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Showing posts with label Disney California Adventure. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Disney California Adventure. Show all posts

Friday, October 4, 2019

Happy 49th to Me as I Spend the Day at the Happiest Place on Earth!

My 49th at Disneyland

Living in the midwest, but heading Down Under, means that I had to fly west before I could fly to the Southern Hemisphere. With a nearly 16 hour flight, I didn't want to have the 5 additional hours to get to LA be shortly before hopping on the next plane, so a stopover was called for. Departing for Australia the day after my birthday meant that I really didn't want to also be flying on my birthday, but would much rather spend the day doing something I wanted to do and hadn't been able to do in decades...visit the park that started it all...Disneyland. So I flew to LA two nights early and spent the night of the 3rd in Anaheim across the street from the park. With this trip, I will finally get to experience the park's newest land, which opened back in June...Galaxy's Edge, the new Star Wars addition. I'm pretty excited about it, and can't wait to get back inside my beloved Disneyland. 

As a kid, I always began my day in the park in this space, and then worked my way around. Today I'm headed to a whole new world to start my grand circle tour of this amazing place. Going to get my Han Solo fix and see the Millennium Falcon first.

Single Rider plus right at opening means on the second flight of the morning! That was an awesome experience. I will be doing this one again later!

I've popped across the esplanade to Disney California Adventure and am now just hanging out with my favorite visionary dreamer and the Mouse. I love how this statue is accessible and makes for a great photo spot, unlike the more famous Partners statue in the hub over at Disneyland which is in the center of a large planter and completely inaccessible to guests. I got a similar photo to this one though when we got to visit the Walt Disney Studios for an awesome tour a couple of years ago, as the Partners statue found there is completely accessible in the Courtyard, just as this Dreamers statue is at DCA.

Some people probably wonder how someone could go to a "family" place like Disneyland alone. Well one of the best parts of being solo, is I get to do things that my family doesn't like to do! I LOVE Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room, and they don't. I've enjoyed it TWICE today...with a Dole Whip each time! AND, it never gets old. I love this show. 😀

Halloween is NOT my favorite holiday, but The Haunted Mansion IS my all-time favorite attraction in the park. So I'm going to declare that this is a Haunted Mansion-themed slice of birthday cake, and not a Halloween one. Since this is my day, I can make that declaration. 😎
(Tomorrow it'll go back to being the other thing for anyone who enjoys it 😅)

It's been such a great way to spend my 49th birthday. I got to be in a place that I love, chat on the phone with people that I love, and just do anything that I wanted going at the pace that I wanted. I couldn't have asked for anything better.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Featured Foto Friday - Ariel's Entryway...East & West

The Little Mermaid - Ariel's Undersea Adventure recently opened as a brand-new attraction within the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World as part of the New Fantasyland 2012 renovations and expansion; but it first opened in June 2011 at Disney California Adventure park at the Disneyland Resort in Southern California.  
Both parks have given their version of this identical, omni-mover, dark-ride attraction its own unique theming and feel to the entrance queue and overall surrounding aesthetics given the attraction's location within the parks.  

In Florida, the attraction is located between the new Storybook Circus area and the assorted Beauty & the Beast based attractions and restaurants inside the new Fantasy Forest in Fantasyland, and has a very richly themed entry, including Prince Eric's castle, and caves and grottos to explore.  

In California, it's located within the Paradise Pier section of Disney California Adventure, thus it has a more seaside pavilion flair, reminiscent of boardwalk structures of the 1930's and '40s, and features bas relief images of Ariel's sisters, and a bronze statue of her father, King Triton on the apex of the curved dome structure. The actual queue entryway takes guests through the recreation of San Francisco's famed Palace of Fine Arts, from the 1910 World's Fair.  

Personally I love both queues for very different reasons.  They each appeal to my individual tastes, and are richly appointed, just in different ways.  For a more-immersive feel, Florida wins, hands-down.  I know my daughter can't wait to be able to experience the new queue in Florida, and see some of the fun new interactive features that were not included in the California queue. 

