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Dateline Disneyland

Farewell Roy, Welcome back Abe, California Adventure construction, D Street, +MORE

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by , 12-20-2009 at 04:24 PM
Welcome back to Dateline Disneyland! It's been a busy week at the Disneyland Resort with the opening of the new "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln," a couple new offerings in Downtown Disney, and on-going work on the various projects in Disney's California Adventure. As the Resort buzzes with activity is also quietly observing last week's death of Roy E. Disney with Disney flags at half-staff.

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.

There's a lot to get to this week, so let's get started!

Inside Dateline Disneyland

A promo display for the Honda car giveaway at the Mickey and Friends tram stop could use some attention.

It's pretty scuffed up, and the snow bases for the trees are broken and chipped.


In the Main Entrance Plaza, work continues on the new stroller and wheelchair rental building.

On Wednesday Disney lost Roy E. Disney, son of Roy O. Disney and nephew to Walt Disney. Roy's death followed a year-long battle with stomach cancer and Disney CEO Bob Iger ordered Disney theme parks to observe Roy's death by lowering Disney flags to half-staff.

Roy E. Disney, Key Figure in Revitalizing The Walt Disney Company, Disney’s Animation Legacy, Dies at Age 79
Roy Edward Disney, son of Disney Studios co-founder Roy O. Disney, and nephew of Walt Disney, passed away today (12/16/09) at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, California, following a year-long battle with stomach cancer. He was 79 years old. Disney was a successful businessman, philanthropist, filmmaker, and award-winning sailor, who played a key role in the revitalization of The Walt Disney Company and Disney’s animation legacy. He was associated with the Company over a 56-year period, and from 1984 – 2003, served as vice chairman of the Company’s board of directors, and chairman of the Studio’s Animation Department. In recent years, he held the title of director emeritus and consultant for the Company.

As head of Disney Animation, Disney helped to guide the Studio to a new golden age of animation with an unprecedented string of artistic and box office successes that included “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin,” and “The Lion King.” He personally executive produced “Fantasia/2000,” a sequel to the 1940 Disney classic, and served in a similar capacity on a number of recent animated shorts, including the 2004 Oscar®-nominated “Destino,” based on storyboards and original art by the iconic artist Salvador Dali. In the area of live-action films, Disney and his wife, Leslie DeMeuse Disney, most recently executive produced the 2008 feature documentary, “Morning Light,” which followed a group of young sailors as they competed in the grueling Transpac race from Los Angeles to Honolulu.
His philanthropic activities included sponsorship of the Roy E. Disney Center for the Performing Arts at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Roy and Patricia Disney Family Cancer Center, part of Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California, is scheduled to open in spring, 2010.

Commenting on the announcement, Bob Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, said, “On behalf of everyone at Disney, we are saddened by the loss of our friend and colleague Roy E. Disney. He was much more than a valued 56-year Company veteran – Roy’s true passion and focus were preserving and building upon the amazing legacy of Disney animation that was started by his father and uncle. Roy’s commitment to the art of animation was unparalleled and will always remain his personal legacy and one of his greatest contributions to Disney’s past, present and future.”

More at the DisneyParks Blog: Roy E. Disney, Key Figure in Revitalizing The Walt Disney Company, Disney’s Animation Legacy, Dies at Age 79

The Main Street Opera House reopened late last week with the latest version of "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln."

The impressive Capitol Building scale model is back on display.

The beautiful new "Mr. Lincoln" lobby is full of art work by Imagineering legends created for the show.

Photos are strictly prohibited inside the theater, but Disney released a couple publicity photos of the new show. The new 15-minute presentation is heavy on nostalgia, utilizing vintage paintings from Disney legends and the original audio from voice actor Royal Dano. It will be interesting to see how this show, which is heavy on patriotism, but low on thrills will favor with current audiences. On opening weekend, theaters were only half-full.

The DisneyParks Blog posted video footage of the new Lincoln Audio-Animatronics figure being programmed.
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And the OC Register's Around Disney blog has a video clip of the revamped show

The latest look at Disney's California Adventure's on-going $1 billion remodel and expansion.



Cars Land:


A new remote-controlled jungle boat game has been added to the side of the Rainforest Cafe.

