Why I’m Just a Little Jealous of Other Disney Parks This Summer

Normally I think I could safely argue that when it comes to entertainment, the Disneyland Resort can hold its own – and often top – the offerings of any other Disney Parks & Resorts.

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The Pixarmonic Orchestra in their new Pixar Promenade home!

That said, this summer for Pixar Fest, they only introduced one new show – the Pixarmonic Orchestra, who as of today take up residence in their new bandshell location at Pixar Pier in Disney California Adventure. Otherwise, we just had a parade park swap – and in my personal opinion, the Pixar Play Parade seems a bit lost at Disneyland Park as I think it was a much better fit at Disney California Adventure, whereas Paint the Night finally has room to breathe and lots of great viewing locations at Disney California Adventure even more so than it did at Disneyland Park.  Overall I think it was a wash switching the two parades.

So I’m going to admit that I’m a wee bit jealous (or in one particular case – a whole lotta jealous) of some of the shows happening at other Disney Parks this summer and if I could travel to any of them, here’s where I would go and why:

EPCOT at Walt Disney World

Through August 19th, the America Gardens Theatre in the World Showcase is host to the show: Guardians of the Galaxy – Awesome Mix Live! featuring a visiting rock band from Xandar and guest appearances by Star-Lord and Gamora.

Performing live musical selections from the two Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mix soundtracks, I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews about this show that plays several times daily! Check the My Disney Experience app for times but be aware this show can often be affected/shut down due to summer storms.

While I wouldn’t trade the Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance Off! at Disney California Adventure for anything, I would be absolutely thrilled if when the Dance-Off ended for the evening, Star-Lord and Gamora could hop over to a stage in the Hollywood Backlot and rock out with a crowd that has been sorely missing a regular nighttime live rock band since the Diamond version of the Mad T Party ended two years ago. Continue reading

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Character Spotlight: The 60th Anniversary of the Alice in Wonderland Attraction Brings Out the Characters!

This is my 400th feature for this site!  And I had no idea going into this week what I was going to write about, but I knew I wanted it to be special.

Some weeks I have a specific topic in mind – something I’ve experienced already that I want to share, or something I plan to seek out. But often, I just visit the Disney parks and note what I happen to encounter. And oh boy, did I have an encounter yesterday!

This week – Thursday, to be precise – was the 60th anniversary of the Alice in Wonderland attraction at Disneyland Park. This classic Fantasyland dark ride is unique in all the world and remains consistently popular as it has been periodically updated or “plussed” over the years.

I actually didn’t board the attraction this week – although I rode it fairly recently with friends – as a) I rarely take the time to go on attractions since my biggest park love is its Mousertainment! and b) I got VERY distracted yesterday when this happened in celebration of the anniversary…

The Alice in Wonderland Character Cast of Disneyland Park!

YES! In the most incredible character moment I’ve EVER seen, SIX Wonderland characters all came together for a photo opportunity and some very lucky guests got to have a Meet & Greet and pose with the entire group!

To say I was having a total fan meltdown when this happened would be an understatement.

I’d previously met all six of these characters, but usually in groups of two, or perhaps seeing two groups of two greet each other in passing, but never meeting guests while gathered all together like this!

It was an unadvertised amazing piece of Disney Parks magic and I’m just thrilled beyond words that I was there to participate and get photos! Continue reading

A Different Kind of Entertainment – A Mad Tea Party with Alice & The Mad Hatter

What better way to celebrate a royal wedding today than with a tea party? A MAD Tea Party, that is!

Unlike Musical Chairs with Alice & The Mad Hatter at Disneyland Park, which is not listed on the daily Entertainment Times Guide nor on the Disneyland app, but still happens fairly regularly in the afternoons at Coke Corner, it is a bit less often that you can find Alice and the Mad Hatter hosting a Mad Tea Party for guests.

I’ve seen this spontaneously happen anywhere from Fantasyland to Coke Corner on Main Street, U.S.A. at the whim of the Hatter – it is HIS tea party after all! Although Alice does insist on crashing it!

There’s always time for tea!

Generally it involves the Mad Hatter inviting a few lucky guests to join him and Alice at a table. He provides the tea cups and teapot – and the guests get to have the fun! Continue reading

Character Spotlight: Disneyland Resort Update March 2018

With no new shows added lately, I have been spending much of my time at the Disneyland Resort visiting with characters – often with the Marvel characters.

You never know when Loki may turn up again!

Sadly, as of yesterday, Thor & Loki are no longer meeting in the Hollywood Backlot at Disney California Adventure. While we hope for their return sooner rather than later, in the meantime, we have received a new visitor to the park – T’Challa, the Black Panther!

You can’t miss Black Panther entering or exiting the Hollywood Backlot area at Disney California Adventure!

Much like Black Widow this past summer, T’Challa makes his grand entrance on an Avengers transport vehicle and is accompanied by his guards before stopping to Meet & Greet with guests on Stage 17 in the Hollywood Backlot.

His guards are an awesome part of seeing Black Panther at his Meet & Greet – they are FIERCE!

Mousertainment Tip: This Meet & Greet is very popular right now. Be prepared to wait in quite a line to meet Black Panther. If he is your priority, the earlier you can get there, the better! For his daily scheduled appearances, check the Disneyland app. But if you just want to catch a glimpse of him, you can see him traveling through Hollywood Land just prior to and just after each Meet time as he heads into and out of the Hollywood Backlot on the back of an armored truck.

