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Update for August 20 – 26, 2012

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News and Views

Where have all the beach balls gone? | Report sheds light on Jungle Cruise changes | Disneyland prepares for return of the Annual Passholders | Fall 2012 Refurbishment schedule update | 20 nights of Candlelight | Fantasmic! Passholder Glow with the Show event scheduled for August 28 | Muslim ex-cast member sues Disney | This and That...

Where have all the beach balls gone?

Last weekend, I noted that there were noticeably fewer beach balls in use at the Luigi's Flying Tires attraction in the new Cars Land at Disney California Adventure, and by Monday morning the beach balls were gone entirely. Cast members at the attraction said the beach balls were "on vacation," but admitted that they likely would not return. Disney posted an internal notice to cast members on Monday that confirmed that the beach balls had been removed, that said, "We regularly make modifications to our attractions to provide our Guests with the best possible experience, and look forward to introducing new creative elements in the future."


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Disney has removed the beach balls from Luigi's Flying Tires, and plans to modify the ride vehicle to decrease weight. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

It's not hard to imagine that Disney removed the beach balls to avoid a potential liability issue. Several MousePlanet readers responding on Facebook and Twitter related stories about being hit in the face with flying beach balls, with one reader saying, "I did see some rowdy teens/college kids getting out of hand with the beach balls. They were really trying to draw blood."

In a statement, Disneyland Resort spokeswoman Suzi Brown acknowledged, "The unpredictable nature of the beach balls has resulted in a few minor incidents," but said,"This change is about further enhancing the guest experience. Immediately, it will help expedite loading and unloading of the attraction, which will reduce wait times and increase the number of guests who can ride." California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) spokesman Peter Melton confirmed that the agency did not order Disney to make changes to the ride.

The change has drawn mixed reaction from readers, and those who expressed disappointment often mentioned that the beach balls made the ride more enjoyable for their children. Readers who are happy to see the balls go hope that this will speed the load/unload cycle, and return the focus of the ride to maneuvering the tires rather than throwing beach balls at other riders.

The Orange County Register reported last week that Disney is removing the spin-control mechanism from the ride vehicles, which should reduce the weight of each tire by about 20 pounds, and is expected to make the tires easier to fly.

Disney's announcement said they "look forward to introducing new creative elements in the future," so this likely isn't the end of the story. If you were re-Imagineering Luigi's Flying Tires, what new "creative elements" would you add to the ride?

Report sheds light on Jungle Cruise changes

An incident in which a 5-year-old girl fell into the water while boarding Disneyland's Jungle Cruise attraction last November prompted some of the recent safety upgrades to the ride, according to a California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) report obtained by MousePlanet.

On November 5, 2011, a child tripped and fell while boarding the Jungle Cruise, slipping into narrow gap between the boat and the dock. A cast member told MousePlanet that a quick-thinking Jungle Cruise skipper pushed the boat away from the dock and pulled the child from the four-foot-deep water. No injuries were reported, but a complaint was filed with DOSH, prompting the agency to begin an investigation.

After inspecting the ride on three dates in January, DOSH issued a "Notice to Correct" to Disney, requiring the park to implement new safety procedures to close the gap between the boat and the dock, which the inspector measured to range from seven to nine inches, depending on conditions.

A Jungle Cruise skipper says that even before DOSH filed its notice, Imagineers "swarmed all over" the Jungle Cruise, taking measurements and discussing changes. Within weeks, Disney implemented a new operating procedure that required skippers to load the dock side of the boat first, helping keep the edge of the boat closer to the dock.

The DOSH report confirms that Disney had already implemented new operational guidelines before their investigation was complete, and that the new guidelines did help to "somewhat" reduce the gap.

Still, the agency required Disney to "develop and implement a way to reduce and maintain a minimum gap between the dock and the boat," so that "any patron's body or body parts is unable to fall or be entrapped between the boat and the dock." The agency says two other guests have fallen into the water in the past 5 years, and 15 others reported that "part or parts of their body" fell between the boat and the dock during the same period.

DOSH required Disney to present its plan before starting work.

Earlier this month, Disney closed the Jungle Cruise to install new bumpers on both the dock and the sides of the boats, along with a new tethering system to keep the boat snug against the dock during load and unload. Disney also added nets around the boats.

 Walt Disney World spokesperson Kathleen Prihoda told MousePlanet that she was unaware of any plans to make similar modifications to the Florida version of the ride.

Disneyland prepares for return of the Annual Passholders

The Disneyland Resort is preparing for the end of the summer annual passholder blockout schedule by relocating cast member parking for two days this month.

For SoCal Select passholders, the summer blockout period began June 6, a week before Cars Land opened to the public, so Monday, August 20 will be their first opportunity to see the new additions. To prepare for what is expected to be a peak-attendance day, Disneyland Resort cast members were alerted last week that the Katella Cast Member Lot (KCML) lot will be used for guest parking on August 20. CMs who normally park in that lot will instead park at Angel Stadium and take a cast member shuttle to work.

The blockout period for SoCal passholder started on June 29, so they had two weeks to see Cars Land after it opened. However, Sunday August 26 is the first weekend day open to SoCal passholders since July, so Disney has alerted cast members that KCML may again be used for guest parking that day. A final decision won't be made until Tuesday, August 21, after Resort leaders have had a chance to evaluate the crowds on August 20.

