Welcome to Dateline Disneyland for July 13. Today we're taking an in-depth look at Disney's California Adventure's on-going extreme makeover as the hot Anaheim summer presses on at the Disneyland Resort. Parking lot demolition has begun in the former Timon Lot as Walt Disney Imagineering begins to get started on building the new 12-acre Cars Land. Over at the former Golden Dreams, landscaping is starting to be cleared away before demolition crews arrive to remove the theater. And in Paradise Bay, construction on the sprawling Disney's World of Color show continues to chug along. There's a lot to get to today, so let's jump right in!

As always feel free to click on any of the Project Tracker images. These photos will take you to the Tracker threads on MiceChat where you can get the latest timeframes, information, news, and discussion on all of the current and upcoming projects in the parks.

So with that said, let's jump in and see what's going on, shall we?

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  • <a href="#DD1">Welcome to Disneyland!</a>
    Mickey & Friends tram stop construction, Fantasmic! work
  • <a href="#DD2">California Construction</a>
    The latest Disney's California Adventure construction photos.
    • <a href="#DD2-1">Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar</a>
    • <a href="#DD2-2">Pacific Wharf dining</a>
    • <a href="#DD2-3">World of Color & Viewing Area</a>
    • <a href="#DD2-4">The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure</a>
    • <a href="#DD2-5">Cars Land</a>
  • <a href="#DD3">This and That</a>
    New Games of the Boardwalk prizes, Kitson Kids construction
  • <a href="#DDAROUND">Around the Resort</a>
    Photos from around the Resort
  • <a href="#DDNEWS">Weekly News and Information</a>
    Weekly theme park hours, closures and refurbishments, news & headlines


<a name="DD1">
The Mickey & Friends tram stop is partially behind construction fences as some cement work is taken care of. Hopefully this will finally allow this side of the tram stop to be fully open, as the main loading station has been left unused for months now.

Inside Disneyland, work continues around the clock on Fantasmic!'s troubled new dragon.

Al Lutz discussed the on-going dragon drama in his July 7 column on MiceAge:
Murphy When?
Speaking of hard working CM's, there's plenty of them in the basement of Tom Sawyer Island with that oh-so-troublesome new dragon. While TDA managers work behind the scenes to try and figure out how to handle the contractor who built the dragon (and who is also building Universal's big new King Kong up in Hollywood), technicians and engineers are working down in the pit nearly every day now making repairs to the dragon's infrastructure. While the situation is still very fluid, the latest info we have as of this post is that the dragon could debut as early as Monday, July 13.

The sooner the better, obviously, as huge crowds continue to pack the 9,000 space Fantasmic! viewing area each night, drawn by all of the marketing hype built around a dragon. Disneyland's Entertainment department will continue with overnight rehearsals and programming sessions for the dragon all this week, so wish them luck. They have also been testing a new entry for the nifty Flotsam and Jetsam characters, bringing them in from opposite sides of the island, which was the original plan before they had to cut the speeds due to the big waves and wakes the powerful jet-skis underneath created.

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<a name="DD2-1">MAKE IT BLUE</a>
The Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar is temporarily closed as it brings in some updated exhibits to showcase the next stage of construction around the park, and what the work will become.

It will reopen a day before Disneyland's 54th anniversary.

<a name="DD2-2">WHAT'S COOKIN'?</a>
Over on Pacific Wharf, Cocina Cucamonga's former location is still behind construction walls as the new Asian-style restaurant moves in.

The new restaurant is currently aiming for a September 15 opening.

Of course work continues on the upcoming World of Color show and its adjacent 9,000-person viewing area.

Looks like California Screamin's wave machines are back

Look at that mess! Cables galore for World of Color

A bigger perspective of the World of Color construction can be attained from Mickey's Fun Wheel.

The new Golden State Park fountain:

Rock work has been added to the new utility box between the Orange Stinger and Golden Zephyr.

Landscaping around Golden Dreams have begun to be removed before the theater is demolished to make way for the new Little Mermaid dark ride. Demolition is slated to begin July 15, after being delayed from July 6.

Trees are being saved

Handrails and cement are torn up outside of the theater's exit.

<a name="DD2-5">CONSTRUCTION ROUTE</a>
Over in the Timon Lot, Walt Disney Imagineering officially broke ground on the massive new Cars Land expansion on July 9. Only some of the parking lot is currently torn up, but it should be interesting to see construction on Cars Land evolve over the next three years.

Work continues on the structure at the far edge of Timon.

New trailers have moved in.

Bye-bye, Timon Lot!

<a name="DD3">THIS AND THAT</a>
New, Disney-themed prizes have been brought in at the Games of the Boardwalk. Most prizes are now appropriately-themed to whichever game they're at. Definitely a nice touch, buy these would have been even better when the new Games launched, and there were actually people waiting to play.