Monday, February 11, 2013

stopher's stuff - Universal Reflections

While on my recent sojourn to Florida and the Caribbean, I enjoyed a day at Universal Orlando Resort – well, actually PART of a day, not the entire day.  I was there specifically to complete the on-site portion of the Universal Specialist Program for travel professionals.  Another program designed to better understand the destinations that we sell, and thereby boost our individual business for a particular destination.  The Universal program includes an online and an on-site portion… I’d completed the online portion last summer.  Now it was time for the on-site. 
The last time I had been to Universal Orlando was in 2007, with my family.  On that trip we’d stayed at the Nickelodeon Suites over on World Drive, near Walt Disney World.  This time I was staying at Walt Disney World at Disney’s Old Key West Resort – and was going solo.  I arrived at the Universal Orlando parking garage in my rental car at around 8:50 am, knowing the parks opened at 9 am.  My plan was to visit Islands of Adventure first, and then head over in to Universal Studios Florida afterwards.  By the time I got to the park entry, passing through the CityWalk area, and enjoying looking around to see what was the same and what was different from my last visit, it was a little after 9 am. 

As a park, Islands of Adventure hadn’t changed a whole lot, with one large exception… and entire new land had been built… the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  Though I will say that new land itself, wasn’t all completely new, as part of The Lost Continent was area was given up for this new land.  The Wizarding World boasts two different roller coaster experiences that were existing attractions, simply re-purposed for the Potter theme.  Dragon Challenge was formerly known as Dueling Dragons – and Flight of the Hippogriff was formerly known as The Flying Unicorn

Full disclosure time – and go ahead and let your jaws drop in disbelief if you so choose – but I have never read a single Harry Potter book in my life.  Nor have I seen any more than about 20 minutes of one of the films when it aired on television.  That’s it.  I am not a Potter fan, nor do I plan to become one.  But I did have interest in seeing the land for myself.  I wanted to know what I sell, and be able to answer questions that my clients might have.  So when the opportunity to visit the parks presented itself, I jumped at it.  And I will say, that even though I am not a fan, and I do not know the different storylines or backstories behind the various elements of the land itself – it was beautiful .  And I believe, very well executed.  The folks at Universal Creative apparently got it right, because I definitely heard a lot of “high praise” from guests all around me, oohing and ahhing at the various shops, backgrounds and scenic elements throughout Harry’s community.  I knew some of the characters from magazine articles and conversations with friends, but the backstories... no.

The Hogwart’s castle that they created, which sits high atop the feature attraction, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey was simply stunning.  I loved it for its beauty and grace as a thematic element to the land.  Many of the folks at Universal Creative were once Imagineers for Disney, and were certainly trained well in the art of the show, and the theatrical immersion that comes across so well in many theme park environments.  The Wizarding World of Harry Potter definitely comes across well in its immersion.

Now to get to the actual attraction, and my experience with it - I had read and heard many things prior to my visit, including get there as quickly as possible in order to minimize the wait time, otherwise expect a very long line.  I did just that, and was pleasantly surprised to see just a stated 10 minute wait.  Now the reality is my wait time was a little less, since I got into the Single Rider line, but in the end, it turned out to be more, simply because it took me about 10 minutes just to finally decide to ride it after I stood inside the center of the queue area watching the video which demonstrates what the ride technology actually does.  Let me just state emphatically that I love roller coasters, and I don’t mind many different spinning rides (though Mission: Space at Epcot did make me very nauseous) – but I’m not one to jump up and down about being turned nearly upside down…backwards.  And that’s what the video was showing.  So hemmed and hawed for a while, trying to decide what I would do.  Ultimately my curiosity won out, and I did go on the attraction.  However – I will say – that as an attraction, it did not in the end make me nauseous – but I just didn’t like it.  I didn’t care for many of the thematic elements included, nor did I care for how very dark and foreboding the overall attraction was.  I can see how fans of the series might enjoy the attraction, but I didn’t.  And that’s okay.  It just means there’s one less person to be in line ahead of you the next time I’m in the Islands of Adventure park.  Oh yes, and one more thing... with my apologies to the die-hard HP fans out there... I didn't like the Butterbeer either.  

Pretty much everything else about Islands of Adventure was the same as my last visit.  Although The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman over in Marvel Superhero Island had been updated, and I was sure to ride that one to see how it was different.  I really enjoyed that one, just as I did the last time I rode it nearly 6 years ago.  I wish that Disney had an attraction similar to it, as it really is a cool attraction.