Fall 2012 Refurbishment schedule update

Travel agents periodically receive a schedule from Disney listing upcoming refurbishments, including those that have yet to be announced on the official Disneyland site. Disney finally updated that schedule last week, and it looks like Disneyland is cramming as much work as possible into the 10 days between Labor Day and the start of Halloween Time.

September 10-13 looks to be an especially bad time to visit Disneyland, with Haunted Mansion, Casey Jr. Circus Trains, Storybook Land Canal Boats, Indiana Jones Adventure, and Space Mountain all closed for refurbishment.

As always, this information is not complete (the list sent to travel agents is missing the Indiana Jones refurbishment Disney has already confirmed), and may change without notice.

Disneyland Park

  • Plaza Gardens – closed through Winter 2013 for the construction of Fantasy Faire
  • Haunted Mansion – closed August 27 to September 13:
  • Stage Door Cafe – closed August 28–29 for refurbishment
  • French Market – closed September 4–7 due to flooring work
  • Snow White Grotto and Wishing Well – closed September 4–24, however, the walkway remains open for guests to walk through
  • City Hall – facades refurbished September 4 to October 31, 2012:
  • Stream Train – runs at reduced capacity (3 out of 4 trains available).September 4 to November 6
  • Casey Jr. Circus Trains and Storybook Land Canal Boats – closed September 4 to November 15 for refurbishment
  • Indiana Jones Adventure – closed September 4 to December 7 for refurbishment
  • Big Thunder Ranch Petting Farm – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment
  • "it's a small world" – closed September 10–14 for refurbishment . Note, Disneyland says this is the adjacent Toy Shop, not the ride
  • Main Street Guest Lockers – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment
  • Space Mountain – closed September 10–13
  • Cafe Orleans – closed September 10–21
  • Mad Hatter (Main Street) – closed September 10–21
  • Redd Rocketts Pizza Port – closed September 10–21 for refurbishment
  • Davy Crockett Canoe Docks and Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes – closed September 17–18 for refurbishment
  • Sailing Ship Columbia – closed September 18–20 for refurbishment
  • Mark Twain Riverboat – closed September 25–28 for refurbishment
  • Goofy's Playhouse – closed October 1–11
  • Starcade – closed October 8–18 for refurbishment
  • "it's a small world" – closed October 22 to November 8 for refurbishment
  • Petting Farm – closed November 1–8
  • Space Mountain – closed November 5


In other refurbishment news, a large portion of the Downtown Disney parking lot was closed last week for construction and repaving. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

Disney's California Adventure Park

  • Toy Story Mania – closed September 5 for software installation
  • Muppet Vision 3D – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment
  • Disney Animation courtyard and Sorcerers Workshop – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment; Turtle Talk and Animation Academy available to via the side doors.
  • Soarin' Over California Theatre A – closed September 18 for refurbishment
  • Soarin' Over California Theatre B – closed September 19 for refurbishment


The Earl of Sandwich restaurant has not yet announced an opening date, but the company says they are looking forward to their new location in Downtown Disney Anaheim. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

Downtown Disney District

  • Compass Books – closed now through late summer and under construction to open an Earl of Sandwich restaurant.

Following the closure of the Princess Fantasy Fair, the princesses have relocated across the way to the new Princess Royal Walk. This meet-and-greet location has three photo backdrops, with characters rotating every 20-40 minutes. While the princesses have some shade thanks to a mesh awning, visitors waiting to meet them had no respite from the summer sun on Monday. By Tuesday, portable umbrellas had been added to the queue, which can be as long as an hour.


The new Princess Royal Walk opened last Monday. The princesses will utilize this temporary meet-and-greet until the new Fantasy Fair opens next Spring. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.


With waits topping 60 minutes on Monday, Disney added umbrellas to the queue Tuesday to shade visitors waiting to meet the Disney princesses. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

20 nights of Candlelight

Back in 2008, after online sales of dining packages for that year's Candlelight Ceremony and Processional crashed Disney's servers for the third year in a row, I wrote the following in my MousePlanet blog:

"So, to the Powers That Be: the time has long since come to decide what Candlelight means to the Disneyland Resort. If it's really intended to be an private event, a "thank you" of sorts for corporate sponsors, senior executives and Club 33 members, then hold it after park hours on a December week day, much as you do the Cast Member holiday parties, and be done with it.

"But, if Candlelight is going to remain a public event, then it's time to get serious about making this truly a Disney experience."

It's taken four years, but it looks like Disneyland is finally getting serious. After testing a private $275-per-person Candlelight event exclusively for D23 members in 2009, offering no packages in 2010, then going completely overboard with a $2500 "Candlelight Experience" in 2011, Disneyland has announced a major overhaul to its Candlelight offering, expanding the show from two to 20 nights in 2012.

Though the first two nights, December 1 and 2, are invitation-only, the performances from December 3 to 20 (two performances each night) are open to "Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders and guests booking special, to-be-announced dining packages," according to the announcement on the Disney Parks Blog.

Disney released no additional details about the show or the dining package, and there are loads of questions still to be answered so visitors can make their plans.


