Quantcast
MousePlanet.com


Update for December 18-24, 2006

Go directly to: News & Views | Current Refurbishment/Attraction Closures | Park Events | Discounts and Promotions | Park Schedule/Blockout Dates

News and Views

You win some, you lose some

As we indicated last week, the Matterhorn Bobsleds were looking good to reopen earlier than the scheduled December 15 date to return. Indeed by Monday the ride was running full time and by Wednesday it was officially open. As expected there were no significant changes made to the attraction during its extensive refurbishment. The new restraint system that was discussed has been moved to a later refurbishment.


advertisement

The most common question about the ride as its opening approached has been that is it smoother. Since much of the jerkiness of the ride is inherent in its design it isn't surprising that the answer is not really. If you found the ride too jerky before you'll almost certainly find it so now.

At the other end of the spectrum, last Monday it also seemed unlikely that the Disneyland Monorail would be able to return on its scheduled date. There was simply too much work to still be done and that was born out later in the week when Monorail cast members were informed that they would not be needed for at least an extra week until at least December 21.

However, in the intervening week there has been one piece of very interesting progress in the construction for Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage: the ride sign has been installed.


The ride sign is up above what will be the entrance to Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. Photo by David Michael.

While we're lingering in the area, The Hatmosphere is now officially and completely history. For a couple months now the store has been acting as the Winner's Circle store that closed beneath the monorail platform to make room for the Submarine Voyage queue. The hat merchandise was moved to the new TomorrowLanding store but the name remained unchanged. That has finally been updated and a new sign is in place and The Hatmosphere is gone.


Just in time for people to not be walking past on the new Autopia exit ramp, The Hatmosphere is finally renamed. Photo by David Michael.

Most watchers were caught off guard last Monday when California Screamin' at Disney's California Adventure park closed suddenly and half of the loop was removed. Impressively, the ride was closed for just two days while the section of track was removed to make room for a construction crane assisting with demolition of the storefront underneath the ride and then just as quickly put back in place and the ride returned to service.


California Screamin' closed for a couple days with half the loop removed. Photo by David Michael.


Just two days later it was put back together and running. Photo by David Michael.

Holidaytime Tour

MousePlanet write Shoshana Lewin took this year's edition of the Holidaytime at Disneyland tour and sent along the following information and comments. The tour is offered through the end of the year.

While the basic structure remains the same every year, there are some perks that change. Last year's Rice Krispy Marshmallow Christmas Tree became this year's yummy gingerbread man; last year's holiday cup because this year's Year of a Million Dreams cup; this year the tour jockeys have also been given "magical" candles that they can turn on and off (making them much easier to find in the evening crowds). Another perk was the stop at the Candy Shop that included a tasting of either mint or pumpkin fudge (yummy!) The only problem was that, because of the crowds, our tour didn't have a chance to learn more about the decor in Frontierland or Toontoon as in past years. While each tour is limited to 15 guests, three tours took off at the same time—all of us meeting at the train station and again at the VIP seats for the parade (the characters are very attentive to tourgoers).

If you can get the evening tour, try to as there is no better way to see all the lights.

Tour highlights:

  • Express boarding for "it's a small world" Holiday and Haunted Mansion Holiday
  • Commemorative pin
  • Reserved seating for "A Christmas Fantasy" Parade
  • A holiday treat
  • Capacity: Each Tour is limited to 15 Guests
  • Tour Length: 2.5 hours
  • Price: $59 per person/ $47.20 per person for Annual Passholders between (NOTE: Disneyland says the discounted rate is only for 11/17/06 - 11/30/06, but be sure to ask when you book).
  • All tours may be booked up to 30 days in advance by calling (714) 781-4400

Faces behind the voices

It was a late addition to last week's Park Update so if you read it early you might want to go back read Frank Anzalone's recap of an event in Sacramento where a new piece of artwork featuring the Fab Five was unveiled. The great part about the event was that all four voices behind the five characters were on hand as well, an extremely rare opportunity. So if you'd like to see the faces behind the voices, check it out.

Another legal setback

Disneyland has been handed a judicial setback in a lawsuit over liability following the death of a Spanish woman in 2000. On June 25 of that year, Christie Moreno of Barcelona rode Indiana Jones Adventure and then began complaining of headaches. Eventually she was hospitalized, where a brain hemorrhage was found to be the cause of her problems. After lingering in a coma, Moreno passed away on September 1, 2000. Her family has claimed that the harsh motions and jerkiness of the Indiana Jones Adventure attraction was the cause of Moreno's illness.

