Disneyland Resort saw big crowds this weekend as unseasonably warm temperatures accompanied the popular inaugural Tinker Bell Half-Marathon event. As the runDisney event drew thousands of extra guests to the Resort, Disney construction crews took advantage of the gorgeous weather to continue work on on-going projects in Disney California Adventure, including the new Buena Vista Street main entrance complex and the massive Cars Land expansion. At Disneyland, the Matterhorn Bobsleds, Fantasmic! and Main Street restaurants continue their refurbishment projects as the Haunted Mansion reopened following the removal of its holiday overlay.

Don't forger that you can now click on photos in Dateline Disneyland to view a higher-resoultion version of the image. Because of this new feature, you will no longer be able to click on photos featuring Project Tracker watermarks to be redirected to those threads on our MiceChat discussion boards. For your convenience, we've added handy Project Tracker banners at each relevant section of the update, so if you'd like to learn more about any project in today's update or join the on-going discussion on the MiceChat forums, all you need to do is click on through!

Are you all rested after the big MiceChat 7 Year Anniversary weekend? Let's get started with this week's update!
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Inside Dateline Disneyland</center></td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f1f1f1" width="100%"><a href="https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=3874837" target="new"><img src="http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x356/micechat/Dateline%20Disneyland/donatetoplong.png" width="145" align="right" border="0"></a>
  • <a href="#DD1">Welcome to Disneyland!</a>
    Touring Plans crowd forecast
  • <a href="#DD2">Magic Kingdom Makeovers</a>
    Main Street and Matterhorn changes, Adventureland refresh, Haunted Mansion reopens
  • <a href="#DD3">More Memories</a>
    Romance and sand castles coming to "it's a small world" projection show
  • <a href="#DD4">Tinker Bell Run</a>
    Inaugural Tinker Bell Half-Marathon brings thousands to Resort, and millions to local economy
  • <a href="#DD5">California Construction</a>
    A look at the on-going construction at Disney California Adventure...
    • <a href="#DD5-1">Buena Vista Street</a>
    • <a href="#DD5-4">Paradise Pier</a>
    • <a href="#DD5-5">Cars Land</a>
  • <a href="#DD6">Downtown Disney changes</a>
    La Brea Bakery construction, LEGO relocation, Cupcake Store opens
  • <a href="#DD7">This & That</a>
    Harbor Boulevard transportation hub repaving
  • <a href="#DDNEWS">Weekly News and Information Round-Up</a>
    Weekly theme park hours, closures and refurbishments
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778" height="" width="100%"><center>Sponsored by TouringPlans.com | Do More. Wait Less.</center></td></tr></tbody></table></center>
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<center><a name="DD1"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%">
WELCOME TO DISNEYLAND!
</td></tr></tbody></table></center>This weekend was a great example of how a major event at the Resort can impact off-season crowds. The weekday crowds were nice and light, but the big Tinker Bell Half-Marathon brought big crowds to the parks over the weekend. Our friends at Touring Plans are here with their weekly crowd forecast, but you can get a complete forecast and avoid big crowds like those seen this weekend by subscribing today:
<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>It should be another slow week at Disneyland. TouringPlans.com can help you navigate the parks with our per-park <a href="http://touringplans.com/disneyland-resort/crowd-calendar?utm_campaign=ads&utm_medium=website&utm_s ource=dateline&utm_content=r1&property_id=2">Crowd Calendar</a>, <a href="http://touringplans.com/disneyland-app?utm_campaign=ads&utm_medium=website&utm_source =dateline&utm_content=r1&property_id=2">Lines - Mobile Wait Times App</a> that gives access to current and estimated wait times for attractions, and <a href="http://touringplans.com/disneyland-resort/touring-plans?utm_campaign=ads&utm_medium=website&utm_sour ce=dateline&utm_content=r1&property_id=2">Touring Plans</a> detailing the best plan of attack for hitting the attractions. With holiday crowds on the horizon, it's a good time to subscribe to TouringPlans.com to plan your strategy to avoid the crowds!

Below are the predicted resort-wide crowd numbers for select days generated by the TouringPlans professional statisticians as measured for the upcoming week. For the access to the full year and per-park crowd level predictions, visit our <a href="http://touringplans.com/disneyland-resort/crowd-calendar?utm_campaign=ads&amp;utm_medium=website&a mp;utm_source=dateline&amp;utm_content=r1&amp;prop erty_id=2">Crowd Calendar.</a>

