The Disneyland Resort has announced that it will allow its annual passholders to experience Cars Land up to two hours after the Disney California Adventure theme park closes to day guests on Thursday evenings throughout February 2013.
All participating Annual Passholders and their Guests (ages 3 and older) must be valid Annual Passholders on the day of entry for admission to the Park, for check-in and admission to the Annual Passholder Extended Hours event.
Wristbands, which will be required for the event, will begin distribution at 12:00 pm the day of the event inside the park’s main entrance, to the right of the turnstiles. All attendees over the age of three must be present to register and possess an annual pass. Passholders with wristbands may enter the event until thirty (30) minutes prior to the end of the event.
We are just under a week from the New Year and — with it — the 124th annual Rose Parade held on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, California. This year’s theme is taken from the Dr. Seuss classic, Oh, the Places You’ll Go! and Disneyland Resort hopes to transport the parade’s millions of viewers to Cars Land, it’s newest addition at the Disney California Adventure theme park.
The Disney float, dubbed ‘Destination: Cars Land,’ showcases the landmarks of Cars Land in a colorful re-creation of the roadside town of Radiator Springs. Shaped like the state of California, the 125-foot long float — the longest in this year’s parade — features flowing water, smoke-puffing baby tractors and 45 animated parts, including replicas of Lightning McQueen and Sally as they relive their fun-spirited road race from the first Cars movie. Mater, the tow truck, follows along behind the float.
Here’s a breakdown of what viewers may spot aboard the 125-foot long, 35-foot tall float:
- At the front of the float, is a postcard-style ‘Welcome to Cars Land’ sign, flanked by a trio of baby tractors emitting puffs of smoke while their eyes move in a playful manner.
- Further ‘up the road’ are likenesses of Lightning McQueen and Sally, moving forward and backward as if jockeying for race position.
- The main buildings of Radiator Springs are marked by spinning signs for the town’s landmarks, including the Cozy Cone Motel and Flo’s V-8 Cafe.
- Guests aboard the float will ride vehicles from two Cars Land attractions: a tractor from Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree and a bouncing tire from Luigi’s Flying Tires.
- The iconic Radiator Springs mountain range, a Cars Land landmark, is re-created on the float, with characters Luigi and Guido perched on the rocks.
- The mountain range is home to a miniature version of the popular Radiator Springs Racers attraction, complete with small-scale race cars zooming across the landscape.
- High above everything, Barney Stormin’ the airplane tows a banner that reads: ‘The Happiest Place on Earth Just Got Happier.’
Via Twitter, volunteer @BigD923 recently shared some of the following images of the float as it is being assembled (in two parts) and decorated:
The parade steps off at 8 am PST on Tuesday, January 1, in Pasadena and will be broadcast live on ABC, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, KTLA (Tribune), NBC, RFD-TV and Univision. The Parade is also seen in more than 220 international territories and countries.
The Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) today announced the recipients of its annual Thea Awards during the IAAPA Attractions Expo. The prestigious Thea Awards recognize and celebrate excellence in the creation of compelling experiences and places. TEA serves the global attractions industry, including theme parks, museums, world expos, heritage centers and resorts.
Among the named recipients is a triple-threat from the newly revamped Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort. In addition to the Cars Land themed area itself, Radiator Springs Racers and the Carthay Circle Restaurant located on Buena Vista Street are recipients of TEA’s Awards for Outstanding Achievement.
Radiator Springs Racers is being recognized for demonstrating ‘true excellence in design, technical innovation and in execution… the animated figures break new ground in creating the illusion of live animation, and the technical elements, including special effects, sophisticated, in-vehicle sound, and a sophisticated ride system, have all been transparently integrated into the highly enjoyable story and experience. In addition, the design team incorporated an extremely large attraction footprint into the plan of the overall Cars Land footprint in a way that creates multiple notable scenic vistas, and overlooks and seamlessly intertwines the environment and attraction into a total experience greater than the sum of its parts.’ TEA refers to RSR’s home, Cars Land, as ‘a destination attraction in and of itself. The sensitive layout, sophisticated use of scale, extension of character details and the high quality of execution combine to make this an outstanding example of experiential design.’ TEA also hails Carthay Circle Restaurant as ‘a truly outstanding achievement in a theme park,’ citing its ambiance and quality of food.
