Snap! Kodak Out, Starbucks In

by David Koenig, staff writer
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Longtime park sponsor Kodak reportedly has decided against renewing its contract with Disneyland. The photo pioneer has been tied to the park since the early years, as camera shop lessee, official film provider, and attraction sponsor, among other roles.

"As far as I know, Kodak was there from the beginning, although there were several periods where they were gone from [Disneyland and the Magic Kingdom]," said former head of participant affairs, Pete Clark. "I think that Kodak didn't think Disney couldn't get along without them. One of the replacements was GAF, which was trying to challenge Kodak. The other was Polaroid. Both were short-lived."

The 132-year-old company filed for bankruptcy in January and ever since has been shedding jobs and assets, while continuing to lose millions of dollars a day.

Kodak currently sponsors the park guide maps, picture stops, and merchandise stand near "it's a small world." The Kodak kiosk will be decommissioned January 6, 2013. Formerly a Fantasyland ticket booth, the structure is said to be the last original ticket booth left in the park that is still being used for guest services.

Sources say the kiosk will either be torn down or relocated and "retasked." As yet another piece of Disneyland history disappears, let's hope for the latter.

Brew House

At the same time, Starbucks will be moving into the Market House on Main Street after the holiday season. Starbucks had earlier vowed to maintain as much original theming as possible as it opens outlets in each of Disney's domestic theme parks and has enjoyed early success with its first—inside the Fiddler, Fifer and Practical Café at the end of Disney California Adventure's "main street."

Yet how much of the Market House's original interior will remain is unknown. Starbucks' promise to design the coffee shops "to fit the theme of their surroundings" does not necessarily mean they'll preserve any original theming. Many of the furnishings date back to the Market House's opening in 1955. In addition, few other buildings on Main Street, with the exception of the cinema, have retained as much of their "look" from the days of Walt as has the Market House.

Candlelight Packing Its Bags

With California skies finally beginning to dry, the nightly Candlelight Ceremonies and Processionals are underway. What began as an intimate, couple-of-nights event 54 years ago has now grown to 40 performances (twice nightly from December 1 to 20). Expect crowds to pack Town Square and Main Street every single night.

Consequently, the Entertainment division is planning to relocate Candlelight to DCA's Hyperion Theater for 2013. The number of days will be increased from 20 to about 30. With a dedicated, easy-to-darken venue, there's no telling how many performances Disney could schedule per day—although they do have to keep in mind they're working with a 600-member choir of volunteers. The move would also allow Disney, if it so chose, to charge admission to the event.

Ho, Ho, Ho!

Finally, I want to wish you all a blessed Christmas season. I apologize for not being able to turn out the feature articles quite so regularly of late, as I've been busy promoting Mouse Tales' release as a Kindle e-book, as well as my new Danny Kaye book. Danny Kaye: King of Jesters and The Danny Kaye Show blog. I hope to dive into Disney at lightspeed in 2013.

In the meantime, why don't you celebrate with the latest priceless offering from the masterful Disney artistes known for their fine craftsmanship, subtle charm, and tasteful use of beloved characters?

Enjoy the new Mickey Hoisting a Turkey Leg Christmas ornament.


Enjoy the new Mickey Hoisting a Turkey Leg ornament!

Comments

  1. By Toocherie

    Although happy to see Starbucks in Disneyland, I am also hoping they adhere to the "feel" of the Market House. I'm also assuming the perk of free coffee if you keep your receipt is going away.

  2. By olegc

    Toocherie beat me to it - those are my 2 concerns as well. The Market House was more than just free coffee - it was a fun place to hang out and check out all things kitchen/mug as gifts as well as a snack haven for packaged snacks. Seems like Disney's new mantra to sponsorship, in some cases, is "whatever works for you". I know its early - but how many more locations might get the same treatment. What about other restaurants, etc. If Starbucks can make more changes, can other sponsors of Plaza Inn or Pizza Port start making requests to have their own signature items in the parks.

    and, yes, I really REALLY hope they don't get ride of the free refills - or in fact the flavored coffees they serve (the latter most likely will be gone). Its one small perk (pun definitely intended) that really makes me happy to be on Main St. and take in the land. The hazelnut was strong and not sweet and that's good for me. Oh well - change is always coming - but can we just have a wee little bit left over from previous offerings instead of "nope, not our way of doing things"...

  3. By stan4d_steph

    Starbucks offers free refills in their stores. You need to have a registered Starbucks card and have earned 5 stars. I don't know if the promotion will apply at the Disneyland location though.

  4. By olegc

    Quote Originally Posted by stan4d_steph View Post
    Starbucks offers free refills in their stores. You need to have a registered Starbucks card and have earned 5 stars. I don't know if the promotion will apply at the Disneyland location though.

    I had thought there was discussion when the 3PIG opened at DCA that they were not honoring some of the refill or other policies that Starbucks had. You could use a charged card for purchases but that was it.

