's Around Disney blog: Around Disney: Disney’s free birthday tickets draw millions

Also from the Around Disney blog:

Disney employees lose weight for charity
Disney employees’ loss was the Orange County Food Bank’s gain this week.

On Monday, the Disneyland Resort gave $10,000 to the food bank as part of its Weight Loss Challenge. The resort agreed to give the donation in conjunction with employees’ participation in the program to lose weight and pursue healthy lifestyles, according to Disney.

At the conclusion of the 10-week programs, about 1,400 employees ended up losing a total of 2,658 pounds. Employees participated in a wellness walk in Disney’s California Adventure before the check ceremony.

For the full press release, visit Around Disney: Disney employees lose weight for charity

That should wrap up this week's Dateline Disneyland. Many thanks again to MacDaddy from the MiceChat boards for help with his great Disney Gallery photos. To see more of MacDaddy's Disney Gallery shots, check out his 10/2 Photo Update on MiceChat.

And of course, thanks to all of you for reading. Be sure to discuss this week's update in the comments section below!

Your support keeps these updates coming! Without you they couldn't happen. We all know times are tough, so any amount of support helps. If you can donate to Dateline Disneyland please consider doing so via a safe and quick PayPal donation. To donate, click here.

Don't forget that MiceAge and MiceChat has loads of new content weekly! If Dateline Disneyland isn't enough to satisfy your Disneyland itch, then don't miss David "Darkbeer" Michael's In the Parks column which runs here every Friday and is packed full of Southern California theme park news, photos, and gossip. And if you want even more Disney theme park goodness, don't miss MiceChat's Weekend Update, which takes a look at Disney theme parks and other international landmarks, curiosities, and oddities every Saturday!

Don't forget - Dateline Disneyland is on Twitter! If you still haven't checked us out on Twitter, head over there today and see why 4,800 other Disneyland fans have already started following Dateline Disneyland! The Dateline Disneyland Twitter is updated throughout the week with links to breaking news, mini updates, photos, and links to newsworthy MiceChat discussions. Head over to, or check out the widget to the right to follow us!

See you here again soon!
Love reading Dateline Disneyland?
If so, consider donating so the updates can keep coming through a quick and safe PayPal donation. Thanks for your support!

| | |

Submit "Give a Day Get a Disney Day, Disney Gallery opens, DCA progress, Downtown Disney,MORE" to Digg Submit "Give a Day Get a Disney Day, Disney Gallery opens, DCA progress, Downtown Disney,MORE" to Submit "Give a Day Get a Disney Day, Disney Gallery opens, DCA progress, Downtown Disney,MORE" to StumbleUpon Submit "Give a Day Get a Disney Day, Disney Gallery opens, DCA progress, Downtown Disney,MORE" to Google

Updated 10-05-2009 at 04:29 PM by Dateline Disneyland (Fixed news section formatting errors, and Refurb/Construction calendar typo)

Disneyland Resort , Disney's California Adventure Remodel/Expansion , Downtown Disney


Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12
  1. BassBone's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    I really enjoy the soundtrack for Halloween Screams. It's high energy and exciting. The highlight for me is the dark arrangement of "Hellfire" from Hunchback of Notre Dame. The only thing I don't like about the soundtrack is the mix. The bass is far too loud and hurts my lungs. Also, I agree with you about the Jack Skellington voice actor. He is horrible.
  2. Sleepy505's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Very Impressive work Andy, I was thinking of turning my office into A Disney room (Office) and take out all of My Raiders memorabilia out LOL your photo work just brings out such colorful ideas.
  3. TifaOnACloud's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Quote Originally Posted by Disneyland Limited
    According to the "Disneyland: Secrets, Stories and Magic" DVD, it was one of the Imagineers (Marty Sklar?) who didn't think the castle looked right and turned the center turret around just before Walt came into a meeting with them to discuss the castle. Seeing the backwards turret, Walt said that he liked it better that way and that's how it was built.
    Yeah, that's the story I always heard too. Disney never can keep their facts straight.

    Awesome to hear Hunchback music in the fireworks display. It's Menken's best score.

    When did they start tearing out the Rustworthy?
  4. DisneyDude12's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Awesome! Great pics!
  5. Barbossa's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Thanks for the update!
  6. bostoncg's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Great update! Loved all the pics! I don't know if I have ever been in Gallery. I will have to take a look at it the next time I go to DL.
  7. whamo's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Amazing! Cool photographs and comments on the Disney Gallery. I still pine for its old location, but the new one looks inviting. I especially enjoyed the photograph of the original bench where Walt dreamed up Disneyland. The new Gallery needs to take a clue from museums. Have a docent explain the artwork on a tape recording. Sell DVD's of the Disney Tour Guide speech and tour for those of us too busy to spend Disneyland time doing such things. Sell CD's of the music for "California Adventure" -- all those Route 66, California theme classics.
  8. Eagleman's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    Andy .Thank You .Good Job!
  9. Tikiroom1963's Avatar
    • |
    • permalink
    On a related note to the opening of the new gallery:

    The Disney Gallery - Product Release & Artist Signing
    Date: Saturday, October 10, 2009
    Time: 9 AM to 11 AM
    Location: The Disney Gallery, Main Street, U.S.A.

    Event Information:
    Join us as we celebrate the opening of The Disney Gallery in its new location on Main Street, U.S.A. with an array of Walt Disney Imagineers and Disney Inspired Artists, including Jim Crouch, Jody Daily, Jeremy Fulton, Kevin Kidney, Larry Nikolai, Maggie Parr, George Scribner and Yakovetic. Commissioned artwork by these artists will on display and will be available as part of the product release & signing. The artist signing will take place from 9 AM to 11 AM on Saturday, October 10, 2009.

    INCLUDING new Tiki Room stuff. I'll be there ! Go to and go to the event calender for more details. Aloha!!!!
Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12