Over in Universal Studios, more has changed since our last visit, as the new Transformers attraction is getting closer and closer to completion.   Since our visit, the Jaws attraction has closed, and the real estate it once sat upon is currently under construction bringing a “bridge” between the two parks with some sort of Harry Potter connection (I’ve read about it online, but don’t recall exactly what it will be at the moment - something having to do with a Hogwart's Express or something to that effect);  Back to the Future The Ride made way for The Simpsons Ride; Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit  debuted; and Despicable Me Minion Mayhem replaced the old Jimmy Neutron ride.  PLUS they have a cool new nighttime water & laser show on the central lagoon called Universal’s Cinematic Spectacular, which I might have enjoyed seeing had I stayed there until nightfall.  It looks really cool, though I know I would stand there comparing it to World of Color at Disney California Adventure way too much.   

While in USF, I did enjoy the Lucy: A Tribute exhibit (I have been a die-hard Lucy fan since I was a very small child...and now my kids are as well.  We love watching "I Love Lucy" every Sunday evening with our dinner, going through episode by episode, as they were originally shown on tv all those years ago).  I also had a nice piece of pizza at Louie’s Italian Restaurant in the New York section, but I really didn’t ride anything.  I had no real desire to. Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit looked really cool, and in retrospect I wish I had ridden it, but alas, I did not.   While I really like the backlot feel of the New York and San Francisco sections, I must admit I don’t care for Universal Studios Florida as much as I do for Universal Studios Hollywood.  The Hollywood park is different, in that it sits inside an actual, functional, movie studio whereas the Florida park only simulates one.  Plus I have an affinity for the Hollywood park, as I worked there in high school – it was actually my first paying job back in the summer of 1987.  So for me, USF just falls a bit flat.  Of the two Universal Orlando parks, I much prefer Islands of Adventure. 

Alright, I’m going to call it quits for now, but will write more about my Florida adventures in the next installment of stopher’s stuff.

Until then make it a great week! 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Featured Foto Friday - Highlighting the State Flower at Disney California Adventure

Poppies, the state flower of California, are often highlighted in  planters around Disney California Adventure park.  These evocative beauties come in a wide array of colors, and often remind guests of the scene in the 1939 classic, "The Wizard of Oz", when the Wicked Witch of the West casts a spell on a field of poppies to cause Dorothy and her companions to fall asleep instead of reaching the Emerald City and the Wizard of Oz himself. 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Today in Disney Parks and Resorts History - Grand Californian Hotel Opens

January 2, 2001 – Disneyland – Anaheim, CA

The Disneyland Resort unveils its’ brand new Grand Californian Hotel, built on the former parking lot of Disneyland as the company has transformed the original Disney park into a multi-park, multi-day destination.  The new hotel features 2 full-service restaurants:  Storytellers Cafe & Napa Rose, and the Whitewater Snacks quick-service snack bar, as well as high-end rooms and service.  It is the company’s first domestic theme park located inside a Disney theme park – the all-new Disney’s California Adventure opening in February 2001, and features a private entrance directly from the hotel into the Condor Flats area of the theme park.   

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Today in Disney Parks and Resorts History - Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel

December 12, 2000 – Disneyland – Anaheim, CA

The Disneyland Pacific Hotel re-opens as Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel. The 502-room hotel has been brightly painted and decorated to reflect a new beachfront theme, and soon will offer hotel guests a private entrance into the Paradise Pier section of the all-new theme park located directly across the street, Disney's California Adventure, which is currently under construction on the site of Disneyland’s former parking lot. (Disney California Adventure would celebrate its’ Grand Opening February 8, 2001).

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Today in Disney Parks and Resorts History - Disney California Adventure

October 6, 2002
Disney California Adventure - Anaheim, CA

a bug's land officially opens at Disney's California Adventure theme park at the Disneyland Resort. 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Featured Foto Friday - Single Soarin'

Single Rider Pass for Soarin' Over California at Disney California Adventure...
definitely something they ought to have at Soarin' at Epcot.
Soarin' - whether it's Soarin' Over California as at Disney California Adventure - or just plain Soarin' as at Epcot... is one of my all-time favorite attractions.  I have loved it since it first opened up at DCA in 2001.  I loved it when I first heard that news that it would open at Epcot in 2005, and I always want to ride it when in those parks.  