Disneyland has announced its expansion of the Candlelight Ceremony to 20 nights in 2012. MousePlanet file photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

We can look to Walt Disney World's version of Candlelight for an idea of how the packages might be structured at Disneyland. Candlelight runs more than a month in Florida, with three performances nightly. WDW requires that you eat before your selected show, and offers lunch and dinner reservations at 14 World Showcase restaurants. Lunch packages range from $32.99 to $55.99 per person, depending on restaurant selected, with dinner packages from $49.99 to $66.99. Kids' packages are $12.50 to $26.99, depending on meal time and restaurant. Walt Disney World's Candlelight package includes appetizer, entree, dessert, and non-alcoholic beverage, along with preferred seating tickets for Candlelight and admission to the VIP viewing area for the Illuminations fireworks show.

We have no idea whether Disneyland plans to take a page from Disney World's playbook, but there's no reason the West Coast version couldn't be structured like that of Florida. One concern is the reservation system. Walt Disney World already offers online booking for most restaurants; the system isn't perfect, but it's relatively stable. By contrast, Disneyland only offers online dining reservations for those wishing to purchase the World of Color picnics. All other requests are handled through the Disney Dine Line, or a quaint e-mail reservation system where you submit your dining request, and someone gets back to you in a day or so.

Given Disneyland's history of bungled online reservations for past Candlelight events, whatever system they use for 2012 had best be bullet-proof.


The Candlelight staging (shown here from 2008) has a major impact on Town Square. Many question how Disneyland's operations team will cope when Candlelight expands from 2 to 20 nights. MousePlanet file photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

Another question raised by some readers is how the expanded Candlelight schedule is likely to impact crowding and traffic flow during the busy holiday season. Disney's announcement seems to indicate that the show will remain in Town Square, with the Main Street train station forming the backdrop for the choir risers and living Christmas tree. For the week the stage is under construction or in use, the Main Street train station is only partly accessible and portions of Town Plaza around the flagpole are blocked off for lighting trusses and equipment. Folding chairs and benches fill Town Plaza on performance nights, and the Main Street vehicles are kept backstage.


Seating for the 2007 Candlelight Ceremony fills Town Square. MousePlanet file photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.

What is just a nuisance for one weekend may turn into a real inconvenience for 20 straight nights. Entertainment managers are taking on a monumental task in trying to present 40 live performances just steps inside Disneyland's main gates on some of the busiest nights of the year. If dining package sales are strong, I would not be surprised to see Candlelight move back to the Fantasyland theater for 2013, after the theater reopens from the just-started renovations. Purists will complain about any effort to move Candlelight again (the previous move to the Fantasyland theater was not well-received), but it may not be practical to keep the show on Main Street and increase the performance schedule to give more guests the chance to see it.

We will post updates about the dining packages as soon as we get them from Disney.


Crowds pack the sidewalks of Town Square to secure a spot for the 2011 Candlelight Ceremony, while the Christmas Fantasy Parade wraps up in the background. MousePlanet file photo by Joe Flowers.

Fantasmic! Annual Passholder Glow with the Show event scheduled for August 28

As we expected, Disney announced a annual passholder event and special performance of Fantasmic to introduce the Glow with the Show mouse ears. The event is Tuesday August 28 from 10 p.m. to midnight, with Fantasmic scheduled at 11:30 p.m, after the park closes to the general public. Disney has said that "select attractions, shops and food offerings will be open for event guests until 12 a.m.," a change from the last World of Color AP event when Disney California Adventure was completely closed before the event even began.

Another change is that Disney is not distributing free Glow with the Show ears at this event, and participants are asked to bring their own, either from participation in a previous event or purchased at the park. Ears aren't required—you won't be turned away if you don't bring or buy a pair—but they are "strongly encouraged for optimal viewing experience."

Passholders must register for the event in person at any Disneyland Ticket Booth—the Resort is not accepting online or phone reservations. Passholders must be 18-years or older with photo ID and valid Annual Pass. Passholders may bring up to three Annual Passholder guests. Registration is open until August 23 or whenever the event fills up, whichever comes first. Note: Your AP must be valid on the event date to attend. If your pass expires after you RSVP but before the event, you will not be admitted.

Muslim ex-cast member sues Disney for discrimination and harassment

Imane Boudlal, a former Disneyland Resort employee, has filed suit against the Walt Disney Corporation claiming she was harassed, discriminated against and wrongfully terminated because of her Muslim faith.

Boudlal first made news in 2010 when she requested to wear a hijab to work as a hostess at the Storyteller's Cafe, after nearly two years of employment. Her cause was championed by Unite HERE Local 11, which at the time was embroiled in a bitter contract dispute with the Disneyland Resort. Boudlal reported for work on three occasions wearing her own hijab in violation of Disney's "Look" policy, the dress code that regulates everything from the length of an employee's fingernails to the color of their undergarments. When Boudlal refused to remove the head covering, managers sent her home.

Disney said in 2010 that while the company worked with Boudlal to devise a head covering that would match her Disney costume (Boudlal rejected three proposed designs), they "offered reasonable accommodations to allow her to work during her scheduled shifts." Sources not authorized to speak on the record about the situation told us at the time that these accommodations included four backstage positions where she could wear her own hijab, including one that paid more than her hostess position. Boudlal declined all of these options, and Disney removed her from the schedule.

