DLR UPdate 9 - Disney Elite
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DLR UPdate 9

PlanEAR 


Disneyland

  • Sailing Ship Columbia <attraction/Frontierland> closed Nov 27th to 30th.


2018

  • Haunted Mansion <attraction/New Orleans Square> closes Jan 8th to remove holiday overlay.  Re-open date TBA.


Disney California Adventure

  • Goofy's Sky School <attraction/Paradise Pier> closed through Dec 20th.


2018

  • California Screamin' – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier retheme. Will re-open as Incred-a-Coaster date TBA.
  • Mickey's Fun Wheel – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier retheme. Re-open date TBA.
  • Ariel's Grotto – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier re-theme.
  • Cove Bar – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier retheme. Re-opening during Spring Break.
  • Games of the Boardwalk – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier retheme. No re-opening date is available at this time.
  • Sideshow Shirts – closes Jan 8th as part of the Pixar Pier re-theme.


Downtown Disney

  • Ridemakerz – Reduced operating hours.

Crowd Impacting Events

2017

  • Holidays at the Disneyland Resort – through Jan 7th, 2018.
  • Candlelight Processional/Ceremony – Dec 2nd and 3rd, with two events nightly.
  • Candy Cane dates:
    • Disneyland Candy Palace – Nov 24th, 29th; Dec 1st, 4th, 6th, 8th, 11th, 13th, 15th, 18th, 20th, 24th
    • Disney California Adventure Trolley Treats – Nov 25th, 28th; Dec 2nd, 5th, 7th, 9th, 12th, 14th, 16th, 21st, 25th


2018

  • Pixar Fest – Apr 13th, 2018. Debut of the new "Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular" fireworks
  • Dapper Day Spring Soiree - Apr 22nd. event website.
  • 2018 Grad Nites: May 4th, 5th, 11th, 12th, 15th, 16th, 18th, 19th, 22nd, 23rd, 29th, 30th; Jun 1st, 2nd, 5th, 6th, 8th and 9.


The Happiest NEWS on Earth!


Holiday Parking

Downtown Disney's parking rate structure has changed just in time for holiday shopping, but this time to the benefit of guests! This summer Disney ended free parking for Downtown Disney, but allowed guests to receive two or four hours of complimentary parking with validation from eligible stores, restaurants and the AMC movie theater. This time frame made it impossible to enjoy dinner and a movie without paying for parking.

Guests now receive three hours of complimentary parking in the lot when they spend at least $20 in one transaction at any Downtown Disney shop, kiosk, or quick-service restaurant.

As before, only one validation is accepted per ticket, and the stores and restaurants at the three Disneyland Resort Hotels do not offer validation for the Downtown Disney lot.



Now it's Christmas

After a three-year absence, the wreaths once again cross Main Street, U.S.A.. The decorations were not hung in recent years because many units from Paint the Night and Main Street Electrical parades were too tall. With neither parade scheduled this season, Disney was able to hang the garlands once again. For me the Christmas season begins when I walk onto Main Street U.S.A. and see the tree, the wreaths and Sleeping Beauty's Enchanted Winter Castle.



Shake Mecca Coming to DTD

Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer is coming to California in 2018, opening their first West Coast location in Downtown Disney. The New York based company announced last week, saying, "Black Tap is creating a customized concept for its Downtown Disney District location, which will feature indoor and outdoor seating".

The restaurant serves a high end diner menu of burgers, fries and shakes with a twist, the burgers are also available as salads. The chicken wings are tossed in Korean BBQ sauce, and the milkshakes come topped and decorated with over the top garnishes like pop tarts, cotton candy, pretzel rods, and even a slice of birthday cake.

The Disney Parks Blog posted the restaurant will be located across from Catal Restaurant, which means the building occupied by Build-a-Bear and Ridemakerz. We had previously announced both retailers are to close after the holidays to make room for dining offerings. Disney says construction will begin soon. We do not know how much of the two story building will be converted for the diner. 