    And even so - I think I as a guest should not have to worry if I have a Starbucks card or not. It should matter if I am a Disneyland guest for that day or not. Assuming most folks have starbucks cards, and allowing that to possibly be the determinator and not whether i paid admission is even more aligned with what I mentioned above - that the sponsors call more of the shots...

  5. By Toocherie

    I also wonder who will take over sponsorship of the park guides.

  6. By abkb76

    I really hope the Candlelight Processional is not relocated to DCA. Seeing the Candlelight Processional on Main Street and the narration of the Christmas story along with the choir in front of the Main Street Train Station in Town Square is absolutely beautiful. To have this event in a theater would take away from the ambiance.

  7. By carolinakid

    I thought the Candlelight Processional moving to the Hyperion Theater in 2013 was a done deal.

  8. By newhdplayer

    Quote Originally Posted by carolinakid View Post
    I thought the Candlelight Processional moving to the Hyperion Theater in 2013 was a done deal.

    Oh goody, another Hamburger production....

  9. By houseofmouse

    Why do you think Disney won't do Candlelight absolutely beautifully in Hyperion? That is a huge stage. Having it on Main Street is great for the one weekend it used to be offered but for 20 nights or more it's just a logistical nightmare. I was hoping for Fantasyland theater but guessing it's not big enough. Why does it matter where it is? It's not the idea behind the CP it's the Christmas spirit, music and Christmas story that matter.

    I don't do coffee but I hope the Coffee shop retains its character. Here's hoping Disney puts their more than two cents in about how Starbucks changes things.

    Maybe Fuji could do the park maps or Cannon?

  10. By Tinker44

    I am utterly THRILLED that Candlelight will be moved to the Hyperion for 2013. We're exactly one year out from our next trip and I was dreading the logistics of 20+ shows while we were there. I am only a teensy bit disappointed that we won't get to see Aladdin.Anyway, I think that putting it inside a building has FAR more to recommend it that keeping it at the Train Station for sheer nostalgic value. They can do so much more to enhance the presentation, they can work out a much smoother flow of people in and out... and best of all it is then immune to the whims of Mother Nature. It's a great idea, and I for one, am much relieved with the news.

  11. By wdi33

    Quote Originally Posted by Tinker44 View Post
    I am utterly THRILLED that Candlelight will be moved to the Hyperion for 2013. We're exactly one year out from our next trip and I was dreading the logistics of 20+ shows while we were there. I am only a teensy bit disappointed that we won't get to see Aladdin.Anyway, I think that putting it inside a building has FAR more to recommend it that keeping it at the Train Station for sheer nostalgic value. They can do so much more to enhance the presentation, they can work out a much smoother flow of people in and out... and best of all it is then immune to the whims of Mother Nature. It's a great idea, and I for one, am much relieved with the news.

    Obviously none of you saw Candlelight when it was temporarily moved to the Fantasyland Theater. The show lost its warmth, magic, and charm in a large performance venue. It was moved back because of the poor reaction from guests and inset officials. Main Street is the perfect backdrop and nothing is better than the surprise moment when the trumpeters appear on the roof of the train station! You can't recreate that in the Hyperion!

  12. By Jimbo996

    Since the Candlelight is staffed by volunteers, I don't get why Disney is taking advantage of it monetarily. Instead, it should be turned into a charity event. The increase to 30 days seems ridiculous.

  13. By abkb76

    Quote Originally Posted by wdi33 View Post
    Obviously none of you saw Candlelight when it was temporarily moved to the Fantasyland Theater. The show lost its warmth, magic, and charm in a large performance venue. It was moved back because of the poor reaction from guests and inset officials. Main Street is the perfect backdrop and nothing is better than the surprise moment when the trumpeters appear on the roof of the train station! You can't recreate that in the Hyperion!

    Couldn't have said it better myself. You also can't recreate the choir members walking down Main Street with candles to illuminate their way to Town Square in a theater.

  14. By houseofmouse

    They can still process to the theater. It was a sight to see for sure. No rain cancellations inside though and will be better for DL in general during the craziest part of the month. I think we all just need to give it a chance and see what is done before people freak out. IMHO

  15. By olegc

    sure they can process to the theater - but those inside can't take advantage of the view and those outside won;t see the performance - unless they scurry in for last minute seats.

    It definitely changes the dynamic and it will be much more of a stage production than an outdoor event to use the surroundings as part of the atmosphere. Both have their benefits - and drawbacks. I guess now the Parks can do lots of private things at Stage 17 before or after events - and the proximity to an exit gate is another good option. Traffic flow will be better.

    Still - the overall show will be experienced differently no doubt. I just think its ironic that it seems "everything" is moved to DCA these days. If this keeps up Santa won't even be over at Disneyland anymore

  16. By houseofmouse

    We had friends who saw Candlelight first weekend and while they were processing, they were standing in the area waiting to be able to get into the standing room for the show. So I guess some missed it anyway. Those in the Small World area don't necessarily see the show but can see the choir process. Really it will be no different in DCA.

  17. By brassplayer

    How about kicking off Candlelight with a weekend of performances at Town Square, and then moving the rest of the performances to the Hyperion? Best of both worlds.

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