But there's one huge difference between the two parks... I can ride it as a Single Rider at DCA, but not at Epcot.  That is such a wonderful thing, especially when on my various solo treks to the parks.  Epcot did, for a short time, have a Single Rider line, but quickly did away with it.  I sure wish they would bring it back.  

Friday, June 15, 2012

Today in Disney Parks and Resorts History: CARSLAND is FINALLY OPEN!!


After a long 5 years of multiple parts of Disney California Adventure being being a myriad of construction walls, the long anticipated re-launch of the Disneyland Resort’s “second gate” is here!  It is the culmination of the park’s 5-year, $1.8 billion dollar “re-do”, which today sees the public Grand Opening of both CARSLAND and the all-new entrance land, BUENA VISTA STREET

Originally opened February 8, 2001, Disney’s California Adventure (as it was then known), was hoped to be a huge success at transforming Disneyland into a multi-day destination “Resort” as Walt Disney World is.  With more than a $1 billion investment to transform the old Disneyland parking lot into the new theme park, as well as build the Downtown Disney District and the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, the company was excited about the prospects that the second gate would offer.  Unfortunately the projections did not bear out as company management had hoped, but the park did produce one of the most original and sought after attractions in a long time – Soaring Over California (which as a result produced a copy on the east coast and opened as Soarin’ at Epcot on May 5, 2005).  In order to boost attendance and turn what was quickly viewed as a marginal, half-day park into a more full-fledged stand-alone park, additions and modifications were quickly put on the agenda:  incorporating more Disney characters and entertainment, Twilight Zone Tower of TerrorTurtle Talk with Crusha bug’s land (the first new land added offering 4 new attractions designed specifically for young children:  Heimlich’s Chew Chew, Flik’s Flyers, Francis’ Lady Bug Boogie and Tuck and Rolls Drive ‘em Bugggies ), Monsters Inc: Mike & Sully to the Rescue and the Aladdin musical stage show all came between 2002 and 2005.  In addition the Block Party Bash, filled with Pixar characters debuted in 2005 and the Main Street Electrical Parade – re-christened Disney’s Electrical Parade was added in as nighttime entertainment in 2006.  After the Block Party Bash was moved to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida in 2009, the all-new Pixar Play Parade replaced it. In 2008 construction began on a number of new attractions to the Paradise Pier area, and in 2009 construction on Carsland began.
 New and re-themed attractions for Paradise Pier included Toy Story Midway Mania (originally conceived and designed for the Paradise Pier area of the park, and shortly after construction began in 2007 it was decided to be added in to Disney's Hollywood Studios in Florida as well. Ultimately the Florida version opened just days prior to the California version as there was less construction needed in Florida than California, since the California version goes underneath the California Screamin' roller coaster (which was mildly re-themed for the redo) and the Florida version is housed completely inside a pre-existing soundstage structure at that park); Mickey’s Fun Wheel (formerly the Sun Wheel), Silly Symphony Swings (replaced the original Orange Stinger), Goofy’s Sky School (formerly Mulholland Madness), the beautiful nighttime water and laser spectacular World of Color, on Paradise Bay, and The Little Mermaid: Arial’s Undersea Adventures.  New shops and restaurants were also added to the mix, as well as various daytime entertainment offerings. 

BUENA VISTA STREET, the all-new park entrance land, transports park guests to Los Angeles and Hollywood of the 1920’s, when Walt Disney first moved to California from the Midwest.  It is completely new, offering a wide array of shops and dining locations – including the Fiddler, Fifer and Practical Café, which is the home of the very first Starbucks inside any Disney theme park ever.  (Starbucks will be opening locations in all other domestic Disney parks in the near future).  It was a massive undertaking for the theme park to completely shut-down and redo its’ entrance area – and the first time in Disney theme park history that the company ever made the decision to do so, but it was such a good decision.  The theming, landscaping and surroundings are simply gorgeous, and well-worth the wait and inconvenience caused to the guests throughout the construction process. With the addition of the Red Car Trolley, and numerous walk-about themed characters and musical acts, Buena Vista Street is now a charming complement to Main Street, U.S.A. across the esplanade in the original Disney theme park – Disneyland, and continues the story, if you will.  Whereas Main Street, U.S.A. represents the small-town charm of Walt’s boyhood home in Missouri, Buena Vista Street represents the optimism of the young man and his dreams as he and his brother Roy embarked on cranking out Mickey Mouse cartoons and turning the Disney Brothers Studio into the entertainment behemoth we all know and love today.