In pressing their case, the plaintiffs have argued that they should be able to present to the jury changes made to the ride in 2002. They claim the changes were made to make the ride smoother and safer (implying it was less safe before that) while Disney contended that the changes were unrelated to safety and had no bearing at all on the case at hand.

Last week, the judge ruled that the family could present the information on ride changes to the jury.

This is the second setback in the case for Disney. Last year, the California Supreme Court issued a split ruling that Disney could be held to a much higher level of liability for "common public carriers" (see this article for our much more detailed explanation) more generally associated with public busses, trains, and ferries.

While rulings in California have no jurisdiction over Walt Disney World, this combination of rulings raises some interesting questions for Mission: Space. That Epcot attraction is much younger than Indiana Jones Adventure and has seen several significant incidents that can be directly tied to riding the attraction. Also, the ride was significantly changed as a result (by adding a separate queue for a version of the ride with no motion effects).

This and that...

...Late last week saw the official announcement of the next slate of new attractions for Hong Kong Disneyland. Animation Academy (originally at Disney-MGM Studios and now also at DCA) and Mickey's WaterWorks, an original water-based parade, will open next summer. Of more interest to Disneyland fans is that summer 2008 will see the opening of a fifth version of "it's a small world." The attraction, which opened at Disneyland in 1966, is one of the few attractions found in all four of the other worldwide Disney Resorts and it will now be one of the even fewer found in all five. Attractions currently in each of the five parks are:

  • Mad Tea Party
  • Space Mountain
  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters (with various names)
  • Autopia (counting Tomorrowland Indy Speedway at WDW and Grand Circuit Raceway in Tokyo)
  • A railroad (if you count Western River Railroad at Tokyo Disneyland)

No details have yet been released about the design so it is unknown whether the Hong Kong version will have anything unique about it.

...Just a reminder of entertainment schedule changes following the holiday season. Disney's Electrical Parade at DCA will continue its daily runs at 8:45 through Sunday, January 7. After that it will be dark until at least Spring Break and possiby until the summer season starts. Also at DCA, High School Musical Pep Rally will go to weekends only (Friday through Sunday) after January 7th.

Over at Disneyland, both the A Christmas Fantasy Parade and Believe...In Holiday Magic fireworks show will also continue through the January 7 until being put away for a year. Parade of Dreams will return (twice per day Friday-Sunday, once per day Monday-Thursday) to Main Street on Friday, January 12. The Remember...Dreams Come True fireworks show will also return on that day, though its performances will be limited to weekends (Friday-Sunday). There is no indication that either Parade of Dreams or Remember... will be significantly changed from their pre-holiday versions.

The official Disneyland calendar shows Jedi Training Academy dropping off of the calendar after December 31 but this is almost certainly a data entry issue as even if the show were going dark, it wouldn't do it in the middle of New Year's weekend.

Don't keep it to yourself! Send us your news tips, rumors, and comments. E-mail us here.

Current Refurbishments and Attraction Closures

Disneyland

  • Disneyland Monorail closed August 21 - December 14 for station remodel and queue construction for Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. Will likely close again in January.
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant closed January 8 - January 17 for refurbishment.
  • Haunted Mansion closed January 8 - January 18 for removal of Christmas Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay.
  • Mark Twain Riverboat closed January 15 - January 19 for general maintenance and painting.
  • it's a small world closed January 22 - February 1 for removal of Christmas overlay.
  • Gadget's Go Coaster closed January 22 - February 2 for refurbishment.
  • Splash Mountain closed January 23 - early May for major refurbishment. No major changes are expected but lift mechanics are being replaced.
  • Professor Barnaby Owl's Photographic Art Studio closed January 23 - early May due to closure of Splash Mountain (store is primarily for sale of Splash Mountain ride photos).
  • Disneyland Railroad closed February 5 - March 29 for track work and to allow heavy equipment access to Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage.
  • Mr. Toad's Wild Ride closed February 19 - March 29 for an extensive refurbishment.
  • Fantasmic! dark February 20 - March 16 due to work on Tom Sawyer Island.
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage is currently under construction and will open sometime around summer 2007.

Disney's California Adventure

  • Golden Zephyr closed January 8 - January 11 for maintenance.
  • Orange Stinger closed January 16 - March 23 for full refurbishment.
  • Grizzly River Run closed January 22 - January 25 for maintenance.
  • Midway Mania under construction. Opens 2008.
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.

Events

If you know of any events, official or unofficial, that should be listed here, let us know.