Statistician, TouringPlans.com
</blockquote></blockquote></blockquote>

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</td><td colspan="1" width="25%" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f1f1f1">
RESORT-WIDE
Crowd Calendar Prediction
</td><td colspan="1" width="53%" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Crowd Tips
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0" valign="top">Tues., Jan. 31</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
3/10
</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top" rowspan="4">Here are some quick-hit notes that we hope you'll find helpful as you prepare your visits for the week:
  • Partial block outs this weekend.
  • Expect Super Bowl Sunday to be moderately busy, but light compared to Saturday.
  • Saturday in Disneyland is a 8.2.
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0" valign="top">Wed., Feb. 1</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
3/10
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0" valign="top">Thu., Feb. 2</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
3/10
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0" valign="top">Fri., Feb. 3</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
8/10
</td></tr></tr><tr><td colspan="7" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0">
Crowd levels are based on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.
</td></tr><tr><td colspan="7" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="">
See <a href="http://touringplans.com/disneyland-resort/crowd-calendar?utm_campaign=ads&utm_medium=website&utm_s ource=dateline&utm_content=r1&property_id=2">Disneyland crowds</a> for the next 365 days.
Get <a href=""http://touringplans.com/disneyland-resort/lines?utm_campaign=ads&utm_medium=website&utm_sour ce=dateline&utm_content=r1&property_id=2">Disneyland wait times</a> on your<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/disneyland-lines-from-touringplans/id412482020?mt=8"> iPhone</a>,<a href="https://market.android.com/details?id=com.touringplans.dlrlines.android&featu re=search_result"> Android</a>, or Smartphone.

Do more. Wait less.

</td></tr> </tbody></table></center>

<center><a name="DD2"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%"></td></tr></tbody></table></center>
The restaurant and retail remodels on Main Street continue, with some visible progress being made on the facade refurbishment on the side of the Crystal Arcade







Work on the Matterhorn also presses on, with scaffolding covering nearly the entire mountain.








Green spray-painted lines have appeared at various places on the rock work.






Views from the Monorail show that the loading platforms have been removed and will be completely rebuilt





Over at the entrance to Adventureland, the land's marquee has emerged from refurbishment tarps looking fresh and new again.





Back in New Orleans Square, the Haunted Mansion has reopened following the removal of the holiday overlay.


Inside, the classic show is back. While it isn't in the best shape, the attraction is moderately improved over the deplorable condition the attraction was run in throughout last year. Madame Leota is once again synced properly, a problem that Disney just couldn't seem to fix last year. Yet, the Stretching Gallery wallpaper shows obvious tears and patch marks following the removal of the holiday overlay. Lighting conditions in many parts of the attraction are too high, lighting up back walls and mechanisms that should be hidden from view. We've also noticed another lawyer-friendly guard rail up in the Mansion, immediately after the Attic scene. An ugly guard wire is now up here, decorated with cut-outs that appear to be inspired by the wallpaper in the Corridor of Doors sequence. Many of the attraction's issues are small and can be easily fixed by some people who just take some time to actually ride the attraction a few times and take note of what they see. Hopefully some folks who care can get this attraction looking as good as it deserves.



Across the Rivers of America on Tom Sawyer Island, the Fantasmic refurbishment continues in the dragon's pit.




While we know many are fans of Fantasmic, we're definitely enjoying this rare time when so much river traffic can be seen well into the late afternoon.




<center><a name="DD3"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%">
MORE MEMORIES
</td></tr></tbody></table></center>
Back at "it's a small world," guests will soon be able to see the facade of the iconic attraction sporting Valentine's Day and summer-themed imagery as part of the on-going "The Magic, The Memories & You!" nighttime projection show. Disney announced the seasonal changes for the show last week on the Disney Parks Blog:


<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>[ LINK ] </blockquote></blockquote></blockquote>

This looks like a nice enough seasonal enhancement, but does anybody really watch this show at Disneyland?


The "it's a small world" sand castle.




<center><a name="DD3"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%">
TINKER BELL RUN
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Disneyland hosted its inaugural Tinker Bell Half-Marathon over the weekend. The event was the Resort's first female-targeted running event and brought thousands of guests and millions of dollars to the local economy.


The OC Register's Around Disney Blog ran a story prior to the event discussing its impact on the local economy:
<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>Disney race closes roads, brings in millions[ FULL STORY ] </blockquote></blockquote></blockquote>


Congrats to Kellie Nickerson for coming in first place on Sunday!


<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>Kellie Nickerson Wins Inaugural Tinker Bell Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort[ FULL STORY ]</blockquote></blockquote></blockquote>




<center><a name="DD5"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%">
CALIFORNIA CONSTRUCTION
A look at the on-going $1 billion remodel and expansion efforts at Disney California Adventure
<hr width="100%" color="white"><a name="DD5-1"></a>BUENA VISTA STREET
<img src="http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x356/micechat/Dateline%20Disneyland/dcatracker-minibanner-formoreinfo-long2.png" width="375">
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Work continues on the Buena Vista Street project, with Disney taking full advantage of the unseasonably warm temperatures following last weekend's rain.








This new structure has appeared.


