I made a quick trip to the Disneyland Resort on Friday, March 4. This was one of the trips that I call a Menu Blitz, where I go all over the resort and collect/take pictures of menus, as well as photograph anything else that seems new or interesting.
It was also my first trip with my new point-and-shoot camera - I bought a new Canon PowerShot SD970 IS a few weeks ago. I had my Garmin ForeRunner GPS with me as well - according to that I covered 9.5 miles in 4 hours and 55 minutes of roaming around.
I thought I'd take you with me on my wanderings and show you some of the things I saw.
I parked in the Mickey & Friends parking structure and then walked over to the Disneyland Hotel. This is actually the first Disney picture I took with my new camera (the first of thousands, I'm sure!). The remodel is complete on the Dreams and Wonder Towers and has now moved to the Magic Tower:
There's construction walls around the back, and access to Goofy's Kitchen and Steakhouse 55 is through the lobby. Notice the big mirror - those are at all the corners.
Because of the construction of the new pool and restaurant area (you can read a bit about the two new restaurants, Tangaroa Terrace and Trader Sam's, in this Disney Parks Blog entry), access to the Wonder Tower is via the path between the Dreams Tower and Downtown Disney. But at the end of the Dreams Tower there is this set of peepholes where we can get a glimpse into what's going on. I liked how they were at varying heights. :-)
There wasn't much to see - I'm guessing this is part of the structure for the new pool slide.
I liked how the fence was actually built around this tree! You can also see an example of one of the old-time attraction posters that they have placed along the fence.
I visited the Paradise Pier and the Grand Californian, collecting menus, and then did a turn through Downtown Disney, also in search of menus. But menu photos are not exactly interesting. I'd logged 2.25 miles by the time I arrived at the Esplanade. They have this Let the Memories Begin display there:
The Family Fun Weekends sign just inside the entrance to Disneyland:
The construction walls that were covering the trolley tracks on Main Street last month are gone, but there are walls up on either side of the entrance to the Opera House.
In Tomorrowland, work is proceeding on Star Tours, which now has an announced opening date of June 3.
The Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster Fastpass machines are behind walls.
The Star Traders shop is temporarily closed, and merchandise has been moved into Starcade next door. So you can play video games and shop for your favorite Star Wars merchandise at the same time! :-)
There's walls around the base of the Observatron also.
The Tangled meet and greet area in Fantasyland.
Something I'd never noticed before - the coat of arms for Dumbo! (Motto: Believe & Soar!):
Construction walls at the Mark Twain dock.
For the three Mardi Gras weekends, the restaurants in New Orleans Square were offering special food items. There was a Bananas Foster Crepe at Cafe Orleans, and Bouillabaisse and Apple Fritters a la Mode at the Blue Bayou.
The French Market had two special sandwiches: a Muffaletta and a Shrimp Po Boy (pictured here). That looked good, but I didn't get a chance to try it.
Royal Street Veranda, French Market, and Harbour Galley were all offering a Mickey Brioche. This was an egg bread with some purple, gold and green sugar sprinkled on it. It was about 6" around. It was a little dry, though.
In the Court of Angels they were doing character greetings with characters in their Mardi Gras costumes.
In the area between the French Market and the Haunted Mansion were a couple of merchandise carts - this one offered New Orleans-themed items, and the other one was doing Mardi Gras face painting.
Jeanine already did a nice blog entry on the Mardi Gras weekends, including Princess Tiana's Mardi Gras Celebration, which I saw on Friday. Before the show, the Jambalaya Jazz band played on the stage.
The cast in their Mardi Gras parade from Frontierland to New Orleans Square before the show - they even threw a few beads. I wish they'd been able to bring back Tiana's Showboat Jubilee on the Mark Twain - I really enjoyed that show.
Critter Country is still undergoing "beautification" and those walls are still up.
There was a beautiful display of spring flowers - daffodils and tulips - in the planters around the hub:
The day started off cloudy and overcast, but once the marine layer burned off it was a beautiful day - the warmest we've had in a several weeks - it got to the upper 70s! I like the color on the tree in the middle of this photo - and you can see some of the foliage from Pixie Hollow in the corners.
Saint Patrick's Day is coming, and there's some new merchandise out - several t-shirts, Mickey ears, baseball caps, an antenna ball and a lighted shamrock on a lanyard.
There's also a special Duffy:
And several St. Patrick's Day treats - Marshmallows on a stick:
And, my favorite, the Mickey Leprechaun shorts apples:
In Part 2 I'll have photos from Disney California Adventure.