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  1. #16

    • Former Churro Jockey
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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Wow, I kind of saw it coming but decided to go anyway. I wish I hadn't.

    I got off of work and went home and decide to wait a bit for Friday traffic to clear out before heading off to Disneyland. I ended up getting to Harbor Blvd around 7:30pm. Harbor was backed up a little bit (to about Chapman or so) and it took a good 15 - 20 min to make it into the Toy Story lot, only to be told that the lot was full and I'd have to go to the parking structure instead. I tried to follow the CM's directions for getting out of the lot but I got a little lost and actually ended up finding a parking space so I just went ahead and parked.

    Getting into Disneyland wasn't too bad, but the villain party right at the train station created quite a mess for people trying to enter the park. After I made it past that, I headed over to New Orleans Square. It was probably 8:30pm or so by now and Fantasmic was getting ready to start. I managed to make my way past the French Market to head to the Haunted Mansion. They had the area by the train station roped off for another villain dance party that was going to start later on, and the line for Mansion was backed up all around the fountain and even around the popcorn wagon. I tried to find the end of the line but I kept getting blocked off by the ropes that they had set up for the dance party. Fantasmic started, so I thought maybe I'd get something to eat at the French Market and wait for Fantasmic and the fireworks to end and see if the crowds lightened up enough to find the back of the line for Mansion. It took about half an hour to get some food, but there were no available tables at all. I even walked over to the Café Orleans (which was closed now) and asked if I could sit over there since there were no tables at the French Market but they said no. I ended up sitting on the floor on the stage at the French Market to eat.

    After the fireworks, I tried again to find the back of the line for Mansion, but now the villains dance party was starting and it was getting more crowded in New Orleans Square, so at that point I gave up and decide just to go home. I started heading through Adventureland but there were still a lot of the Fantasmic crowds trying to make their way out of the park, and I thought that the busses might be super crowded, so I hopped on Jungle Cruise and hoped that maybe I'd be able to let some of the crowds clear out while I was on the ride.

    I did make it out of the park about 10:00PM or so. The lines to get into the park were super long and stretched well back into the esplanade. I made it over to the busses, and the line for the busses was the longest I've ever seen. I didn't time how long it took to get on a bus, but I'd guess somewhere between 30 - 45 minutes. I finally made it home around 11:30PM, and I only live 10 miles away.

    Overall it was awful. I feel really bad for anyone who was visiting from out-of-town who was there yesterday and that was their one day at the park while they are out here. According to MouseWait, the wait for Space Mountain was 100 minutes when I got there and the wait for Haunted Mansion was 130. I really should have just turned around and gone home when they told me that the Toy Story lot was full.
    Disneyland Cast Member
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    My interview with MiceAge about working at Disneyland:
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  2. #17

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    i'm surprised anyone is surprised

  3. #18

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    It was another Leap Day 2012. You had to have been in the park before 4:00 to beat the traffic nightmare. The park was overly crowded. I'm surprised it didn't reach capacity.
    I guess Disney wasn't ready, again.

    The fireworks, Remember..., were amazing even if the overall experience wasn't.

  4. #19

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Glad I stayed home and played Disney Infinity

    So I'm guessing the parks will not be crowded today!

  5. #20

    • Former Churro Jockey
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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Quote Originally Posted by BasilofBakerStreet View Post
    Glad I stayed home and played Disney Infinity

    So I'm guessing the parks will not be crowded today!
    Today is a blackout day for most AP's and it's the beginning of the school year so the park will probably not be that crowded at all.
    Disneyland Cast Member
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    My interview with MiceAge about working at Disneyland:
    http://micechat.com/blogs/mouth-of-t...ding-crew.html

  6. #21

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Well, I'm lucky enough to be in Anaheim for the weekend on a plant startup in San Francisco, so I drove down last night, only knowing about the party a few days ago, after I had my ressies at the Candy Cane Inn. I was upset I didn't get down here until about 10:30. But when I saw the cars backed up to 5 for the Mickey and Friends, I got very afraid.

    Traffic wasn't bad at all until I got to where I wanted to turn on Katella, and I didn't realize the turn lane wasn't moving because of people in it to get around to Garden Walk. Once I finally got around, I went into the bus U turn lane, and got to CCI. I quickly checked in and got to the gates around 11:15,.

