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Dateline Disneyland

Valentine's Day decorations, Swings progress, Tiana celebrates, River refurb, +MORE

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by , 02-08-2010 at 03:00 AM
Welcome to the February 8th edition of Dateline Disneyland! The parks continue to be a maze of construction walls as Disneyland continues its off-season refurbishments and Disney's California Adventure presses on with its various construction projects. Meanwhile, new Valentine's Day decorations have sprung up in Town Square as well as at Minnie's House in Mickey's Toon Town, and over in New Orleans Square, Princess Tiana is starring in a new Mardi Gras Celebration as her meet and greet moves to Fantasyland's Princess Fantasy Faire.

For more information, or to join in on the on-going discussion on many of the construction projects featured in today's update, check out the newly re-launced Project Trackers on MiceChat. Just 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.

Before we get started, I am pleased to announce that this week's DatelineDisneyland is sponsored by our good friends at the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel - Anaheim Resort. A short walk from the park, the hotel is conveniently located to Disneyland with nearby dining and freeway access. For more information on HoJo Anaheim, room rates, or to book your stay today, visit Readers of Dateline Disneyland and MiceChat receive special discounted rates, so please book from the links above or call and ask for the MiceChat rate! With great rooms, family suites, a fantastic water playground Castaway Cove and pool, the HoJo Anaheim is the perfect location for family fun and relaxation - just across the street from the magic kingdom of Disneyland.

Inside Dateline Disneyland

Sponsored by Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel - Anaheim Resort

New signage at the Mickey and Friends Parking Structure and Main Entrance Plaza security tents notify guests of the new central Stroller Rental location.

Meanwhile, construction walls are still up around the former Stroller Shop just inside Disneyland's main gate.

A few refurbishment walls are here and there on Main Street while minor work is taken care of.

A temporary "door" is in place at 20th Century Music Company while the actual door is gone for some work. The work doesn't affect guests; the guest door is to the left of this faux porch.

Disneyland quietly introduced some minor new Valentine's Day decorations this year in Town Square as well as in front of Minnie's House in Mickey's Toon Town.

Each of the four circular planter benches in Town Square have the new holiday decorations, which look good in photos, but up close look built-to-last out of metal but lack charm.

At Minnie's house, the hearts look more whimsical, suiting the cartoon mouse.

The rebuilding of the Bridge to Frontierland is winding down.

Inside Frontierland, the big Rivers of America refurbishment continues as crews drain the river yet again after this weekend's rainfall.

With the Rivers of America closed, Princess Tiana's popular show aboard the Mark Twain Riverboat which debuted in November has ended. The Princess' shows proved popular, though, and she has returned as of this weekend in a new small show on the New Orleans Square mainland, in front of the French Market Restaurant.

The show only features Princess Tiana from the film, so don't watch expecting to see Prince Naveen or other characters from the film that were featured in Tiana's Showboat Jubilee!

Tiana sings several songs solo here, along with some backup dancers and Disneyland's Jambalaya Jazz Band performing live in the background.

Princess Tiana's Mardi Gras Celebration runs several times daily. Times are listed on the Times Guide.

Fans of the Princess and the Frog should know that Princess Tiana no longer does meet and greets after performances in New Orleans Square's Courtyard of Angels. Tiana has now joined the other Disney Princesses in Fantasyland's Princess Fantasy Faire.

Construction continues throughout California Adventure as the park undergoes a multi-year $1 billion remodel and expansion.

Work continues around the clock on the Disney's new World of Color show.

Looks like the "ChernaZurg" is fully submerged.


Silly Symphony Swings continues its transformation.

A quick look at some other refurbishments around the parks...
Wine Country Trattoria in California Adventure remains closed.

Work in the building can be seen both downstairs....

...and upstairs at the old Vineyard Room restaurant.

Back in Disneyland, "it's a small world" is back open after removing its annual holiday overlay. The new Sylvania-sponsored marquee has yet to be installed.

Nearby, Le Petit Chalet Gifts is closed for refurbishment through Wednesday.

The Matterhorn Bobsleds are also down for some work until March 1.

Pooh Corner in Critter Country remains open while its facade continues its refurbishment.

The Tomorrowland Terrace foodservice windows are now completely covered by refurbishment walls as the restaurant continues its long refurbishment.

The stage is still open for Jedi Training Academy and evening concerts.

Across the way, the Starcade is back open after a quick floor replacement.

The same everyday arcade games are available.

The floor might look wooden in photos, but in person its a metallic gold color.

The upstairs half of the Starcade remains empty and closed to Guests.

