Posts Tagged ‘refurbishment’

Observations from Disney’s Animal Kingdom: August 15, 2014

by on August 15, 2014

Observations from Disney's Animal Kingdom

Take a day — or at least 2/3s of one — to walk around Animal Kingdom with Touring Plans (photos by Seth Kubersky).

This week it was time for me to make some observations from Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and is there any place in Walt Disney World more welcoming on a muggy, humid day? Wait, don’t answer that… As an infrequent visitor to Animal Kingdom, it was my objective to visit as many of park’s major and mid-tier attractions as possible, in order to test Derek Burgan’s controversial theory that DAK is indeed more than a “half-day park.”

 

While the typical Touring Plans approach is to arrive before rope drop, I decided to give Animal Kingdom a fighting chance by pulling onto Disney property a half hour after the park’s 9 a.m. opening time. The first sight that greeted me past the toll booths was a large section of the overflow parking lot where grass was being replaced with asphalt.

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Disneyland’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad Reopening March 17

by on March 9, 2014

Disneyland's Big Thunder Mountain Railroad reopening is set for March 17

Disneyland’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad reopening is set for March 17 (photo by Seth Kubersky)

The wildest ride in the wilderness will ride again a little sooner than expected, as the Disney Parks Blog has announced Disneyland’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad reopening on March 17. The iconic Frontierland E-Ticket has been down since January 2013 for an epically extended refurbishment, but will resume delighting Disneyland riders ahead of the previously-published April return.

The revamped ride will sport a brand new track (following the same course as the original), rebuilt Rainbow Ridge buildings (again, reconstructed to resemble the rotted originals), and new lighting and sound effects. Most notably, the beloved dynamite-chewing goat is rumored to feature an explosive new digital projection found on the roller-coaster’s third lift hill, formerly the site of an unconvincing earthquake effect.

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Disneyland’s Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage Closing for Extended Refurbishment

by on December 16, 2013

Disneyland Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage refurbishment

Photo copyright Disney

If you are a fan of directionally challenged CGI clownfish, you better swim over to Disneyland in the next few weeks. The Orange Country Register reported, and the Disney Parks Blog confirmed, that Disneyland’s Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage attraction will close on January 6 for an extensive refurbishment expected to last until late 2014.

During the downtime, Disney says that the Tomorrowland lagoon will be drained and the coral rockwork will be made more colorful. The subs, which were (in their original non-Nemo incarnation) added in 1959 as one of Disneyland’s first E-ticket attractions, have limited carrying capacity and are notoriously expensive to maintain. Here’s hoping that the submarines do return by the end of next year, and that this isn’t the first step towards the attraction fading into Yesterland.

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Disneyland’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad Refurb Officially Extended Until 2014

by on October 7, 2013

Image copyright Disney

File this piece under “the least surprising news in the wilderness”:

After months of officially insisting that Disneyland’s iconic Big Thunder Mountain Railroad ride in California would return from its multi-month refurbishment in time for fall 2013 holiday season — despite rampant rumors that there was still extensive work to be done — Mickey has finally admitted that you won’t be taking any rides past the newly-rebuilt town of Rainbow Ridge until early next year.

The announcement only provides a vague reopening time period of “Winter [early] 2014,” but we’ve updated our attraction closures webpage with a tentative return date of February 15, 2014.

Stay tuned for more information as it becomes available.

 

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Celebrate Disneyland’s 58th Birthday with Vintage Video (plus Jungle Cruise News)

by on July 15, 2013

This Wednesday (July 17, 2013), the Disneyland Park celebrates its 58th birthday. If you are an Annual Passholder in the Anaheim area, you can mark the occasion on Tuesday at the final of three free presentations detailing the resort’s early years.

Even if you can’t make it out to wish the park a happy birthday in person, you can still honor the occasion at home by watching this recently released compilation of color footage from Disneyland’s opening months, provided courtesy of the Disney History Institute. Check out the rare views of short-lived attractions like the Phantom motorboats, Storybook-less canal boats, and Main Street’s performing monkey.

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Disneyland Alert: Space Mountain Closed by Cal/OSHA

by on April 20, 2013

Photo by Seth Kubersky

As you may have heard, the Disneyland Resort has been having serious issues with some of its headlining E-Tickets lately. On April 12, inspectors from California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (following up on an incident from earlier this year in which a Space Mountain maintenance worker fell and was injured) issued a citation to Disneyland for safety violations in the Anaheim parks, with proposed penalties totaling nearly a quarter million dollars.