    By then, hoards were leaving, and I walked right through the gate. There was a huge line for the villains meet and greet, but It was the guy from Pocahontus at the time. Who cares about him? There was no special map or guide, so I went to NOS. I was fighting against the hoards for sure. Went to the pin store to find the pin for the evening event sold out at 10 AM. The lady at the counter was very helpful. Told be pumpkin beignets were sold out hours ago, there was supposed to be a special popcorn bucket, but it didn't arrive in time, so hopefully I can score one this weekend, if they finally show.

    everyone was buying the Halloween ears like crazy, and they are supposed to be very limited, so I bout the apple ones for my wife.

    i decided to bit the bullet and get in the mass of a HM line. I may have cut some of it inadvertently, but it was a bit over 30 minutes. The GAC abuse was unbelievable, hoards of people, with no wheelchairs, mostly 20 something's.

    the mansion was awesome as usual. I really Liked the new screen in e stretching room. I haven't ridden in a few years, so I don't know what else changed, except the centerpiece,and zero in the no long changing portraits, just projections.

    on the way out, at 11:44, I did a walk on, which still means 15 minutes for Indy. Loved the new Mara effect. In line one group of "handicapped" people were even bragging about gaming the system.

    Crazy experience but now I can say I've been to one of these crazy Disney events.

    jason

  7. #22

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    We finished dinner around 7:30 and the night was so young (as are we), so we decided to go to Disneyland to check out the new HMH effects. It took an hour to get into Mickey and Friends. Should've listened to my original instinct. :l

    Either way by 10PM, getting into NOS from Frontierland was a mess because they were holding everyone up because I assume the first Fantasmic! crowd was leaving as the second crowd was queuing up for it, and the dance party in NOS and HMH were not helping.

    HMH was listed as 80 minutes but it as really only 40 and I thought the new effect was okay. Minor nitpicking is the projection of the Ghost Host and the windows because the windows display outside as daytime...very clear daytime. :l

    After riding that, we tried to get a Fastpass for Indy, but there was a glitch in system or something because when I (and other guests around me I saw), put in their AP, it came out as INVALID despite the fact that we weren't holding other Fastpasses. Oh well.

    Leaving, interestingly enough, wasn't a problem though. Uh it was an interesting night.

  8. #23

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    I had been so looking forward to this event since they first announced it back in January. One of the few events we knew was coming - and if we knew it was coming, why didn't management plan this better? I really am not sure what I was expecting, but this sure wasn't it!
    The good thing is my daughter and I got there early afternoon before the traffic and parking nightmare began. Found out after I parked in Toy Story that Pumba was open. O how I wish we had parked there when it was time to leave. Getting into the Park was no problem and the crowds were manageable. Headed over to Mansion and waited 25 minutes and love the new effects. Then up to the Halloween Carnival at Big Thunder Jamboree to catch my Billys doing their Halloween show. Lots of stuff going on up there, almost too much. They've increased the size of the conjuring tent and the line stretched all the way across which made getting into the arena area difficult. Also they have the dress the kids as pirates thing up there and the pumpkin carving. The Billys were hot as always! Down to see a couple of Laughing Stock shows in the air conditioned Horseshoe and then back up for the last Billy show of the day. Sat and talked and listened to Farley the Fiddler.
    And that was the last of our relaxing, uncrowded day.
    Now the mess begins. We decided we wanted a chicken dinner from Plaza Inn but the line was out the door, down the path and around the corner. Ended up over in Del whatever - crowded but not that bad. Decided to go down to Town Square and wait for the happenings at 8 PM. I could tell right away things would not go well. There was no line for the villains meet n greet - it was just a mass of people with no organization. We sat over by the Hat Shop and saw the villains come out by the side gate. Then the music started. Now folks, I'm old - and frankly this isn't by style of music. Projections on the train station were nicely done. Bass was really good if you are into that but it bothered me so much. So we headed to New Orleans but knew the Villain party wouldn't start until 9:45 so went back to Hungry Bear and just sat. Not crowded back there and watched the backstage for Fantasmic comings and goings. When Fantasmic started we watched from the canoe area all the performers coming and going. It's kind of fun. We ran into some friends and so our two daughters went on Splash Mountain which was practically a walk on. Then we headed to the "party" in New Orleans. Yikes. What a mess. Just a mass of people and the villains just stayed up on the platform dancing but you could not see them!
    OK - that was it, time to head out. Made our way slowly but surely through the crowds, cutting through the stores on Main Street. Couldn't believe how long the line was to get into Disneyland still was. Now is the time I wish I had parked in Pumba. The line for Toy Story buses began over on the side where they normally let you off and there was only one bus over in pick up and none coming. So we walked back to Toy Story. That is when in became clear why there were no buses - they were stuck in traffic. And it became clear that was not the way to go to get out of the area. When we finally got out of the parking lot we went straight across Harbor and took the round about at the convention center, back to Harbor and turned South to Orangewood and then West thereby avoiding the traffic mess on Harbor and Disney Way and Katella.
    So I would say my day was a mix of good and bad. Good afternoon but bad night. You really think they would learn by now.