Tortilla Jo's new quick service Taqueria is open for business

And Disney's new D Street store is open for business in the former Illunimations storefront. The store focuses on high-end Disney fashion and the popular Vinylmation figurines.

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

Disney's California Adventure Park
Monday - Wednesday: 10 am - 9 pm
Thursday: 10 am - 6 pm
Friday - Sunday: 10 am - 10 pm

Disneyland Park
  • Haunted Mansion: Closed January 4 - 14 to remove holiday overlay.
  • Big Thunder Ranch: Closed January 4 - 12 to remove holiday overlay.
  • Main Street Cinema: Closed January 4 through February 1 for refurbishment.
  • Starcade: Closed January 4 through February 1 for refurbishment.
  • Le Petit Chalet Gifts: Closed January 4 through February 10 for refurbishment.
  • Corn Dog Wagon: Closed January 4 through May 4 for refurbishment.
  • Tomorrowland Terrace: Closed January 4 through May 4 for refurbishment.
  • Rivers of America: Closed January 4 through May 6 for a major refurbishment. The closure of the river will result in the necessary closure of the following attractions:
    • Sailing Ship Columbia: Closed January 4 - May 6
    • Mark Twain Riverboat: Closed January 4 - May 6
    • Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes: Closed January 4 - May 6
    • Pirate's Lair on Tom Sawyer Island: Closed January 4 - May 14

Disney's California Adventure Park
  • Grizzly River Run: Closed January 4 - 8 for refurbishment.
  • Redwood Creek Challenge Trail: Closed January 11 through February 19 for refurbishment.
  • It's Tough To Be A Bug!: Closed January 20 - 21.
  • Francis' Lady Bug Boogie: Closed January 25 through February 4.
  • Orange Stinger: Closed for retheming. Reopens Spring 2010
  • 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. Expected to be refilled mid-October 2009.
  • Disney's World of Color Nighttime Spectacular: New show under construction. Debuts Spring 2010.
  • Golden State Park and Amphitheater: Closed. New, larger viewing area for Disney's World of Color viewing under construction in same location. The new viewing area is scheduled to open February 2010 as Paradise Park.

Disney finally announced the long-rumored return of Captain EO on their DisneyParks Blog last week:

Captain EO Returns to Disneyland Resort
Twenty-three years ago, at the height of his phenomenal entertainment career, Michael Jackson joined forces with Disney to create “Captain EO,” a groundbreaking 17-minute 3D film experience.

We are excited to confirm that the classic musical spectacular that thrilled Disneyland park guests from 1986 – 1997, will return for an exclusive, limited engagement at Disneyland park beginning in February 2010!

The attraction’s return to Tomorrowland will provide new audiences the opportunity to experience the original 3D production for the very first time, as well as a nostalgic look back for longtime fans wanting to see “The King of Pop” in a rare performance created for the big-screen, just one more time.

“Honey I Shrunk The Audience” will be closing sometime in the next few weeks to make way for the Captain’s return.
For the full article, visit: DisneyParks Blog: Captain EO Returns to Disneyland Resort

As part of Sylvania's new sponsorship of Disneyland's iconic "it's a small world" attraction, the attraction will get a new illuminated marquee in early 2010:

Sylvania Sponsors Disney's 'Small World'
Sylvania is sponsoring the "It's a small world" attraction at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif. The deal, which includes the attraction's first-ever illuminated marquee, is part of a 12-year agreement between The Walt Disney Company and Siemens.

The agreement includes marketing and promotional rights, attraction sponsorships and a promotional presence that features Siemens products and services at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California. Siemens also is the sponsor of the Epcot icon, SpaceShip Earth.

"The deal between Disney and Sylvania's parent company, Siemens, brings together the world's leading family entertainment company with a premiere global technology and infrastructure company," Mike Colotti, vice president of brand management and marketing communications for Sylvania, tells Marketing Daily. "In addition to marketing and promotional campaigns, our companies work together to develop and integrate Sylvania lighting technologies into Disney attractions and throughout its resorts."

The illuminated marquee -- the only change to the attraction -- will brighten the overall experience for guests, and is slated for installation in early 2010. The design is a visual celebration of what the attraction represents -- the happy spirit of children everywhere, according to Sylvania.
For the full article, visit: Sylvania Sponsors Disney's 'Small World'

Alrighty, that's it for this week's Dateline Disneyland! I hope you and yours have a great holiday and thanks, as always, for reading! Be sure to discuss the update in the comments section below!

