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Everything posted by ILoveRides

  1. Every year during the holiday season The Disneyland Resort decks the halls and goes all-out with a festive holiday celebration. This year, returning classics such as “Haunted Mansion Holiday” and “It’s a Small World Holiday” are joined by new experiences such as “Princess Elena’s Musical Grand Arrival” and “World of Color - Season of Light.” We visited the resort to take part in the festivities and see what’s in store this holiday season. Check out our full report below! We’re at Disneyland! Yay! Monorails are awesome! Since we’re here for the holiday celebration, we headed straight to It’s a Small World Holiday Lets take a ride! Fa la la la la, la la la la. It’s pretty much unchanged this year - which is totally okay because it’s great! There are yummy scents. And lots of holiday goodness inspired by different parts of the world. Moving on, Sleeping Beauty Castle is covered in snow and lights. The nice thing about winter in So Cal is that you can still enjoy Dole Whip Floats! Over to the best holiday overlay of all time - Haunted Mansion Holiday! Jack has been busy decking the halls. There are awesome Nightmare Before Christmas details all around and throughout the Mansion. Every year they make a new massive gingerbread house for the ballroom scene. Here’s this year’s! Pretty rad! Even the Hatbox Ghost is getting into the holiday spirit. This Sally character is brand new this year. We thought it looked great and fit in perfectly. IMO all Haunted Mansions worldwide should get this overlay. It’s just so perfect! Next we headed back to It’s a Small World Holiday for the 20th anniversary lighting ceremony. The Southern California Children’s Chorus came on stage and sang the holiday music from the attraction. As they finished, the lights on Small World came to life, officially welcoming the holiday season! So pretty! Oooh, ahh. On our way over to Disney California Adventure we passed the giant Christmas tree on Main Street. We snapped a few photos of it! The tree is so large that the nutcracker “ornaments” are just real, full-size nutcrackers. Over to DCA! The giant grizzly bear is staying warm in his light up Christmas sweater. There’s a new mini show, Princess Elena’s Musical Grand Arrival. The show introduces Disneyland’s newest princess, Elena of Avalor, with singing, dancing, and some small special effects on the float. Disney Princess fans will definitely enjoy the show! Afterwards we headed to ¡Viva Navidad! for some Latin inspired food and music. They had all sorts of food and desserts for us to sample! The live band was awesome! Check out those skills! After dinner it was time to check out the all-new World of Color - Season of Light. Imagineer Steve Davison introduced the show to the eager crowd. The show has lots of Christmas hits such as “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” “Let it Snow,” and “Feliz Navidad.” There’s lots of Christmas imagery. And clips from an array of Disney movies, both classic and new. Among the clips are Bambi... Cinderella... Beauty and the Beast... Lady and the Tramp... The Lion King... Finding Nemo... Pinocchio... The Good Dinosaur... Lilo and Stitch... Inside Out... And of course, Frozen! There’s also an emotional “Peace on Earth” segment where foam hearts float above the audience as “Peace on Earth” is projected in various languages. The show has everything we’ve come to expect from World of Color. Lots of colorful fountains... Cool effects... and tons of fire! New holiday editions have become a tradition for World of Color, and we thought this was the best holiday version yet! What a great way to end the night! The Holiday celebration at The Disneyland Resort is always a must-see Winter tradition for us. There’s just so much great stuff - special food, new shows, and some of the best attraction overlays ever created. We didn’t even have time to do everything during our half-day at the parks, but we hope this report gives you a taste of all the awesome things there are to experience. To see it all, you’ll have to go for yourself! Holidays at the Disneyland Resort runs through January 08, 2017 so you still have time to check it out! Don’t miss it! Thanks to Disney for putting on such a great event, and thanks to you for checking out our report!
  2. Dark Harbor is back at The Queen Mary for 2016! This year there are 6 mazes, including the all-new “Intrepid,” and some other interesting new additions. We were there on media night to check out what’s in store for this year’s event. Check out our full report below! We’re at Dark Harbor to see what’s in store for 2016! We were greeted at the entrance by this year’s new character, The Iron Master, along with The Captain and The Ringmaster. As the gates opened, monsters burst out into the crowd. Dark Harbor always has a ton of cool characters. Graceful Gale is one of our favorites! Dark Harbor is no slouch when it comes to entertainment. There are tons of shows and performers to interact with throughout the entire night. Intrepid is this year’s brand new maze! We headed there first! You enter the maze by boarding a steam train. The conductor greets your group and hurries you along. Your group then gets split up. Some are sent up a flight of stairs, while others continue on towards a foggy hallway. There are some tight spaces you need to navigate. Watch out, the monsters crawl out from under fences to get you! This was my favorite scene in the maze. An anchor is being cast from molten iron. Check out our video of Intrepid!: [youtu_be] [/youtu_be] Next we headed to Soulmate! A young Graceful Gale greeted us. Upon hearing that I was an eligible bachelor, she asked if I’d join her for a nightcap later. Apparently Gale doesn’t treat potential suitors very nicely though. She’s trying to find the perfect man. Photos of men adorn the walls with the features she likes circled. Ahhh! Gale is chopping up her suitors and reassembling their pieces into the perfect man! Have a heart, Gale! Watch out, her minions are there to help her find and dissect potential suitors. While the maze is still great, the iconic ballroom dance finale scene was removed this year. That scene was a great ending to the maze, so we missed seeing it! After Soulmate we headed to the entrance to catch the grand opening for the public! Draven was there to entertain us by hammering a nail into his face! Spears even got to pull the nail out! The gates opened to a rush of monsters, and Dark Harbor 2016 was officially underway! We love all the performers at Dark Harbor. So many of the characters have special talents and rich backstories. This gives the characters much more personality than we see at other haunts. They aren’t just actors who jump out at you, it’s as if they’re real inhabitants of the haunted harbor! Next up, Circus! This maze has lots of improvements this year to keep it fresh. We happened to catch the Ringmaster meandering through the props in the queue. Lets go in! Pick a door, any door! Ball pit + creepy clown = awesome! There’s a full mirror maze midway through. The maze ends with a disorienting spinning tunnel. Take a trip to the Circus! Here's our video of the maze: [youtu_be] [/youtu_be] We love the Ringmaster! Here’s Twirly entertaining Spears with some tap dancing. They both did a big dance number together. It’s great that you can just walk up to characters at Dark Harbor and have moments like this! Next up, Lullaby. The maze begins with a funeral for Scary Mary, who still haunts the maze. She just wants to play! Those are some creepy toys. Next lets check out B340. There are creepy people… And tight spaces. In the darkness the old metal staircases of the ship are scary on their own! No thank you! Here's our video of B340!: [youtu_be] [/youtu_be] Back on dry land, we headed towards Deadrise! You enter the wreckage of Deadrise, a WWII escort ship. The ghosts of sailors haunt the wreckage. Fog, fire, and water impede your journey through the ship. Some new improvements this year include a scene where you may find it hard to find your way out! Spears was nice and tucked in the creepy ghost sailor so he could get some sleep! The maze ends with a blinding fog-filled tunnel where you aren’t alone! There’s always great entertainment at Dark Harbor. Lets watch some shows! We enjoyed this show featuring fire swallowing and other daring fire stunts. There was a slider show as well! They did lots of neat tricks! New this year is Panic 4d! This up-charge movie was really fun! The audience seemed to love it. You board the Queen Mary, but it quickly mutates into a ship of horrors! There are lots of scares and surprises! The Freaks & Oddities Sideshow up-charge returns this year as well! There are lots of strange things to see in the Sideshow. Of course there are freaks too! Be careful, The White Ghost lurks in the fog! After the Sideshow mini-maze you can watch some freaks perform on stage. And there are some photo-ops as well. We had a great time at Dark Harbor 2016. With a solid cast of mazes, shows, entertainment, and characters, Dark Harbor is always a great event and is one of our favorites in So Cal! We definitely recommend checking it out! Thanks to the folks at Queen Mary Dark Harbor for inviting us, and thanks to you for reading our report! Dark Harbor runs through October 31, don’t miss it!
  3. We did it the night before opening night. They invited a small group of media outlets to come check it out. They didn't allow any photos or video of the experience though. Honestly, I'm shocked and disappointed that they cancelled it. It wasn't offensive at all. Now, as for the experience, it was okay. Worth the $10, but it didn't blow us away. I'm more disappointed about them caving in to the (IMO unfounded) complaints than I am about actually losing the attraction. It was a good attempt, and there were elements we liked, but the tech just isn't quite there yet and it would need a higher budget and some outside-the-box thinking to really turn it into a "must see" attraction. Personally, I'd rather see them bring back Trapped.
