Archive for August, 2012

Join us for the Post-marathon Cupcake Meet at Disneyland!

by on August 27, 2012

Lets face it, running is hard. We want to help those brave half marathon-running souls gain back those precious calories by eating delicious cupcakes! Join us on Sunday, September 2nd at 1:30 PM for a post-marathon cupcake meet in Disneyland. We will meet in the seating area outside of Jolly Holiday Bakery. If you didn’t run in the half marathon, don’t worry! Runners and non-runners are both welcome and will receive cupcakes. Just look for me in my cranberry-colored TouringPlans shirt.

Please RSVP on PlanCast. See you on Sunday!

Last Week at Disneyland Resort (8/19/2012 -8/25/2012)

by on August 27, 2012

All photos copyright Disney

The masses of annual Passholders that were anticipated to invade the Anaheim attractions after blackout dates were lifted last week didn't quite materialize. So if you've been avoiding Disneyland all summer, now is a great time to visit as preparations begin for the Halloween season.

Crowd Calendar

Quietest Day: Friday 8/17 was a 5 out of 10 at the resort, with DCA crowds at 4.7 and Disneyland Park at only 3.1.

Busiest Day: Sunday 8/19 was an 8 out of 10 at the resort, with DCA crowds at 8.9 and Disneyland Park at 5.7.

Subscribe to the Disneyland Crowd Calendar for details on predicted crowds for the next 30 days.

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10 Things I am Looking Forward to at Disneyland this Week

by on August 24, 2012

By the time you read this, I will be in the middle of a work vacation in the Happiest Place on Earth! Yes, my job is a rough one, it often requires me to travel to, of all places – Disneyland! And to top it off, they are putting us up in my favorite hotel anywhereDisney’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa. So I’m sure that at the moment you are reading this, the sides of my face will be aching from all the smiling I have been doing. Here are some of the things I’m looking forward to the most!

1. I’m Taking a Newbie! – Well she’s essentially a newbie. My roommate (and work colleague) for the trip hasn’t been to Disneyland since she was seven! She’s very familiar with Walt Disney World and goes all the time but Disneyland is a whole new thing for her. I’m excited to show her everything that Disneyland has to offer and watch her fall in love with it as I did several years ago.

2. Carthay Circle RestaurantI finally am going to try Carthay Circle! I can’t wait! I’ve seen the menu, I’ve read the reviews, and I’ve drooled over the pictures of the food. And again – I can’t wait! Did you know if you order an appetizer or dessert with your entrée you get a FASTPASS for World of Color? Even more value for our money! Okay, there’s no cost associated with FASTPASSes so there may not be actual value there, but it feels like it!

3. Cozy Cone MotelI also have not eaten at Cozy Cone yet, and Seth’s review has me intrigued. Or should I say scared? I’ve gone on record as saying food in a cone sounds rather genius to me. It’s kind of like egg rolls for me. If I break it down I probably don’t actually like a single thing in an egg roll. But put it all together in a tasty wrapper and fry it up? I’m there! I was thinking the cones would be similar, but maybe I was wrong. Maybe horribly wrong if Seth’s experience is common.

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Weekly Disneyland Photo Update for August 24, 2012

by on August 24, 2012

This week we take a look at the construction around the Disneyland Resort and the introduction of Annual Passholder Movie Nights.

When Disneyland opened on Thursday morning there was a sign outside of the Opera House announcing the first ever Annual Passholder Movie Night. No mention of it was made on any Disney-owned websites or social media accounts. It looks like they left it up to the fans to spread the news.

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Magic Kingdom’s Evening Extra Magic Hour Line Up To Change

by on August 24, 2012

Next week, the attraction line up will be changed up a tiny bit for Evening Extra Magic Hour at the Magic Kingdom.

Starting on August 26, Splash Mountain will be removed as an attraction that is included in Evening Extra Magic Hours. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room and Country Bear Jamboree (when it reopens from it’s refurbishment in October) will be added in its place.

