Posts Tagged ‘Big Thunder Ranch’

Goodbye Goats: Video of Big Thunder Ranch’s Closing Day at Disneyland

by on January 14, 2016

In my professional opinion, one of Disneyland’s greatest assets is its deep bench of minor attractions that can be enjoyed by all ages, to balance out the heavy-hitting E-Ticket rides. Accordingly, ever since I began working on the Unofficial Guide to Disneyland, I’ve been advocating for Big Thunder Ranch‘s goats as the park’s greatest under-the-radar treasure. This year, I’ll have the sad duty of deleting all references to the Ranch from the next edition of the Unofficial Guide, as the petting zoo (along with the adjacent barbecue restaurant) ended operations for good at 4 p.m. on Sunday, January 10, 2016. Of course, I had to be there for Big Thunder Ranch’s closing day — along with every annual passholder in California, apparently — to witness the end of an era.

I was wise enough to get my final scritchings in with Big Thunder Ranch’s whiskered stars on Saturday, since I knew the competition to get “last petting” bragging rights would be intense among goat groupies. Even on Saturday, the Ranch was busier than I’d ever seen before that weekend.

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Disneyland Annual Passholder Sing Along Under the Stars Events Start Feb 5

by on February 5, 2014

Disneyland Annual Passholder Sing Along Under The Stars in February at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree

Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree (seen here with holiday decor) will host Disneyland Annual Passholder Sing Along Under The Stars in February.

Drive-in movie theaters are sadly a distant memory in most of America, and the majority of us can’t jump on a Disney cruise just to watch a flick while floating in the pool. But this month, Disneyland Annual Passholders have a unique interactive opportunity to experience a Disney “second golden age” classic outdoors under the Anaheim night sky, thanks to February’s Disneyland Annual Passholder Sing Along Under The Stars screenings at Frontierland’s Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree.

Each week, a different animated musical film is shown, accompanied by hosted trivia and (of course) sing-along sections. Passholders even get free popcorn, coffee, and cocoa! The venue opens at 5:30 p.m., and the film starts at 6:30 p.m.. Space is limited, so secure a wristband by presenting your valid annual pass after 2 p.m. on the day of at Westward Ho! in Frontierland.

Here’s the schedule:

  • Beauty and the Beast: February 5 and 6, 2014
  • The Little Mermaid: February 12 and 13, 2014
  • Aladdin: February 19 and 20, 2014
  • The Lion King: February 26, 2014

It’s worth noting that events like these, which were formerly promoted under 2013’s “Limited Time Magic” banner, seem to have outlived that marketing campaign. You can find all the fine print on the Disneyland website.


Disneyland’s Billy Hill and the Hillbillies Retire on January 6

by on November 8, 2013

Billy hill and the hillbillies retire

Enjoy the antics of Bill Hill and the Hillbillies while you still can

Brace yourselves for tragic news, Disneyland fans: the Disney Parks blog announced yesterday that Frontierland’s beloved Billy Hill and the Hillbillies retire permanently on January 6, 2014. The Billys have been performing at the Disneyland Resort for over twenty years, and their comic fiddling has long been one of the resort’s favorite entertainments among TouringPlans readers and staff (including this author).

The Billys’ usual home has been The Golden Horseshoe, but they will conclude their Disneyland run at the Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree, where they will relocate to for their final holiday season starting tomorrow (Friday 11/8/13). Their last in-park performances will occur on January 6, and there is no official word on what may replace it beyond a vague statement about “a variety of entertainment offerings during our many seasonal and special celebrations.”

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Woody’s All-American Roundup Arriving at Disneyland This Summer

by on May 18, 2013

Photo copyright Disney

With heavy lifting recently completed on the reconstruction of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad‘s track, the construction crane near Disneyland’s Big Thunder Trail has been removed, reopening the pathway between Fantasyland and Frontierland full-time and returning the Big Thunder Ranch to daily operation. That’s good news, because that area can expect to see much higher attendance next month when the Toy Story team arrives.

Similar to the Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree held last summer at Big Thunder’s festival arena, Woody’s All-American Roundup will include character meet & greets, carnival games, kids crafts, and specialty snacks. New this year is “Talent Roundup” stage show, featuring Jessie the Cowgirl’s slingshot skills, Woody’s lasso tricks, and the musical stylings of Buckaroo Bob.

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Last Week at Disneyland Resort (12/9/2012 – 12/15/2012)

by on December 17, 2012

All photos copyright Disney

Looking to take a quiet stroll around the Disneyland Resort to check out the Christmas decor? Better get there quickly, because the busiest season the Anaheim resort has seen in years is rapidly approaching with the winter solstice! And while you're add it, be sure to take a spin on the “wildest ride in the wilderness” while you still can…

Crowd Calendar

Quietest Day: Tuesday 12/11 was a 3 out of 10 at the resort, with 2.6 at Disneyland, and 2.0 at DCA.

Busiest Day: Saturday 12/15 was an 8 out of 10 at the resort, with a 8.1 at Disneyland, and 5.0 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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Goodbye Gobbler Gallery: A Thanksgiving Tribute to Disneyland’s Ex-Turkeys

by on November 22, 2012

Disneyland's Big Thunder Ranch may not draw as much demand as the similarly-named roller-coaster next door, but it's always been one of my favorite places in the resort for catching a quiet moment.

Best known as home to the Happiest Petting Zoo on Earth (featuring a herd of friendly pigmy goats) the Ranch is currently in the clutches of Santa Claus and his elf-managing Mrs.

This year's Jingle Jangle Jamboree features photo-ops, DIY craft stations, and seasonal performance by Billy Hill and the Holiday Hillbillies on the arena stage. But this year, you may notice certain long-running VIP guests are absent.

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