In August 2010, Boudlal filed a Charge of Discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and earlier this month, received a Notice of Right to Sue, allowing her to file her lawsuit in a court of law. There is no indication from the court filing as to the results of the E.E.O.C. investigation, nor whether the commission found a violation.

This lawsuit (the full text is available on the A.C.L.U. website) includes several specific allegations of harassment at the hands of Boudlal's co-workers and supervisors, charges not raised in 2010 when the controversy began. Boudlal claims she reported these incidents to her managers starting in 2008, but no actions were taken and the harassment continued.


Imane Boudlal rejected three proposed costumes, including this design, as "silly" and "ridiculous." Photo (c) Disney

Disneyland Resort spokesperson Suzi Brown told MousePlanet, "Walt Disney Parks and Resorts has a history of accommodating religious requests from cast members of all faiths. We presented Ms. Boudlal with multiple options to accommodate her religious beliefs, as well as offered her several roles that would have allowed her to wear her own hijab. Unfortunately, she rejected all of our efforts and has since refused to come to work." Disney declined to comment on the new charges of harassment included in Boudlal's filing.

Boudlal has requested a jury trial, and is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is also requesting that Disney provide training to managers regarding harassment, and alter the Disney "Look" policy to allow Muslim cast members to wear a hijab when working in on-stage positions without requiring that the hijab be covered with a hat or other item.


Disney created this costume in 2010 for a College Program intern who requested to wear a hijab in her role as a vacation planner. Photo (c) Disney.

In 2010, Disney College Program participant Noor Abdallah requested to wear a hijab in her role as a vacation planner, Disney's term for someone who works in the ticket booths or staffs the main entrance gates, after relocating from Chicago for her six-month internship. After initially transfering Abdallah to a backstage role, a move the intern protested, Disney and Abdallah compromised on a headcovering similar to the one rejected by Boudlal.

More recently, a cast member working in a Disneyland parking lot was spotted in a similar headcovering. Brown did not know the specifics of that employee's request, but said the Disneyland Resort routinely provides accommodations for a variety of requests.

In January, 2012, the company lifted their longstanding ban on facial hair for men, allowing male cast members to grow beards so long as they are "fully grown in, neatly groomed, and well-maintained at no longer than a quarter of an inch in length." At the same time, the company relaxed the dress code for cast members who work backstage with no contact with the public, allowing for casual Fridays.

This and That...

...MousePlanet reader Julie alerted us that the impact of UEA (Utah Educational Association, sometimes referred to as "Utah Escapes to Anaheim") weekend may be considerably lower than in past years. While the convention that creates the four-day weekend, and provides an excuse for many Utah families to travel south for a weekend at Disneyland, is scheduled for October 18 & 19, Julie says that Utah valley schools will be out October 11 through 15 instead. She says, "I'm sure both weekends will be busier than usual, but it won't be as bad as years past." Thanks for the tip!

…The MousePlanet Newsletter is here! The newsletter contains a recap of the week's articles (in case you miss a day), news that may have developed since the weekly Updates were published, and tips about what's happening at the Disney theme parks for the coming weekend. We'll also include a fun MouseAdventure bonus, such as an Eye Spy or a trivia question. To subscribe to our free newsletter, go to the MousePlanet main page and enter your email address in the top right box labeled "Join the MousePlanet Newsletter." Click Join, then fill out the fields in the registration page, including your first and last name. The Newsletter is free, but you must complete this registration to receive it, even if you may have signed up for one with us in the past.

…Visitors planning trips to the Disneyland Resort should make a point to check the Current Refurbishment/Attraction Closures section each week for the most recent updates. The Disneyland Resort Web site currently only publishes refurbishment information about six weeks in advance. Be sure to check the most recent Park Update (link) for the latest changes, as MousePlanet does not edit past Park Updates to reflect changes.

Crowd Forecast

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Crowd information and forecasts are provided by TouringPlans.com, the website of the Unofficial Guide to Disneyland, to help you better plan your trip to the Disneyland Resort. TouringPlans.com gathers wait time data from a team of in-park researchers and users of their Lines mobile phone application, and then predicts crowd levels for the next 365 days. Using a scale from 1 to 10, TouringPlans.com has a 90 percent accuracy of predicting the crowds to within 1 point, helping visitors prepare for their trips so they can "Do more. Wait less."

Expect even lighter crowds this week than last at Disneyland Resort. TouringPlans.com can help you navigate the crowds with our per-park Crowd Calendar, Lines - Mobile Wait Times App that gives access to current and estimated wait times for attractions, and Touring Plans detailing the best plan of attack for hitting the attractions. Now that school is out, it's a good time to subscribe to TouringPlans.com to plan your strategy to avoid the crowds!

Below are the predicted resort-wide crowd numbers for select days generated by the TouringPlans professional statisticians as measured for the upcoming week. For the access to the full year and per-park crowd level predictions, visit our Crowd Calendar.

Date Overall
Tuesday, August 21, 2012 4 / 10
Wednesday, August 22, 2012 4 / 10
Thursday, August 23, 2012 4 / 10
Friday, August 24, 2012 5 / 10

Here are some quick-hit notes that we hope you'll find helpful as you prepare your visits for the week:

  • Southern California Annual Passports Summer blockouts are over, so expect more locals in the parks.
  • Partial blockouts on Saturday.
  • Disneyland (park) is a 3.2 on Thursday.
  • Due to its incredibly low capacity, consider riding Luigi's Flying Tires standby right after starting your day by grabbing a FASTPASS for Radiator Springs Racers.

