Took a short visit to the park today. Mint's update covered everything but I'll give a bit of commentary.
The buildings around GRR look great! They are the same color as before by not faded, as weathered, or distressed. The vibrant, dark red on the Rushin River Outfitters is a great contrast to the dark green pines all around it and it sets a nice foreground to the granite peak beyond it. The buildings are going to look great and less worn down and more in the time period.
Speaking of time periods...ran by Condor Flats and into the Fly N Buy and noticed what may be a new display case behind the register. The store already has GREAT theming inside but this little case stuck out as new because it had a calendar in it that was for "October, 1947", along with some aviator sunglasses, a state of CA map, and other cool 40's era looking items. Some more theming added to perhaps better bring home the 1940's airfield theming they are aiming for...?
BVS is coming together nicely. Elias and Co is looking better and better. The trees around the fountain were blooming these beautiful pink, bell shaped flowers. New streetlights were also up around the fountain and looked GREAT! The wrought iron marque looks fantastic and really adds a nice dimension to the building. As I, and many other posters have been saying, that's the fun of more simplistic Mission Revival and Art Deco styles, seeing it all come together with the ornamental details. There was also a beautiful planter/vase up on the 2nd floor of the Carthay.
Blue Sky Cellar...this by far is the BEST exhibit thus far in the cellar. People are excited for Cars Land. I spent some time in the area and let me tell you, guest of all types are talking about it. I saw so many guest look at the banners up on the parade route, saw that they mentioned Cars Land, and went up to discover the cellar. Others came up to get a better view down Route 66 for pictures (especially once the sun set and the neon came on) and some more from the wonderful CM host welcoming guest in. The art, models, and pictures in the exhibit are great. The aerial picture is from a couple weeks ago and you really get a sense on the layout of the land. One thing I noticed from the aerial picture, the layout plans (which clearly show all land including Bugs Land path and stuff) and the model is what looks to be a large "viewing" area that diverges off the main path leading from Cars Land to Pacific Wharf and sits next to the track of RSR. Maybe a cool photo spot to get that awesome family pic with the massive Cadillac Range and racing cars in the background? Who knows... Lot's of other awesome stuff in the exhibit, I definitely recommend checking it out. I particularly liked the art showing all the various graphics, posters, billboards, and even the fastpass machines, for the land. I just love that style! Oh, and the music is really great too. Hopefully a sign of things to come.
The video...I could go on about how well done the main video is. It is just so good. So many great shots of the rockwork and the land in general! The more scenic filming they did of the land with the rocks, the landscaping, and the buildings/lights is GREAT stuff. I love the ones they show with the plants swaying in the breeze, filtering the light with the red rocks as a backdrop. Such a great mix of textures. This land is going to be something special. Someone needs to get stills from the video and put them up because it would be awesome to see (I would but don't even know how).
This video really got me excited for the land and kind of brought a better understanding of the stories and themes of the land. Sure, part of the motivation is merchandise and franchise and blah blah blah but you know what, this land does have heart, especially to anybody who used to road trip and travel to small towns. These small towns are so unique, so quirky, so different. They are a class of their own but are so often bypassed but shouldn't be. Like John says, life isn't about the finish line, it's about the journey to get there; to stop and take a second to realize all the intricate details that make the fabric interesting. I know Cars isn't a favorite among many people here but I feel that theme is why I've always enjoyed the movie. I'm a "stop and smell
the roses" kind of guy. It's nice to take the long way sometimes and remember all the small things that make life special. Hearing the Imagineers talk about their journey on Route 66 and how they hope to bring this to the land is just great. The land will tell the stories, just like the Radiator Springs did in the movie. Cars Land is going to be special for me. Road trips were a big thing in my family and the stops in small towns were just something special, and I can see that this feeling is coming to Cars Land. In much the same way that Grizzly Peak reminds me of summer camping trips in the High Sierra's, Cars Land is going to remind me of the long, desert drive to get there including the stop at our favorite cafe in that little small roadside town with the radio playing those old, familiar tunes and where the people are just so interesting and different, just so special.
I like how the one emotional Imagineer described Radiator Springs Racers. He said it's more our journey in their world. The ride is about us. (since we're on topic of loose narratives). All those Imagineers were great and so passionate about this project and truly hitting the ball out of the park through quality work. Cars Land will be something else