December

  • Lion King returns to Pantages Theater. Beginning November 16 for eight week run. Call 323-463-4367 for details and tickets. Perusal tickets are available to Annual Passholders and Disney Visa members through June 10.
  • Nightmare Before Christmas at El Capitan Theater. October 19-January 4. (link). After November 3, it is only two late shows per day.
  • The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause at El Capitan Theater. November 3-January 4 (link). Screening includes a stage musical show before each show.
  • Believe Holiday Fireworks show. Beginning November 9 for daily holiday fireworks show that will run through the end of the year.
  • A Christmas Fantasy parade. Beginning November 17 for daily parade that will run through the end of the year.

January

  • Mary Poppins at El Capitan Theater. January 11-January 31. (link).

February

  • Peter Pan at El Capitan Theater. February 1-February 15. (link).
  • Bridge to Terabithia at El Capitan Theater. February 16-March 22. (link).

March

  • Meet the Robinsons at El Capitan Theater. March 30-May 20. (link).

Current Discounts & Promotions

Several current promotions offer discounted admission to the Disneyland Resort. For convenience sake, 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 which works best for you. And keep those tips coming – let us know if you find a better / 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 still rarely see 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.

As we are approaching the end of the year, the information below is for 2007 tickets. These tickets and prices are effective for first use after January 2, 2007. If you are still planning travel for the end of December, make sure you purchase 2006 tickets, which must have a first use of January 2, 2007. As of January 3, 2007, prices for multi-day parkhopper tickets will increase.

This information is pulled from many sources but much thanks must go to MousePlanet sponsor MouseSavers.com for providing the bulk of the information. If you know of any additional discounts, offers, promotions, or contests that should be listed in this section, drop us a line (link).

One Day Park Hoper
Regularly $83/$73

Southern California 1–Day Park Hopper – Disney is not currently offering a Southern California 1-Day Park Hopper at the Web site. Southern California AAA offices and Vons Supermarkets may be selling these tickets, but call ahead to confirm. Proof of residency will be required when redeeming them at Disneyland (Vons will happily sell you the ticket voucher regardless of where you are from but you still need to be an appropriate resident to use it. If you do see these available anywhere, email us to let us know.

Two Day Park Hopper
Regularly $122/$102

AOCVCB 2-Day Bonus Ticket ($119/$100) – The discount (from the Anaheim-Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau) is $3 (adult) and $2 (child) and shipping on all orders is at least $10 (link). So if you are ordering more than 10 days in advance and your discount would be less than $10, you'll still come out ahead by ordering at the Disneyland Web site.

Three Day Park Hooper
Regularly $179/$149

Advance Purchase 3-day Park Hopper Bonus Ticket ($159/$129) – A discounted price for advance purchase through the Internet or select dealers. Available at the Disneyland Web site (link) where shipping is included if you order more than 10 days prior to your travel date. Also available from AAA offices in Northern California, Nevada, and Utah (not currently listed at the AAA Web site, you may need to call your local office). Disney Stores (California), Safeway grocery stores (California and Arizona), and certain travel agents may also sell these tickets. It is best to call and confirm before visiting a location, however. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday). If purchased from AAA, the tickets come with free parking at the Mickey ∧ Friends parking garage (an $11/day value)

Southern California CityPass($235/$189) – This pass includes a 3-Day Disneyland Resort park ticket (including one early-entry day). It also includes one day admissions to SeaWorld San Diego, Universal Studios Hollywood, and either the San Diego Zoo or San Diego Wild Animal Park. The CityPass expires 14 days after first use at any location. Purchase CityPass through the Disneyland Web site (link) or onsite at the ticket booths of Disneyland Resort or the other theme parks included in the pass. You can also purchase directly from the CityPass Web site (link) though this has a minimum $7.50 shipping charge (no shipping charge from the Disney Web site if purchased more than 10 days in advance).

The Southern California City Pass can also be purchased online from Costco at a cost of $209.99/$169.99 (adults/child), 5% surcharge if not a Costco member and shipping fees apply. Booklets may be available for sale in some stores but varies widely. If you want to buy in person it would be best to call ahead and confirm availability. If you do buy at a Costco, you will initially purchase a large plastic container which you must trade for ticket books prior to leaving Costco!

AOCVCB 3-Day Bonus Ticket ($155/$126) – The discount (from the Anaheim-Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau) is $4 (adult) and $3 (child) and shipping on all orders is at least $10. So if you are ordering more than 10 days in advance and your discount would be less than $10, you'll still come out ahead by ordering at the Disneyland Web site. Tickets include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday) (link).

Everybody Plays for the Kid's Price ($129/$129) – A special off season promotional ticket direct from Disney. First day of use must be on or before April 26, 2007. If you have the tickets shipped to you (as opposed to Will Call), you'll also receive a coupon for discounts on Disneyland merchandise. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday) (link).

Four Day Park Hopper
Regularly $209/$179

Advance Purchase 4–Day Park Hopper Bonus tickets ($179/$149) – A discounted price for advance purchase through the Internet or select dealers. Available at the Disneyland Web site (link) where shipping is included if you order more than 10 days prior to your travel date. Also available from AAA offices in Northern California, Nevada, and Utah (not currently listed at the AAA Web site, you may need to call your local office). Disney Stores (California), Safeway grocery stores (California and Arizona), and certain travel agents may also sell these tickets. It is best to call and confirm before visiting a location, however. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday). If purchased from AAA, the tickets come with free parking at the Mickey ∧ Friends parking garage (an $11/day value).

AOCVCB 4-Day Bonus Ticket ($174/$145) – The discount (from the Anaheim-Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau) is $5 (adult) and $4 (child) and shipping on all orders is at least $10 Tickets include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday) (link).

Everybody Plays for the Kid's Price ($149/$149) – A special off season promotional ticket direct from Disney. First day of use must be on or before April 26, 2007. If you have the tickets shipped to you (as opposed to Will Call), you'll also receive a coupon for discounts on Disneyland merchandise. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday) (link).

Five Day Park Hopper
Regularly $229/$199

Advance Purchase 5–Day Park Hopper Bonus tickets ($189/$159) – A discounted price for advance purchase through the Internet or select dealers. Available at the Disneyland Web site (link) where shipping is included if you order more than 10 days prior to your travel date. Also available from AAA offices in Northern California, Nevada, and Utah (not currently listed at the AAA Web site, you may need to call your local office). Disney Stores (California), Safeway grocery stores (California and Arizona), and certain travel agents may also sell these tickets. It is best to call and confirm before visiting a location, however. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday). If purchased from AAA, the tickets come with free parking at the Mickey ∧ Friends parking garage (an $11/day value).

AOCVCB 5-Day Bonus Ticket ($183/$154) – The discount (from the Anaheim-Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau) is $6 (adult) and $5 (child) and shipping on all orders is $10.

Everybody Plays for the Kid's Price ($159/$159) – A special off season promotional ticket direct from Disney. First day of use must be on or before April 26, 2007. If you have the tickets shipped to you (as opposed to Will Call), you'll also receive a coupon for discounts on Disneyland merchandise. "Bonus Tickets" include one early admission day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday) (link).

Travel Packages

2007 Resort Dream Vacation Package – This official Disney travel package (link) start at $389/per person for two adults per two-nights. The $389 price is for the Paradise Pier Hotel and goes up for Disneyland Hotel or Grand Californian Hotel. In addition to the hotel room, the package includes appropriate park hopper tickets, one early admission (early admission days are currently Mondays, Tuesday, Thursdays, and Saturdays), a virtual prize for the Virtual Magic Kingdom online game, admission to Mickey's Toontown Morning Madness (currently available Mondays, Wednesday, Fridays, and Saturdays), a collectible Dream Coin, and Walt Disney Travel Company collectible pin and lanyard, luggage tag, and California Fun Book. Travel using this package must be booked by March 10, 2007, and completed by March 15, 2007.

2007 Good Neighbor Dream Vacation Package – This official Disney travel package (link).

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 2-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)

AAA Restaurant Discounts – AAA (American Automobile Association) members can receive a 10% discount (excluding alcohol) at Plaza Inn, Wine Country Trattoria Ariel's Grotto, PCH Grill, and Goofy's Kitchen.


Park Schedule/Blockout Dates

DL: Disneyland
DCA: Disney's California Adventure
Annual Pass blockout dates:

  • SL – Southern California Select Annual Pass
  • SC – Southern California Annual Pass
  • DX – Deluxe Annual Pass
12/3 12/4 12/5 12/6 12/7 12/8 12/9

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–9p
SL

DL: 9a–6p
DCA: 10a–9p

DL: 9a-6p
DCA: 10a–9p

DL: 9a-8p
DCA: 10a–6p

DL: 9a-8p
DCA: 10a–6p

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–9p

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p
SL/SC

12/10 12/11 12/12 12/13 12/14 12/15 12/16

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–9p
SL

DL: 9a–9p
DCA: 10a–6p

DL: 9a–9p
DCA: 10a–6p

DL: 9a–9p
DCA: 10a–6p

DL: 8a–11p
DCA: 10a–8p

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–9p
SL

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p
SL/SC

12/17 12/18 12/19 12/20 12/21 12/22 12/23

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p
SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p SL/SC

DL: 8a–Mid
DCA: 10a–10p
SL/SC/DX

Visit our Annual Passholders Blockout Dates 2006 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.

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




Talk about this article and more, on the MousePad community forums.