Connected to existing construction with these support bars








Looks like they're starting to "skin" this new facade







New window in place













The Clarabelle's Hand Scooped Ice Cream facade is coming together nicely behind tarps.


If you look closely, you can spot new bas relief ice cream cones and sundaes.


Scaffolding is up around the Elias and Co. Department Store as they prepare to add the themed facade elements.








The old Sunshine Plaza Candy Shoppe facade will be repurposed as part of the Elias and Co facade.


Looking down the eastern side of Buena Vista Street...







Views of the Buena Vista Street work from the Monorail





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The repaving project in front of the Little Mermaid attraction should be just about ready to wrap up.







Across the bay, the Midway Shops along the pier are really starting to show some significant changes. The former Man Hat-n-Beach facade is out from behind scaffolding, but still has a ways to go before it's finished.




Meanwhile, the other Midway Shops have all gotten a healthy dose of wood paneling applied over the cheap stucco facades.



It's surprising how much some simple wood paneling can change the look of this area. It blends in a lot nicer with the nearby Toy Story Midway Mania and Games of the Boardwalk facades, but if you look close enough you'll notice the overlay is a quick fix and not the well-crafted permanent fix the Midway Games received a few years ago.





The California Screamin' supports are still exposed here, unlike the supports that were covered behind the Midway Mania facade when that attraction was built.


Hopefully they'll be able to swap out the garish signage on these facades as well.




Some stucco remains... for now.




The ugly stucco and cheap neon waves are history!




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Last week, Disney released a new publicity image of the upcoming Radiator Springs Racers attraction that will be used when marking the new ride this summer.






The old Bountiful Valley Farms barn facade, which is becoming shaded queue space for Mater's Junkyard Jamboree, is getting repainted to a new yellow color.






The Cars Land/Pacific Wharf gateway is coming together...




The Cozy Cones are starting to turn orange!








A look at the backside of the Cars Land mountain range, as seen from Harbor Blvd.









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DOWNTOWN DISNEY CHANGES
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Outside the parks, some Downtown Disney projects continue to show progress. The La Brea Bakery Cafe is getting some serious work done.


The work being done at the La Brea Bakery could potentially become home to the Disneyland Resort's first Starbucks location.







More new planters are going in around the Catal Restaurant







Over at the former Island Charters shop, work is underway to convert the space into a temporary LEGO Store location while the main LEGO location gets ready to close for a major remodeling project.


LEGO signage is already up in the window.





The new Cupcake Store kiosk is open for business.



<center><a name="DD7"></a><table style="border: medium none;" border="0" width="100%" style="border: 1 solid black"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1" width="100%">
THIS AND THAT
</td></tr></tbody></table></center>
The Harbor Blvd transportation hub continues to get some maintenance work, with its bus zones getting repaved. One of them has recently reopened.






...and another has now closed for repaving.






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<a name="DDNEWS"></a>
<table style="border: medium none;" border="0" cellpadding="5" width="670"><tbody><tr><td colspan="3" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="">
WEEKLY NEWS AND INFORMATION ROUND-UP
</td></tr><tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778">
Weekly Theme Park Hours
</td><td rowspan="16" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f7f6f0" valign="top" width="166"><center><SCRIPT charset="utf-8" type="text/javascript" src="http://ws.amazon.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&MarketPlace=US&ID=V20070 822/US/disneylandres-20/8001/4fbf2cff-aca2-4b01-a4a2-0f4400889107"> </SCRIPT> <NOSCRIPT><A HREF="http://ws.amazon.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&MarketPlace=US&ID=V20070 822%2FUS%2Fdisneylandres-20%2F8001%2F4fbf2cff-aca2-4b01-a4a2-0f4400889107&Operation=NoScript">Amazon.com Widgets</A></NOSCRIPT></center>
</td></tr> <tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disneyland Park
</td> <td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disney California Adventure
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
Monday-Thursday 10 am - 8 pm
Friday: 9 am - 12 midnight
Saturday: 8 am - 12 midnight
Sunday: 8 am - 11 pm</td>
<td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
Monday-Thursday: 10 am - 8 pm
Friday-Sunday: 10 am - 9 pm
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="">
For a complete listing of theme park hours, visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar

</td></tr><tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778">
Expected Crowd Levels presented by TouringPlans.com
</td></tr> </td></tr> <tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disneyland Park
</td> <td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disney California Adventure
</td></tr><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top">
LOW-MEDIUM out of 10
</td><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top"
MEDIUM out of 10
<tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="">
Crowd levels are based on a scale from 1 to 10,
with 1 being the least crowded conditions and 10 being most crowded.