At the end of Buena Vista Street, you’ll find the Carthay Circle Theatre, a full-scale recreation of the West Los Angeles theatre that was the site of the World Premiere of Walt Disney’s 1937 classic, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – the first full-length animated motion picture.  This Carthay Circle Theatre doesn’t show films, but is an exquisite table-service restaurant, filled with tributes to the film and the original structure. Upstairs there is an additional dining location, open only to the membership of the newly expanded Club 33, Disneyland’s private, members-only club conceived of by Walt himself as a way to entertain various VIP’s and their guests over in New Orleans Square, on the second level of that land.  The Club has a waiting list several years long, with hundreds of people still waiting to be asked to join, but with the inclusion of the Carthay Circle’s lounge as part of the Club, several hundred new members were added to the Club’s roster. 

CARSLAND, the all-new 12 acre land recreating the Route 66 town of Radiator Springs from the Disney-Pixar CARS films is the home of 3 exciting new attractions, plus a myriad of shops and restaurants based on locations and characters from the films.
  • Flo’s V8 Café is themed 
  • dining location open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and is one of the largest restaurants in the entire Disneyland Resort, full of beautiful and intricate details that help to tell the story of Radiator Springs.
  • Cozy Cone Motel is a series of quick-service counter locations, selling things such as ice cream, popcorn, churros, beverages, including beer, and other snack items.  Limited table seating is available in the courtyard.
  • Fillmore’s Taste In is a fruit and juice stand.
  • Sarge’s Surplus Shop is filled with all kinds of clothing and toys. Several unique Carsland inspired items can be found here. 
  • Ramone’s House of Body Art is full of adult clothing and car accessories, many of which are uniquely themed to the land and not available anywhere else. 
  • Lizzie’s Curios Shop was designed to be an eclectic shop filled with unique and fun trinkets and finds just as people would have found when stopping along the famed Route 66 during their cross country treks, but sadly that fun concept was discarded by management, and so this shop just sells standard Disney souvenirs available in practically every other location throughout both of the parks and Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort. It is the official Pin Trading location for the land, and the Vinylmation center as well. 
  • Luigi’s Flying Tires is a tire-inspired attraction that allows guests to hover above the air table as they move around the floor turning and bumping into each other.  It is a 21st century updated version of the “Flying Saucers” attraction that once lived in Tomorrowland at Disneyland in the mid-1960’s.  The imagineers worked hard to bring this attraction to Carsland, but from all initial testing and reports, it’s a very slow loading, low capacity attraction.  Waits will be long for just a couple of moments of air time.
  • Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree is the sleeper hit of the land!  It is a fun musical spinner attraction where guests sit in the “tow” portion of the vehicle, behind Mater and enjoy several moments of spinning fun!  With 8 regular musical tracks playing as they spin, and lots of funny interjections from Mater along the way, guests are sure to enjoy this experience.
  • Radiator Springs Racers is by far the “star” attraction of the land.  This attraction takes guests on a thrilling journey through 6 acres of this new land!  Both indoors and outdoors, guests will find all sorts of stunning views of the new land as they interact with numerous characters from the films, and ultimately race another ride vehicle to the finish line! The theming is rock solid, the indoors sets are expansive and very well done, and the desert inspired landscaping is lush and very appropriate. The concept behind the attraction was based on the original Test Track at Epcot, but goes way beyond that in design, theme, technology and execution.  The attraction itself offers Fastpass and Standby lines, as well as a Single Rider line.

Disney California Adventure certainly has been transformed since what premiered back in February 2001.  It has been a long and interesting process to watch – but in the end, I believe that the park, and the Disneyland Resort is much better for it.   Personally I was very disappointed in the original park – with its' "hip & edgy" vibe, and very lackluster, non-Disney feel but I have and have been thrilled with each new addition. Just as Disney's Hollywood Studios (formerly Disney-MGM Studios) was a half-day park when it first opened in 1989, that park and now this park have both grown and expanded into full-day adventures.  I used to take my son there as a “daddy-son” afternoon for an hour or two when the park first opened.  Our family has been many times through the years since we moved from Southern California to the Midwest.  We can’t wait to get back and experience it all together once more – now that the re-do has been completed.   After so long – and so many additions - the park has finally come into its’ own, and can finally be called a full-day, stand-along adventure, as the other parks in the Disney pantheon are.  

