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California Adventure

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Disneyland has released details of the upcoming holiday offerings at the resort and there’s a lot that’s new. New segments include a new Holiday segment for ‘World of Color’ and an updated section of “The Magic, The Memories, and You!” Additionally, Toontown gets some updated cheer a new exhibit focused on Walt Disney’s love of trains will debut in the Disney Gallery.

The full press release is below the jump:

As an Orange County native, I am one of the few who is very attached to the beloved California Adventure theme park. I remember visiting Disneyland while it was under construction during my youth and wondering what was behind the temporary walls. I remember being amazed when I walked into the Hollywood section for the first time and thinking it was so hip to take pictures underneath the giant letters (always “A” for Amanda). This park was a part of my adolescent Disney experience, and thus I am very fond of it.

Which, my friends, is why I am excited to share with you this preview of Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree, one of the three rides that will be a part of the California Adventure Cars Land expansion opening in Summer 2012. According to the Los Angeles Times, the ride will be a blend of “a traditional teacup ride and classic whip ride with cars transferring from one spinning turntable to the next along a circuitous route.” Though I am not particularly a Cars fan, I think this concept art is really helpful when picturing what the park as a whole is going to look like. This ride may be a bit more…well…junkyard-y than the rest of the 12-acre land, but it certainly does look like a cute, exciting, and worthwhile addition to the park!

Click here for more images, or continue below the jump for a short video of the ride!

Despite having California right in the title, the park known as California Adventure has never had a coherent theme. Was it a movie studio? A fantasy-take on the golden state? or a wistful glance at the history of seaside amusement parks? There was no one theme, but it was trying to capture the gestalt of California. The new ‘theme’ is even less coherent (but that’s a different article) and it requires the removal of everything that greeted guests and set up the park’s original story.

The new story (about Walt’s arrival in California) doesn’t need railroads (despite the very important role they played in the early life of Walt Disney, including his arrival). So that means it’s time for the California Zephyr to hit the road. But some good will come of it, the Disneyland Resort has donated the California Zephyr train previously located at the entrance to Western Pacific Railroad Museum in Portola, CA.

The train and related artifacts, which were part of the entrance to the theme park, arrived at their new home August 6 and will become part of the museum’s Zephyr Project collection. Plans for a gallery dedicated to sharing the legacy of the California Zephyr are underway.

“Walt Disney’s love of trains made this donation perfectly fitting,” said Disneyland Resort President George A. Kalogridis. “The expansion of Disney California Adventure park provided the opportunity for us to make this meaningful donation and we are thrilled the train will offer museum visitors and train enthusiasts an immersive experience, much like it did here.”

Disney has released a new video hosted by Imagineer Chris Beatty who gives us a sneak peek at the making of Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid. The video includes some never-before-seen sketches, artist renderings, attraction maps and more, and shares some details on Prince Eric’s castle and the attraction’s creative queue.

Also included is a brief talk by Imagineer Eric Miller with some behind the scenes glimpses of rock work from a few weeks ago.

The crowds were out in full force at Disneyland this weekend. Of course this is to be expected. School is out and two new rides have just opened.

Tomorrowland could be best described as very very crowded. If you do not need to approach Tomorrowland from Main Street at the moment just don’t even go there. Access Space Mountain from the other side of the park and avoid the Jedi crowds.

I had a plan of action to get the most possible rides on Star Tours. I booked a room in one of the Disneyland Resort hotels so that we could get the Soundsational Summer Package. Not only does this give you early entry into the parks on certain days it will give you something even more valuable. 2 Fast Passes per guest. This is a huge deal if you want to avoid standing in the line for Star Tours.

The early entry hours this Sunday meant that Disney resort guests could enter Disneyland at 7am which is one hour ahead of the rest of the park guests. This should have got us a head start but of course after leaving the park at midnight the night before things didn’t quite work out as planned. So we were a little late reaching the Fast Pass kiosk at 8:15am.