Also being recognized is Disney’s Aulani Resort, which the TEA defines as ‘an exceptionally cohesive, immersive and entertaining resort experience. Interlaced throughout the entire resort are many layers and references to native Hawaiian culture, both traditional and contemporary, including murals and music commissioned for the resort that successfully unites families in a shared experience of pure Hawaii. Mickey himself is seen on site as only another of many tourists enjoying the educational and entertaining offerings at Aulani.’
The Buzz Price Award, formerly known as the lifetime achievement reward, also underscores Disney’s history as it is being awarded to Frank Stanek. Stanek’s career reaches back into the 1960s when he served as part of the team that brought “it’s a small world” to life at the 1964-65 World’s Fair. His most notable project for the company would be the development of the Tokyo Disneyland Resort, but his hands reached much further inside and outside of Disney, notably also at Universal. Marty Sklar has this to say about Stanek: ‘Frank is one of those “unsung talents” who make our projects happen – much as Buzz Price did from the beginning of the industry. Perhaps no one has had more impact on the two biggest players in our business – Disney and Universal – than Frank Stanek has had – especially in the growth and development of the industry in the international marketplace.’
The Thea Awards will be formally presented on April 6, 2013 at the 19th Annual Thea Awards Gala, a ticketed, black-tie dinner affair, open to the public, at the Disneyland Resort. For more information on these and other recipients, see TEA’s full list here.
This summer, the eagerly anticipated additions of Buena Vista Street and Cars Land opened to excited Guests as part of a major expansion at Disney California Adventure Park. Now, those popular areas will undergo a spectacular holiday makeover, meaning that The Happiest Place on Earth Just Got Merrier.
Bustling and busy Buena Vista Street, which now welcomes you when you enter Disney California Adventure Park, is themed to a Los Angeles business main street from the 1930s. It re-creates the era when Walt Disney was establishing his world-famous animation studio.
A community Christmas
“For this first holiday celebration, we imagined that all the businesses on Buena Vista Street got together like a chamber of commerce to bring the community together,” explained David Caranci, Manager of Resort Enhancement. “It becomes a matter of civic pride to decorate the street and stores and to erect a huge, 50-foot-tall Christmas tree in the heart of the city as a spot for everyone to join in singing carols.
“Even Mickey and his friends will sport a retro look — how they appeared in the 1930s — to match the rest of the theming on Buena Vista Street. We’ll also have wonderful vintage toys for display under the huge Christmas tree. From a tin robot to a blimp — all sorts of hidden surprises from that time period.”
The bell motif on the garlands and street decorations is continued on the oversize ornaments on the massive Yuletide tree as well. The Buena Vista Street Community Bell Ringers will perform as they wander up and down the street and participate in the evening tree lighting.
Re-creating magical holiday moments
“On the episode entitled ‘Holiday Time at Disneyland’ on ‘Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color’ TV series in 1962, Walt was seen in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle ringing bells and standing beside a group of carolers,” said Carla Carlile, Show Director, Walt Disney Entertainment. “We are very excited to re-create that concept with our own bell ringers in a ring-along, sing-along encouraging our Guests to join in by singing familiar carols and ringing in the season.”
“One of the things that I love about the creative people at The Walt Disney Company is their attention to detail,” said Alan Bruun, Creative Director, Walt Disney Entertainment.
“The amazing people in Resort Enhancement studied what type of trees might have been used during that time period in Los Angeles. The Buena Vista Street tree is completely different from any others in Disney Parks. All the decorations are large-scale replicas of actual decorations that would’ve been on a Los Angeles Christmas tree in the 1930s.”
Underneath the airy tree will be a custom-made 1/16th-size train chugging along with sound and lights through the specially designed gifts, evoking Walt Disney’s love of model trains.