Mickey and Goofy dressed as fisherman are the new big prizes at Goofy About Fishin'

Dumbo is the new big prize at his game.

Casey at the Bat-themed prizes:

Woody and Jessie mini-pillows and generic snake plush

Or, win Bullseye

Over in Downtown Disney, construction walls are up around the main entrance of the upcoming Kitson Kids store.

New shelving (below) and some lighting (not pictured) is now up in the store which was said to open sometime this month.

And finally, we'll take a look around the Resort to finish up the photo section of this week's update.

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For a complete listing of theme park hours, please visit the Disneyland.com Theme Park Calendar
Disneyland Park
Monday - Sunday: 8 am - 12 midnight

Disney's California Adventure Park
Monday - Sunday 10 am - 9 pm

Disneyland Park
  • Pinocchio's Daring Journey: Closed July 20 through August 14.
  • The Enchanted Cottage: Closed July 29 through November 17.
  • Casey Jr. Circus Train: Closed August 31 through November 20.
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats: Closed August 31 through November 20.
  • Remember... Dreams Come True - A Fireworks Spectacular: On hiatus. Returns fall 2009.
  • Disneyland: The First 50 Magical Years/Main Street Opera House: Closed. Reopens as The Disneyland Story: Featuring Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln December 17, 2009.

Disney's California Adventure Park
  • Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar: Closed to change exhibits July 10 - 15.
  • Orange Stinger: Closes July 14 to be rethemed as Silly Symphony Swings. Reopens Spring 2010.
  • Cocina Cucomonga: Food service location closed June 18, when new location opened. Original location reopens with new Asian-style menu September 14.
  • The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure: Under construction. Golden Dreams theater is scheduled for demolition to make way for new attraction.
  • Souvenir 66 and Corn Dog Castle: Store and dining location closed for remodeling through May 2011.
  • Paradise Bay: Drained for construction of upcoming Disney's World of Color show.
  • Disney's World of Color Nighttime Spectacular: New show under construction. Debuts Spring 2010.
  • Golden State Park and Amphitheater: Closed. New, larger amphitheater for Disney's World of Color viewing under construction in same location. The new amphitheater will open December 2009.

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MiceAge's Al Lutz reported in his July 11 Editor's Note that Space Mountain would be closing for two weeks this September to install a new Halloween-themed overlay, similar to Hong Kong Disneyland's Space Mountain: Ghost Galaxy (pictured above).
Editor's Note 7/11:
Yes the rumors are true, Team Disney Anaheim approved the money this week for a '09 Halloween overlay for Space Mountain, using much of the equipment installed in '06 for Rockin' Space Mountain. Based on the Ghost Galaxy version of the ride in Hong Kong, this version will now debut at Disneyland on September 25th, after a two week closure. More info to come in the next update. - Al Lutz

The fan-favorite E-Ticket Magazine, an unofficial Disneyland history publication, has been acquired by the Walt Disney Family Foundation and will be permanently archived at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco, which is scheduled to open later this fall.

From the E-Ticket Magazine web site:
Special Update from the last Issue:
The "E" Ticket Magazine began in 1986 by two brothers, Jack and Leon Janzen, who wanted to add something to the new hobby of collecting Disneyland souvenirs and memorabilia. Years passed and the small-time magazine flourished. Leon Janzen, eldest of the brothers, died suddenly in 2003, leaving brother Jack to continue. Well, it hasn't been much fun without Leon, and it's time for this ride to come to an end. As most of you already know, Issue #46 is our last.

Now for the Good News! The "E" Ticket Magazine will soon become part of the extraordinary effort of the Walt Disney Family Foundation to establish a museum commemorating Walt Disney the man. The "E" Ticket body of work of the last twenty-three years will be safe and accessible to fans of Walt Disney and the Disney Theme Parks for many years to come. We couldn't be more pleased.

Remember that elaborate wedding proposal YouTube video that Disney put out? Well, they're admitting it was a fake and all just part of viral marketing. The OC Register has details:
For the full article, check out Around Disney: Disneyland gets viral with elaborate fake marriage proposal
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<object classid="clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=9,0,124,0" id="TwitterWidget" align="right" height="335" width="225">

<embed src="http://static.twitter.com/flash/widgets/profile/TwitterWidget.swf" quality="high" bgcolor="#000000" name="TwitterWidget" allowscriptaccess="sameDomain" allowfullscreen="false" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" flashvars="userID=16832260&styleURL=http://static.twitter.com/flash/widgets/profile/smooth.xml" align="middle" height="335" width="225"></object>Well, that wraps things up for this week's Dateline Disneyland. Thanks, as always, for reading and be sure to discuss the update in the comment section below!

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