  9. #24

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    My wife and I went last night, and we didn't know there were any special events going on, that was just the only chance we had to go before our passes expired (we won't be renewing right away for budgetary reasons).

    Traffic getting into the resort was a mess, foot traffic inside the park was a mess - gridlocking and bottlenecking everywhere. A lot of food stands were shutting down at about 10:30-11, so it was a little bit harder than normal to get a snack. Wait times for certain rides weren't bad but a lot of the stuff we wanted to go on was a long wait (Space Mountain 120 mins) or 101 when we tried (Fantasyland rides). I didn't like the fact that they shut down the trains for the dance party, I'm sure that didn't help traffic at all.

    Not knowing what was going on, I wasn't glad to see the flashing neon lights and pumping techno music. I go to DL to get AWAY from that. Guess I picked the wrong time and place. Oh well. We still made the most of the night.

  10. #25

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    It does seem like another Leap Year debacle - I've been reading about what happened in WDW and it seems to be the same story.

    I hope the villains will be out for meet & greets during the Halloween season, outside of the parties...I'd love to meet Maleficent again!
    Merida looks like this. Not a Barbie doll!

  11. #26

    • Science Factual
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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    It was not Leap day 2012.
    Lines got a little long but nothing a little patience and some good convo didn't cure.

  12. #27

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    I was hoping to arrive by 8:00pm, but I checked out the traffic on Waze, and we decided to have dinner and wait until 10:00pm. We exited Ball and headed directly to the Toy Story lot, and encountered a delay of up to 5 minutes due to traffic. This was already much better than our hour+ wait in traffic on the first 24 hour day. The signs outside the Toy Story lot said the lot was full, but since the fireworks had already happenend, there were a bunch of cars leaving the lot. So, we pulled right in, found a quick spot, and before we knew it, we were already on a bus!

    But then it took the bus about 15 minutes to get to Disneyland. People on the bus were sharing their horror stories of being in traffic for two hours, going from Mickey and Friends, to Toy Story, to Gardenwalk, only to find that Gardenwalk was not accepting annual pass parking, and then going back to Toy Story. Yikes. The bus took forever to cross the first intersection but then zoomed ahead.

    Once at the esplanade, we found longish lines to get in. They definitely weren't as bad as the first 24 hour day, when lines snaked around the whole esplanade. DCA had just closed, so we were getting the parkhoppers. It was fine, though; we just got in a short line all the way to the right (when facing Disneyland), and we were in within 2 minutes.

    And then we saw the real crowds! We stayed mainly in the Town Square, checking out the dance party, and hopping in the TWO HOUR line to take pictures with the villains. We got Captain Hook and Gov. Ratcliffe, who everyone around us were super excited to see. We had taken pictures with them during Long Lost Friends week, but this was more fun. Everyone was posing all evil with the characters, and embracing their evilness. At Long Lost Friends, the character handlers had to tell us to give it up to the bad guys because people were ignoring them (Hades, in particular). The dance party gave it a real fun atmosphere with a good mix of dance music from different eras, and the spiderweb lights. We enjoyed watching the green witch dancer do Beyonce's Single Ladies dance. They even did Monster Mash (of course).

    We noticed they had sold out of the gingerbread skeleton cookies, and we figured they were out of beignets. They had other Halloween-themed candy, and the candy apple fridge was emptying quickly!

    So, in the end, it was fun, but we definitely knew what we were getting into and embraced the idea of being in a crowd of crazy Disney fans.

  13. #28

    • the rockawho?
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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    the lower AP passes should be blackout on these type of special events....it will cut back on the traffic around the park and the attendance inside the park.....

    The lower AP holders will have the option to pay a few more bucks to have their tickets valid for the event....Im sure some will be willing to pay, and some won't be willing to pay extra...this is probably one way to avoid these type of jam packed ordeals by just a little

  14. #29

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilRocketeer View Post
    the lower AP passes should be blackout on these type of special events....it will cut back on the traffic around the park and the attendance inside the park.....

    The lower AP holders will have the option to pay a few more bucks to have their tickets valid for the event....Im sure some will be willing to pay, and some won't be willing to pay extra...this is probably one way to avoid these type of jam packed ordeals by just a little
    I agree.

  15. #30

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    Re: Disneyland on Friday the 13th is a REAL nightmare

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilRocketeer View Post
    the lower AP passes should be blackout on these type of special events....it will cut back on the traffic around the park and the attendance inside the park.....

    The lower AP holders will have the option to pay a few more bucks to have their tickets valid for the event....Im sure some will be willing to pay, and some won't be willing to pay extra...this is probably one way to avoid these type of jam packed ordeals by just a little
    I disagree. Either it's a ticketed event for everyone or no one.
    Merida looks like this. Not a Barbie doll!

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