Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, CA
Somehow, it’s August, which means that pretty soon, things are going to start getting a lot spookier and spookier at Westcoaster. It’ll kick off with our coverage of Midsummer Scream this upcoming week, recapping the events of this awesome Halloween and horror convention happening right now. But first, lets check in again with the Disneyland Resort, where our quantity of things to update has dropped, now that Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge has opened, and Pixar Pier is done, and the new parking structure is operational. But there are still a couple of major projects going on, and some entertainment returns to catch up upon. Oh, and the Main Street Electrical Parade is back. Again. So lets check it all out?
Pixar Pals Parking Structure
The Pixar Pals parking structure may be open, but there are still some components that remain incomplete. For one, that bridge over Magic Way and connecting walkway all the way to Downtown Disney is still ongoing, with an anticipated completion of September. In addition, the tram promenade between the escalators of the Mickey and Friends and Pixar Pals parking structures is getting landscaping and pavers. Plus, work continues on the new elevator tower on the Mickey and Friends side that’s going up next to the existing elevators!
The promenade remains walled off as landscaping is returned to this area, and new paving is put back.
There are quite a lot of trees planted—more than originally there!
Over here, tram unload is proceeding.
At Mickey and Friends, they’re continuing with the new elevator.
They’re put to the third floor with a pair of new columns.
Here’s the elevator pit.
Looking from the escalator side…
The extra elevator capacity will be very welcome.
Staffing cutbacks mean that security lines can be unnecessarily long if you come at the wrong time. It’s a bit absurd to see two lines open among the two dozen of the new layout, but that’s the overreaction of reduced staff hours, I guess.
Onto that bridge…
Nothing much new on this side.
But we can see glimpses of new railing on the ramp down on the opposite side.
Spanning across the street…
It does look sterling!
There will be a walkway connecting to the intersection of Disneyland Drive and Magic Way.
The ramp to ground level is progressing.
I like the guardrails. They’re a bit different.
The path will parallel Disneyland Way over to the old Rainforest Cafe.
Also, last time, we saw that sometimes, cars can enter the Pixar Pals structure. But also, apparently, they can exit if operations decides to reverse the traffic flow of the Pixar Pals ramp.
Marvel Land Construction
Progress from the ground is less obvious now that the building has gone behind tarps. They’re working on putting the wall framing and beginning the process of covering up the building. But from higher above, though, we can see that the expanded architecture around the old It’s Tough to Be a Bug building is actually getting pretty substantial, wrapping around to the Hollywood Land side as well! Marvel Land will open next spring, and we’re likely to get more details at the D23 convention later this month. But for now, we can only watch the future Spiderman attraction show building slow progress.
The new Spiderman ride building is doing its best to sort of blend in with Guardians of the Galaxy beyond.
The building is topped out.
So now comes the light gauge metal stud framing.
The studs are going up around the perimeter of the building addition.
No exterior sheathing yet.
Lets go up higher.
The area around Flik’s Fun Fair is starting to fill in a little more.
And there’s more structure around the other side, behind the Art of Animatin building.
The facade in front of the It’s Tough to Be a Bug building is no joke either!
This single story area is probably more than just the Spiderman ride. More likely, it’s shops of some sort.
They keep on working.
Dirt is on the park perimeter side.
Maybe we’ll find out soon what this will officially be!
Tale of the Lion King
In our last update, we talked about the new Tale of the Lion King stage show at Paradise Park, but we didn’t have any photos, because the showing that I planned to watch ended up being cancelled due to the heat wave of that week. Fortunately, there was no such postponement last Friday.
Tying into the live action release of the movie this summer, Tale of the Lion King is a theatrical retelling of the famous movie and story, featuring music and dance and a spirit cast of fantastic performers who bring the tale to life. Occurring at the Paradise Park stage multiple times a day, this 15-20 minute show is a lively way to relive the classic movie.
Welcome to the Tale of the Lion King!
This is a retelling of Lion King, in stage form.
It’s similar to the mini-show’s the park has done for movies like Coco.
The Circle of Life kicks things off.
We meet some of our principal characters.
Mufasa shows Simba his future domain.
Simba just can’t wait to be king.
Scar doesn’t like this, and warns that everyone else should be prepared.
The two alternate their songs into one harmony.
But Scar enacts his plan. Oh no! Wildebeest!
Mufasa tries to rescue his son.
But he is betrayed by Scar.
Run away, Simba. Run far far away, and never return!
Flash forward, where we meet Timon and Pumba.
And they meet Simba.
Simba doesn’t want to tell them what’s wrong, so they decide he needs friendship.
They share the power of Hakuna Matata.
It’s a wonderful thing.
Simba accepts their advise and enjoys growing up in the jungle.
But one day, he bumps into Nala.
They reconnect after so many years.
They apparently feel the love tonight.
“I see you…”
After Simba refuses to go back to Pride Rock, Mufasa’s spirit returns and admonishes his son, reminding him who he really is.
So Simba confronts Scar, who’s like “I though you be did?!!”
They fight it out!
Simba wins, though.
Scar tries a sneak attack but is thrown into the hyenas.
They eat him. Because they were starving.
Simba takes his place as king, with Nala as his queen.
And that’s the show!
Main Street Electrical Parade Returns… Again
In Disney’s haste to try to bring back lost crowds after an abnormally slow start of summer despite the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the park is dusting off the old classic Main Street Electrical Parade and running it for a limited time this month and next. Remember how they said the parade was going away forever… for real this time… two years ago? Yeah, apparently, that was about as trustworthy as the retirement of a professional wrestler. Or the disbandment of a beloved rock band. Of course it was coming back. If the park can milk nostalgia to manufacture attendance (and get some merchandise bonus out of something), it will. At least under this current administration.
The silly thing about this is that the biggest driver of low crowds is most likely the Annual Passholder block out dates. Lets see what happens at the end of this month when Deluxe Passholders are allowed into Disneyland. And next month with SoCal holders can visit Batuu. If crowds are still low, then we can worry. But as the summer as progressed, the crowds have come back closer to normal. So really, I’m not sure there’s any need for drastic measures.
In the meantime, if you loved the OG Electrical Parade, then visit the park these next two months. For its age, it actually looks pretty good. The floats seem to be pretty operational, with fully functional lighting. And it is a catchy, classic theme.
The Main Street Electrical Parade is back. So here are a bunch of photos of it!
Other bugs and stuff.
Here comes Alice!
Who… are you…?
What a happy little firefly!
Cinderella’s up next.
A very babyfaced Prince Charming.
Here comes Big Ben.
This means Peter Pan!
Tinker Bell and her fairies.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs next.
There’s Snow White.
Up next, a bunch of asses.
Followed by Donald Trump.
Sorry, I meant the Pleasure Island float.
Parade favorite, Pete’s Dragon is next.
Finally, to celebrate America…
Really high kicking!
And also a super long strip of bacon.
Such a patriotic celebration!
The 60th Anniversary Fireworks also returned earlier this summer—the first time guests have seen them since the end of the actual Diamond Anniversary celebration for the park. It’s nice to have this show back. It’s not as good as Remember… Dreams Come True, but it’s still an excellent nighttime spectacular. Here are a few shots from Main Street last Friday.
And that wraps up this week from Disney! Join us starting tomorrow as we review the 2019 iteration of Midsummer Scream. Before you know it, the fog will descend, and it will be that haunting time of year again!
Architect. Photographer. Disney nerd. Haunt enthusiast. Travel bugged. Concert fiend. Asian.