  4. Thursday was the opening night of Knott’s Scary Farm 2016, and TPR was there to check it out! Scary Farm is always one of our favorite Halloween events and one of So Cal’s largest with lots of mazes, scare zones, and entertainment. It’s always a well-rounded event with something for everyone! Check out our report below to see the highlights from this year’s event. If you want to see everything for yourself (and you should!), Scary Farm runs select nights through October 31! On with the report... We’re at Knott’s for the opening night of Scary Farm 2016! We’re all checked in - let’s go! The Headless Horseman loomed over guests as the park opened. Monsters were ready and waiting to scare guests as they entered. Knott’s threw a great media reception (as always!) There was an ice sculpture... And all the food you could ever want. The reception was Día de los Muertos themed. Selfie time! Mmm, Sangria! But enough with the reception, we’re here for the mazes! First we checked out Dead of Winter. It’s bloody, icy fun. There were lots of improvements throughout the maze this year. But this guy is still the coolest part! Now for a new maze, here’s Shadow Lands! We loved this maze! Lots of demon samurai goodness. After a quick pre-show, you walk through a Japanese garden before entering the temple. This maze has a great immersive environment like Voodoo, but has more scares and some cool effects. Watch out, some creatures get very close! This samurai sword scene was great! Check out the video to see it in action... Here's our walkthrough video of Shadow Lands: Next we checked out The Red Barn. This is another one of the new mazes this year. It’s a a creepy barn filled with carnivorous animals and disturbing people. People are imprisoned amongst the dead chickens and blood spattered walls. No thank you! This horse animatronic was pretty neat! Here's our walkthrough video of Red Barn: Scary Farm always has great entertainment too! This year’s Hanging was no exception! There are tons of pop culture jokes as always. Trump appears a bunch in this year's show - no surprise there! We won’t spoil the surprise, but we loved who they hung this year! Here are this year’s Scary Farm T-shirts! Everyone seemed to really like the women’s Ouija t-shirt. Watch out, you never know what’s lurking in the fog! Moving on, Special Ops: Infected is all-new this year and way better than before! While Infected will always be lower capacity due to the nature of a shooting maze, they were very efficient with keeping things moving this year. They were dispatching groups very quickly into the maze, but even then we never saw the other groups and it felt like we were the only ones there. This was great! This year Infected was moved out of Camp Snoopy and took on a more traditional maze format with everything in close quarters - this was a GREAT decision! It felt more in-your-face and the sets and theming were awesome! We loved all the sets, but the subway was especially cool! Don’t miss Infected! This was our favorite maze at Scary Farm this year. Here's our walkthrough video of Special Ops: Infected: Time for Elvira’s Danse Macabre! Starring the one-and-only Elvira: Mistress of the Dark! The Elvira show is always fun and has lots of variety. There’s fire eating... Comedy... Dancing... Audience participation... And neat acrobatic acts! I’ve heard rumors that Elvira may be retiring soon, so if you’re an Elvira fan be sure to check this out! Back to the mazes, here’s Trick or Treat. These ghost characters were great! I’ll pass on dinner. Spears stirred up the Witch’s brew. The Green Witch was not happy about this! Moving on, here’s Tooth Fairy! Creepy! That drill seems a little excessive for teeth. They’re coming for your teeth, and they won’t take “no” for an answer! Spears says, “No, take his!” If The Tooth Fairy were really like this, kids would just throw out their teeth and forget about the whole money-under-the-pillow thing. Here's our walkthrough video of Tooth Fairy: Finally, here’s Voodoo. Eh, I’m not hungry. I’ve always loved the atmosphere of Voodoo, and this year is no exception! It’s not the scariest maze but it’s just a neat one to experience. Aww, is the night over already? We had a blast this year and loved all the new additions! Recommending Scary Farm is always a no-brainer - it has creative, home-grown mazes and entertainment at a price that offers some of the best value-for-money in the industry. The creative team at Knott’s is clearly passionate about their work, and that passion combined with a rich history give Scary Farm character that sets it apart. We look forward to Scary Farm every year, and hope all of you reading will get the chance to check it out! Thanks Knott’s for putting on such a great event, and thanks to you for reading our report!
  5. Last night Knott’s Berry Farm held their annual Scary Farm Announcement Event where they revealed all the exciting things that we can expect at Knott’s Scary Farm this year. There are some cool new additions coming to Scary Farm for 2016 so check out our full report below to learn everything that’s in store for this year’s Scary Farm! We’re at Knott’s for their annual Scary Farm Announcement Event! We can’t wait to see what’s in store for Scary Farm this year! Inside the Charles M. Schulz Theatre several monsters appeared on stage and introduced the host of the event... The always-hilarious Jeff Tucker! Great news for Elvira fans! Elvira is back this year with a new show... “Elvira’s Danse Macabre” will feature dance and comedy performances, transporting guests to a masquerade ball full of music, dance, and humor. It wouldn’t be Scary Farm without The Hanging! This year’s show is titled “The Hanging: Finding Gory,” and will feature all the pop culture humor, special effects, pyrotechnics, and stunts we’ve come to expect from The Hanging, but on an all-new stage! Next lets take a look at this year’s scare zones! Fiesta De Los Muertos fuses dance music, colorful costumes, and larger than life stilt walkers in a dance party scare zone. The Boardwalk will once again be overrun by clowns for the CarnEVIL scare zone. This year’s brand new scare zone is The Hollow! From within the fog, the legendary Headless Horseman and his army of the undead are ready to unleash a reign of terror in the new scare zone, The Hollow. Guests entering the frightful 6-acre area will be terrorized by the souls of fallen soldiers and local farmers that have escaped their shallow graves. Ghost Town Streets, the original scare zone and my personal favorite, returns as well! Now the returning mazes... Scary Farm designers Jon Cooke, Daniel Miller, and Gus Krueger came on stage to introduce the mazes. Tooth Fairy is returning! Effects include a blackout room through which guests must feel their way out, a disorienting x-ray strobe light room, and a final encounter with the massive tooth fairy himself. Voodoo returns as Voodoo - Order of the Serpent! The haunting legend of Papa Legba continues as guests follow him on his journey to conjure the serpent demon goddess in the outskirts of New Orleans. Trick-or-Treat returns! Once again you can ring the Green Witch’s doorbell. Her and her Tricksters are waiting! The Dead of Winter: Wendigo’s Revenge will have 4 new rooms and a new facade. The treacherous snow queen has been usurped by her evil minion, the horrific wendigo, who has seized control of her throne and is ready to prey upon unsuspecting visitors who enter the icy domain. The Gunslinger’s Grave: A Blood Moon Rises is back. Walk in the bloody footsteps of a betrayed and left for dead gunslinger on his path of retribution against the Skinwalkers. The standout hit from last year, Paranormal, INC. - The Haunting of Hayden Hill returns as well! Featuring high flying aerial stunts and scares, guests investigate a haunted hospital where the patients were tortured for decades by deranged doctors and nurses. For the first time this year, the Skeleton Key Rooms will be standalone rooms that are independent from mazes. The four Skeleton Key Rooms will each feature a unique story and theme. Lets check out the 4 rooms... First up, Visions. Guests must investigate the Green Witch Museum in Ghost Town where it is not the building that is haunted, but the various items contained within. Using a Phantom Finder augmented reality device, guests will be able to identify and witness paranormal activity connected to items from the Sarah Marshall Witch Trial. In Slasher guests are invited to step into an 80’s slasher horror film. The masked Angel Maker Killer is on the loose. Every lead has run cold and that’s when you step into the picture. Will you become his next victim? Next up, ZOZO. People from all over the world claim to have been visited by the demon ZOZO after a spirit board session. Is the demonic entity known as ZOZO real or are spirit boards just a myth? The fourth Skeleton Key Room is Prey. In Prey you’ll navigate a hay maze full of dead ends with only a faulty lantern as your guide. And you are not alone - mutant beasts are lurking around every corner. Finally, here are the new mazes for this year! First up, Black Ops: Infected. Armed with cutting edge laser guns, brave guests will face off against hordes of zombies in the groundbreaking all-new Black Ops: Infected interactive maze. Small units of guests will battle the zombie apocalypse through blood soaked city streets and an underground sewer system crawling with nearly one hundred ravenous zombies. The high tech innovative experience thrusts guests into the middle of a live-action video game complete with live actors, real time scoring system, kill streak rewards system and interactive targets, including a juggernaut boss zombie. The new attraction is one of the largest mazes ever created in Knott’s Scary Farm history, and it will no longer be located in Camp Snoopy as the previous renditions of Black Ops were. Also new is Shadow Lands... A fulfilling life ensures a soul safe passage into eternity, but what happens to the souls of soldiers slain in battle? Enter the hair-raising Shadow Lands maze and fight off demon samurais whose souls are cursed to rot within the depths of purgatory. Guests will embark on a quest through a sacred shrine, an ancient Japanese temple and into the midst of the shadow lands. Finally, in The Red Barn maze you’ll take a trip to a blood-soaked barn filled with carnivorous animals seeking to prey on human flesh. Legend has it the farmer who owns the barn was transformed into a heinous creature that sends his sadistic sons to ensure his legacy. None dare enter the barn, for those who enter never escape. After the show Knott’s put on a reception for media with yummy food... Cool decorations... Drinks... And awesome desserts! Monsters were roaming through the crowd! Spears had a great time at the event! Thanks to Knott’s for putting on such a cool event, and thanks to you for checking out our report! We're really excited for Scary Farm 2016 - it's almost here! Knott’s Scary Farm runs Sept 22 - Oct 31, don’t miss it!