The Belle is Back!

The River Belle Terrace restaurant reopened last week in Frontierland after an extensive refurbishment to finalize the transformation from a buffeteria to a table service restaurant. The serving line has been removed entirely, with a new wall between the expanded dining room and kitchen

The restaurant has a new entrance, host stand and waiting area on the Frontierland side. The former Adventureland entrance is now used only as an emergency exit. Indoors, the original seating area is as lovely as ever, full of light from the wrap-around windows, and decorated in a colorful motif. The new area reminds me of the kids table at Thanksgiving dinner, It's as if there wasn't enough room at the "real" table in the formal room, and so Grandma set up an extra table in the living room.

The outdoor seating area was also expanded, with a new railing separating the River Belle Terrace dining area from the adjacent Stage Door Cafe patio area. There are also two new service areas outdoors, keeping the bus station and computer terminals out of guests view.

I had hoped that this remodel might mean the return of breakfast service at River Belle Terrace, but the restaurant is open only for lunch and dinner. The menu remains the same all day, and features southern barbecue and sides. The location also offers a Fantasmic! dining package.


Disneyland for Xmas

One of my favorite times as a Cast Member at the Walt Disney Travel Co. was the week after Thanksgiving. Families all around the country had come together for a holiday dinner and decided they all needed a trip to the "Happiest Place on Earth".

Disney's holiday marketing theme is all about giving a Disney Vacation to your family for the holidays, and this is the last week to book a special "Enchanting Escape" package. The 2-night, 3-day package includes accommodations at one of the three Disneyland Resort hotels, theme park tickets including MaxPass, Disneyland dining certificates, and collectables.

The package starts at $1724 per day, plus tax, for a family of four staying at the Paradise Pier Hotel; other hotels and longer stays can be booked at a higher cost  The package is valid for arrivals most Sunday through Thursday nights from January 7 through February 1, 2018, and must be booked by Sunday, November 27. You can call your favorite travel agent to book, call Disney at (866) 903-7872, or click disneyland.com.


Date Night at Disneyland

You could pay $100 or more to be among a few thousand people to enjoy three hours inside a Disney park after it closes to the general public. 

WDW has toyed with this concept for years, and has finally made it work. Now it's Disneyland's turn to see if guests will pay for an exclusive, after-hours experience. The first Disneyland After Dark event is scheduled for Thursday, January 18th, and has a theme  Throwback Nite.

"Step back in time to the '50s and '60s for a taste of the classic after dark experience at Disneyland. Come dressed in your best to enjoy the Happiest Place on Earth under a million twinkling lights, swinging to the tune of the bands and enjoying your favorite rides in the cool moonlight 'till the clock strikes 1 a.m.!"

This event will even include an exclusive showing of the "Fantasy in The Sky" fireworks. Disney has not said how much this event will cost, or what is included beyond Photopass downloads. Pricing and ticket information will be released before tickets go on sale to Disneyland annual passholders on November 30th, and to the general public on December 7th.

Disney says each event in the series will have a different theme, though no details were available. I will share information as it is released. So what do we think Disneylanders, how much would you pat for this experience based on what you know now?


Light speed to Crait!


An update to Star Tours - The Adventure Continues launched last week introducing passengers to two new destinations in the Star Wars galaxy. The first is a planet called Crait, from the upcoming 8th episode Star Wars: The Last Jedi. We don't learn much about the planet from the sequence, but the visuals are exciting!

The second world is Buuth the name of the "remote outpost on the galaxy's edge" now being constructed at Disneyland Park. With Star Wars: The Last Jedi set to open in theaters in just a few weeks, Disney's marketing machine is working to fuel the anticipation. When the new Star Tours scenes debuted Friday at Disneyland, Star Wars actor Mark Hamill (Jedi Luke Skywalker) surprised one cabin of guests with a special appearance.



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Stop the Presses, err Passes!
WDW UPdate 8

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