Disney California Adventure Summer of Heroes 2017

Disney California Adventure finally became a full day park for me when The Mad T Party arrived (although it was almost there with ElecTRONica). However, the influx of all the wonderful new entertainment options for the Summer of Heroes has finally brought me another excuse to want to spend many hours in this park instead of Disneyland Park!

I had a busy day recently checking out most of the new sights and even a few of the new bites! So after that, here are my thoughts…

Hero Action Center quiz area.

I first started off in the Hollywood Backlot where I wanted to take the quiz at the Hero Action Center to find out which super hero I’m most like! Similar to all those social media quizzes, I picked the answers on the provided tablets that I most closely related to and wound up with Thor! (Now, while that may be pretty accurate, for the record, I’m still #TeamLoki!) After your identity is selected, a Cast Member gives you a sticker representing your super hero as well as a free comic book. I took the sticker, but skipped the comic as I didn’t want to carry it around all day. Still, freebies at the park always equal awesome!

Next, I noticed there was some kind of Super Hero Showcase going on in the Sunset Showcase Theater. Honestly, I’m not sure what’s in there, but I’m guessing it’s the Marvel equivalent of the Path of the Jedi clip show that started in Tomorrowland for the Season of the Force. I skipped that one, too, since I’ve already seen the movies and I’d rather spend my time at the parks doing unique park things.

Black Widow and her S.H.I.E.L.D. transport!

As I was leaving the Hollywood Backlot area, I found Black Widow was out at the end of her “Heroic Encounter” before she headed back to S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters, so I took a quick pic while she was there. But I still wanted to see the entire Encounter later that day. Continue reading

Show Spotlight: Summer of Heroes Hollywood Backlot DJ Dance Party

Is this the Eye of Agamotto watching?!

aka: The Dance Party That Shall Not Be Named!

For the Disney California Adventure Summer of Heroes, many locals were anticipating the return of a themed nighttime dance party for the park – preferably with a live band.

However, the promoted Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance-Off! turned out to be a daily audience participation show stop ala DJ’s Dance ‘n Drive.

But oddly stealthily, Disney California Adventure actually has added a nighttime DJ dance party – only it’s not on the published schedule nor is it advertised anywhere! Instead you just have to sort of stumble upon it or follow the pop music issuing from the former Diamond Mad T Party dance stage in Hollywood Land.

Here you will find the as yet unnamed Hollywood Backlot DJ dance party! Currently only temporarily scheduled for the next week or two, it is likely to be extended throughout the summer if perceived as successful. Continue reading

The Bands Are Back in Town… This Summer at Tomorrowland Terrace!

 

Awkward rock family photo featuring: Tomasina and the boys!

In lieu of the nighttime Marvel Dance Party entertainment option many were expecting for the Summer of Heroes at Disney California Adventure (which has turned out instead to be a daily interactive show stop for the little ones ala DJ’s Dance ‘n Drive) – the happy news many of us had hoped for has come true:

The bands are returning to Tomorrowland Terrace for the summer!

Weekends from May 26th to August 20th will once again be filled with the sound of live rock and pop music at the classic Disneyland Park venue and the fans couldn’t be happier!

Set times are scheduled for: 7:30 PM, 8:35 PM, 10:00 PM, and 10:45 PM (as always, subject to change)

Returning bands include two of my favorites: The 80z All-Starz and TOMASINA – along with some new to the location such as Grilled Cheese Soundwich who drew big crowds in Downtown Disney over the past few months!

So far, these are the dates scheduled: Continue reading

Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival 2017 – Entertainment

Welcome to the Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival 2017!

This year’s expanded Food & Wine Festival at Disney California Adventure brings back both the culinary demonstrations and the popular (and still pricey) food and drink booths from last year’s event but adds several more of these along the parade route down Paradise Pier.

Sadly, the prices kept me away from sampling these offerings once again this year. I simply cannot justify $6 for a spoonful of soup in a mini bread bowl (bread roll?), when I can pay $11 for an entire cup of soup with a full loaf of bread just down the way at Pacific Wharf Café – so in fact, that’s exactly what I had!  Although I was disappointed that the seasonal Loaded Baked Potato soup there yesterday was much saltier than I remembered from previous meals.

But very happily, the entertainment for the Festival has been greatly enhanced as well and will definitely be bringing me back regularly for the rest of this event, which runs March 10-April 16, 2017!

For the run of the Festival, there will be two stages with all day and into the evening performances. First is the Paradise Park stage – an elevated platform right in front of World of Color. This is for the bigger shows and I’m absolutely thrilled that one of the regular bands performing here is a Disneyland Resort favorite: TOMASINA!

TOMASINA playing at Paradise Park during the day.

Yes, Tomasina is bringing her wild and crazy rock and pop show to Disney California Adventure this season!

TOMASINA playing at Paradise Park in the evening.

Following are TOMASINA’s currently scheduled dates and show times (as always, subject to change): Continue reading

Show Spotlight: Main Street Electrical Parade Returns to Disneyland Park

The Main Street Electrical Parade returns home to Disneyland Park for a limited time!

The Main Street Electrical Parade returns home to Disneyland Park for a limited time!

What is the Main Street Electrical Parade?

Goofy rides the train!

Goofy rides the train!

This endearing, enduring parade has once again crossed the country back from the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort where it ran as their nightly Disney’s Electrical Parade for the past several years.

Once again home at Disneyland Park for a limited time before it “glows away forever” (for real this time… we think), this spectacle of color, lights and music was the inspiration and precursor to the (hopefully returning later this year) Paint the Night parade.

The performance features massive floats themed variously to classic Disney animated movies including Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella and Pete’s Dragon, along with brightly lit individual characters all moving to the familiar strains of the “Baroque Hoedown”.

Each main massive float features matching characters (Alice atop a mushroom, Cinderella in her pumpkin coach, Pete atop Elliott the dragon, etc.) and many are also accompanied by smaller themed floats as well.

Tinker Bell in the Peter Pan segment of the parade.

Tinker Bell in the Peter Pan segment of the parade.

Who are the performers? Continue reading

Downtown Disney Mousertainment – The Suffragettes

Make it last forever, friendship never ends…”

The Suffragettes sing in Downtown Disney!

The Suffragettes sing in Downtown Disney!

The Suffragettes are another band that originated at Tomorrowland Terrace at Disneyland Park and have now found their way out to the main stage by the ESPN Zone in Downtown Disney. In a case of “too many bands, too little time”, I’m embarrassed to say that although I’d wanted to, I’d never seen this all-girl band (hence their name) until this week!

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While some of the performers in this group were familiar to me – you may notice a lot of talent crossing in between many of the awesome bands I feature here – some were new to me as well. And none disappointed! Continue reading

Paradise Garden Bandstand – The Ellis Island Boys

The Ellis Island Boys at Paradise Garden Bandstand.

The Ellis Island Boys at Paradise Garden Bandstand.

The Paradise Garden Bandstand is a small covered stage in the midst of the Paradise Garden eating area of Disney California Adventure. Conveniently located near several quick service food stands with plenty of seating to be found, it’s a great place to stop and relax in the midst of the noise of Paradise Pier.

While lately the stage been used by cultural entertainment themed to the various festivals (recently Viva Navidad and currently the Lunar New Year celebration), between the festival times it is home to some recurring bands such as Sligo Rags (a Celtic band that is a great favorite of a friend of mine and on my want-to-see list) and the group I’ve seen there a few times – The Ellis Island Boys.

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Continue reading