The Princess and the Super Hero are coming soon – no, I’m not talking about runDisney marathons!
I’d actually originally planned to write something Valentine-themed this week, however, such major news was released over the past few days for the Disneyland Resort that I had to switch gears and address it all!
The resort announced two major themed initiatives for spring and summer 2017 – one at Disneyland Park and one at Disney California Adventure.
First, let’s look at what’s coming to Disneyland Park very soon!
While no specific dates were announced for these opportunities, with the new live action Beauty and the Beast movie coming out in March, I think it’s safe to say most of these will be happening any day now!
First, the Village Haus counter service restaurant in Fantasyland will be getting a Beauty and the Beast French-inspired eatery overlay to temporarily transform into the Red Rose Taverne! I can’t wait to sample some of the new food offerings – including hopefully a West Coast version of “The Grey Stuff” cupcake! While this location won’t quite match Walt Disney World’s Be Our Guest restaurant, it will be something with presumably a few less antlers than Gaston’s Tavern at the Magic Kingdom. Then again… given the word that they will be theming the venue into different rooms, perhaps one may carry Gaston’s decorating touches after all!
This is good because… Gaston will return to the area as a roaming character! Most recently brought in to occasionally wander Fantasyland last year, he was still a pretty rare character to find. He never stopped to have a line for photos, you just had to be lucky and timely to ask for a quick pic as he walked around. Although if you flattered his ego, he might pause to pose for you!
I still prefer his dedicated Meet & Greet at the Magic Kingdom in Florida, but I’m happy to see Gaston wherever he is!
There is also a newly opened store (where the Tangled and Frozen Meet & Greets used to be in Fantasyland) called Royal Reception, which carries Beauty and the Beast and other royal-themed merchandise.
Disney also reminded guests of the daily live show at The Royal Theatre in Fantasy Faire, which re-tells this tale as old as time…
And nearby, at Maurice’s Treats vending cart, you can not only find one of my favorite savory snacks at the park, but it will soon be offered with new dipping sauces – including “the grey stuff”!
The live action Beauty and the Beast film is already represented at Disney California Adventure with a new preview currently playing in the Sunset Showcase Theater in the Hollywood Backlot.
However, Disney is generally leaving the princesses to Disneyland Park as this summer Disney California Adventure will be all about the Super Heroes!
The Summer of Heroes will introduce both long and short term changes which will include:
- The opening of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! – the new Marvel-themed redo of the former Tower of Terror. This attraction will officially open on May 27 (but I wouldn’t be surprised to see some soft openings before then if you happen to be in the right place at the right time a week or two beforehand).
- Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance Off! – this is the one that the Mad T Party fans are most interested in hearing details about! Will it be a full nightly dance party for younger and older adults including a live band like T or will it be a DJ-only experience such as the not-very-popular Jammin’ on the Backlot or a more-themed character and DJ kids dance party ala the equally unsuccessful Freeze the Night! Time will tell as we wait for more details on this one!
- Guardians of the Galaxy favorite Groot will be added as a Meet & Greet character (Cap and Spidey are still sticking around, too!)
Those are the longer-term additions. In the short term (though obviously with potential to be extended!), during the Summer of Heroes running from May 27-September 10, you can also experience:
- Avengers Training Initiative – hosted by Hawkeye and Black Widow (two characters I’d love to get the chance to meet, too) – this sounds like it’s the Marvel version of the Jedi Training Academy, where potential young Avengers recruits can see if they have what it takes to join up with other Super Heroes. This is anticipated to run on the former dance stage where the Diamond Mad T Party was on the Hollywood Backlot.
- Heroic Encounter: Black Widow – this seems like it’s going to be a grand entrance walk-through a few times a day ala the Star Wars-themed March of the First Order at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort. It is not yet known whether this will be followed by a Meet & Greet with the character or not.
- Themed food and merchandise – and of course there will be special food and merchandise created just for this summer event. I’ll be looking forward to seeing the super-menu for this but I’d guess there will at least be a specialty hot dog offered at Award Wieners, as well as multiple Marvel cupcake creations available at various locations!
With these new entertainment and themed food options arriving in the coming months, I’m not sure what I look forward to the most! (Okay, it’s the Awesome Dance Off – IF there’s a live band involved!)
What are you most excited to experience this spring and summer at the Disneyland Resort? Something Beauty-ful or something Marvel-ous?