The Dangers Of A Politically Correct Disney

by on August 24, 2012

Not even going to touch this attraction's source material...

Over the years, Disney has made a lot of changes to its theme parks that have no explainable basis other than the pursuit of more politically correct attractions and experiences. This is no surprise, given that we live in a sensitive society. To be sure, some of this sensitivity is absolutely justified. We should live in a society that is aware of its past transgressions and is intolerant of intolerance. However, attempting to sanitize all elements of culture to be politically correct is a fool’s errand.

In the past, we have seen some of these sanitation efforts at play in the Disney theme parks. Famously, Pirates of the Caribbean was altered so that instead of pirates chasing after wenches (err…sorry…females), pirates now run around with gold or are chased by females. Now, I’m not contending that the scene in its previous form could not have been construed to ascribe ill-intentions to the pirates, but I think it takes a fairly literal interpretation of the attraction in order to view that scene as offensive. If viewing the attraction in such a light, where do you draw the line? Consistency would require taking offense at women being auctioned off as “brides,” and actually, should require taking offense at the premise of the attraction, in general. After all, pirates are hardly model citizens. Historical and contemporary pirates are heinous individuals who commit murder, among other terrible things. Is it really appropriate that we glamorize such atrocious human beings with a popular attraction and a series of blockbuster films?

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Epcot Now Has Complimentary Wi-Fi

by on August 24, 2012

Disney started rolling it out earlier this month at the Magic Kingdom, and now Epcot is the second Walt Disney World park that offers complimentary wireless Internet access (Wi-Fi) throughout.

As a reminder, to connect to the Wi-Fi, all you’ll need to do is select the “Disney-Guest” network on your device, launch a browser, and agree to the terms.

The rest of the parks, plus Downtown Disney, are slated to get complimentary Wi-Fi access soon.

Comparing the Cost of a Disney Cruise Line Vacation to Walt Disney World

by on August 23, 2012

This is the first in a series of articles we will be running on Disney Cruise Line. Please let us know what you think in the comments!

Newly edited for 2017 with updated pricing

One of the factors that causes guests to shy away from a Disney Cruise Line vacation is its up front costs. When you book a Walt Disney World vacation, you have complete control over the number of nights you spend, which resort you choose, and how you want to eat. On DCL a lot of those decisions are made for you and included in your costs.

For fun, let’s do an apples to apples comparison of 2 similar land and sea-based trips:

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What’s New in the 2013 Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World

by on August 23, 2012

The first printing of the 2013 Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World is available on Amazon and other fine bookstores. (Kindle edition here.)

I’m surprised that the print edition is out this early, since we were making changes to the text as late as July 20 (to cover the new 2-hour Evening Extra Magic Hours). That’s amazing considering the book is 848 pages. Between Bob, me and the other contributors, we submitted close to 200 pages of updates and new content for this printing. And that excludes corrections for things such as typos, prices, hours, and phone number changes. Speaking of corrections, we’d like to thank the dozens of proofreaders and fact-checkers who helped update this edition – you folks are teh best. (Ha!) Thanks also to everyone else who sent in updates. Finally, while we’ve made every effort toward accuracy, there are bound to be some things we’ll need to correct. Drop us an email if you notice anything, please.

Below is a quick summary of the major changes for the most popular chapters of the book. I’m sure I’ve missed some sections, so drop us a line if you have questions.

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New Nighttime Castle Show Set To Debut at the Magic Kingdom

by on August 22, 2012

Disney will debut a brand new castle projection show for the Magic Kingdom this fall.

The new show, called Celebrate the Magic, will premiere sometime in November. It will take the place of The Magic, The Memories, and You! castle show, which will have its last showing on September 3, 2012. There will not be a nighttime castle projection show for the remainder of September and all of October.

The new show will include elements of its predecessor; however, it will have a completely new story with new music and new special effects.

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