6/20: Toy Story what? Innoventions Dream Home, Award Wieners, Wall-E merch, +MORE
by, 06-20-2008 at 03:20 AM
WELCOME TO DISNEYLAND!
New park maps.
The inside flap of the park maps note the new Toy Story Midway Mania and Innoventions Dream Home attractions.
At the parking toll booths, guests are given "Adventure Roadmaps" as part of the Honda Pilot and Midway Mania cross promotion.
The Adventure Roadmap features a series of "trivia" questions to answer guests need to answer to enter in the Honda Pilot sweepstakes.
The billboards at the Mickey & Friends tram stop have been swapped out for Toy Story (Midway) Mania.
The Green Army Men directing guests to Toy Story Midway Mania at Disney's California Adventure that Al Lutz mentioned in his June 17 column set up shop on this small stage in front of the Downtown Disney security tents.
A Honda Pilot that guests can get in and check out is parked out in the esplanade.
"Disney's California Adventure or Bust"? Right.
TOY STORY WHAT?
Despite a somewhat misleading and confusing ad campaign excluding the California Adventure park's name and the wrong name for the attraction, the new Toy Story Midway Mania ride opened with wait times upwards of 2.5 hours on Tuesday.
Prior to its 11 am opening to park guests on Tuesday, the attraction's queue stretched from the Pacific Wharf pedestrian bridge all the way to the Sunshine Plaza fountain, weaving through the Bountiful Valley Farm area along the way.
The grand opening ceremony took place at 10 am in the Golden State amphitheater, with radio stations broadcasting live nearby throughout the day.
Yet, the attraction has routinely been encountering extended periods of down time. On opening day, the attraction broke down several times, the longest was for three hours, causing Cast Members to clear the queue. Shortly after the attraction re-opened, the wait time hovered around a posted 90-minute wait-time. On Thursday, the attraction broke down a little over an hour before the park was scheduled to close, and Cast Members turned guests away, saying that, despite their trying, they didn't expect it to re-open before the park closed early for Grad Nite. Hopefully the attraction starts running reliably soon, as CMs are hoping that some of the kinks are worked out before opening up the Single-Rider queue in a couple weeks.
The ride-though isn't the only part of Midway experiencing issues. On opening day Mr. Potato Head went to bed early after one of his animatronic arms broke.
Not only is the attraction itself faulty, but so is the advertising. The message boards have been buzzing ever since the TV spots started airing and the billboards went up about the somewhat misleading representation of the attraction being at Disneyland - both with the toys sneaking down Main Street, U.S.A. and the use of the Disneyland Resort logo. But the attraction is also suffering from having two names. The opening-day ceremony marked a bizarre juxtaposition of both of the names literally right on top of each other, with the ceremony stage signage covering up the attraction marquee.
The Honda Adventure Roadmap map oddly features both attraction names right next to each other.
And after having just seen the Green Army Men advertise Toy Story Midway Mania on their stage in Downtown Disney, guests are greeted with signage after the security checkpoint advertising Toy Story Mania.
Where is the consistency?
It's definitely not here.
The merchandise for the attraction, including these new Toy Cannons continue the double-name problem.
The entire debacle is completely silly, and shows the true maturity level of certain divisions of the company. While Imagineering has to put their foot down to give the attraction an appropriate name, another division has to lead some misguided attempt at showing superiority. It's silly and just ends up looking bad to guests, who just want to be able to ride the new ride without having to deal with it having an identity crisis as it constantly breaks down.
STILL MOVING IN
While the marquee new attraction for the summer has its fair share of problems at DCA, across the esplanade at Disneyland, the new Innoventions Dream Home hosted media and sponsor guests on Monday and Tuesday. But guests wanting to get a look at the new Dream Home featured in their Disneyland guide maps are being turned away. Apparently, the residents are still "moving in" to their much-delayed Dream Home.
Guests looking down into the Dream Home from the second level of Innoventions got a look at a nicely-furnished home, complete with more digital photo frames and appliances running Windows Vista than anybody could ever need.
Still, the place looks nice, and hopefully it can get finished up by the planned opening targeted for the end of the month.
The House of the Future table that was in one of the old Innoventions zones has made it into the Elias family's young boy's room.
Outside, the Tomorrowland smoking area, which was poorly re-located to the pathway between Autopia and the Tomorrowland Railroad Station when the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage opened, has finally been moved.
The smoking area should never have been moved here, because the cloud of smoke was an awful torture that Railroad passengers had to walk through to and from the Tomorrowland train station, and guests entering Autopia not only had to deal with the Autopia exhaust, but cigarette smoke as well.
The new location is all the way at Fantasia Gardens at the former Motorboat Cruise dock.
Only the back half of the dock is reserved for smokers, as the front half is still seating area for the adjacent turkey leg and churro carts. Surprisingly, the division of the space works, and the eating area is not terribly affected by the nearby smoke.
Better signage may be needed, though, as some guests lighting up did not realize that the smoking area was at the back of the dock, which is an issue for eating guests.
THIS & THAT
Nearby, work continues on "it's a small world," with the attraction marquee covered up in tarps and scaffolding.
Hopefully the marquee will ditch its pastel color scheme and be repainted in gold and white to match the attraction facade.
The cannon in Town Square has returned.
And over in DCA, the new Award Wieners dining area in the never-used Muppet*Vision 3D queue has opened.
You wouldn't know it from these photos, but this space sees way more guests than it ever did as Muppet*Vision queue.
Overhead fans help beat the heat.
Ever since Seasons of the Vine closed, its been hard to track the progress on the new Walt Disney Imagineering preview center that's moving in. But apparently there is work going on behind those doors, and the Preview Center should open up later this summer.
You can't ride it, but you can pretend with the new Monorail Mark VII attraction poster.
The side-by-side poster set, similar to the side-by-side Submarine Voyage set, is quite nice.
WALL•E merchandise is now available around the Resort. Thanks to Armadillo4 for a few of these shots!
A new line of Pirate Princess merchandise has hit the shelves for the ladies.
I'm certainly not in the target demographic for this stuff, but I just don't see the appeal.
And a look at some other new, and relatively new merch available now.
Alright, that should do it for this week. Thanks for reading, and feel free to discuss below!
Also, be sure to subscribe to the MiceChat Featured Blogs RSS Feed so you never miss your Disneyland fix again!
See you next week!