I am here yet again to let you know what some of the Fantasyland managers have been mentioning about possible changes and closures coming to my favorite land. Some Fantasyland attractions will undergo refurbishment starting in January. Below is a list of these possible changes with some updates about the rides. I just wanted to point out that some of these changes are not set in stone yet and might get pushed to another date.
Current Closure List:
Dumbo – January 8th – January 17th
This is on the official Disneyland calendar. Currently scheduled, Dumbo will be undergoing a regular refurbishment with possible updates to the software programming. Although the software update is not fully a reality at this point, it could affect the hourly counts of the attraction allowing more guests to ride. One of the biggest problems cast members face with this ride is the unloading of handicap guests. Unlike “King Arthur Carrousel,” Dumbo does not stop in the same location it started at. This forces Slow moving handicap guests with wheelchairs to exit their Dumbo and walk around to the other side where their wheelchair is located. This possible software update will fix that problem because Dumbo will stop exactly where it started allowing the line to move more quickly as CM’s no longer have to wait for these guests to exit.
Matterhorn – 2 week’s in January
The Matterhorn might go down for an unknown two-week period in January to replace a section of the track on the lift hill that was not done in the last refurbishment. This is not on the official Disneyland calendar and might get pushed to a later date. The recent Matterhorn refurbishment involved mostly “behind the scenes” work, like track replacement. There were three changes I am aware of that effect the Cast Member operation of the attraction.
1) Dispatch Console - They added a dispatch console to both A-side and B-side of the mountain right before the sleds go onto the lift hill. Just like with Space Mountain, cast members are now required to dispatch the sled into the mountain once they have checked all safety harnesses to insure they are all secured around the guests.
2) Unload Console – They added an unload console to both sides of the mountain as well. This allows a cast member to ensure all guests are out of the sled before it cascades into the next section. This console can be disabled when this station is not manned making the unload section operate as before.
3) New intrusion detection system – They installed more cameras in the mountain to keep track of the guests. Tower can see more then ever before. If a guest is detected by the system as intruding into an area were they shouldn’t, the system notifies the tower and will show the camera to the operator.
Mr. Toads Wild Ride – February 19th – March 29th
I’m excited about this as it is officially on the Disneyland calendar. The ride vehicles are getting some TLC. The cars will be getting new motors, new paint, wheels and anything else that needs to make sure that the fastest dark ride stays that way! The vehicles will be the same, but rebuilt basically making them new.
Alice in Wonderland – Unknown regular refurbishment
Alice will be down for a bit. The date is currently not set, however the TLC will be completed before April and spring break.
Peter Pan – 2008
I reported a year ago on MC that Pan might be getting new boats as I ran into the imagineer in charge of the project while I was standing at Pan unload. I know this isn't going to happen before april, but I thought this was good news to share with everyone as this appears to be a reality for 2008! There are two problems with the current boats. First, they really only sit three causing the line to remain long because there are a lot of groups totaling four that currently take up two boats. In addition, the safety bar hits kids on their chin when released while they are at unload. The new boats are still being designed, but rumor has it that they might be able to sit four guests increasing the hourly capacity. If this is the case, look for a long refurbishment of Pan as they will most likely have to replace the track above in order to hold the additional weight.
The Fantasyland guy