If you have not yet made a trip to the Disneyland Resort - now is definitely the time to start planning!  I'd be thrilled to help you with that process too.  If you need more information, don't hesitate to visit my website for more info. 

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Today in Disney Parks and Resorts History - Ariel's Undersea Adventure

June 2, 2011 - Disney California Adventure Park

The Disneyland Resort celebrates the opening of the all-new adventure in the Paradise Pier area of Disney California Adventure,  The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure with a special ceremony featuring Jodi Benson, the original voice of Ariel, as she performs "Part of Your World," from the film’s Academy Award-winning score. (Both Jodi Benson and  Pat Carroll - the actress who voiced Ursula, the sea witch - had taken the first ride on the attraction the day before).

This attraction is currently being replicated at Walt Disney World as part of the "New Fantasyland" expansion, and is slated to open sometime in the fall of 2012, ideally prior to the Christmas season.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Sunday Spotlight - Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel

Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel® celebrates Southern California's beach culture.  Like the other hotels of the Disneyland® Resort, it is just a short walk from all of the action of the Downtown Disney® District, and both Disneyland® Park and Disney California Adventure® Park.  And all resort hotel guests have use of the exclusive, private entrance into Disney California Adventure® Park via Disney's Grand Californian Hotel® & Spa. 

Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel® offers 481 rooms, including 25 suites.  Standard rooms can accommodate up to 5 guests; suites can accommodate up to 6 guests.

Dining opportunities at the hotel include:  PCH Grill, which features "Surf's Up! Breakfast with Mickey & Friends" character dining; Surfside Lounge offering cocktails; and Slurpin' USA, quick service snacks.

Recreational opportunities at the hotel include the rooftop pool area with the "California Streamin'" - a roller coaster inspired water slide; whirlpool sap and toddler wading pool; Mickey's Beach Fitness Center and an arcade.  Wifi is available throughout the resort, and the resort provides a number of small ballrooms & meeting space, as well as Business Center services.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Magical Mondays - World of Color Marks 1,000 Performances

I just read elsewhere that WORLD OF COLOR at Disney California Adventure just marked its 1,000th performance, and has been seen by millions of guests.  That's so very cool.  It is an amazing show, and certainly a "must-do" in my book.  The show is performed on Paradise Bay in the Paradise Pier section of the park. It first premiered in early June 2010 to rave reviews, and continues to receive them.  The 28 minute show features favorite Disney and Pixar characters; a gorgeous orchestral soundtrack; as well as fountains, lights, lasers, mist screens, and fire; and oh yeah, you might get wet too.   

Did you know that the show uses over 1,200 fountains on a "show table" that rises up to the surface of the water for the performances, and is hidden during the day?  Did you know that the show was created by Steve Davison, the same genius who designed "It's a Small World Holiday", and various fireworks spectaculars such as "Wishes!", "Remember...Dreams Come True", "Believe in Holiday Magic" and "Holiday Wishes!"?  Did you know that the show table the fountains rest upon is actually comprised of 3 separate show tables, each able to raise or lower independently?  Did you know that the show table is longer than a football field?  Did you know that since the show is 100% computer generated, it can easily be modified for seasonal or promotional tie-ins such as last year's "Tron" overlay at the end, "Pirates 4" and now Christmas additions?  Did you know that the show's title drew its' inspiration from Walt Disney's transition from black & white to color on his Sunday night television show - "The Wonderful World of Color?" but the show itself was inspired by the fountains at the Bellagio in Las Vegas?  Did you know that both Mickey's Fun Wheel and California Screamin', other Paradise Pier area attractions are used as part of the show during various sequences? You may not have previously known these details, but now you do.  

I absolutely love this show, and highly recommend it to anyone heading to the Disneyland Resort.  Perhaps someday a version of the show will make its way east to Walt Disney World as Fantasmic! did years ago, - maybe it will even be added in the water near Pleasure Island & Downtown Disney as several online rumors have suggested - but for now... you can only experience it for yourself in Anaheim.  Check out this video from You Tube and you'll get a glimpse of just how big the show really is.While this view does not use any music from the show, rather just a bland piece of audio, this clip shows a great aerial perspective of the show that no regular guest can ever see:

Here are just a few images from the show, and one short clip as well: