by David Davies
If you look at a descending list of the box offices revenues for Pixar films, neither film in the Cars series is near the top. This has not, however, prevented Cars-related merchandise from being astoundingly popular. This comes as no surprise to most parents of a young boys, and a June 2011 Los Angeles Times article even suggests that prospective merchandise sales drove Disney’s green-lighting of Cars 2 and perhaps even California Adventure’s recent expansion. Needless to say, you will find ample themed merchandise readily available in Cars Land and throughout California Adventure.
Tom Bricker writes:
Stores in Cars Land are really small. I was a bit surprised by this, especially given that one of the big ‘sells’ for Cars Land is the merchandising opportunities. It would have been one thing if they all were unique merchandise stores, but they’re not.
Brief overviews of the stores (each of which is visually fantastic) follow:
Sarge’s Supply Hut
Across Route 66 from Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree is a rusty Quonset hut that houses Sarge’s Supply Hut. Appropriate for a supply shop run by a military jeep, American flags, gas cans, barrels, and other supplies abound in the decor. In addition, merchandise racks are styled like wooden shipping crates. The wares for sale, of course, are all about Cars. Visit this store if you’re in search of Cars merchandise like t-shirts and toy cars.
Radiator Springs Curios
Made out to be an ramshackle roadside junk store near the tacky Cozy Cone Motel, this shop’s exterior features antique gas pumps and weathered road signs. Although the use of road signs in decorating continues to inside the store, the interior is small but clean and modern. Merchandise includes shirts, pins and lanyards, mugs, Vinylmation, prepackaged snacks, Route 66 mouse ears, and more.
Ramone’s House of Body Art
Adjacent to Flo’s V8 Cafe is the main shopping venue of Cars Land. There are black and white tile floors like you’d find in a high-end garage, and chrome exhaust pipes top some of the merchandise racks. At Ramone’s you can find Cars artwork, grand opening memorabilia, attraction-specific clothing, and other Cars Land items.
All eyes in the theme park industry turned last week to the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, where the grand re-opening of Disney California Adventure was celebrated in the high style befitting the finish line of a billion-dollar makeover marathon. Before this massive expansion officially opened to the public on June 15, invited media and paying sneak-preview participants already had their way with the new attractions of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street, and naturally the TouringPlans.com team was there on the scene. Touring Plans’ official photographer Tom Bricker, Unofficial Guide to Disneyland co-author Seth Kubersky, and new Touring Plans researcher Guy Selga, Jr. were all on-property that week, documenting every detail to your touring advantage. Check back on the blog for our hot-off-the-press first reviews direct from DCA, edited versions of which will appear in the 2013 edition of the Unofficial Guide.