At one point earlier this week, Space Mountain, Matterhorn Bobsleds, and Soarin’ Over California were all simultaneously shuttered, in addition to Big Thunder Mountain which is closed for an extensive refurb. Then, on Friday (April 19) California Screamin’ was added to the list of forbidden rides, following a review of emergency evacuation procedures. Note that these closures are not related to guest safety, but to fall protection and other safety measures for employees cleaning and servicing the attractions after hours.

At press time, the Matterhorn and Soarin’ Over California have both been reinspected and returned to service. California Screamin’ was also reopened late on Friday, and is expected to operate on Saturday. However, according to reports on MiceAge, Space Mountain may be out of service for the rest of April.

If you are visiting Disneyland in the immediate future and using our Lines app to optimize, your touring plan should automatically adjust to accommodate any closed attractions. Check back on our Refurbishment page for updates on what is operating at the resort on any given day.

 

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Farewell to Main Street Favorites: Disneyland’s Market House and Voices of Liberty Say Goodbye

by on April 11, 2013

They say that April showers bring May flowers, but this month a different kind of precipitation may be misting up Disneyland’s Main Street, U.S.A. I’m certain that I’m not the only Disney devotee who is shedding a tear over the loss of two favorite front-of-park attractions. One, a legendary retail outlet that had remained largely untouched for decades; the other, a relatively recent entertainment import from Epcot.

First and foremost, Disneyland’s Market House will close on April 15 for its transformation into a franchised Starbucks Coffee outlet, similar to the Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Cafe that opened in DCA last summer. The rehabbed location, like the one across the Esplanade, is expected to be hugely popular with guests seeking their familiar Starbucks fix. But we would be remiss not to mark the passing of one of Main Street’s best-loved locations.

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DCA’s Disney Junior Show Reopens with New Characters

by on March 25, 2013

Unless you visit the Disneyland Resort with toddlers in tow, the Disney Junior — Live On Stage! show in Disney California Adventure’s Hollywood Land probably isn’t one of your top in-park destinations. But if you have pint-sized patrons of the popular Disney Junior series in your household, you know that the network’s cartoon characters are like rock stars to the pre-school set.

After many weeks of refurbishment, DCA’s Disney Junior show reopened on Friday, March 22, with the same refreshed production that previously premiered at Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios park. This latest version retains the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse framing segments and Jake and the Neverland Pirates vignette, while replacing the Handy Mandy and Little Einsteins sequences with new scenes inspired by Sophia the First and Doc McStuffins. As before, the show uses a mix of live actors and rod puppets manipulated from beneath the stage.

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Last Week at Disneyland Resort (1/13/2013 – 1/19/2013)

by on January 21, 2013

All images copyright Disney

Happy Inauguration Day! As America’s President retakes the oath of office in chilly Washington, the sun is rising over Anaheim on a warm Martin Luther King Day. Unlike some Superbowl stars, Obama probably won’t end his victory celebration by shouting, “I’m going to Disneyland!” But if you are visiting the Happiest Place On Earth this week, why not honor our Republic by spending some great moments with Mr. Lincoln as you enjoy this season’s short lines in Disneyland.

Crowd Calendar

Quietest Day: Wednesday 1/16 was a 2 out of 10 at the resort, with 2.5 at Disneyland, and 1.1 at DCA.

Busiest Day: Saturday 1/19 was an 9 out of 10 at the resort, with a 9.9 at Disneyland, and 7.5 at DCA.

Subscribe to the Touring Plans Disneyland Crowd Calendar for full details on predicted attendance for the next 30 days.

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Last Week at Disneyland Resort (12/30/2012 – 1/5/2012)

by on January 7, 2013

All images copyright Disney

Last week, Disneyland Resort bid farewell to the Christmas season and sailed into 2013 with festivities, fireworks, and fierce crowds. The end of the holidays brings a brigade of closures and refurbishments, but also arriving are a wave of limited-time events and merchandise to welcome the new year.

Crowd Calendar

Quietest Day: Wednesday 1/2 was a 6 out of 10 at the resort, with 5.1 at Disneyland, and 5.1 at DCA.

Busiest Day: Monday 12/31 was a 10 out of 10 at the resort, with a 10.0 at Disneyland, and 10.0 at DCA.

Subscribe to the Touring Plans Disneyland Crowd Calendar for full details on predicted attendance for the next 30 days.

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