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  • [Chat] How was youre first experience at DCA.....

    ..........be honest please..................

  • #2
    Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

    You do post a lot of threads, don't you? Well...I've already said this before, but what the heck...I'll say it again.

    I admit I didn't approach it with an open mind. I'd seen commercials, and I knew the name, and I hadn't heard any good word of mouth. But all of that was secondary to the simple fact that it was next door to Disneyland, and I wanted to spend as much time there as I could. (I could only visit once every couple years or so at most back then, usually.) But I was dragged into DCA for the first time by my group - who hadn't been there before either - so I made some attempts at enjoying myself.

    But the lack of charm and stuff to do was just too much. I enjoyed Soarin' - not as much as I later would - but I really was extremely anxious to get back to the mother park. In my handful of DCA visits since then, I've tried to give it a fair chance as much as I can. But I keep coming back to the same conclusion: it's not a bad park, but it sure as heck ain't something I want to pay for.

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    • #3
      Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

      I agree pretty much with what Data has said. I had no clue at all going into it, so I did enjoy it since it was completely 100% new to me. But the differences between what Disney could have done and what they did were so apparent. There are some great and very well executed rides in DCA and I don't really hate the park. I do like it, but boy, is it a far cry from what it could be... but not for long.

      Our revels now are ended. These our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits and Are melted into air, into thin air: And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces, The solemn temples, the great globe itself, Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff As dreams are made on, and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. mycroft16 on Twitter

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      • #4
        Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

        I was scheduled for vacation the week of 9/11. And I had planned to visit DCA for the first time that week. I was going to an Angels game, and spend the night in Anaheim.

        By Thursday 9/13 I'd had enough of the TV coverage, and since there was no baseball I made the trip down just to see DCA (I had a freebie, no Disneyland pass though and I didn't have an AP).

        As you'd expect, there seemed to be more CM's than guests there that day, so I didn't exactly pick the best day or time from a festive mood or atmosphere standpoint.

        But within a three hour period I'd easily seen and done all there was to see and do.

        And here is the main gripe I still have to this day with DCA. A one-day ticket for DCA is priced the same as a one-day ticket to Disneyland! Equal value? You've got to be kidding.

        And back then there were no park-hoppers or 2-fers either.

        -- Barry
        God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

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        • #5
          Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

          To be honest...the first time I went to DCA, I only enjoyed a few parts of the day. For a long time I didn't want to go back, because it just wasn't as fun for me. I do go every now and then, though. I really don't do a lot of the rides there, and I used to go just for EP at night, but I do enjoy going through the Animation Building, and watching Muppet Vision 3-D.

          Now I just have to be patient and wait for the Little Mermaid ride.

          http://skeletonstockings.deviantart.com/

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          • #6
            Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

            I had no preconcieved notions at all about the park even though I didn't go for a long time after it opened, after ToT. I had not been keeping up with Disney at the time and really didn't know hardly anything about the park and had no idea that ir was so derided by the fan community. I had a park hopper, hadn't been to DL in years, and didn't think that we'd possibly have time to do everything we wanted. We headed over to DCA around 10 and my first impression was not good. I thought the murals and the entire entry area was hideaous. We headed to Soarin', where we were luck and got a front and center seat, and I liked it a lot, though I thought that the queue and theming could have been done a lot better. Next we hit Grizzly and I enjoyed parts, liked the spinning hill, but was disappointed that the theming was only slightly better than the competition and surprized to find no bears. We headed on and made our way through PP and did MM, MaliB, and Screamin' and I was really disappointed by the whole design of that area of the park and thought it desperately needed some life and quality theming added to it. We made our way back through the wharf which I thought looked nice, but seemed barren, had lunch and then headed on to do ToT. I liked it but thought that it seemed like something was missing from what I had heard about the WDW version. I didn't even know that it was a trimmed down version, but had heard descriptions of the WDW one and thought it seemed trimmed down. We made a brief stop at the animation building and I think we rode Monsters, and decided that there seemed to be no other must sees and headed back to DL at about 1. So I guess my impression was that DCA was a decent park, and unlike many I thought it did have potential, but I thought it seemed cheap, was very disjointed, poorly laid out and flawed in many themetic ways, and was very lacking in the ride department, which on a short trip I was primarily focussed on. I guess my impression of DCA was slightly improved by some of the shows that I didn't get to see that day, but my overall impression pretty much remains the same.
            The Mickey audience is not made up of people; it has no racial, national, political, religious or social differences or affiliations; the Mickey audience is made up of parts of people, of that deathless, precious, ageless, absolutely primitive remnant of something in every world-wracked human being which makes us play with children’s toys and laugh without self-consciousness at silly things, and sing in bathtubs, and dream and believe that our babies are uniquely beautiful. You know…the Mickey in us.
            -Walt Disney

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            • #7
              Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

              First time I went to DCA was June 2005. I did not know what to expect, so was not prejudiced one way or the other ahead of time. I loved Soarin' (still do!), did not like the Paradise Pier area at all (but Screamin' is great!). Flik's area is cute for the little ones. Tower of Terror one of my favorites too...and I do like that the characters are out and about and accessible. I do not spend much time there ... but do usually go over once a day during a weeks visit. I guess my first impression was kind of "ho hum" and now lets get back to DL!! :>)
              Sharon
              Next Trip - Nov. 13-19 2011