An interesting new line of t-shirts is out featuring old Walt Disney quotes.

Photos from around the parks. Clicking on these will take you to their Flickr photo page, allowing you to download in high-resolution or to order prints.

Just steps away from Disneyland:

For a complete listing of theme park hours, please visit the Theme Park Calendar
Disneyland Park
Monday: 9 am - 11 pm
Tuesday - Thursday: 10 am - 8 pm
Friday - Sunday: 8 am - 12 midnight

Disney's California Adventure Park
Monday: 9 am - 7 pm
Tuesday - Thursday: 10 am - 6 pm
Friday - Saturday: 10 am - 9 pm
Sunday: 9 am - 8 pm

Disneyland Park
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds: Closed February 1 through March 11 for refurbishment.
  • Le Petit Chalet Gifts: Closed through February 10 for refurbishment.
  • "Honey, I Shrunk the Audience:" Closed. Captain EO is returning for a "special limited engagement" in February. It is unknown if "Honey, I Shrunk the Audience" will return following Captain EO's run.
  • Tomorrowland Terrace: Restaurant closed through July 2 for refurbishment. Stage will remain open for shows and performances during restaurant closure.
  • Rivers of America: Closed 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 through May 6
    • Mark Twain Riverboat: Closed through May 6
    • Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes: Closed through May 6
    • Pirate's Lair on Tom Sawyer Island: Closed through May 14

Disney's California Adventure Park
  • Francis' Lady Bug Boogie: Closed through February 4.
  • Golden Zephyr: Closed February 16 through April 2 for refurbishment.
  • Award Wieners: Closed through April 18.
  • Wine Country Trattoria: Closed through April 26.
  • Silly Symphony Swings: Orange Stinger is now closed for retheming. Reopens as the Silly Symphony Swings late April.
  • 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.
  • Disney's World of Color Nighttime Spectacular: New show under construction. Debuts Spring 2010.
  • Paradise Park: Former Golden State Amphitheater area is closed and a 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.

MiceChat 2010 Gumball Rally!

Embark on a journey through the happiest theme park on earth to find out which team can ride the most attractions at Disneyland in a single day with MiceChat's 2010 Gumball Rally!
When: May 1st, 2010
Where: Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California

Nick Jonas held a surprise concert in Downtown Disney last week promoting his new album. The impromptu performance was announced shortly before he went on stage via his Twitter account. The Disney star signed autographs and posed for pictures with fans afterward.
Surprise Nick Jonas concert at Downtown Disney

Word leaked out around 4 p.m. on the Internet that singer Nick Jonas would be coming to Downtown Disney to sing a few songs.

And, a few hours later, Jonas was singing in a free, surprise concert in the Disneyland Resort.

The concert was billed as a “Twitter-tour” to promote his newly released CD/DVD set, “Who I Am.”

Teens and some parents came from Riverside, Los Angeles and other areas, saying they had heard about it from a Twitter post that was making the Internet rounds from celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton.
For the full article, visit: Around Disney: Surprise Nick Jonas concert at Downtown Disney

The latest turn of events for the disgruntled worker union that keeps Disney's Hotels running is a hunger strike in which 10 people was participate in, beginning tomorrow, February 9.
Disney hotel workers to start fasting Tuesday
Some Disney hotel workers today said they are willing to risk their own health by joining a hunger strike for the sake of securing free healthcare benefits.

Today, the Disney hotel union, Unite Here Local 11, announced that 10 members plan to start a hunger strike on Tuesday to draw attention to a two-year contract dispute. The participants plan to consume only water for at least seven days.

Disney officials say the union is using the strike to distract from the negotiations stalemate.
“This is just another tactic from Local 11 leadership to distract from the fact that after two years their members are still without a contract,” said Suzi Brown, a Disneyland Resort spokeswoman, in a prepared statement Wednesday.

The main contention is over healthcare costs: Disney wants employees to contribute to the company health plan. The union wants to keep providing its own free health care for about 2,150 members, with Disney kicking in more funds.

In the past two years, employees say workloads also have increased, some leading to health problems, said Ada Briceno, the union’s secretary-treasurer. Disney officials say that the workload has remained about the same and injury reports have collectively decreased in the past two years at the three hotels: Grand Californian, Paradise Pier and Disneyland.
For the full article, visit: Around Disney: Disney hotel workers to start fasting Tuesday

Okay, that should wrap up this week's column. Thanks to Mac Daddy for his extra help with a few shots this week. And of course, thanks to you for reading! Extra thanks for those of you who have donated to Dateline Disneyland. Your contributions go towards transportation costs and are the reason you continue to see these updates published every week — so thank you! Without your support, these updates could not happen! If you'd like to donate to Dateline Disneyland please consider doing so via a safe and quick PayPal donation. To donate, click here.