The Citizens of Buena Vista Street, the improvisational performers at the Park, will share in the holiday cheer with Disney California Adventure Park Guests, treating them as if they were residents of the town. Molly the Messenger will have forms for children to fill out to send their letter to Santa.
Speaking of the jolly old elf himself, Mr. Claus will be found in the lavish Elias & Co., a sprawling shop that evokes the grandeur of classic department stores. Just like those fondly remembered stores of yore, Santa will be at his special seat surrounded by his many helpers so that children can share their secret wishes with him.
Getting all revved up for the holidays
Cars Land is celebrating its first Christmas season as well, in an enchanted creative partnership between Resort Enhancement, Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Imagineering. “We all came up with some very imaginative answers to the question, ‘How would cars celebrate the holiday season?’” said David.
Look for Snowy the Snow Car, a brand-new automotive holiday friend. He’s the Cars Land version of a snowman. “We have all fallen in love with him already because he is just so endearing,” said David. A nice photo next to this whimsical, seven-foot fellow might be just the thing to include with your holiday cards this year!
Every resident of Cars Land has incorporated their own personality into their holiday decorations. Mater has a nine-foot-tall tree with an arching sparkplug on top as the star. Luigi and Guido added holiday flair to the red, white and green color scheme of their shop—the colors of the Italian flag. Sarge sports a six-foot-tall, red, white and blue tree with a military star on top. And Flo’s nine-foot-tall tree is made out of oil cans!
Around almost every corner of Cars Land, you’ll discover new imaginative decorations and surprises — even the 20-foot-tall tree at the courthouse has a hubcap for every ornament. The courthouse statue of Stanley, the founder of Radiator Springs, is adorned with a Santa hat and a big bag of rims, wheels, accessories and other goodies for all the good residents of Cars Land.
“We’ve never done a land like this before,” David added. “Our Guests won’t see these types of unique decorations anywhere else in any of the Disney Parks.”
Beyond Cars Land and Buena Vista Street, the spirit of the season will also glow throughout Disney California Adventure Park. The lights on Mickey’s Fun Wheel on Paradise Pier will be specially programmed for the holidays. Not far away, good pals Flik, Princess Atta and Princess Dot have decorated “a bug’s land” so it’s crawling with goodwill to men, women — and cute bugs!
The rocking Mad T Party will offer its own holiday spin on its special entertainment repertoire — including a live band and dancers with an icy, cool look for this party in the streets. Don’t be surprised if, just as things start to really heat up, a surprise snowfall doesn’t cool things off for a bit before the fun begins again!
Of course, one of the most acclaimed wonders to appear in recent years is World of Color, the nighttime water spectacular. It’s the festive finale to any day — or several days — of Disney California Adventure fun, but during the holiday season, look for special surprises added especially for this delightful time of year.
“One of the most exciting things for all of us is creating new holiday traditions,” said Alan, echoing the enthusiasm of his fellow Cast Members on the makeover team. “Now there are holiday things to enjoy on our ‘two main streets’ to add to the existing memories traditions at Disneyland Resort.”
Inside ‘Disney twenty-three’ Fall 2012 Edition: California Adventure, ‘Frankenweenie,’ ‘Once Upon a Time’
Available on newsstands beginning August 14, the fall 2012 edition of Disney twenty-three, the full-color over-sized official magazine of Disney D23, will take Disney enthusiasts on an exciting trip starting at the recent Buena Vista Street and Cars Land expansion at Disney California Adventure and straight through to a sneak peek at Tim Burton’s upcoming Frankenweenie, with other exciting stops along the way.
The ‘complete insider’s guide’ to the Disney California Adventure expansion will take readers on a journey through the stunning reimagining of the park with exclusive interviews, breathtaking photography, and surprising details straight from Disney Imagineers, who designed the new buildings, attractions and entertainment featured in the park.