  6. ... continued from above! Spears took a quick nap. The Lilly Belle is on display as well! Next we headed to California Adventure! We took a spin on Heimlich’s Choo Choo Train. And then we soared over California one last time. On June 17th Soarin' Over California will become Soarin' Around the World. We’ll miss you Patrick! I’ve always loved Soarin’ Over California, and will certainly miss it! That said, I’m excited to experience the new ride film and hopefully some new scents! For dinner we went to Carthay Circle Theater. Spears liked the fancy velvet rope. Cathay isn’t cheap, but it’s totally worth it to enjoy amazing food and drinks in the heart of DCA without all the crowds and noise. The food is always spot on. We posed in one more of the 60th photo ops before heading over to World of Color! It’s Dessert Party time! After you’re seated, the wait staff introduce themselves and start you off with a bread basket. Here’s the dessert menu. And here is the gorgeous plate of desserts! Pretty nice, huh? Don’t forget to wash down the desserts with some delicious drinks. Each person gets 2 drinks of their choice. Kids even get these cool glow with the show cups! Uh oh, Spears lost her vegan powers and tried some of the desserts! She said they were great! What a great view! And you get to sit down instead of standing for the whole show. It was the perfect end to a perfect day - we really enjoyed it! Our waiter, Moses, was gracious and entertaining! Here are the tables where you sit. Once it got completely dark the show began. The world is a carousel of color! If your live coverage was shaky at all, now you know why. (I kid - Spears did a great job with her first live broadcast!) This rendition of the show - "World of Color - Celebrate!" - is a great tribute to Walt Disney! During the show we got to relive many of the attractions we saw during the day. Here’s The Enchanted Tiki Room. Splash Mountain Pirates of the Caribbean Small World And Star Tours The new effects are awesome! And the fire is always a crowd favorite. The fire effects in this show don’t disappoint! We had an amazing time at Disneyland and DCA. There are so many new experiences at the resort right now that it’s a great time to visit! And after spending a fun-filled day at the parks, there’s no better way to cap off the night than at the World of Color Dessert Party. Watching World of Color with reserved seats and great food and drinks is the perfect way to end a day. Thanks to Disney for inviting us to attend and thanks to you for checking out our report!
  7. The 60th Diamond Anniversary celebration is still going strong at the Disneyland Resort with the “Paint the Night” parade, “Disneyland Forever” fireworks, and “World of Color - Celebrate!” entertaining guests each night. Not wanting to leave your tastebuds out of the fun, Disney recently debuted a “World of Color Dessert Party” as a special way to enjoy World of Color. The dessert party package features an assortment of sweet and savory treats, sparkling beverages, and reserved seating in a preferred viewing area for World of Color. Desserts include a Dulce de Leche-filled cookie, Mickey Coconut Macaroon, fruit, and artisanal cheeses plated on china. The dessert party is $79 per person - admittedly not cheap - but we found the convenience of reserved seating - being able to relax and sit down before and during the show - paired with wonderful desserts and up to 2 alcoholic (or non-alcoholic) beverages to be a really nice end to our day at the resort. If you’re looking for a magical way to end a day at the parks, or if you want to treat someone special to a fancy surprise, the World of Color Dessert Party could be just the ticket! Disney invited us to enjoy a day at the resort and cap off the evening with the dessert party, and we did just that - jumping at the opportunity to check out Star Wars: Season of the Force, Star Wars Land construction, ride lots of rides, take lots of photos, and end the evening with desserts, drinks, and reserved seats at World of Color. It was a wonderful day and night! Check out our report below to join in on the fun! We’re at The Disneyland Resort for a day of fun followed by the World of Color Dessert Party! But first, lets start out on the top floor of the Mickey and Friends parking structure to check out Stars Wars Land construction! Here’s an overview shot that shows the entire area. It’s huge! So far there’s pretty much just tractors and dirt. Construction going on with Big Thunder and The Matterhorn in the background. That’s the Fantasyland Theater in the background. And here’s a close-up shot behind Toontown. Pretty neat! We can’t wait to see this change into a new land over the next several years! Lets head in to Disneyland! Star Wars: Season of the Force brings several new Star Wars experiences to Tomorrowland. There’s a new “The Force Awakens” scene in Star Tours featuring the planet Jakku! Photography isn’t allowed on Star Tours flights, but we loved the new scene! Both the motion and visuals were great. One part reminded me of the old comet scene from the original Star Tours - really fun! Control panel enthusiasts - this one’s for you! In Star Wars Launch Bay you can check out models, props, costumes, and artifacts from the Star Wars films. Plus you can meet Chewbacca and Kylo Ren! I loved all the models! Manly pose with Chewbacca! The detail on the models is great! There are even lit interiors on some. At Hyperspace Mountain you get put into the middle of a dogfight between X-wings and TIE fighers. There’s some new theming in the queue for the Hyperspace overlay. And a new queue video. The second half of the ride was really great! There were some cool effects and surprises! We’re using the force! Food time! It’s Springtime in the submarine lagoon, which can mean only one thing... Baby duckies! Have you ever seen a baby ducky from above? Now you have! Spears counts character credits like most TPR members count coaster credits... here she is getting her Captain Hook credit! Next we decided to check out It’s a Small World. It sure is! Spring flowers were in bloom all around the parks, basking in the beautiful weather! Not much of the Star Wars Land construction was visible from the Fantasyland Theater. But there was a small amount of dirt to be seen. The train tracks have been removed before the Toontown train station. This fence blocks where the train would normally pull into the Toontown station. Over to the other side of the park, we stopped by the Tiki Room! It isn’t a trip to Disneyland without a Dole Whip! So yummy! The Tiki Room is a great place to beat the heat and relax mid-day! In the tiki, tiki, tiki, tiki, tiki room. Tweet, tweet tweet, tweet tweet. The Jungle Cruise was closed... But the skippers were still there telling jokes and entertaining crowds. It was awesome! (Look at THAT!) The even did a “Land Cruise” - a full run through of The Jungle Cruise on land, re-created with stuffed animals and awesome humor. This was such a gem, and I hope they do this again in the future whenever jungle cruise is temporarily closed! It’s rad that Disney is able to keep their employees employed, and keep guests entertained, all while the attraction is closed! Have you ever seen a park do that before? So cool! And even better... alert the Anaheim Animatronic Hippo Conservation Society! A hippo charged during the show, and it wasn’t shot! Sure, it’s only a stuffed animal and not an animatronic, but this could signal a dramatic shift in policy going forward. We hope for the best! And as always, we stand with the AAHCS and support their cause. SaveTheAnimatronicHippos.org Over to Pirates of the Caribbean, I was inspired by all the Jungle Cruise puns... Arrrrr you ready for these photos? You might have a bone to pick with me when I’m done. There was just a skeleton crew running the ride. But regardless, this is my favorite bride in the park. There’s no single rider line though so you ought to band together. The jail walls aren’t built to scale. I’ll Sparrow you the rest of my puns. Over to Big Thunder… Construction walls are set up and you can no longer walk through to Fantasyland. This is a pretty dramatic change! Peeking through a hole in the fence! The Mark Twain Riverboat is docked while the Rivers of America are closed for Star Wars Land construction, but it’s still open to guests and is a great place to rest your legs and get some shade! This is the Big Thunder side of the Rivers of America. A temporary mural is set up, and just beyond it the water is completely drained. Gertrude got hired by Disneyland to oversee the work happening on the river, so you may see her in and around the water while she manages the project. This also earned her a free annual pass, which she is really stoked about. Spears found more baby duckies and would be content spending the rest of the day watching them. Here’s the Haunted Mansion side of the river. A closeup of the mural. We love all the 60th anniversary photo ops they’ve set up around both parks! More dirt! As seen from The Hungry Bear restaurant. I’m sure all these views of dirt will get much more interesting once things start getting built. Next we took a ride on Splash Mountain. Looking down from the ride, you can see that the train tracks have been removed here as well. Manly pose! You can now cross over the tracks and check out the other side of the New Orleans Square train station. And there are activities to do there too. You can also get a close-up look at the handcar that’s normally stationed at the front of the park. There’s a model steam boiler, and the friendly train staff will explain how the steam trains work. You can ask pretty much anything about the trains and they’ll have an answer for you! Thanks Dean for being so helpful and informative! And if you ask nicely you can even blow the whistle! Again, it’s really cool of Disney to do all this. They could’ve closed the train station and sent the employees to the unemployment line (and most parks would) - but instead they’ve created a neat experience for the guests that also keeps their cast members on the job. Go Disney! Before heading over to DCA, we stopped by the Main Street train station where you can peek in an engine. (Report continued in next post below...)
  8. That was a spectacular event! If only they could do the whole John Williams + orchestra + projection mapped castle + fireworks on a nightly basis. I can dream. Thanks for covering the event and giving us a taste of what it was like to be there! And congrats to Universal on the new land! It looks beautiful and is sure to be a huge success!
  9. They actually did! I decided not to include it in the report since they aren't normally available, but they made us a veggie burger and a vegan version of the Boysenberry Flautas. Their entire media and culinary teams are so awesome - every single person - some of the nicest and most accommodating people we've met in the business! And a special shout out to John Chiu for always making sure we're taken care of. It's a nice gesture, and a level of customer service beyond anything we've seen or would ever expect from a park!
