Disneyland Trip

Yesterday, Jesse and I went to Disneyland. Our annual passes are about to expire, and we wanted to check out the latest changes. The park is all decked out for the up-coming 50th anniversary. Frankly, I think all the gold paint is a little over the top, but at least I know it’ll be gone in a year and a half.

The two biggest changes that we wanted to see are the refurbishment of the Tiki Room, and the new Buzz Lightyear ride in Tomorrowland. The Enchanted Tiki Room was long overdue for some work. The thatch roof was starting to come off, and everything looked really worn out. The work that has been done makes it look great. The paint is fresh and bright. The bird feathers are clean and sharp, and the sound is perfect. I love to sing along with the songs. It’s too bad more people don’t get in the spirit, but it’s still a lot of fun. I’m glad they’ve finally returned some Enchantment to the Tiki Room.

The new Buzz Lightyear ride is in the old Circle Vision building that has been sitting unused since the Rocket Rods were shut down years ago. Buzz is a little more than your basic dark ride. You go through the queue and then step on a conveyor belt like on the Haunted Mansion to enter the cars. You basically ride around the track looking at the sets and then step out a couple minutes later. Or at least that’s what it would be if it was just another dark ride. What makes Buzz different is that it’s interactive. Not only can you spin the car around using a control lever, you can also shoot at targets with hand held laser guns. A computer system tracks your hits and gives you a score. At the end, you are ranked by your score. I made Level 3 every time I rode. It’s going to take some serious practice to get to Level 4, and it goes up all the way up to Level 9. I wonder what the high score actually is. This is a great ride to ride over and over, especially if you’re into video games. I have a feeling that it’ll be popular for years to come.

They’re still working on Space Mountain (due to open in July), and the lagoon has been drained for construction of a new submarine ride (probably Finding Nemo based). I’ve heard rumors that Star Tours will be getting new movies, and the People Mover will return. I’m really excited to know that Tomorrowland is going to once again become one of the best places in the park instead of being the worst. (Now, if they could just figure out how to make Innoventions cool.)

Jesse and I will probably let our passes lapse for six months or so. We’ve gotten a little burned out, and could use a break to restore the magic.