One year ago, on 5-3-05, I arrived in Anaheim, anticipating the
beginning of the Fiftieth Festivities. I'll save some of these thoughts
for 5-5-06, because on this thread I just want to discuss some of the
special "pre-party surprises."
Because 5-4-2005, marked the first time in years that Disneyland
was closed to the public, I wanted to arrive on 5-3-05, in order to
visit DL one more time, before the party officially began. I tried to
back offon some of my high hopes for this party, (hoping for a 5th
mountain for DL park, for it's 50th, and a New MSEP, and among
other things) But even with the lack of several items on my wish
list for DL, this trip proved to provide many pleasant surprises.
As the Mickey and Friends tram dropped us off at the the one and
only stop for DDT, DCA, and DL, anticipation certainly began! (Still
hoping that there would be some way to get into DL 5-4-05,
with the back up plan of going to DCA to see their new parade,
if I absolutely couldn't get into DL on 5-4 - because I wasn't
one of the few winners of the AP online contest)
I did have to make one very important stop, before entering DL!
You see, just a couple days prior, I had received a lucite copy of
my DL Esplanade Brick ~ with the 50th Anniversary Medallion.
This would be the 1st time to see my actual brick for the 1st Time!
What a great way to start the trip ~ and it's become tradition
to check out the brick on every trip!
Entering through DL Gates, many of the 50th preparations had already
been completed. The floral Mickey, which had greeted guests for
50 years was made extra special for this 50th Celebration. And the
trip thru the magical tunnel, under the railroad track, opened up
Main Street, with all the charm it always has had, with the added
sparkle of all the buildings which had gone through a several months
refurbishment project. And extra gleem was added to all the lamposts,
courtesy of Tinkerbell!
At the end of Main Street, we noticed the castle had extra gold
sparkle, the new multi-blue colored tiles, and the much brighter
looking castle. However, one final touch, or shall I say FIVE,
final touches were still missing from the castle. No doubt, the
castle would receive her crowns at the coronation celebration
Walking thru the park, our eyes were open for all the added
touches, of new hidden Mickey logo's and the several photo
montages of various Disney Animated Character. Disneyland
new, once again!
Pirates, was one of the 1st choices, and what Disney Geeks
we proved to be with the cannonball splashes actually getting
us wet, and reaching heights never seen before. Little did we
know, this extra charge wouldn't even make the top ten list
for this trip.
Just as we walked by the Jungle Cruise, which had been
closed at least a couple months, the attraction opened a few
minutes prior! Soon we would know the secret behind the sign
which proclaimed "Something Gnu". As a Jungle Cruise nut, and one
time, guest river guide, I was about to go WiLD for the cruise as
One of the statues guarding the entrance to the sacred Elephant
bathing pool was moved closer to the Bengal Tiger, Some Giant
Arachnids were now it's place. The elephants out as usual,
and just beyond,. . . Baboons? screamming and WHOOOOHSHSHSH!!!
A brand new sound, that can even be heard in DTD! The "Guerilla's"
had learned how to use some of the amo!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!
And then, we could celebrate the shooting of the Hippo once again!
(Even though it was the hippo in the tree!) The guns, were rightfully
restored into the hands of the Jungle Cruise Guides! HURRAH!!!!!
And Talk about restoring, during the rehab, the cliffs of Schweitzers
Falls, named after that great explorer and humanitarian, Doctor
Albert . . . . . Falls, actually fell. hence, we were now witnessing
the ALL NEW backside of Water!. Soon, we were witnesses to
"new?!?!?" petroglyphs of some sort of extinct creature? Suddenly the
water churned in the rapids area, like never before! Not once, but
twice, piriahna were feverishly attacking!! Actually getting spatt on
by those Angry Goldfish!
Then an unknown face appeared! FINALLY, trader Sam was unmasked!
and a new friend, Ellie, is now there with one more greeting on this
50th Birthday of Cruising the Jungle! Truly a Jungle Jubilee to Celebrate!