  10. Knott’s Berry Farm’s Boysenberry Festival returns this year from March 19 - April 3. The 16-day festival in Ghost Town features over 70 boysenberry-inspired dishes, drinks and treats; decorations; a wine and craft brew tasting garden; and tons of live entertainment. This year’s entertainment includes Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies, Peanuts Party in the Park, Dueling Fiddlers, vine dancing, Jammin’ in the Dark (a nighttime dance party), live music, and more. But the big star of the Boysenberry Festival is undeniably the boysenberry, so Knott’s invited us to a tasting preview to sample some of the boysenberry deliciousness that you can only get at this event. Check out our report below to tease your tastebuds and preview just a small sample of what’s in store for the 2016 Boysenberry Festival! We’re at Knott’s Berry Farm to check out the delicious foods and drinks you’ll find at the 2016 Boysenberry Festival! We came hungry and ready to sample some grub! We headed to the Wilderness Dance Hall, which serves as the wine and craft brew tasting garden during the festival, to kick off the event. The Knott’s culinary team welcomed everyone and got us excited for what was in store! First up, we headed for the wine. There are tons of wineries represented, each with a selection of different wines to choose from. It’s impossible to try them all! One I’ll recommend though is the Layer Cake Malbec - it was delicious! And our favorite from last year returns! The Honeywood Boysenberry Wine is a “must try!” Food Time! Here’s the Chicken Sandwich - grilled chicken breast tossed in boysenberry BBQ sauce, topped with farm made coleslaw on a whole wheat bun. Boysenberry Meatballs! Boysenberry BBQ Short Ribs served on a bed of Rice with Boysenberry BBQ Sauce! Boysenberry Wings! For the adventurous types, there’s Fried Alligator Bites served with Fries and Boysenberry Aioli. Wash some of the food down with some Boysenberry Beer or Boysenberry Cider. (In our case we mixed the two, and it was quite good!) The full Berry Market line of products is available for purchase at the event. And the Berry Market line has grown bigger this year! Along with all the preserves and syrups there’s now a Boysenberry Mustard and a Spicy Boysenberry Salsa. The salsa was great! It was spicy and sweet at the same time. There’s something for everyone! You can bring home the Boysenberry BBQ Sauce and slather it on whatever you like! Another favorite of ours, the Boysenberry Licorice, returns this year! It’s worth purchasing a pack of this! More wine please! On to the desserts, and they don’t disappoint! New this year is the Fun Stick! It’s cheesecake dipped in funnel cake batter that’s deep fried and then topped with park-made boysenberry cream and dusted with powdered sugar. Nom nom nom. The Boysenberry Flautas are great! And of course the infamous Fun Bun returns! The Fun Bun has become synonymous with the Boysenberry Festival. It’s a cinnamon bun dipped in funnel cake batter, deep fried, then iced with boysenberry cream cheese! Thanks Knott’s for all the delicious foods and drinks! This was just a small sample of everything that’s available to eat at the Boysenberry Festival, so you’ll have to make a visit to check it all out! Between eating the food, checking out the new decorations, experiencing the live entertainment, and enjoying everything else that Knott’s Berry Farm has to offer - it’s easy to make a full day trip out of a visit to the Boysenberry Festival! The Boysenberry Festival is now open! It runs March 19th through April 3rd, 2016... Don’t miss it!
  11. Knott’s Berry Farm is celebrating the 75th anniversary of Ghost Town this year, and to commemorate the occasion they’re refurbishing the area and adding several new experiences. Knott’s invited us to take a construction tour to see the current progress, so check out our report below to see everything that’s in store for Ghost Town’s big anniversary! We’re at Knott’s to see all the progress being made for Ghost Town’s 75th anniversary celebration! First up, there was a brief presentation to let us know everything that’s coming soon to Knott’s. Starbucks is opening March 18! The Boysenberry Festival is returning March 19 through April 3! We’ll be back at Knott’s in a couple weeks for a closer look at what’s in store for this year’s festival, so keep your eyes peeled for that report! Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant is currently undergoing a complete refurbishment, and is scheduled to re-open Spring 2016. The Ghost Town 75th Anniversary celebration will run May 27 - September 5. The centerpiece of the anniversary celebration, Ghost Town Alive!, will run May 27 - September 5 as well. And we were happy to learn that Ghostrider will complete its full refurbishment on May 27 as well! Time to check out all the progress around Ghost Town! Special thanks to the crew at Knott’s - Russ Knibbs, Jeff Gahagan, Lara Hanneman, and Jeff Shadic - who gave the construction tour and answered all our questions! First up we took a peek at the Wagon Camp. If you look on the left, you’ll notice the stage is being completely re-built from the ground up. There will be a new stunt-filled show here for the 75th! Ghost Town is getting spruced up with new paint and additions. The centerpiece of the 75th anniversary celebration is Ghost Town Alive! The whole town will be populated with characters who guests can interact with. You’ll now get to enter the peek-ins (rather than just peeking in at mannequins) and interact with the residents of the town! This should be a ton of fun! We can’t wait to meet all the residents! Having the town populated with characters should really bring the area to life! In the Sheriff’s office you may be asked to help make a wanted poster or you may be asked to become a deputy and help out. Each day, a story will unfold in the town throughout the day. The day will culminate in a hoedown to celebrate the 75th year of the town, but beware of the Mayfield Gang attacking and trying to take over! The Barn is being completely re-done to look more realistic, and it will now have real horses and a mule inside. The Haunt Museum is no more. Instead, this will become the Town Hall. This building will be the Calico Bank. The absent-minded bank owner keeps losing the combination to the safe, so he may need your help to figure it out! Also, beware of bank robbers! There was lots of painting going on. Everything will look nicely touched up! It’s nice seeing Ghost Town getting some TLC! The Calico Square stage is being relocated to the area where Screamin’ Swing used to be - between the Mine Ride and Pony Express. The area the stage occupied will become the location for the big nightly Ghost Town hoedown. The Calico Saloon is getting tons of love! It’s really looking great! Outside it has been repainted and has new railings and fixtures. There are new lanterns. This design board gives a good idea of the finishes and style they’re going for. Inside you can get a feel of how extensive the refurbishment is. Pretty much everything is getting worked on. The bar is brand new! There will now be beer on tap! (Yay!) And air conditioning! (Yay!) There’s lots to be done still! The staircase has been replaced with a new one. Ooooh, ahhh. We can’t wait to escape the summer heat in here - sitting in the cold AC watching a show while sipping a beer sounds pretty nice! Is it May yet? The new Calico Stage is mostly just an empty lot so far. In a couple months this view will look very different! Keep out! Moving on, lets check out Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant! This board gives an idea of what the finished building will look like. All furniture, flooring, lighting, and decor will be renovated. This shows an overhead view of the restaurant. And if you look closely, you’ll notice a full service bar has been added to the restaurant in place of the Garden Room. This should be a great addition! For the first time, there will also now be an outdoor seating area. Guests will enjoy views of the Marketplace fountain and the newly restored GhostRider. Russ stressed that when it comes to the food, their focus is on quality above all else. Anyone who knows Knott’s history can tell you that Knott’s Berry Farm wouldn't exist if it wasn't for the Chicken Dinner Restaurant - so Knott’s is working hard to honor that foundation by preserving Mrs. Knott’s original recipes and preparing them with the highest quality ingredients. They were even nice enough to prepare some biscuits for us, some with boysenberry butter, and some with Knott’s own Berry Market jam. Mmmmmm! Finally, lets see how the Ghostrider refurbishment is coming along! The coaster has been undergoing a full refurbishment intended to make it as good or better than when it was new. When it re-opens the mid-course brake run will be gone! Yay! The coaster is being completely re-tracked. You can clearly tell the new wood from the old wood. Some parts have been re-profiled to give more airtime and a more thrilling ride! If you look closely, you can see the bolt holes where this track used to be attached. The track was raised to give a bigger pop of air here. The refurbishment appears to be coming along nicely. The coaster will also be getting new Millennium Flyer trains and magnetic brakes! We can’t wait to fly over this drop again without the mid-course brake! We also got to peek into the maintenance area. This is the area under where they store the extra train. And here it is from above. We also got to see the lift motor. The chain wasn’t attached at the moment. Grease globs should be enough to get any coaster enthusiast salivating. When Ghostrider first opened it was a great ride - we’re really excited to get to experience it that way once again. With the new trains, removed mid-course brake, re-profiled portions, and magnetic brakes at the end, we expect it to be even better than when it first opened! As you can see, the Ghost Town 75th Anniversary is shaping up to be a must-see event at Knott’s. With new interactive entertainment, new shows, refurbishments throughout the area, the new-and-improved Chicken Dinner Restaurant, and the return of Ghostrider - its shaping up to be a great anniversary celebration! Thanks to Knott’s for showing us around, and thanks to you for checking out our report! The Ghost Town 75th Anniversary celebration begins May 27 - don’t miss it!
  12. ^ Yep, we'll be there and we'll have a full update and POV video video sometime in November! And for the So Cal locals - Mystic Motel opens TONIGHT! Here are the dates and times for 2015: Oct. 30: 6pm-9pm Oct. 31: 5pm-9pm November 1: 6pm-9pm November 2: 6pm-9pm Stop by and show them some support!
  13. Continued from above! You never know who you’ll run into in the mazes! Back on the ship... B340 is next! Nap time! Finally, lets check out Voodoo Village! This maze is very dimly lit, so there was a lot I couldn’t photograph. You’ll have to experience it to see it all! Back outside we hung out with the monsters and performers. If you want, you can even take a spin on this ride from Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch! The monsters really bring this event to life. Dark Harbor has the best cast of characters I’ve encountered at a haunt. There are so many memorable characters and amazing performers! They give their characters the freedom to enjoy themselves, interact with guests, take photos, move throughout the mazes, etc! It’s as if these characters really do live in the harbor, and you’re a guest in their world. We always have a blast at Dark Harbor, and I’m happy to report that this year continues that tradition. Dark Harbor often doesn’t get the same level of attention that Knott’s Scary Farm and Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights command in So Cal - but it should. The Queen Mary provides the perfect backdrop for a haunt, and they’ve integrated mazes in and around the ship that immerse you in the creepy world of the harbor. Add to that some of the best characters and performers you’ll find at a haunt, and it’s easy to see why Dark Harbor is always one of our favorite Halloween attractions. Thanks to the Dark Harbor team for throwing such a great event and inviting us to attend, and thanks to you for checking out our report! Dark Harbor runs through November 1st - be sure to check it out!