I have had fun visiting some of the classic Disney characters as well, both in scheduled locations, such as Alice and the Mad Hatter in Fantasyland, as well as roaming characters like Gaston. I was even hijacked the other day in New Orleans Square by Captain Jack Sparrow himself, who needed my help to find some treasure on Tom Sawyer Island! Continue reading

Three Years of Mousertainment

I don’t know what seems stranger and more amazing to me – that I’m kicking off my fourth year of writing this blog, that I got introduced to Disney Parks entertainment more than seven years ago with ElecTRONica at Disney California Adventure and as a result of that experience have been regularly following various performances, performers and groups for almost six years, that it’s been almost two years since the Diamond version of the The Mad T Party ended and I’m still hanging out at the parks several times a month going from show to show to show… or that some of you have been reading my articles since the beginning and others are still coming aboard to find out more about my favorite part of Disney Parks – the Mousertainment!!!

So I’ll start with a thank you – to those who’ve followed for months or years and to those who are just discovering the blog for the first time. Some of you found the site by your interest in shows and performers, others through watching some of the hundreds of videos I’ve posted on my YouTube Channel. For those of you who haven’t checked out those videos yet, please do so! I try to get video of many of the folks I feature here. Keeping an eye on my YouTube Channel may sometimes give you a sneak peek of who and what I will be featuring as time goes on.

But before we look ahead, I’d like to take a look back at last year – the first completely without my beloved Mad T Party. I honestly wasn’t sure my enthusiasm would stay high without weekly nighttime bands to enjoy. Fortunately, Disney brought the bands back for the summer to Tomorrowland Terrace, and then throughout much of the rest of the year to the main stage in Downtown Disney. And while out there, I found even more musical talent filling the area! And the holidays brought further seasonal joy to the hotels as well! Continue reading

Character Spotlight: Disneyland Park Halloween Time Update October 2017

Since there is a lot to cover for character updates during the Halloween Time season at the Disneyland Resort, I’m going to separate this into multiple reports. Today’s will cover the characters you may encounter at Disneyland Park, while next week we’ll take a look at some of the fun costume changes that have appeared for characters at Disney California Adventure.

Meeting on Main Street in their familiar garb from the past few Halloween Time celebrations are the Fab Five of course.

Here’s Mickey! But don’t get spooked by his costume – he’s still the same lovable mouse as always!

Cruella De Vil is out in Town Square as usual, but lately I’ve spotted the Queen of Hearts there, too! Happily, I actually found her listed on the Disneyland app so I knew when to look for her!

Her Majesty, the Queen of Hearts!

In other locations, the popular Meet & Greet area for Jack & Sally (The Nightmare Before Christmas) in the Sky Room between the shops in New Orleans Square has reopened for the Halloween season. Be prepared for long lines for this duo! Continue reading

Season’s Treatings – A September Epic Disney Food Fail

I was really excited to head into Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort, not just for the decorations and other seasonal entertainment (to be discussed in a future post), but okay yes, for the seasonal – especially themed – food!

Unfortunately, in my two recent visits, I disappointingly experienced more epic misses than hits. But sometimes it’s just as important to know what to skip as what to get, so I’m sharing my opinions (personal and subjective as always) with you here today.

First off, did you know that some resort restaurants have offerings that change monthly? Sometimes even I find it hard to keep up with knowing everything that’s going on and I go there really regularly. But I just found out a few days ago that the monthly gourmet hot dog at Whitewater Snacks at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel was mini hot dog nachos and I just had to get over there to try them!

Now, I’ll preface this by saying: I have never tried a Disneyland corn dog. *Waits for the gasps to quiet.* Further blasphemy – I’ve never tried the jumbo turkey leg or a Dole Whip for that matter. Sorry, I’m a Citrus Swirl fan forever. One of these days I need to do a food crawl of just these classic items I’ve never tried though.

I think it’s because the full sized corn dogs are just intimidating looking and while I love a good hot dog, I’m not really a corn dog fan. But mini-corn dogs with select toppings? That I would try.

On the day I went over to Whitewater Snacks, it was about lunchtime and I was told by the Cast Member that it would be a 45-minute wait for this dish since it was so popular. And indeed, while I was ordering, they cut off all orders for it for the day. But I got mine in.

After waiting, my food was delivered to me. But unlike the mini-corn dog dish I’d seen pictures of and other people around me were enjoying, what I got was this:

What was supposed to be mini-corn dog nachos (aka mini-corn dog bites with toppings).

And while a corn dog fan might have found this plateful enticing, I couldn’t even look at it, it was so totally unappealing to me. Fail. I literally picked it right up and brought it back to the cashier. I pointed out that this was not the dish I’d ordered and waited for. The cashier (and my server) both apologized profusely and said they’d run out of the mini-corn dogs and had to try making this. Yeah, I wasn’t going to eat that – although honestly it was probably a great deal for what I’d paid for a smaller dish. I was quickly given a refund, however.

Problem is, I was really hungry as I’d waited so long for this dish! My friend split their lunch – a sandwich – with me, but I needed to find food fast. My friend had a craving for dessert after their meal, so we headed into Disney California Adventure as I wanted to try one of the Halloween Time desserts. Continue reading