See Disneyland crowds for the next 365 days.
Get Disneyland wait times on your iPhone, Android, or Smartphone.
Do more. Wait less.


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Community Events

Come CHOC Walk with Team MousePlanet

Team MousePlanet is back for our fifth year at the CHOC Walk in the Park, benefiting Children's Hospital Orange County. Thanks to the efforts and generosity of our readers, Team MousePlanet has raised over $27,000 for CHOC since 2008. The 2012 race is on Sunday, October 14 at the Disneyland Resort. Registration is now open—visit the CHOC website to join us! You can also visit our MousePad discussion forum for more information about the walk and our team.

Current Refurbishments and Attraction Closures

Note: Not all of these have been officially confirmed by Disney, and are all subject to change at any time. We recommend checking for updates as you plan your visit.

Disneyland

  • Plaza Gardens – closed until Spring 2013 for the construction of the new Fantasy Faire.
  • Princess Fantasy Faire/Fantasyland Theater – closed until Summer 2013 for refurbishment of the Fantasyland Theater. The Princess meet-and-greet is relocated to the terrace near "it's a small world" until the new Fantasy Faire opens.
  • Troubador Treats – closed until Summer 2013 for refurbishment of the Fantasyland Theater.
  • Haunted Mansion – closed August 27 to September 13 for installation of the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay.
  • Stage Door Cafe – closed August 28 and 29 for refurbishment.
  • French Market – closed September 4–7 for flooring work.
  • Snow White Grotto and Wishing Well – closed September 4–24 for refurbishment.
  • Disneyland Railroad – reduced capacity (3 of 4 trains available) September 4 – November 6.
  • Storybook Land – closed September 4 to November 15 for refurbishment.
  • Casey Jr.closed September 4 to November 15 for refurbishment.
  • Indiana Jones Adventure closed September 4 to December 7 for refurbishment.
  • Space Mountain – closed September 10–13 for installation of the Ghost Galaxy overlay.
  • Big Thunder Ranch Petting Farm – closed September 10–13 for installation of the Halloween Time overlay.
  • Main Street Lockers – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment.
  • "it's a small world" toy shop – closed September 10–14 for refurbishment.
  • Cafe Orleans – closed September 10–21 for refurbishment.
  • Main Street Mad Hatter – closed September 10–21 for refurbishment.
  • Redd Rocketts Pizza Port – closed September 10–21 for refurbishment.
  • Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes – closed September 17 and 18 for refurbishment.
  • Sailing Ship Columbia – closed September 18-20 for deck oiling.
  • Mark Twain Riverboat – closed September 25-28 for deck oiling.
  • Goofy's Playhouse – closed October 1-11 for refurbishment.
  • Starcade – closed October 8-18 for refurbishment.
  • "it's a small world" – closed October 22 – November 8 to install the holiday overlay.
  • Big Thunder Ranch Petting Farm – closed November 1-8 to transition from Halloween Time to Holiday overlay.
  • Space Mountain – closed November 5 to remove the Ghost Galaxy overlay.

Disney California Adventure

  • Toy Story Mania – closed September 5 for software installation.
  • Muppet Vision 3Dclosed September 10–13.
  • Disney Animation Courtyard – closed September 10–13 for refurbishment. Turtle Talk and Animation Academy will be open and accessible via side doors.
  • Soarin' Over California - Theater A closed September 18 for refurbishment.
  • Soarin' Over California - Theater B closed September 19 for refurbishment.

Note: Refurbishment schedules are estimates only. All information is subject to change without notice. To get the most recent updates, call Disneyland at (714) 781-7290.

Resort Events

Check here to see if a large convention, competition or park event might fall during your next trip to the Disneyland Resort. If you know of any in-park events, official or unofficial, that should be listed here, please send us an e-mail (link).

2012

Summer
  • 2012 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend (sold out) – August 31 to September 2.

Fall

  • Disneyland Resort Service Celebration – Thursday, September 6. Disneyland closes at 5 p.m. for a private cast member recognition event. Disney California Adventure remains open until 8 p.m.
  • HalloweenTime at the Disneyland Resort – September 14 to October 31, 2012
  • Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland – September 28; October 2, 5, 9, 12, 15, 19, 23, 26, 29 and 31. Advance-purchase tickets are on sale to Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders and to the general public via Disneyland.com or by calling (714) 781–4000. Advance-purchase tickets now are on sale to Disney Vacation Club members and Disney Visa Cardholders by calling 714-781-4636.
  • MouseAdventure: Road Trip (sold out) – Sunday, September 30, 2012. Be sure to sign up for our MouseAdventure Newsletter or visit our MousePad discussion forum to keep up with the latest news about future events.
  • CHOC Walk in the Park – Sunday October 14. The annual fundraiser for Children's Hospital Orange County takes place before park hours in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. The Magic Morning normally scheduled for Sunday at Disneyland will likely be rescheduled to Monday, October 15, and Disneyland will likely open at 9 a.m. to accommodate the event. Team MousePlanet is back for our 5th year, and we welcome new members - visit the CHOC website to join us! You can also visit our MousePad discussion forum for more information about the walk and our team.
  • Utah Education Association convention (UEA, a.k.a. "Utah Escapes to Anaheim") – October 18 & 19 (link). Expect unusually large attendance levels October 18–22 as Utah students and families take advantage of a 4-day weekend created by their school's participation in a state education convention. Not all Utah schools or teachers close for or attend UEA, but the impact on the Resort is usually noticeable enough to mention.