  14. Dark Harbor is an annual Halloween event held at The Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA. Every year the harbor comes to life with a rich set of characters and mazes inspired by the real-life history and ghost stories of The Queen Mary ship. The ship provides a perfect eerie backdrop for the event, with several mazes actually located in its abandoned walkways and rooms. Several new additions and changes for 2015 keep the event fresh and exciting. Check out our full media night report below to see everything that's in store for 2015! We're at The Queen Mary's Dark Harbor to check out what's in store for 2015! The Captain welcomed everyone and officially kicked off the event. Once inside we were greeted by many of Dark Harbor's monsters. There are lots of unique characters. And they all have their own unique personalities. Graceful Gale stared gracefully at Spears. Many of the monsters at Dark Harbor have special talents. This guy was mocking me for taking photos. Stop monkeying around Spears, we have work to do! Scary Mary seemed happy enough to pose for a photo with me. Open up and say ah! Spears is having none of it. The Captain and Graceful Gale arrived in style at the RIP lounge! Those who purchase VIP admission can chill in the lounge and enjoy some drinks. The humans ate the slider burgers, and the monsters ate the humans. The RIP Lounge gives a great view of the event. Fire! Ooooh, ahhh. There are also decorations throughout the lounge. It's maze time! First up, Soulmate! There is extra emphasis this year on helping guests understand the stories behind the mazes. Throughout the lines you can now learn the backstory of the mazes while you wait. We thought this was a nice touch! A pre-show video was also added to Soulmate to introduce the story. Graceful Gale is trying to create the perfect man by piecing him together! There are lots of nice details throughout the maze. Graceful Gale lined this wall with photos of men, and has circled the part that she likes from each man. Building the perfect man! Does she get her perfect specimen? You'll have to check out the maze to find out! Next up, Lullaby! This maze is new for 2015! The maze begins with a funeral service for Mary where we learn that her death wasn't an accident. She was murdered in the pool room of the ship, and ever since her death her spirit has been lurking the ship near the pool. You come face to face with Mary's ghost throughout the maze, and the only way out is to play her games! She challenged Spears to a game of hide and seek! Creepy hallway with wall-walking monster? No thanks! Mary lurks in the pool room, asking if you want to play. She follows you out, taunting you as you leave! Check out our full POV of the new-for-2015 Lullaby maze! As we were walking to our next stop, this contortionist stopped us and asked us to name two body parts. We said "ankle" and "ear"... She touched them together! Pretty awesome! I could play this game all day - but alas, we had to move on! Next up, The Curse of Anubis Paintball Adventure! In this brand new up-charge attraction you get to shoot zombies with paintballs! Spears says "Bring on the zombies!" There are targets that pop up that you can shoot as well. But honestly, if you're smart, just save your ammo... And then when a zombie walks out, unload! I think we know who the "worst job of the night" award goes to! After we killed off the zombies, we walked around a little to check out the atmosphere. I love how talented all the monsters at Dark Harbor are! So many of the monsters have special skills and unique personalities! Wherever you wander there are monsters lurking. There's also lots of entertainment. All throughout the night there are great performances on the main stage. We stopped to watch Mudd the Magnificent magician! Guess who got called on stage? Spears helped with some magic. And did some tying up. Mudd adds some flair to the typical straight jacket escape. We loved the show! Next up, the Sideshow of Freaks and Oddities! This up-charge attraction is always one of our favorite things to check out at Dark Harbor! Spears isn't sure about this. Lots of freakish characters and relics are on display when you enter. You get to have a chat with this skeleton. And then meet some freaks! When I asked her for a photo she grabbed a nail and hammered it into her face! You can witness some magic. And grab a drink in a light-up Dark Harbor skull mug! Look, it's my personal favorite Dark Harbor character, The Ringmaster! The Ringmaster hosted a mini show where she introduced all of the freaks. I happened to be wearing the colors, so what the heck - I make a great ringmaster, right? Some of the freaks also put on their own mini shows to entertain you. You can meet the freaks and snap a photo with them. There are also a few freak show mini-mazes where you get to come face to face with a freak in each one. These are so much fun! Next we got a super special treat - We got to do the Circus maze with the Ringmaster herself! In she goes! New this year was a ball pit in the middle of the maze. This was so unexpected and fun! The Ringmaster fell and got stuck in the balls, so Spears is helping her up! Thanks to the Ringmaster for making our trip through Circus extra fun and unforgettable! Next lets check out Deadrise. The scares come at you from all directions in this one - including above you! (Report continued in next post...)
  15. Continued from above... I had a nightmare once that looked like this. Pinocchio Unstrung returns this year. Take a trip to Pleasure Island. There’s nothing pleasurable about this though! Could Pinocchio be any creepier? Now over to the Carnevil scare zone. A new mini-show happens outside the Charles M. Schulz theater. As we were walking by, fog filled the air… And the Deadly Seven appeared… They scared in the fog along with the Green Witch. I would love to ride around in this contraption all night! Finally, lets take a look at the new show "Elvira’s Asylum.” You enter an asylum filled with freaks. I love the lighting! Maybe selfie sticks aren’t so bad after all. There are several performers in the show. No net! The star of the show is the legendary Elvira! There’s dancing… Knockers… Hooters… And variety acts. It’s a fun show! Whenever I’m asked by friends, “What Halloween event should I go to?” my answer is always Knott’s Scary Farm. Knott’s offers one of the most well-rounded Halloween events with something for everyone. And despite being the first - they don’t rest on their laurels. They continue to innovate and re-define what to expect from a Halloween attraction. With great new mazes such as Paranormal Inc. and The Dead of Winter, returning favorites like Trick or Treat and Voodoo, interactive experiences such as The Hanging and Infected, awesome shows like Elvira’s Asylum, legendary scare zones such as Ghost Town, as well as a full park of rides - Knott’s Scary Farm is a “can’t miss” Halloween event. Scary Farm runs select days through October 31, 2015 - don’t miss it! Thanks to Knott’s for throwing such a great event, and thanks to you for checking out our report!
  16. Thursday was the opening night of Knott’s Scary Farm 2015, and TPR was there with David and Spears! This year's event has 11 mazes, 2 shows, and 3 scare zones to entertain you throughout the night. There's so much to do at Scary Farm that it's hard to cover everything in one night - but this report should give you a great idea of what to expect this year! Check out the full report below! Put on your excited pants, Scary Farm is here! The Green Witch and the new Deadly Seven characters started Scary Farm off with a bang by scaring guests as they waited in the entrance plaza. Spears got her first scare of the season. The Deadly Seven have great costumes! She can scare me anytime. Boo! At 7pm the park opened, and guests eagerly raced in! A media reception was set up in the Fiesta De Los Muertos Scare Zone. The reception was Dia De Los Muertos themed. As is customary for Knott's, there were tons of decorations and things to eat and drink. Mmm, food. Yum yum. We washed down the food with some sangria. And we washed down the sangria with some desserts. Spears posed as a bouncer with Haunt designers Gus Krueger and Daniel Miller. Time to check out some mazes! Here's a new one for this year: Dead of Winter! There's a small mirror maze inside. And lots of snow and snowy characters. And the best part? It's cold! Which is great on hot so-cal nights! Can you survive your encounter with him? The Ice Queen awaits! Check out our full walkthrough video of Dead of Winter: Moving on, lets check out the My Bloody Clementine overlay for The Mine Ride. There are decorations set up around the mine. And Clementine lurks near the exit. There is live talent in the ride as well! However, to protect the animatronics and effects that were installed as part of the recent Mine Ride renovation, there aren't too many places that monsters can scare anymore. Unfortunately, this means that the scares are few and far between, and aren't as effective as they might otherwise have been. But in our opinion, this was the best possible compromise Knott's could have made. We love having talent in the ride for Scary Farm, but even more important is protecting the massive investment that was recently made in the attraction. So the experience does fall a little flat, but we're happy with the choices Knott's made in that regard. There are also new projections and effects throughout the ride. A projection of Clementine in the Glory Hole. The bird is the word. Up next, The Hanging: Straight Outta Calico! This year's show is interactive. Choices pop up on a screen and you can text your vote in to change the outcome of the show. For example, here we had the choice between a traditional start to the show, or a viral video... Viral video got the most votes, so a viral video played before the show started! If you've seen this show before, you know what to expect. It's a pop-culture-mocking-extravaganza! The Kock Brothers. Jared from Subway. There's lots of shooting. You can always expect a Disney reference. Tranny-saurus rex. The fight scenes are great! There's minions... Something for those who like women... Something for those who like men... We love all the action scenes! Hi PacMan! Hi ladies! There's some ball deflating... Gratuitous violence... Humor... Does Bill Cosby get hung? Nope! Donald Trump? Nope! In the end it's Ariana Grande who gets the noose! But enough hanging around, lets check out more mazes! Next up, Trick Or Treat! Ring the doorbell and step inside. There are lots of new effects and scenes this year. We were impressed - the maze is actually a pretty dramatic improvement over last year! This is true of most of the returning mazes this year - noticeable improvements were made across the board! Of course you'll still come face to face with The Green Witch! Voodoo returns with new improvements and more scares! On second thought, I'm not so hungry. Unlike last year, the maze is a single path this year - you can't choose your path anymore. But this ends up making the maze longer since you get to see everything, and new scenes were added to further immerse you in the environment. Voodoo is one of the most immersive mazes I've ever experienced. It really transports you to another place! I'm glad that feeling wasn't lost in this year's changes. The most anticipated maze for 2015 would have to be Paranormal Inc. And I'm glad to say, it lives up to the hype! You join the taping of a paranormal TV show. But things go wrong, and you come face to face with the paranormal world! The maze has some great effects I've never seen used before! This guy gets lifted up into the air! There are also some large animatronics! Check out our full walkthrough video of Paranormal Inc: The Tooth Fairy returns this year with new improvements that bring you into the story more. These tools seem a little excessive for a tooth fairy or dentist. Yep, too excessive. On second thought, I don't need that cavity checked out. Open your mouth and say ah! Around the park there are lots of spooky decorations. I love the themed lamp posts. There are also plenty of monsters wandering around. Lets check out Ghost Town, the first ever Scare Zone in an amusement park, and in my opinion it's still the best! The premise is pretty simple: dim light, fog so thick you can't see, and monsters lurking everywhere. They'll get you! (Report continued in next post!)
