Posts Tagged ‘Soarin’’

What To Do The Night Before Your Disney Alaska Cruise

by on October 7, 2014

Canada PlaceJust in case you haven’t been following along, let me take a moment to catch you up! Fellow TouringPlans Blogger Erin Foster and I went on an amazing Disney Alaska Cruise this summer with our families. We had an incredible time aboard the Disney Wonder and in Alaska experiencing some fantastic Port Adventures like dog sledding, the White Pass and Yukon Railroad, and viewing the Misty Fjords National Monument by float plane.

Before we set off on our exciting voyage, we each spent the night in Vancouver; Erin and her family at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport and my family at the Fairmont Waterfront. My family arrived early on the day before our Disney Alaska Cruise so we had some time to check out Vancouver. Please read on to find out all about our adventures exploring Canada Place, walking the Sea Wall and touring Gastown!

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Favorite Park Series: Disney’s Epcot

by on August 3, 2014

Hello again! Welcome to Epcot. If you haven’t read my highlights on Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, please do so now.

Epcot scenery

Take in the beautiful scenery.

*Twiddles thumbs. Checks Twitter. Reads a blog post.*

Done? Okay, let’s ‘soar’ right in!

Memorable Moments

Pick your mode of transportation! Soarin’ is a popular ride that allows you to hang-glide over California, feeling the wind in your face whilst smelling the fragrance of zesty orange trees. (Fun Fact: The first model for Soarin’ was made out of an erector set!) Once you land on solid ground, hop in a Chevy at Test Track. Strap yourself in and brace yourself for the ride of your life! Put on your space suit, join the NASA team and shoot for the stars as you travel to Mars in your rocket via Mission: Space. To ease back into Earth’s gravity, swim underwater to the ‘clamobile’ where The Seas with Nemo & Friends take you “under the sea.” Finally, use those feet and travel indoors to Innoventions where you’ll find interactive and educational games the whole family will enjoy.

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Observations from Epcot: July 30, 2014

by on August 2, 2014

observations from Epcot

Take a stroll around Epcot with us without having to leave your air-conditioning! (Photos by Seth Kubersky)

Following my Frozen-filled visit to Disney’s Hollywood Studios last week, I found myself back at Walt Disney World a few days later for some observations from Epcot. As a child, EPCOT (as it will always be capitalized in my heart) was my favorite WDW park, and the massive Beard/Abrams coffee table book on the park’s creation remains among my most prized possessions. As everyone knows, Epcot’s attractions (especially in Future World) have been radically overhauled over the past 2 decades, and now I rarely visit the park except during the fantastic Food & Wine or Flower & Garden festivals.

My first mid-summer Epcot experience in several seasons started on a sweet note, as I snagged a parking spot along the center aisle; there is nothing worse than having to walk a football field’s length just to get to the tram.

Spending a lot of time at Universal Orlando lately, I’ve been frustrated by how slow their entry procedures are, even after new ticket scanners were recently installed. In contrast, the turnstile-free entry at Disney’s parks has become my favorite element of MyMagic+. Scanning a MagicBand usually seems swifter than swiping a barcode, and the finger scanners at Disney are still far faster and more reliable than Universal’s new biometric readers.

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Time Traveling: Soarin’

by on January 6, 2014

S0241027

Current balloons on display in The Land pavilion

The last time we went time traveling I teased at the end about one of my all time favorite attractions, and now it’s time to make good on that promise! Today, we’re talking about the land where Soarin’ sits at Epcot. One housekeeping note: a lot of this is written from my own (entirely too sentimental) memories. If you remember it differently, please let me know in the comments below – I’d love to hear from everyone.

If you went back in time between 1994 and 2004, you’d have no reason to be sad about Soarin’ taking over this space. Food Rocks is the show you’d find, and I can honestly say that even at a young age I understood I was seeing a cheap overlay at Disney. The transition time to install this show was only a couple months, and all of the animatronics felt flat. Even our host, “Fud Wrapper,” looked like he was made from cheap, nylon material. In this show Fud was our guide through the food groups and avoiding excess in a concert performed entirely by audio-animatronics. The only problem was that every song was a popular song with words replaced to fit the food group. Think of an entire show written in the style of Weird Al Yankovic… just not funny. It was one of the first attractions to close after I moved to Orlando, and I was thrilled to see it go! However, if you weren’t able to visit during this time, the show is well documented on YouTube, so you have to watch it. I’m very curious if lots of people will disagree with me on this show. Much like The Enchanted Tiki Room (Under New Management), I might just be firmly on one side of a generation gap. I’ll always love the original Enchanted Tiki Room, and I’ll always love the show that Food Rocks replaced.

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Disney’s PLANES Invade Soarin’ Over California Preshow in Disney California Adventure

by on September 17, 2013

Image copyright Disney

Some people saw the recent Disney Pictures’ release PLANES as a cynical cash grab that merely made margins modifications to Pixar’s charming CARS franchise…and some other people enjoy Dane Cook. Whichever camp you fall in, you must admit it was inevitable that the anthropomorphized aircraft would eventually arrive in at least one of Mickey’s theme parks.

It looks like at least one PLANES tie-in came in for a landing recently in Disney California Adventure at Disneyland Resort, though thankfully in a relatively subtle way.

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Observations at Epcot: September 6

by on September 12, 2013

With crowds thinning out from Summer peaks and Food & Wine Festival just around the corner, I headed to Epcot last Friday to take a look around. My morning started with a fuel-up at Kouzzina at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort. It’s generally easy to do a walk-in there, and breakfast never disappoints. I chose the Country French Toast with fig and apple compote and, like I told the Twitterverse that morning, it was so good it made me want to hug people. You can find my review here.

Kouzzina's Country French Toast

Kouzzina’s Country French Toast

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Space Mountain Reopens but Disneyland Still Faces OSHA Issues

by on May 7, 2013

As we reported late last month, the Disneyland Resort recent shuttered some major E-Ticket attractions following inspections from California’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA). Most of the rides, including Soarin’ Over California and California Screamin’, swiftly returned to service, but the iconic Space Mountain remained off-limits to guests for the past 3 weeks.

Happily, Space Mountian returned to service on Friday night (May 3) and resumed normal operating hours as of Saturday, May 4. To clarify earlier coverage, Disney was fined $234,850 after a contract employee was injured in a fall last November while cleaning the exterior of Space Mountain, but the current closure was a voluntary action (not mandated by Cal/OSHA) intended to ameliorate related safety issues that had previously been “grandfathered” approval. Disneyland has not yet announced whether it will appeal the fines, or if further safety modifications to Disneyland attractions (or similar rides at Walt Disney World) will be made.

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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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Soarin’ – we have giftshop!

by on July 9, 2006

Due to demand for Soarin’ merchandise at Epcot, a small shop has opened at the exit of the attraction. It’s literally a single shelving unit tucked away in the corner of the Fastpass distribution area, but it has all your merchandise including T-shirt and keychains. It even has Mickey Mini Gardens which were very popular items sold at the Land’s old store prior to rennovation.

The image above shows the t-shirt style being sold at the new giftshop.

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Soarin’ celebrates 5 million riders

by on July 6, 2006

Recently, the Rose family from Tampa, FL, were the 5 millionth riders on Epcot’s Soarin’ attraction. They got pins (what’s a Disney event without pins?) and other honorary gifts.

In perspective, Soarin’ has only been officially open since May 5, 2005. That places the daily ridership at roughly 11-12 thousand per day.

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