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              • #8
                Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                I went in Aug 2004 (honeymoon) and it was my first time to DLR and DCA. My thoughts at the time on DCA was that it lacked theme-ing, some how didn't have the same "magic" of DLR.
                I really hated the "carnival game" area, if I wanted to be harassed to pay more to play those games I would have went to the fair (we avoided that area like the plague)
                The fact there is no central hub area, some areas are hard to get to, at least in Disneyland we could go from one area to any other area through the hub but DCA you have to backtrack and there is no flow.
                My main thing that I kept thinking is "Why did they create a park about California if we were in California. How does this make sense?" I think hubby got annoyed about me saying this over and over...he's been to DLR a billion times before but first time to DCA.
                Overall it has improved since but I can't wait to see it when they remodel it and hopefully don't overdo the California theme. Don't get me wrong I love California just not so excessively.
                Countdown till Jake(17months) & Eli(3months) first trip to Disney


                Engaged Disney World Oct '02
                Honeymoon Disneyland Aug '04

                Disneyland Jul '05, Jun '06, Oct '08

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                • #9
                  Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                  While DCA opened in Feb 2001, I didn't go until Mar 2001 because that's when I renewed my AP and added the 2nd park onto it.....

                  It was a great time indeed! I loved it.......

                  DCA get's a bad wrap, I think........I mean, no it's never going to be as 'magical' as Disneyland.......because Walt Disney created Disneyland.......but it still has a nice feel to it and my little family and I enjoy it

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                  • #10
                    Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                    Mine was September of last year; the first day I had my annual pass. We'd spent most of the day in Disneyland with friends, but they split off to do other rides so we decided that since some of us had never been to DCA before, why not hop over and see Aladdin, ride Soarin', and have a soup bowl!

                    I loved it, honestly. Aladdin and Soarin' are a GREAT way to get you off on the right foot, and when we went over to the Pier for dinner I just loved the atmosphere. I don't know; I just found it really charming and fun.

                    Really, I didn't realize what a bad rap DCA got until I started reading Disney boards. My biggest complaint was that the park's best rides were so spread apart, and there wasn't much filler in between. When we would go to DCA we would usually hotfoot it all the way over to Screamin' for a FastPass, and then hang around until we rode. Tower of Terror was too far away to ride in the mean time; so was Soarin'. So you had to content yourself with the Maliboomer and other Pier attractions.

                    So yeah, I do love DCA. It lacks the magic of Disneyland, and I don't know if I would pay full price to go just there, but it has it's own special charm and "special-ness" that I love, and while I'm so excited for the refurb that it's getting, I guess I will miss the lack of crowds...I enjoyed my elbow room!

                    ...and just a little bit of pixie dust!
                    http://www.spareoom.net

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                    • #11
                      Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                      Brief. Truly. I went in with a 'Aww, it can't be THAT bad" attitude, and left feeling like it was even worse.
                      To date, the only thing I ever truly enjoyed at DCA was the Snow White exhibit last year. There was some lovely stuff on display.
                      First Visit at the age of 12, July 17, 1968.
                      First Ride, The Disneyland and Santa Fe Railroad.
                      BRING BACK THE PEOPLE MOVER!

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                      • #12
                        Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                        It was October, 2004. I definately had some preconceived notions, I was reading Al Lutz's articles at the time, after all. Heck, my Disney trip in 2002 was to Tokyo because of the reported downfall of the DLR.

                        By the time I visited DCA, they had added Aladdin, Tower of Terror, and a Bug's Land. The first things I did in fact were Aladdin and ToT, so my initial impression of the park was definately a good one.

                        'Screamin is a fantastic coaster, perhaps my favorite anywhere, and Soarin is fun (though film-based rides grow old quickly for me), but if my first trip to DCA had occured before the additions, I would have definately been underwhelmed.

                        As it was, I felt it was a nice addition to the DLR, but lacking...something. Considering the short supply of land in the area, it's a crying shame they built such a so-so park. They shouldn't have to be fixing it now, they should have done it right in the first place.

                        I can't wait to see the future DCA, it should be amazing.
                        My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

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                        • #13
                          Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                          My first trip into DCA was last June (2007) and even though I only went as far as Bug's Land, I enjoyed it.

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                          • #14
                            Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                            I don't know why, but I love the title of this thread... I must just have a dirty mind.

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                            • #15
                              Re: How was youre first experience at DCA.....

                              Our first experience with DCA was during the AP preview weekends prior to the parks opening. To say we were excited would have been an understatement.

                              The park wasn't supposed to be opening until 8am, but we were up and at the resort by about 6:30. We were going to go to La Brea for Breakfast and then into the park. Once we got there we saw that they were letting people in, so we decided to go ahead and get an early start.

                              Our first stop was over at Soarin', we took a quick ride on it and absolutely LOVED it. It was like nothing we'd ever experienced before. After riding we got FP's to use later in the day.

                              Next was Grizzly. yes it was 7:30am, yes it was February, but we didn't care. We actually got our own raft and had an absolute BLAST on the ride.

                              We headed for Paradise Pier next but Screamin' wasn't open.

                              Throughout the rest of the day we did most every ride in the park, had our one and only experience at Schmoozies (ick) and waited an hour for Superstar Limo. To say the park was packed would have been an understatement. So much so that we actually park-hopped back over to Disneyland in the mid-afternoon to escape the crowds. (Imagine that).

                              We finally did get on Screamin' that night and absolutely loved it. We rode Grizzly at night again, and then we went to use our FP's on Soarin'. Well, this was the night they had the (I think it was a sound board or something) fire and the ride was closed.

                              My overall impressions were positive, but Disneyland it wasn't.

                              A few weeks later we took our kids to the park (they were 3 and 5 at the time). We spent 30 minutes in the park, they rode the carousel (one of the few things they COULD ride) and we left to go back to Disneyland. This was when they were giving refunds to people who spent less than an hour in the park (thanks to AL for that one ) so we took our refund and left. Didn't go back to the park until they started offering the 2-park AP (which was that summer if I'm not mistaken).

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