‘Disney fans around the world are flocking to Disney California Adventure to experience the extraordinary transformation of the park,’ said Steven Clark, D23 head. ‘With the fall issue of the magazine, we decided to take D23 Members more deeply than ever into the making of 20 new attractions and shows that have been added to the park during the five-year expansion.’
The fall issue also celebrates ABC’s hit series ‘Once Upon A Time,’ looking at the show’s roots in Disney mythology and offering a sneak peek at its upcoming second season. The story features exclusive interviews with the show’s creators and stars, including Jennifer Morrison, Josh Dallas and Ginnifer Goodwin – a D23 Member who opens up about her love of all things Disney.
Other highlights of the fall 2012 edition of Disney twenty-three include:
- Unlock the doors of ‘D23 Presents Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives’ and see some of the iconic pieces now on display at The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum
- Get early details from director Tim Burton on his latest monster of a movie, Frankenweenie
- Pay tribute to groundbreaking author and futurist Ray Bradbury with a heartwarming remembrance by Disney Legend Marty Sklar
- Celebrate Disney Legend Alice Davis, who recently received a window on Disneyland’s Main Street, U.S.A., next to her late husband, Marc, one of Walt Disney’s famed ‘Nine Old Men’
- Get answers to ’23 Questions’ with Newsies star Bill Pullman
As always, Disney D23 gold level members, who receive a copy of the magazine as part of their membership, can look forward to a little something extra. The gold level member edition of Disney twenty-three includes the full wrap-around cover seen below as well as a bonus gift: a magnetic ‘postcard’ celebrating the Disney California Adventure expansion.
Plus, for the first time ever, D23.com will feature exclusive online articles in conjunction with the magazine. Beginning August 14, 2012, the following online articles will be available to read:
- Featuring exclusive artwork, Imagineer Kevin Rafferty reveals the initial plans and ideas for ‘Carland’ — the car-themed land that was in development for Disney California Adventure before it became Cars Land
- ABC’s ‘Once Upon a Time’ showcases 23 ‘hidden’ Disney references embedded in its first season
- ‘Once Upon A Time’ stars Jennifer Morrison, Lana Parrilla, Raphael Sbarge and Josh Dallas reveal their favorite Disney movies, characters, theme park attractions and memories
- Exclusive outtakes from Disney twenty-three‘s interview with Frankenweenie director Tim Burton
Disney twenty-three is delivered directly to the doorstep of all D23 Gold Members, along with a special gift. Disney twenty-three magazine is also available at retail locations across the country for $15.95, and can also be purchased online at DisneyStore.com and throughout the Disneyland® and Walt Disney World® Resorts.
Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort has already released an innovative flash app to promote its new Cars Land expansion, allowing online guests to virtually tour the new land (by car, of course), visiting each of the residents of Radiator Springs to see their wares and learn more about the new shopping, dining and attraction experiences. Guests can even create, customize and share their own virtual Cars-inspired avatar for the virtual road trip.
Now the theme park is revving up to plus the experience, offering a new online game titled ‘Cars Land Racers.’ When the site is complete, guests will be able to visit CARSLANDRACERS.COM and compete their custom vehicle in races against friends and even the Radiator Springs residents on tracks inspired by their respective real-world attractions (Lightning McQueen’s Radiator Springs Racers, Tow Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree and Luigi’s Flying Tires).
Winning races awards players prizes such as better acceleration, handling and top speeds, while leaderboards show how players stack up against their Facebook friends and worldwide. Add to that, there’s a total of 20 (at launch time) achievements one can unlock by completing various challenges.
From the initial announcement of the expansion at Disney California Adventure in 2007, through the opening of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street today, the ‘sizzle reel’ video we are pleased to share with you below takes a look at the announcements and changes that have helped shape Disneyland’s second gate into what it’s become.