  17. This week Knott’s had their annual Scary Farm announcement presentation where they announce new and returning mazes, scare zones, and shows. This event, which is open to annual passholders, is always fun and filled with surprises. It definitely gets you in the mood for Halloween! Check out our report below to get the scoop on what’s happening this year at Knott’s Scary Farm! As night began to fall, thousands of Knott’s passholders eagerly waited outside the Charles M. Schulz Theatre for the announcement presentation. Here’s a peek inside the theater. Once the doors opened, everyone rushed in to grab a seat. But the monsters were waiting for them! And there was nowhere to hide. Even the back of the theater was no safe-haven. Want to be friends? This monster kept exclaiming, “I don’t even work here!” If Prince Desmond and a rat had a baby, this is what it would look like. Once everyone found their seats the monsters waved goodbye and the show began. The host for the show was the one and only Jeff Tucker! Jeff was wheeled into the theater by two lovely ladies. Jeff is always hilarious. Knott’s is lucky to have this guy! On to the announcements! First up, the shows. The legendary Elvira returns this year in an all new show, Elvira’s Asylum. No show is more synonymous with Scary Farm than The Hanging. This year, the show returns as The Hanging - Straight Outta Calico. Next up, scare zones! This year there’s Fiesta de los Muertos... Carnevil... And the scare zone to end all scare zones - the one that started it all and remains the best - Ghost Town. It’s time to announce the mazes! YES! Pinocchio Unstrung returns with an all new Skeleton Key room. Black Magic (one of my personal favorites) is back as well with a new Skeleton Key room. Trick or Treat returns with a new potion room and attic scene. Forevermore will have a skeleton key room for the first time ever. Voodoo returns with a new skeleton key room and more scares. I loved Voodoo last year because it really immersed you in the environment, but my one critique was the lack of scares. Hopefully this year we get the best of both worlds! The Tooth Fairy, another maze that was very popular last year, returns with a new Skeleton Key room and an all-new ending! Haunt designer John Cooke came on stage to announce the return of Special Ops Infected. This year there are new guns that improve throughout the game - the more zombies you shoot, the better the gun becomes. Each gun also has a health meter, and if you lose your health you’ll have to find a re-spawn check-point to re-set your health and get back into the action. Yay for new guns! Speaking of guns, Gunslinger’s Grave is back! Creator Gus Krueger came on stage to announce that it’ll be madder, crazier, furrier (thanks to werewolves), and it will also have an all-new end scene. Brand new this year is The Dead of Winter! A Snow Queen avenges her family’s murder with an army of resurrected Viking warriors. The Dead of Winter will be unlike most mazes because they aren’t going to shy away from bright white light. The maze will have lots of contrast between dark and light. Also, the Snow Queen awaits you in a Skeleton Key room. The lights then dimmed and the ghost of Clementine (played by Jeff’s daughter) walked across the stage. The mine ride will be getting a Halloween overlay this year called My Bloody Clementine. The ride will utilize projection mapping to immerse you in the story. Designer Daniel Miller came on stage to announce some surprising news - there will be live talent in the ride this year! The last maze to be announced is another brand new maze - Paranormal Inc. In this maze a cast of ghost hunters from a TV show by the same name, Paranormal Inc, find exactly what they were looking for. The maze will be interactive with multiple branching story lines and it will have “high energy stunts unlike any you’ve ever seen in a maze.” All of a sudden one of the crew was dragged off stage by angry spirits. Jeff thought it was just a joke, so he told the rest of the crew “Good job” selling the maze concept. He instructed them to hang tight on stage while the show continued. TPR exclusive: Scary Farm will have green light this year! Suddenly a gang of monsters dragged a giant sleigh on stage. The Green Witch hopped off and greeted the crowd. She then introduced the Deadly Seven, a group of seven characters based on the seven deadly sins, who will roam the park and terrorize guests. The Deadly Seven then broke free of their cages and grabbed the remaining Paranormal Inc. crew members. The crew was dragged off-stage, presumably to meet their doom! Jeff, with Clementine by his side, then concluded the show by saying, “I hope you will join us for Knott’s Scary Farm, Sept 24 - Oct. 31st! See you in the fog!” And into the fog they went! Once outside, members of the media were greeted with an awesome reception. And this is Knott’s, so you know they pulled out all the stops with the food. Nom nom nom. These ice sculptures are a tradition at Knott’s media events! They’re all so fun! They really take pride in what they do at Knott’s. Spooky food-characters adorned the buffet tables. Mmm, wine! Lots of small tables were set up for people to eat and drink at. These centerpieces were at each table. Who invited monsters to this celebration? We got to speak with the creative team behind Scary Farm. Julie Owens and Jeff Tucker let us know about this year’s Hanging show, which will be interactive. The audience can participate on their smart phone, and that will change the direction the show goes. Lara Hanneman talked to us about The Dead of Winter. The maze will be kept really cold to simulate Winter! John Cooke told us about how Voodoo was a beautiful maze, but he wanted to add the “down and dirty scary haunted house” aspect to it. He also felt the Voodoo theme was really broad, so he wanted to narrow it down by focusing the maze on summoning the Serpent Goddess. Daniel Miller mentioned that in the My Bloody Clementine Mine Ride overlay there will be video mapping effects used throughout the ride, so they’re actually going to be adding video to several sections of the ride that don’t normally have video, in addition to the live actors and props. Gus Krueger is really excited about the contrast in The Dead of Winter and the fact that they’re attempting to use bright white rooms instead of the typical darkness and shadows that most people expect. He said he, “doesn’t want anyone to go in there and get what they expect.” Sounds good to me! He also mentioned that there is going to be a snow effect in the maze, and that a mirror maze has been incorporated into the maze. Spears loves monsters! TPR loves dessert! All of the desserts were over the top. So cool! How can you pick just one? A Halloween cupcake in August reminds you that Scary Farm is just around the bend. We can’t wait! With so many great new additions, and so many returning favorites, this year is sure to be a hit! Knott’s Scary Farm runs Sept. 24 - Oct. 31 ... don’t miss it! Thanks to Knott’s for putting on such a great event, and thanks to you for checking out our report!
  18. Great report Dallas! ScareLA looks like a lot of fun.
  19. The Disneyland Resort is celebrating its 60th “Diamond” Anniversary this year, and to kick off the celebration they threw an amazing 3-day media event to show off all the new additions at the resort. TPR was there with Brittney (AKA Spears) and David. Check out the full coverage below! Part 1: World of Color - Celebrate! [ Below ] Part 2: Paint the Night Parade and Disneyland Forever Fireworks! [ Coming Soon! ] Part 3: 24 Hour Diamond Anniversary Kickoff! [ Coming Soon! ] TPR is at the Disneyland Resort to celebrate its Diamond 60th anniversary! This is part 1 of 3. In this update we’ll take a peek at Sleeping Beauty Castle and The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland, before heading over to DCA to party and check out World of Color - Celebrate! Spears is super excited for the 60th! Sleeping Beauty Castle is decked out for the celebration. The castle shimmers with glitter and is draped in sparkling diamonds. Just look at it gleaming in the sunlight! Very fancy! Over at Haunted Mansion, the Hatbox Ghost awaits! For those who don’t know the story - the Hatbox Ghost was a character in the Haunted Mansion when it originally opened. Its head was designed to disappear and re-appear in a hatbox that it was holding. However, the effect didn’t work as originally intended, so shortly after the opening of the mansion the character was removed and never seen again. Over the years, the legend of the character developed a cult-like following among Haunted Mansion fans. After decades of rumors of its return, Disney finally announced that the character would return (in a modern, updated form) in time for the 60th anniversary. Our anticipation builds as our doom buggy climbs into the attic. Hey Constance, you didn’t happen to see a ghost holding a hatbox anywhere around here? What’s that you say? Keep going, he’s right ahead? Ok, sounds good! There he is! And WOW does he look good! The character exceeded our expectations. It’s simply beautiful. The disappearing effect is perfectly executed. The only slight criticism is we do wish it transitioned back and forth a little faster so that every doom buggy got a great view of the effect. But visually, the effect is spot-on. This character was worth the wait. It may just be one character amongst many in the mansion, but it’s the new star of the mansion. It’s that good. Hopefully any future changes to the Mansion live up to this level of detail and artistry. That’s it for Disneyland today! We’ll be back to Disneyland in part 2 of this report, but for now, over to DCA! DCA closed at 6:00pm to the public, but it was about to re-open for media and invited guests to attend the “Celebrating 60 Dazzling Years Reception” (AKA kick-ass party!) and to view the premiere of World of Color - Celebrate! Here Spears is posing with our friends Johanna and Rick from Theme Park Adventure. The gates opened, and we were greeted by lots of characters. Hey Oswald! Everybody was excited for the party! This lady even brought her dog to the classy affair. What’s better than being greeted with characters? Being greeted with wine! 5 & Dime were rocking out in front of Carthay Circle. Carthay’s new diamond decor and banners look great! Spears danced to the music with Goofy. Dip! The party stretched through the whole backlot. There was table after table of amazing food. Yum! Delish! I loved all the little details too. Diamond 60th trays, special 60th napkins, etc! There were even diamond toothpicks! Let’s not forget dessert! The Queen would be pleased with these Mad T Party themed treats - painted red to save our heads! These World of Color - Celebrate! desserts made us eager with anticipation for the show. All the characters were enjoying themselves and taking photos with guests. Chip and Dale were dressed in their finest attire. Kisses for Spears! Donald and Daisy were looking great! Mickey and Minnie stole the show in their classy threads! More wine? Don’t mind if I do! It’s time for the Diamond Mad T Party! New diamond animations play behind the stage. Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum get the crowd excited. The Hottest Deck in Town show off their moves on the Hollywood Backlot Stage. It’s dancey dance time! When the band isn’t onstage, The White Rabbit DJ plays hits to keep the crowd moving. Overall it’s the same Mad T Party we know and love, just a little diamond-ized! The sky began to grow darker as the sun set. Night began to fall on Wonderland. We ran around and snapped some last photos before the party ended. Of course we had to get a photo with Mickey and Minnie! You never know who you’ll run into at a Disney party! We got to hang out with Disney Legend Bob Gurr who designed the ride vehicles for many Disneyland attractions such as Autopia, Haunted Mansion, the Monorail, and the Matterhorn Bobsleds. He’s one of the greats, and is a funny and friendly guy to boot! He said that Spears had to be in the center of the photo because the pretty woman has to be the cream in the Oreo! Now Bob Gurr is the cream in a Mickey-Minnie Oreo! The one bad thing about these parties is that they eventually have to come to an end. As the bars handed out their last drinks, guests made their way to Paradise Park for the premiere of World of Color - Celebrate! Over in Paradise Park we spotted another Disney Legend, Richard Sherman. Richard, along with his brother Robert Sherman, wrote many of Disney’s most famous songs, including songs from Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Winnie The Pooh, and It’s a Small World. It’s hard to even quantify the impact he’s had on my life and the lives of all Disney fans - but suffice to say, it was a true honor to get to meet him! He's the cream in our Oreo. A stage was set up in front of Paradise Bay. We got settled into our location in front of the stage and counted down the minutes until showtime. Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, came on stage and introduced the hosts of the show, Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse! They thanked everyone in the audience for joining them for the premiere of World of Color - Celebrate! Let the show begin! Neil does a great job hosting the show. As does Mickey! The show has all the beautiful colorful fountains that we’ve come to expect from World of Color, plus some new effects and surprises. Mickey’s face on The Fun Wheel is now used as a projection surface, which provides a great location to show video during the show. This version of World of Color celebrates the life and achievements of Walt Disney, which is fitting for the 60th celebration. Kids growing up nowadays may not know much about Walt, so this show does a great job of showing who he was and what he achieved. Walt is shown as proof that all your dreams can come true if you have the courage to pursue them. In the past, World of Color’s storytelling has been fairly abstract. Clips were assembled together to create an emotional experience, but there was no overarching story to the show. World of Color - Celebrate! has more of a traditional story format to it. The show pays tribute to Walt Disney by walking through his accomplishments in more or less chronological order, starting with Mickey Mouse and Mickey’s early cartoons. The show then progresses on to Snow White, the first full-length animated film. Clips are then showed from many of the famous Disney movies that followed, including more recent movies like Cars. Finding Nemo... and, of course, Frozen. The show completely fills your view, with lights and projections on California Screamin’. And there are some cool new effects. Colored smoke now shoots up in and around the viewing area throughout the show! There’s a great segment with scenes from various Disney attractions. Here’s The Tiki Room! Splash Mountain. Pirates. Haunted Mansion. Small World. And Star Tours. The most impressive of the new effects has to be the giant fireball. A massive column of fire erupts throughout the show. Just look at how tall it is compared to the Fun Wheel! It’s seriously huge! The heat and light it puts off are awe-inspiring. For those who have seen World of Color before, the smaller fire bursts in this picture are what you’re used to seeing. That giant burst of fire in the middle is the new effect. You can see how much larger it is than before! The giant fireballs even leave rings of smoke in the air that dissipate slowly as they float away. Even though there are lots of changes and new additions, the show is still very “World of Color.” All the dancing fountains and pretty colors you’ve come to expect are still there. The scale of the show has always been impressive... And the new effects make it even more impressive! Ooooooh, fire! We loved the show! It's a great tribute to Walt, and the perfect 60th addition for DCA! As a special treat, here's a full video of the show! Just remember - it's better in person where you can gaze up at the fountains, feel the heat from the fire, and experience the show all around you! After the show I interviewed World of Color's Producer, Jennifer Magill. (Video coming soon!) While I was interviewing Jennifer, Neil Patrick Harris walked by! Spears, who was standing by watching my interview, got to meet Neil and snap a picture with him! Lucky! What an end to the night! World of Color - Celebrate! was a ton of fun, and it's just the beginning of what's in store for the Resort's 60th anniversary. Thanks for checking out this trip report, and be sure to check back soon for part 2 with lots more neat stuff and surprises from the Diamond Celebration Kickoff!
  20. In general, the ride isn't scary. But 3 1/2 is pretty young, so it may not take much to scare him. My advice would be to watch a POV of it (The TPR Youtube will have one up soon) so you can see it for yourself and decide if it's ok, and maybe have your son watch it so he'll know what to expect.
  21. Wednesday was the media day for Knott’s Berry Farm’s new ride, Voyage to the Iron Reef, and TPR was there to check out all the action! This interactive, 4-d shooting ride brings another family-friendly, entertaining dark ride to the Farm. The ride is as expected - a decent 4-d shooter with a customized story and artwork to make it interesting and unique to Knott’s. To address the elephant in the room, inevitably this more budget-conscious ride doesn’t live up to its neighbors - The Calico Mine Ride and The Timber Mountain Log Ride, or its predecessors - Knott’s Beary Tales and Kingdom of the Dinosaurs. However, it brings an interactive element that Knott’s lacked, and is clearly better than having the building sit vacant, as it has for many years. Overall, we expect it to go over pretty well with the GP, and feel it’s definitely worth visiting Knott’s to check out. While it won’t make our “favorite rides” list, it will be a ride we expect to experience at least once on every Knott’s visit. It's a “good” ride, just not a “great” one. But enough talk, check out our report below to learn more about the ride. And be sure to see it in-person at Knott’s! We’re at Knott’s for the opening of Voyage to the Iron Reef! As usual, Knott’s has tons of awesome food ready and waiting. Ice sculpture and all. Mmmm, breakfast! But enough food, it’s time for the opening celebration! Jason Soyster, Director of Communications at Knott’s, stepped to the mic and welcomed everyone to the event. Raffi Kaprelyan, VP & General Manager at Knott’s, spoke of the history of the ride building, and how this new ride fits into that history. He said that with Knott’s Beary Tales in 1975, Kingdom of the Dinosaurs in 1987, and now with Voyage to the Iron Reef, Knott’s has a proud history of showcasing the latest theme park technology in the unique space. Bob Gurr, famous Disney Imagineer and Disney Legend who also oversaw the creation of the creatures in Kindom of the Dinosaurs, came on stage to reflect on his memories of Kingdom of the Dinosaurs, and share his excitement for Voyage to the Iron Reef. Finally, Captain McCallister came on stage to christen Voyage to the Iron Reef and officially open the ride. With a burst of streamers, the ride was officially opened! As bubbles filled the air, we made our way to the ride entrance. The queue is decorated with backlit cutouts. Monitors hanging throughout the queue play a pre-show video to introduce guests to the theme. Captain McCallister narrates the video. Darn those pesky steampunk animals. Sign enthusiasts rejoice! The Knott’s haunt designers seem to be enjoying the ride. Spears has donned her 3-d glasses and is ready to ride! Each “submarine” consists of two connected cars that seat 4 people each. This display shows your score as you play. Each “freeze ray” gun has a different color gun-shot. These graphics indicate what color your gun is. Here’s the freeze ray gun. It doesn't tire your arm out like Midway Mania does! As the left icon indicates, please don’t slouch or hover over the seat when pooping on the ride. And we’re off! Dive! Dive! Dive! The submarine goes through a fog screen with bubble projections to give the illusion of diving underwater. The ride is pretty much what you’d expect. Lots of screens with lots of creatures to shoot. Nothing too groundbreaking in that sense, but the steampunk art style looks nice and is different than any other shooting ride I’ve been on. Quick, shoot him! Knott’s rides and artifacts are strewn throughout the background. There are some neat things to see if you look closely! Fire away! Knott’s did a good job of creating physical scenes in-between the projection screens. There’s interesting stuff to look at as you transition from screen to screen. Ooooh, pretty tunnel. It’s the Queen Kraken! Shoot her! Talk to the hand, because the face ain't listening. At the end of the ride each rider’s score is displayed with their photo. Our scores aren’t bad considering we were shooting photos instead of bad guys for most of the ride! Here’s the unload area. And a shot of the track and wheels for the super nerds. This is the mural you walk past as you exit. There’s one final room with screens that display the latest scores and top scores. This wasn’t functioning 100% yet, but hiccups are inevitable on the first preview day of a ride. The ride exits into the downstairs arcade which has been tidied up and updated with many new, modern games. The arcade also connects to the gift shop. Nautilus is the gift shop for the ride. Here’s a peek at the store window display. There’s lots of cool ride merchandise! Custom shirts... Coin jars and tins... Steampunk and ocean themed trinkets... This cool display is in the center of the store... Oh no, Gertrude got eaten! It’s so sad! Her funeral is next week. Just kidding! Gertrude is fine. Here she is admiring herself in a Voyage to the Iron Reef pocket mirror. So yeah, there’s a bunch of neat branded ride merchandise and ride-related merchandise. The tentacles are my favorite item. There are mugs... A cool limited edition season pass-holder pin... Even a bunch of the stuff that looks like it’s just “for decoration” is for sale. This spider is for sale. Steampunk fans will be in heaven here. Even this thing is for sale. There’s a bunch of neat stuff! They had to draw the line somewhere, so the steampunk-themed water pipe is not for sale. Knott’s also gave us ERT on all the boardwalk rides! Awesome! A ride on Xcelerator, front seat, with no wait? Yes, please! Make that 3 rides! Xcelerator is still one of the best coasters around. The boardwalk was totally empty! Yay for ERT! You could have the entire ride to yourself! Spears borrowed someone’s bubble gun for some bubble ERT. Back at Voyage to the Iron Reef, we snapped a pic with Captain Snoopy and crew before taking a couple more spins on the ride. Thanks to Knott’s for inviting us to this event... we had a great time! And thanks to you for checking out our report! Now go experience Voyage to the Iron Reef - it's NOW OPEN at Knott’s Berry Farm!