Winter

  • Holiday parade taping at Disneyland – November 3 (unconfirmed). Disney never officially confirms the dates that the West Coast segments of the annual holiday parade will be filmed at Disneyland, but DanceTheMagic.com, a Web site that offers travel packages to dance groups hoping to participate in the filming, lists the filming date as November 3, with November 4 scheduled as a back up in case of rain or tape delay (link). Keep in mind that the filming is subject to change with no notice, and we don't encourage readers to make a special trip just to see the filming.
  • Holidays at the Disneyland Resort – November 12, 2012 to January 6, 2013
  • Candlelight Processional – December 1 & 2 (unconfirmed). Dates, performances times, narrator and availability (if any) of dining packages have not yet been announced.

2013

  • 2013 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend (sold out) – January 18–20. Registration is now sold out.
  • Grad Nite events – this party for high school seniors graduating in 2013 will be held on 22 dates in 2013: May 9, 10, 11, 15, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, 24, 29, 30, 31
    June 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20, 21. The 2013 event includes admission to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure during regular operating hours, and a private party in Disneyland after the park closes to the public for the night.
  • D23 Expo – August 9–11. Tickets for the three-day convention are now on sale.

We also recommend checking the convention calendar at the Anaheim/Orange County Visitor and Convention Bureau website (link). When looking at that site, remember to note both the number of people and the number of rooms resulting from each convention. A gathering of 25,000 people booking few room nights (indicating most will be driving in to the area for their meeting) can impact traffic around the resort much more than a crowd of 25,000 staying in area hotels. Of course, that second group is going to make finding a hotel room more difficult (and possibly more expensive), so it's best to book your own room as early as possible if you see that a big convention is in town during your trip.

Current Discounts & Promotions

Disneyland prices as of May 20, 2012.

Note: MousePlanet does not edit past Updates to reflect price increases; for up-to-date prices check the most recent Disneyland Resort Update.

Several current promotions offer discounted admission to the Disneyland Resort. For your convenience, we have grouped the discount offers based on the number of days the tickets are valid. Check out the category that best matches the amount of time you plan to spend at the resort, and pick the offer that works best for you. And keep those tips coming—let us know if you find a better or different offer, so we can share it with other readers!

This first section is a list of discounts on ticket–only purchases. Though it has become more common in recent years, Disneyland tickets are rarely offered at deep discounts unless you are a resident of Southern California or Northern Mexico. For residents outside that area, the best discounts available tend to be simple advance purchase discounts.

If you know of any additional discounts, offers, promotions, or contests that should be listed in this section, drop us a line. Note, we are no longer listing offers from the Anaheim-Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau, as their convenience fee negates any savings.

One Day, One Park Ticket – Regularly $87/$81

One Day Park Hopper – Regularly $125/$119

No discounts currently available to the general public.

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if any discounts are available through them.

Two Day, One Park per Day Ticket – Regularly $170/$158

Two Day Park Hopper – Regularly $200/$188

Get Away Today Vacations – MousePlanet sponsor Get Away Today Vacations sells two-day tickets at a slight discount over the Disneyland main gate price. 2-day Park Hoppers are $197 for adults and $185 for children; 2-day 1/park/day tickets are $168 for adults and $156 for children

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if any discounts are available through them.

Three Day, One Park per Day Ticket – Regularly $220/$205

Three Day Park Hopper – Regularly $250/$235

Get Away Today Vacations – MousePlanet sponsor Get Away Today Vacations sells three-day tickets at a slight discount over the Disneyland main gate price. 3-day Park Hoppers are $245 for adults and $230 for children; 3-day 1/park/day tickets are $217 for adults and $202 for children

2012-2013 Disney Military Promotional 3–Day Park Hopper Ticket ($95)

2011-2012 Disney Military Promotional 3–Day Park Hopper Ticket ($95) – A discounted price offered to active or retired U.S. military personnel or their spouses. Based on past offers, Disney defines "Eligible Service Members" as active or retired members of the US military, including active members of the National Guard or Reservists and active or retired members of the US Coast Guard. This discount is available at MWR/ITT offices at your military base, or at the Disneyland Resort ticket booths. Valid military ID is required. The price is the same for adults and children, and total of six tickets may be purchased per military member, regardless of who purchases the tickets (the member or their spouse). Tickets must be purchased by Sept 30, 2012. The ticket has the following blockout date: July 4, 2012.

As far as we can tell, there is no "fuse" on this ticket, so you may have more than the standard 13 days from first use to use the remaining two admissions, but we highly recommend you contact your base MWR/ITT office for more details before making travel plans. Please note that this ticket is not a "bonus" ticket, and so does not include an early admission day.

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if other discounts are available through them.