Featuring Robert Iger, CEO and President of The Walt Disney Company, along with then Disney Parks Chairs Jay Rasulo and Tom Staggs, as well as chief executive John Lasseter, the video takes us through the addition of Toy Story Mania!; Disney/Pixar Play! Parade; the nighttime fireworks spectacular Magical, which features a flying Dumbo; a re-vamped Fantasmic!; the Paradise Pier re-do with Mickey’s Fun Wheel; World of Color; Silly Symphony Swings; Goofy’s Sky School; Mickey’s Soundsational; The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Undersea Adventure; Star Tours 2; Mad T Party; and of course Cars Land and Buena Vista Street.
With the grand opening of Cars Land and Buena Vista street at Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort rapidly approaching, Walt Disney Imagineering has put together this video package of titled ‘what guests can expect.’
Imagineer Kathy Mangum takes us through the final testing and preview stages of Cars Land which includes a look at the stunning audio animatronics used in Radiator Springs Racers as well as a look at other attractions such as Luigi’s Flying Tires and Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree, and dining option Flos V-8 Cafe.
Meanwhile, Imagineer Lisa Girolami walks us through the new Buena Vista Street, examining all of the shops and offerings along with glimpses of entertainment such as Calvin the Cop of the Citizens of Buena Vista Street and the Red Car News Boys, along with characters dressed in the period, such as Pluto, Goofy and Mickey Mouse.
When Cars Land opens its garage doors to the public on June 15, 2012, a whole new land inspired by the Disney/Pixar films will immerse Guests in an environment unique to the Disney California Adventure theme park. Even the most familiar of faces will have something to talk about as the meet & greet characters of Tow Mater and Lightning McQueen, who have been a staple at the parks for years, will now communicate with guests.
They will trade off at their meet and greet spot, located at the Cozy Cone Hotel, where they will parade down Route 66 of Radiator Springs, chattering away for the first time in a Disney theme park. Voice talents Larry the Cable Guy and Keith Ferguson recorded all new dialogue for the vehicles, who will actively respond to guests based on their appearances. For example, in our video below, Mater comments on the flat ‘tires’ being worn by a passerby. As another example, guests sporting sunglasses may be complimented on their ‘tinted windshield.
Be sure to view our extensive photo gallery from Cars Land and Buena Vista Street here.
Cars Land opens at the Disneyland Resort on June 15, 2012 as part of the park’s expansion which includes Buena Vista Street. A media preview for the event is scheduled on June 14.
Video by Kelly Noble for Stitch Kingdom
Just a few days before its grand opening on June 15, 2012, Cars Land and Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort opened its doors for previews for Annual Passholders, Disney D23 and Club 33 Members. Guests — along with Disney Parks brass such as Robert Iger, Tom Staggs, George Kalogridis and Mary Niven — enjoyed dining, shopping and the attractions in both areas: Radiator Springs Racers, Luigi’s Flying Tires, Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree and the Red Car Trolley.
New entertainment also kept guests amused as Mater and Lightning McQueen (who now ‘converse’ with guests) traded off at the Cozy Cone Hotel and Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Pluto and Chip and Dale — all dressed in dapper 1930s garb — greeted guests in the Carthay Circle plaza area. Also making appearances throughout the day were the crowd-favorite Citizens of Buena Vista Street: Donna the Dog Lady, Calvin the Cop, Molly the Messenger and Phiphi the Photographer.
From Oswald’s to the Loz Feloz Five and Dime to Elias and Co., guests time travel along Buena Vista Street as the area ties itself to the other end of the Red Car Trolley line, the Hollywood Tower Hotel (a.k.a. the Tower of Terror) from hints of the hotel’s arrival to posters advertising who’s appearing at the Tip Top Club this week.
Below is our gallery of hundreds of photos from the preview along with video of the Cars Land attractions. Highlights include touring the Fiddler, Fifer and Practical Cafe (Starbucks), Cars Land and Red Car Trolley merchandise, the attractions and their queues (including a clever Rust-eze tribute to the old Burma Shave roadside sign campaigns and a nod to Pixar co-founder Ed Catmull) and much, much more.
Click on any of the thumbnails below to see a larger version of the images.
Photos and video © Jim and Kelly Noble for Stitch Kingdom. All rights reserved.