Although I lamented not being there on the 5th, I'd have to say being there yesterday was the next best thing. I sated my desire to see the parade and the fireworks without too much time passing by and I absolutely loved them, especially the fireworks.
I liked the changes in the splash height to the POTC cannon balls, but not so much the noise. I got to ride in the love seat of spash mountain finally. It was cramped and seemed sort of pointless, but it facilitated conversation much better.
To answer a quesiton in another thread about crowds -- no, it wasn't crowded. I'd have to say it was exceptionally light, given that it was a Friday and that just the day after May 5. I guess everyone was there the day before. There was no problem getting great seats for the parade, a perfect spot for the fireworks, and a great view of Fantasmic. In addition, in the last hour after Fantasmic, we were able to walk on (ok so maybe I ran) Splash Mountain, Haunted Mansion and Pirates. Here's a picture of the board mid-day (click on thumbnails for larger view):
These guys ended up setting up a large tv-type camera aimed at the turnstyles:
Just a nice shot of the Matterhorn:
There was quite a delay at the beginning of the show stop for Parade of Dreams, as this poor marionette's top busted its zipper in the back wide open, and this CM had to safety pin it closed.
This poor guy also dropped his tail on the parade route and the same CM had to pick it up. It happened too fast for me to snap a picture:
My favorite parade shots:
For some reason I thought Flotsam and Jetsam were really cool:
Can you tell which is the real castle and which is the float?
As you can see, the stage and monitors are still there, for Regis and Kelly:
The Indy queue from the Jungle Cruise :
The new Falls:
The Opera House:
By the way, I stopped by the music shop and saw a stack of about 10 red-boxed 6 CD sets behind the counter. While I was there, 3 were bought!
Now, long ago I read here about people asking if there would be a new wall map for the 50th, but I never saw any positive response, nor any pictures. But yes! It is here. I picked mine up at Showcase on Main Street, on the counter near the registers. Much of the artwork remains the same from the last wall map I bought years ago, though there are some notable changes.
As you can see, there's a 50th logo, and the 50th entry floral is there:
The Parade of Dreams is on Main Street:
The new Tomorrowland paint scheme is represented, as is Buzz Lightyear and the new mural. The sub lagoon has "future attraction" written on it. The PeopleMover tracks are still there, though no "future attraction" label. The tech walls are still painted gold even though everything else is blue (including Innoventions). The piranhas are shown and labeled on the JC. I can take close-ups of any of these upon request.