For daily crowd predictions for the next 365 days, visit
<img src="http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x356/micechat/Dateline%20Disneyland/Sponsors/touringplans-small.png" width="175">
</td></tr>
<tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778">
Closures and Refurbishment Schedule
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disneyland Park
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top" align="left">
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds: Closed for major refurbishment including the addition of new ride vehicles through June 14.
  • "it's a small world": Closed to remove holiday overlay January 23 - February 2.
  • Sailing Ship Columbia: Closed for refurbishment January 23 - February 17.
  • Fantasmic!: Dark while under refurbishment January 23 - February 17.
  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters: Closed for refurbishment February 1.
  • Carnation Cafe, Blue Ribbon Bakery, Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor, Candy Palace, Penny Arcade and Refreshment Corner: Food service locations and shops close January 2012 for major restaurant and shopping expansion projects affecting current spaces.
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Disney California Adventure
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top" align="left">
  • Redwood Creek Challenge Trail: Closed for refurbishment.
  • Grizzly River Run: Closed for refurbishment January 23 - March 2.
  • Soarin' Over California: Closed for refurbishment January 30 - February 3.
  • Ghirardelli Chocolate Company and Soda Fountain: New Ghirardelli chocolate shop and soda fountain will open in the space formerly occupied by the Mission Tortilla Factory. New dining location opens late-spring 2012.
  • Buena Vista Street: Re-themed main entrance including new Red Car Trolley attraction are under construction through summer 2012.
  • Cars Land: New 12-acre land opens summer 2012.
</td></tr><tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#e1e1e1">
Downtown Disney & Hotels of the Disneyland Resort
</td></tr> <tr><td colspan="2" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="" valign="top" align="left">
  • Island Charters: Downtown Disney retail location closed permanently. A temporary LEGO Store is set to open in this location this spring, with a permanent replacement yet to be announced.
  • La Brea Bakery & Cafe: Quick-service cafe portion closed. Rumor is that this portion may be expanded and reopen as a new dining/retail location, possibly a Starbucks Coffee store.
</td></tr></tbody></table></center>


<center><table style="border: 0pt solid black;" bgcolor="#d6d4ac" cellpadding="5" width="670"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778" width="100%">Disney allows male Cast Members to grow beards for first time
A big change for the Disney Look is now allowing Cast Members to wear bears and goatees for the first time in Disney theme park history. Is this a good idea?</td></tr><tr><td cellpadding="5" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f1f1f1" width="75%">
<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>Disney employees can grow beards for the first timeFull Story: Around Disney: Disney employees can grow beards for the first time</td></tr></tbody></table></center>

<center><table style="border: 0pt solid black;" bgcolor="#d6d4ac" cellpadding="5" width="670"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778" width="100%">City of Anaheim backs tax incentives for luxury Anaheim GardenWalk hotels
From the Around Disney blog:</td></tr><tr><td cellpadding="5" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f1f1f1" width="75%">
<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>Anaheim backs tax incentives to Disney-area hotelsFull Story: Around Disney: Anaheim backs tax incentives to Disney-area hotels</td></tr></tbody></table></center>

<center><table style="border: 0pt solid black;" bgcolor="#d6d4ac" cellpadding="5" width="670"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778" width="100%">Disney pulls t-shirt inspired by Joy Division band from theme park shelves
</td></tr><tr><td cellpadding="5" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#f1f1f1" width="75%">
<blockquote><blockquote><blockquote>R.I.P. Joy Divison Mickey Mouse Shirt
Disney's Mickey Mouse shirt inspired by Joy Division is no longer for sale. A representative from Disney says, "As soon as we became aware there could be an issue, we pulled it from our shelves and our online store to review the situation further." Indeed, the link to the shirt on the Disney webstore is now blank.

As reported on Monday, the shirt blended the likeness of Mickey Mouse with the cover artwork from the band's 1979 album Unknown Pleasures.

The shirt was for sale at Disneyland, Disney World, and online, but the surviving members of Joy Division were unaware of its existence.
</blockquote></blockquote></blockquote>
</td></tr><tr><td cellpadding="5" style="border: medium none;" bgcolor="#263778" height="" width="100%">Full Story: R.I.P. Joy Divison Mickey Mouse Shirt</td></tr></tbody></table></center>

<table style="border: medium none;" border="0" cellpadding="5"><tbody><tr><td style="border: medium none;" valign="top" align="left"><a href="https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=3874837"><img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v647/dustysage/FridayVisions/supportsmalltop.gif" width="100" align="left"></a>Well, that concludes this week's edition of Dateline Disneyland. Thank you, as always, for reading. Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Don't forget to visit our great sponsors over at Touring Plans when planning your next visit to Disneyland!

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Don't forget that MiceChat has lots of new content throughout the week! For even more Disneyland news, photos and information check out the In the Parks column on Fridays. And MiceChat's Weekend Update, tours the world of Disney theme parks and other worldly sights and landmarks!

See you at Disneyland!
- Andy


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