  22. Spring is here! That means it’s time for the Boysenberry Festival at Knott’s Berry Farm! This annual event (Formerly called Knott’s Berry Bloom) returns with special entertainment, decorations, character meet-and-greets, and tons of food. This year there are over 60 boysenberry themed food and drink items! Knott’s held a special tasting for media to try out some of this year’s offerings, so check out our report below for just a small taste of what awaits you at the Knott’s Boysenberry Festival. The event runs March 28 - April 12, 2015 - don’t miss it! We’re at Knott’s, and we came hungry! Bring on the boysenberries! The Wilderness Dance Hall has been converted to a Wine and Craft Brew Tasting area for the festival. The Knott’s media team welcomed us to the event and gave a little history on the significance of the boysenberry at Knott’s Berry Farm. Every single boysenberry on Earth can trace its roots back to Knott’s - pretty incredible! The Knott’s culinary team then got us salivating by telling us all about the special foods they had whipped up. They had me at Fun Bun! (More on that later) Before we delve into all the park food, it’s also worth pointing out that there are lots of good food-related gifts you can get at the festival that are tasty and unique. Anything from the Berry Market line would make a great gift, and we’re huge fans of the boysenberry licorice as well! You can also get boysenberry BBQ sauce this year! Yum! Food time! Here’s an all-beef hot dog with boysenberry relish and boysenberry ketchup. A fish and chips sandwich with boysenberry tartar sauce. Boysenberry BBQ ribs. Fried cheese curds with spicy boysenberry dipping sauce. Or for those feeling particularly adventurous, fried alligator with boysenberry aioli. Time to wash down that food with some drinks! How about some boysenberry beer? There’s also a non-alcoholic boysenberry cider for the younger ones. There are a bunch of wineries offering up delicious tastings of their wines, but the most fitting wine for this event would have to be Honeywood Winery’s Boysenberry Wine. This stuff was so good! Knott’s should have this year-round. If you get boysenberry’d out, there are tons of other wines to try. Sangria, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon... whatever your heart desires! We were impressed by the wide array of wines available for tasting. While food is the star of this year’s Boysenberry festival, there is lots more to see and do than just eat. There will be a pie eating contest... You can meet Easter Snoopy... Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies will perform... Families can enjoy Lucy’s Really Big Spring Show... And dance the night away at the Jammin’ in the Dark dance party. Knott’s had some entertainment on hand to keep us laughing through the night. Spears and I are both vegan, so I’ve got to give a shoutout to John Chiu from Knott’s food and beverage for hooking us up with some vegan versions of the boysenberry foods. That was totally thoughtful of him! It’s time to check out some desserts! Boysenberry flautas. Boysenberry pie. And here it is, perhaps the item that people will go most nuts over, the Fun Bun! It’s a cinnamon roll, dipped in Knott’s famous funnel cake batter, deep-fried, filled with boysenberry jam, topped with boysenberry cream cheese frosting, and dusted with powdered sugar. The one in the photo is half-eaten so that you can see some of the innards of this heavenly beast. But good luck ever getting a photo of an un-eaten one, because it’s so tempting that you’ll eat it before you ever think to take a photo. To round out the night, Spears grabbed a boysenberry cotton candy for the drive home! Thanks Knott’s for all the yummy food! The 2015 Boysenberry Festival runs March 28 - April 12. With tons of special entertainment, decorations, and food it’s sure to be a great time to visit Knott’s!
  23. The Disneyland Resort will be celebrating its 60th “Diamond” Anniversary this year, and they’re going all out with several exciting new additions to both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. We were invited to the resort on Wednesday to check out the newly opened Frozen Fun area at DCA, and to attend an announcement on Main Street at Disneyland introducing the new 60th anniversary offerings. Check out our report below to learn all about what’s in store for this important Disney milestone! First up, Frozen Fun at DCA! This newly opened Frozen themed area replaces the Mad T Party with shows, entertainment, and photo ops that Frozen fans are sure to love. The first thing you see upon entering is “Freeze The Night,” a family-friendly dance party with live entertainment. A DJ, dancers, singers, and performers make the area fun and lively. Here are two of the dancers showing off their moves. There’s live singing in-between the DJ sets and dancing. Overall, Freeze the Night seems more aimed at families and children than the Mad T Party, Electronica, and Glow Fest dances were. It’s still fun, but the energy is a little different. Some people will like that, some won’t. We enjoyed it though! Next up is “For the First Time in Forever, A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration” in the Crown Jewel Theatre. A historian and historian apprentice, along with special guests from the movie, tell the story of Frozen. All of the major songs from Frozen are played with lyrics on screen, and the audience is encouraged to sing along. So prepare to get songs stuck in your head! Kids especially will enjoy singing along with the show and re-living their favorite moments from Frozen. It also snows in the theater! There are special effects all around. And everyone becomes an honorary citizen of Arendelle! Yay! Now lets check out some of the merchandise. There’s something for everyone. There are lots of plush characters at Oaken’s Trading Post. My favorite item would have to be this beach towel with a picture of Olaf enjoying the summer sun. Speaking of Olaf, there’s an entire area dedicated to him called “Olaf’s Snow Fest.” Inside Stage 17, Olaf’s Snow Fest has entertainers... A snow play area with “real” snow. Snow (of the not-so-real variety) falls from the sky as well! There’s sledding... And you get to meet Olaf! We became best bro friends. I now call him Brolaf! Back outside, there’s still lots more to see and do! You can watch several ice sculptures get hand carved throughout the night. More photo ops! And of course Anna and Elsa are waiting to meet guests! (Photo credit: Disney) So that’s Frozen Fun! Fans of the movie (and who isn’t?) will almost certainly enjoy it! Now over to Disneyland to find out what’s new for the 60th! The park was closed, and a stage was set up on Main Street. Invited guests and media gathered in front of the stage, eagerly awaiting the presentation. I spy light from a projector in the window! Perhaps it’s a sign of what’s to come? Shhh! The presentation is starting! Tom Staggs, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, came on stage and greeted the crowd. Staggs talked about the legacy Walt Disney created. He talked about how much Disney Parks and Resorts have influenced the lives of people around the world, and how it all started with Disneyland in Anaheim. Staggs then introduced Steve Davison, Lead Creative Executive of Parades and Spectaculars, to reveal what’s in store for the Diamond Celebration. First Davison introduced World of Color - Celebrate! This new overlay for World of Color will celebrate the wonderful world of Walt Disney. According to Davison, the show will use all new animation to “bring Walt’s dreams to life.” Next it was announced that the icons of each park, Carthay Circle Theater at DCA and Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland, will both get a new diamond transformation for the 60th. Here’s the concept artwork for the “diamond-ized” Carthay Circle Theater. And here’s the concept artwork for Sleeping Beauty Castle with diamonds sparkling in the sunlight. They pointed out that right behind us the castle was currently undergoing its transformation. Next Davison introduced a new parade inspired by The Main Street Electrical Parade, which debuted on Main Street at Disneyland over 40 years ago. The new parade will capture the spirit of the Electrical Parade but bring it up to date with modern technology. The new parade is called “Paint the Night.” Astute Disney fans will know that this parade debuted recently at Hong Kong Disneyland. It will be created in the same style at Disneyland Anaheim, but it won't be entirely identical to the Hong Kong version. (Photo credit: Disney) These photos from the Hong Kong version show how insanely cool this parade is. It’s sure to be a huge hit at Disneyland! (Photo credit: Disney) And finally, one last surprise was announced: a new fireworks show called, “Disneyland Forever.” In addition to the fireworks in the sky, the show will use projectors throughout the park to immerse guests in the story. This concept photo gives you an idea of what it’ll look like watching the show on Main Street. There will be great locations to watch throughout the park though, as there will be projections on Main Street, It’s a Small World, Rivers of America, and The Matterhorn. All of the projection locations will be surface mapped so that the projections can interact with the physical surfaces they’re being projected onto. As a special surprise, they showed the crowd a sample of what the projections will look like! As we found out in the Q&A later, these are very early animations that just give a taste of what’s to come. Work has only just begun on the show. But even these early samples looked great! This will likely be a “can’t miss” show. And with that, the presentation was over! A small dessert reception followed. Mmmm, desserts! There was also a short Q&A with the creative minds behind the 60th additions. One neat thing we learned is that the projections during the fireworks will be customized for each area. For example, you may see characters pop up in the windows on Main Street, but see something different if you’re watching by the Matterhorn. This will encourage people to watch in different locations and to return again and again to see everything. Aww, it’s time to leave. Between Frozen Fun and the wonderful Diamond Celebration presentation it was an amazing night filled with fun and surprises! 60 years is an incredible milestone, and we congratulate Disneyland on their continued success. With the new anniversary offerings that push the boundaries of technology and immersion, it’s easy to see that even at 60, Disneyland is just getting started. The Disneyland Diamond Celebration begins Friday, May 22 - don’t miss it! Thanks to Disney for inviting us to this event, and thanks to you for checking out our report!
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