Also, remember that MiceChat has loads of new content all week long! For even more Disneyland news, photos and information check out the In the Parks column on Fridays. And MiceChat's Weekend Update, tours the world of Disney theme parks and other worldly sights and landmarks!

Don't forget to join us on Twitter! There are 5,800 other Dateline Disneylanders who follow us on Twitter, and recieve updates throughout the week with links to breaking news, mini updates, photos, and links to newsworthy MiceChat discussions. Visit now!

See you here next week!
- Andy

FTC-Mandated Disclosure:
Promotional consideration for this, the February 8th edition of Dateline Disneyland, was provided by
Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel
Anaheim Resort

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  1. Emmanuel_4's Avatar
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    Great update!
  2. WheresMickey's Avatar
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    Great update!
  3. ReverendGonzo's Avatar
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    These updates are beginning to get addicting.
  4. Internitty's Avatar
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    I look forward every week to your updates, thank you for the time and attention to detail you put in each week. I agree with ReverandGonzo these updates are addictive. I love the new Walt Disney quote shirts, I hope they are still available when I visit in December.
  5. JADP's Avatar
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    Okay I'm gonna have to get me one of those shirts!
  6. Baloo's Avatar
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    nice update.
    The work on the ROA has really been an uphill battle when it come to the rain. Maybe next time they should schedule the refurbishment a bit earlier and that way if it rains they do not have to worry about the water expense to fill it up LOL
  7. Viewliner Rick's Avatar
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    The Mark Twain sure looks different with its paddle wheel removed! Since she is well over 50 years old, she is a rare operating historic steamboat. I'm glad the old girl is getting some TLC.
  8. RedHandedJill's Avatar
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    Spectacular update as always! it's so exciting seeing things come together and get fixed for my trip in May
  9. cositaluvsmickey's Avatar
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    Another wonderful report..thanks Andy
  10. KENfromOC's Avatar
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    Great update goes. As far as that silly hotel union hunger strike goes: Haaa Haaaa Haaa!!! Heee Heeee!
  11. DonDuck's Avatar
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    Great shots of all the things going on in the parks!
  12. ThE8rLvr's Avatar
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    I too am a fan of your work Andy! I read your update every monday religiously. I always feel like I've just visited the park. You really are a gifted photographer. I have uploaded serveral of your photos and use them as my desktop. Thanks again for all you do!
  13. astrologic's Avatar
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    Great pictures and great update! Thanks so much.
  14. Dustysage's Avatar
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    Fantastic update Andy! Tons of beautiful photos!
  15. Timekeeper's Avatar
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    Thank you for the lovely pictures, Andy!

  16. disney-fan-reborn's Avatar
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    GREAT update! LOVE the new shirts! Very cool! Also, thanks for the Flickr photos! My desktop background loves you!

    Oh and that "hunger strike"...what a joke! FREE healthcare benefits?! Poor babies don't want to have to deal with having insurance deducted from their checks LIKE THE REST OF THE NORMAL COUNTRY!!

    (Disney execs, here's a tip....GET RID OF THE UNIONS! IT WILL SAVE YOU MONEY!)
    Updated 02-08-2010 at 04:07 PM by disney-fan-reborn
  17. Harrison's Avatar
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    Another great update. My family's annual trip to the Resort is just 15 short days from now and seeing these Dateline Disney updated definitely helps pass the time (I mean just 3 more updates left before we go). The shots around the park are great this week.
  18. disneyfan07's Avatar
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    [quote=disney-fan-reborn;bt11441]GREAT update! LOVE the new shirts! Very cool! Also, thanks for the Flickr photos! My desktop background loves you!

    Oh and that "hunger strike"...what a joke! FREE healthcare benefits?! Poor babies don't want to have to deal with having insurance deducted from their checks LIKE THE REST OF THE NORMAL COUNTRY!!

    (Disney execs, here's a tip....GET RID OF THE UNIONS! IT WILL SAVE YOU MONEY!)[/quote]


    not only do I agree with this, but hopefully you and I arent the only ones who feel that unions have outlived their usefullness.
  19. MickeyMousePal's Avatar
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    Wonderful update
  20. pineapplewhipaddict's Avatar
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    I'm really disappointed that the Starcade didn't get more...I was hoping we'd get some classic 80s games, maybe something like Flynn's Arcade...and that the 2nd floor might see the light of day again.

    Maybe they want to wait for the Tomorrowland makeover...
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