Four Day, One Park per Day Ticket – Regularly $245/$225

Four Day Park Hopper – Regularly $275/$255

Get Away Today Vacations – MousePlanet sponsor Get Away Today Vacations sells four-day tickets at a slight discount over the Disneyland main gate price. 4-day Park Hoppers are $270 for adults and $250 for children; 4-day 1/park/day tickets are $240 for adults and $220 for children

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if any discounts are available through them.

Five Day, One Park per Day Ticket – Regularly $260/$240

Five Day Park Hopper – Regularly $290/$270

Get Away Today Vacations – MousePlanet sponsor Get Away Today Vacations sells five-day tickets at a slight discount over the Disneyland main gate price. 5-day Park Hoppers are $285 for adults and $265 for children; 5-day 1/park/day tickets are $255 for adults and $235 for children

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if any discounts are available through them.

Six Day, One Park per Day Ticket

Six Day Park Hopper

No longer offered by Disneyland. Some travel providers may offer 6-day or longer tickets to international customers as part of a package; residents of Canada, Australia or the UK should check with local travel agencies to see what options may be available to you.

Disneyland Resort Annual Passports

No discounts currently available for new purchases. California residents can take advantage of the monthly–payment plan when purchasing any but the Premier Annual Passport.

Premier Annual Passport: $849 [Valid at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort; includes parking]
Premium Annual Passport: $649 [includes parking]
Deluxe Annual Passport: $469
Southern California Annual Passport: $329
SoCal Select Annual Passport: $269
Parking Add On: $129 [Add on to Deluxe, SoCal and SoCal Select passes. Has same blockout days as corresponding pass]
Blockout Day Ticket: $70 [Grants one–day park–hopper admission to an annual passholder on a blockout day]

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if other discounts are available through them.

Southern California CityPass
$279/$239

Southern California CityPass PLUS
$311/$263

2012 Southern California CityPass ($279/$239) – This pass includes a 3–Day Disneyland Resort Park Hopper Bonus Ticket (including one early–entry day), a one–day admission to Sea World San Diego and a one-day admission to Universal Studios Hollywood. The CityPass expires 14 days after first use at any location, and the first use must occur by December 31, 2012. Purchase CityPass through the Disneyland Website or on–site at the ticket booths of Disneyland Resort or the other theme parks included in the pass. You can also purchase directly from the CityPass Website, though a shipping charge may apply depending on how quickly you need the ticket.

2012 Southern California CityPass PLUS ($311/$263) – This pass includes a 3–Day Disneyland Resort Park Hopper Bonus Ticket (including one early–entry day), a one–day admission to Sea World San Diego and a one-day admission to Universal Studios Hollywood, PLUS one–day admission to either San Diego Zoo or San Diego Safari Park. The CityPass expires 14 days after first use at any location, and the first use must occur by December 31, 2012. This upgraded pass is only available for purchase directly from the CityPass Website.

Check with your employer, school or credit union to see if other discounts are available through them.

Hotel/Travel Packages

Costco Travel Packages – Many different travel packages including visits to Disneyland and Disneyland hotels are available through Costco. When purchasing a Costco Disneyland travel package, extras that will be included are: Mickey's Toontown Madness admission (currently available Mondays, Wednesday, Fridays, and Saturdays), a character breakfast collectible pin and lanyard, and a Costco luggage tag per person, plus a $20 Disneyland Resort gift card per package.

Disney's Resort Magic and Good Neighbor Magic Packages – Package includes accommodations one of the three resort hotels or at one of 40 Good Neighbor hotels; Souvenir Park Hopper ticket with voucher for admission to Mickey's Toontown Morning Madness, plus one Magic Morning (early entry) for three–day or longer Park Hoppers; preferred seating at three DCA attractions (Disney's Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular, Muppet*Vision 3D, It's Tough to be a Bug!); Preferred Showing of Turtle Talk with Crush (Priority Viewing at the first Turtle Talk with Crush show of the day, on any one day – one voucher per Guest); Disney Dream coin keepsake (one per package), luggage tag and lanyard with pin; a Downtown Disney Fun Card; and a "Character Call" from Mickey, Minnie, Goofy or Crush. Contact Disney Travel or your favorite travel agent.

Contact a MousePlanet sponsor travel agency for assistance in booking your next trip

Get Away Today
800–523–6116
www.getawaytoday.com

Mouse Ears Vacations
www.mouseearvacations.com

Small World Vacations
www.smallworldvacations.com

Other Discounts

Annual Passholder offers – Disneyland has once again extended the 20% merchandise discount offered to Premium annual passholders. The discount is now valid through December 31, 2012.

Purchase with Purchase offers – Disneyland Resort shops frequently offer a reduced–price souvenir (often a tote bag, watch, or blanket) with a qualifying minimum purchase. The current offers are:

Disneyland shops

  • Mickey tote bag for $15.95 with a minimum purchase of $25.
  • Pin Trading Starter Set for $18.95 with a $40 purchase.

Disney California Adventure shops

  • Disney tote bag for $15.95 with a minimum purchase of $25.
  • Expandable duffel bag for $17.95 with a minimum purchase of $25.
  • Mickey Mouse watch for $17.95 with a $30 purchase.

Downtown Disney / Disneyland Resort Hotel shops

  • Expandable duffel bag for $17.95 with a minimum purchase of $25.
  • Coastal tote bag for $15.95 with a minimum purchase of $25.
  • Pin Trading Starter Set for $18.95 with a $40 purchase.

