Fantasyland Expansion Opening Dates

It’s 2012: where’s the new Fantasyland? Three years ago when I first read about all of Disney World’s planned expansions for the Magic Kingdom, I was so excited that for a moment I could close my eyes and almost imagine being there. That is the Disney World I always imagined as a child, and I only have to wait for three years, and there it’ll be. Well, we’re halfway through 2012 now, but it seems like little has happened. The biggest expansion-related news to come out of a Disney Park has been about “Cars Land” out in Anaheim. We all … Continue reading

Take a Joyride to Radiator Springs at Cars Land

Radiator Springs is officially open for visitation on June 15. That’s the date that Disneyland’s newest park, Cars Land, is open to the public. The official Disney Parks blog has been posting a lot of pictures from Cars Land lately, but what I’ve actually found most informative about the forthcoming park is its own website. I want to refer to Cars Land as Radiator Springs because that’s basically what it is: guests walk right down Route 66 into the small town and they can visit all the shops and residences of the cars that live there. Swing by Fillmore’s Taste-In … Continue reading

Disneyland Grad Nite

Although Disney World might have decided to convert its decades-old Grad Nite celebrations into Senior Class Trips, Disneyland’s keeping the tradition. We know that Grad Nite will continue there for at least the next two years, as the official Disney Parks blog just mentioned some updates Disneyland is making to its graduate celebrations. Next year, any students partying for their graduation will be able to enter any Disneyland or Disney California Adventure park whenever they want. They’ll also be offered two FASTPASS tickets and a special showing of Fantasmic! before the private Grad Nite parties begin. In 2013 the aforementioned … Continue reading

Cars Land: Grand for “Cars” Fans

We all know how I feel about “Cars.” So I will force myself not to spend this article grinding my teeth over how, despite lackluster reviews, merchandising sales for “Cars 2” were so phenomenal, even before the film came out, that it was considered a success. Such a success (again, even before its release) that Disneyland’s California Adventure Park is adding a new attraction: Cars Land. The official Disney Parks blog has posted a series of articles lately on it, exploring what it will entail and highlighting its 2009 groundbreaking. “Cars” fans start your engines: the attraction dedicated to the … Continue reading

Limited Time Magic at the Disney Parks

2013 is a big year for the domestic Disney Parks. 2012 saw a lot of change for the both of them, between the reimagined California Adventure and the Fantasyland expansion (the largest in history for the Magic Kingdom). To celebrate, both parks are throwing a party for 2013, called “Limited Time Magic.” One-of-a-kind events will take place at the parks at certain times throughout the year next year. The official Disney Parks blog has a look at some of them. Two follow holidays: Valentine’s and Independence Day. For Valentine’s the Disney Parks are rolling out “True Love,” an event lasting … Continue reading

How Disney Chooses Park Attractions

After reading my posts on Disneyland California Adventure’s now-open Cars Land, a close friend and loyal reader (hi, Becca!) asked me what I really thought about the park. She knows my feelings on the “Cars” franchise, and thought that maybe I’m feeling more negative about it than I let on in my articles. I admitted that while I’m not super excited that Disney keeps choosing to promote “Cars” in the parks, I don’t really mind. I’d rather them open another “Cars Land” at Disney World, for example, than make a “Cars 3.” That led me to wonder about the process … Continue reading

Test Your Driving Mettle at Epcot’s Test Track

Disney World sure is the park for auto buffs. First it has the already-profiled Richard Petty Driving Experience, and it also contains Epcot’s Test Track. I guess Disneyland might start to compete a bit with Cars Land, but until we know more about that attraction it’ll be hard to tell. An amusement park might not be a car nut’s ideal vacation, but if they’re already there for other reasons, at least they’ll have more to do than at another park. I almost profiled Test Track as another Fun for Grown-Ups at Disney feature, but kids 7 and older are allowed … Continue reading

Disney Park Secrets: The Mark Twain Riverboat

After exploring the Hidden Magic of Disney World I decided to start a new recurring column: uncovering secrets of the Disney Parks. Today focuses on a special ride at Disneyland: the Mark Twain Riverboat. The ship sidles its way for twelve minutes around the Rivers of America attraction, taking guests for a short scenic cruise. Horns and bells are used to signify the arrival and departure of the Riverboat, and also to communicate specific messages to other crafts also sluicing through the waters, the Rafts to Pirate’s Lair and Davy Crockett’s Explorer canoes. What’s so special about the Mark Twain … Continue reading

Breaking into the Disney Vault

The Disney Vault is famous. We’ve explored the concept of the Vault before, so any of those not in the know can find a primer here. In short: Disney wants to make more money on its movies. They think the value of a film will go up if it’s only available to purchase for a limited time. The Disney Vault has been getting more attention lately as Warner Brothers Studios has just employed a similar concept with another institution: Harry Potter. Despite the fact that “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2” only just became available for purchase four … Continue reading

Disney D23 Expo 2011

The time has arrived: with the D23 Disney Expo just around the corner on August 19-21, the full schedule of events has finally been released. Chances are you know by now whether or not you’re going, but just in case I’ll go over the highlights of the Expo today. I wanted to present the details sooner, but unfortunately Disney didn’t release them until now. Each day is absolutely packed, so if you want to view the entire schedule visit the official D23 Expo website. I’ll present the best looking options for each day here. 2011 is the year for Disney … Continue reading