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  1. Kritter's Avatar
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    Great update!
  2. Melonballer's Avatar
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    I like those Tron shirts. Neat!
  3. Harrison's Avatar
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    That Star Wars Darth Vader painting is awesome. I wonder how much it is... Great update as always guys, only 64 more days until I get to enjoy myself at the resort.
  4. Emmanuel_4's Avatar
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    Great Update!!!!!
  5. Ian P's Avatar
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    Are there supposed to be seats in the World of Colour viewing area? I don't see where they are going to go, looks more like a standing only area.
  6. WheresMickey's Avatar
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    Awsome update!
  7. Mac Daddy's Avatar
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    Thanks for the great update, Andy! My comments both have to do with the trees in DCA.

    1) Not sure ficus were be best choice for the trees around the new lighthouse fixture. They'll give great shade, but those things are monsters. In 10 years they'll either be replacing that concrete or replacing the trees as the roots push out in all directions.

    2) I love the trees behind the new WOC viewing area, what a bummer for the folks with rooms in the expanded section of the GCH who will miss part or all of the WOC from their rooms. I will also miss the view from the other side of the lagoon once the leaves come back. But they desperately need the shade in that area, so kudos to Disney for spending the extra cash for more trees in DCA.
  8. StevenSokulski's Avatar
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    Thanks, as always, for the update!

    Anybody know how big the American Adventure figures are in the Lincoln lobby?

    I was in the parks last Tuesday and Wednesday and noticed that a lit Sylvania logo had already been added to the opening and closing scenes of it's a small world. They're quick!
  9. zugzug15's Avatar
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    Good Update. I actually ate at the Taqueria this weekend. The food was quite good. Like a chipotle with a few more options (different rices for example) High prices for the alcohol though.
  10. Eagleman's Avatar
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    Great Report! "THANK YOU"!
    I do like the little
    American Adventure figures are in the Lincoln lobby!
    Looks like they did a great job with the Lincoln lobby..
    I be glad to see the whole thing myself.......

    I still do not like this tower thing!
  11. Rixter's Avatar
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    Thanks for another great column, Andy. Happy holidays!
  12. cositaluvsmickey's Avatar
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    Thanks Andy for another great Report
  13. sir clinksalot's Avatar
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    Now D Street is a store I might actually go into!!!
  14. iracema1's Avatar
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    GREAT update! Thanks for including the OC Register video of the revamped "GMWML" attraction. So delighted to see the Capitol building returned, as well as all the Imagineer artwork having pride-of-place in the exhibit. Video from OC Register gave me goosebumps!
  15. Disneykin Kid's Avatar
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    The Capitol building in Lincoln - wonder where it's been all these years, after being taken out of the original attraction. The lobby looks beautiful and the figure awesome, but after the initial excitement, interest will still probably wane after a while. I'm one of those who didn't go to see it very often, but still want it there, I hope I'm wrong about the lack of future attendance. It still stirs up the Disney faithful, Disney was smart to put the Disney Gallery right there, hopefully management will continue to recognize the connection between the attraction and the gallery.
  16. disneyDragon923's Avatar
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    Great update. I saw the Lincoln show yesterday and it was awesome. It was my first time because I'm too young to remember when Lincoln was first around, so everything in there is a first for me and not a last. Lincoln really makes you feel good about yourself and proud to be an American
  17. Pipeek's Avatar
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    Disneyland is not open till Midnight on Christmas Eve.
  18. MarkTwain's Avatar
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    That painting of Lincoln called "the Burden of War" is beautiful! I assumed it was a "real"/famous painting until I read from the plaque that it was a piece of WDI concept art. Is there a larger picture of it I can find somewhere, MasterGracey?
  19. wdwnut4life's Avatar
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    it isn't? wdw is open til 1 am! happy holidays all!
  20. Mr_Incredible's Avatar
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    Wow, is that Tron merchandise already? Just less than a year until the new film, and the campaign has already begun. Not really complaining as it's the film of 2010 I'm waiting for the most.

    Also, about the tribute to Roy, why isn't the American flag at half staff. Bit insulting, actually.
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