Character Dining Vouchers – Discounted character dining vouchers are available for purchase online, in advance of your trip, through Get Away Travel.

Disney Visa – Cardholders have access to a private Character Meet 'N' Greet photo opportunity at Disney California Adventure, and receive one free 5x7 photograph per visit. Cardholders also receive 10% off qualifying merchandise purchases of $50 or more from Disney–operated retail stores, 10% off at selected Disneyland Resort restaurants, (Big Thunder Ranch, River Belle Terrace, French Market, Cocina Cucamonga, Steakhouse 55, PCH Grill and Storyteller's Café), and 20% off the "Welcome to Disneyland," "A Walk in Walt’s Footsteps," and "Discover the Magic" guided tours. See the Disney Visa website for terms and conditions.

Landry's Select Club – Members of the Landry's Select Club get priority seating at the Rainforest Cafe when available (which makes a huge difference on busy days), and a 10% discount on retail purchases. This club replaces the former Rainforest Cafe Safari Club as of March 31, 2012. If you are already a Safari Club member, you can migrate your membership to the new Landry's Select Club at no charge, and start to earn points in the new program. The new Select Club eliminated the entree discount and free appetizer offer that was included with the Safari Club, replacing them with a point–based system that gives you a $25 gift certificate after you spend $250. If you are not yet a member of either the Safari Club or the Landry's Select Club, you can pre–purchase your membership before your trip. Membership now costs $25, but comes with a $25 reward.

ESPNZone MVP Club – Membership in the MVP Club does not offer any discounts on food. However, once a member you can make an online reservation for your party up to three days in advance and will get a 25% increase in points purchased when playing games in the Sports Arena (and 40 bonus points at activation). You must register online and your membership card will then be mailed to you within two weeks. The card must then be activated at any ESPNZone by the person who signed up for the card and ID will be required (link).

Park Schedule/Blockout Dates

DL: Disneyland
DCA: Disney California Adventure

Annual Pass blockouts:

  • SL – Southern California Select Annual Pass
  • SC – Southern California Annual Pass
  • DX – Deluxe Annual Pass

Early Admission: (full description available on the Disneyland website)

  • MM – Magic Morning for 3-plus day ticket holders
  • EMH – Extra Magic Hour for Disneyland Resort Hotel Guests
  • AP – Early Entry for Annual Passholders with advance reservations. Ends September 13, 2012.
  • TT – Toontown Morning Madness at Disneyland. Ends December 31, 2102.

Disneyland Resort Special Events:

8/12 8/13 8/14

8/15

8/16 8/17 8/18
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None

 

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts
SL/SC

Events:
None
 

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts
SL/SC

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC/DX

Events:
None
8/19 8/20 8/21

8/22

8/23 8/24 8/25
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

 

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None
 

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH

AP Blockouts
SL

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
8/26 8/27 8/28

8/29

8/30 8/31 9/1
DL: 8a-11p
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-11p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL

Events:
None
DL: 9a-10p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None
DL: 9a-10p
EMH / MM

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

 

DL: 9a-10p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None
 

DL: 9a-10p
EMH / MM

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

DL: 9a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts
SL

Events:
None

DL: 9a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
9/2 9/3 9/4

9/5

9/6 9/7 9/8

DL: 9a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL

Events:

Disneyland Half
Marathon

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 8a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None
DL: 10a-8p
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

 

DL: 10a-8p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None
 

DL: 10a-5p*
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:

*Disneyland to close
early for Cast Member
event.

DL: 9a-11p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 8a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
9/9 9/10 9/11

9/12

9/13 9/14 9/15
DL: 9a-11p
EMH / MM

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:
SL

Events:
None
DL: 10a-8p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None
DL: 10a-8p
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

 

DL: 10a-8p
EMH / TT / AP

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None
 

DL: 10a-8p
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH / AP

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

DL: 9a-12a
TT

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 8a-10p
None

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None
9/16 9/17 9/18

9/19

9/20 9/21 9/22
DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM

DCA: 8a-10p
None

AP Blockouts:
SL

Events:
None
DL: 10a-8p
TT

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None
DL: 10a-8p
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
None

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

 

DL: 10a-8p
TT

DCA: 10a-8p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None
 

DL: 10a-8p
EMH / MM

DCA: 10a-8p
None

AP Blockouts:


Events:
None

DL: 9a-12a
TT

DCA: 9a-10p
EMH

AP Blockouts

Events:
None

DL: 8a-12a
EMH / MM / TT

DCA: 8a-10p
None

AP Blockouts:
SL/SC

Events:
None

Visit our Annual Passholders Blockout Dates page to see more dates. You can see future calendar schedules at Disneyland. As always, specifics are subject to change without notice (or occasionally, without us noticing) so when information conflicts between what is presented here and that presented by Disney, it is best to assume Disney's information is correct.

Visit the Park Hours section of our Disneyland Park guide for additional details about Magic Morning and Toontown Morning Madness, including available attractions.

Entertainment schedule: Go directly to the Disneyland Resort schedule for this week at Disneyland.com here.

 



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Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix (@MousePlanetAVP) is an original MousePlanet staffer and manages to find time for all of this while running two retail stores, MouseShoppe and CharmingShoppe.