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First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

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  • Trip Report First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

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    One of the fun buildings that you pass through in the general line for Radiator Springs Racers is a bottle house. I love the way that they caught and reflected the early morning's light.
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    An example of the catci from the window.
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    The view outside the window of the bottle house. Are you sure that we're in Anaheim?
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    Quite the impressive view.
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    The time came to board the actual attraction, and I sat in the front to the very left. Unlike many attractions, I don't think that a different seat with drastically experience your perception of the attraction. Some Single Riders joined my group, the safety check concluded, and our car began to leave the station. Oddly, the beginning was my favorite part. Slowly winding through the desert with peaceful music in your ears, growing into a crescendo as your car turns the corner and the beautiful glory of the waterfall captures your attention. Spectacular! I got goose bumps as the car then turns into the opening in the cliff and descended into the darkness, embracing you into a new world. I thought that the animatronics were fantastic, all seemed to be working well during my trip. The fluidity of their lip movements is particularly incredible. However, I found the dark ride portion was lacking and left much to be desired. Next, the racing segment. I liked how the guests zip off and speedily maneuver around the beauty of Cadillac Range, but again, I felt like this section felt something to be desired. Overall, although this ride is a nice addition to DCA, “nice” is the best word I can muster for the attraction as a whole. I personally don’t believe it joins the ranks of Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, or Indiana Jones.

    We then strolled over to Hollywood Land. Tower of Terror’s wait line boasted an ominous 13 minute wait, a signal to walk right on. I would love to spend a while in the lobby of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. The details are so rich and I never feel like I have enough time to appreciate them. A wonderfully creepy Cast Member with an unsettling stare and ghoulish voice greeted us into the library. I love Cast Members that enhance the creepy atmosphere on this ride and draw you into the story! This attraction is still my favorite in the park. It has a great story, a highly immersive queue, obvious attention to detail, and everything combines to create a great experience. I enjoy how the environment of the queue becomes progressively creepier, fromthe slightly unsettling, dust-laden and cobweb filled lobby to the dark library to the sinister boiler room.
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    The first red car sighting of the day! I love its vibrant red color and kineticenergy that it adds as it meanders through the streets. I like that I was able to capture the performer leaning out of the trolley's window without the shot looking overly cheesy, unlike the performance itself. I saw a bit of the show, and while the show itself needs new music and better direction, but the energy is great and the utilization of the trolley is genius.
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    More to come soon, including my thoughts and experience of Buena Vista Street and the neon lights of Cars Land! Thanks for reading!
    Last edited by gatheringrosebuds; 10-18-2012, 09:34 AM.

  • #2
    Re: First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

    Thanks for sharing! I have 38 days to go!

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    • #3
      Re: First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

      Enjoying this so far, thanks for sharing I leave in 13 days!

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      • #4
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        The facade of the Carthay Circle Theatre is beautiful. Similar to Sleeping Beauty Castle, it commands your attention and beckons you to come and explore and experience a new world. It's like the new heart of DCA.
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        Strolling around Buena Vista Street and admiring all the details, from the lights to the palm trees and the street signs is a lovely way to pass the time. This land is truly a work of love from the Imagineers. I especially love all the beauitful tile artwork. This one, by the Chamber of Commerce, is a particular favorite of mine, along with the Spanish dancer by the Carthay Circle Theatre. I think that this image is really romantic. Gazing at it, I can feel the love and carefree spirits radiating from these two lovebirds as they pic flowers in the gentle summer breeze.
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        Walking along the street, I admired the architecture and other details that helped tell the story of the street. I headed over to the Chamber of Commerce for a copy of the Buena Vista Bugle and stopped to admire more of the atmospheric details of the land.
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        Joining my family on a bench outside the little market that sells fresh fruit, I noticed Officer Calvin Blue singing at the top of his lungs as guests passed by with confused stares. He was fabulous! Definitely one of the highlights of the day. The Cast Member playing him did an outstanding job. Belting out jolly melodies with glee, handing out good-behavior citations, accidentally knocking over trash cans, and getting his foot stuck in the trolley track are examples of the wonderfully charming and silly behavior of Officer Blue.
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        My favorite part of the meal was the Rose Petal Soda. Perfumey, but not overly so, and just the right amount of sweetness, and the de-li-cious candied rose petal was the icing on the cake. I was still apprehensive of the drink after the first sip, but after the initial taste it is fantastic. Although it may be an acquired taste, I highly recommend trying it.
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        That basically summarizes my experience at the Carthay Circle Restaurant. I would highly recommend it to anyone considering dining there, the combination of the atmosphere and the food creates a wonderful experience. I personally cannot wait to dine again.

        Part three, last but most certainly not least, will be posted soon, covering the neon lights in Cars Land.

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        • #5
          Re: First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

          I agree with you about Soarin' screen and I'm sad it won't be fixed before we return. Just booked a 2nd trip to DLR in Jan!!! I can hope they'll refurb by then, but I doubt it.

          The scents haven't worked for years. I remember the first time I went the oranges smelled so good!

          ---------- Post added 09-27-2012 at 09:11 AM ----------

          Your's is the first report that's made me want to try Carthay Circle. You must have gotten a good waiter! Maybe our 2nd trip...

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          • #6
            Re: First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

            I agree with your observations about the Radiator Racers attraction. The main problem with it is it lacks repeatability. You see the entire "actions" of each scene - unlike Pirates, where the scenes are longer than the actual time you spend there ... so you don't exactly see the same thing over and over again. I am not saying the dark ride portion is extremely bad ... there is just nothing special to it. And when I rode it last Sunday - there were so many animatronics not working (Mater - both, one of the tipping trackers, Sarge), that it really provided nothing more to view. And then the big town scene - um, we just came out of a life-size version of the town, this is just a fabricated repeat, that doesn't measure up. It just is lacking. I think a big problem with Imagineering these days is they get all caught up in the excitement of the technology and being the only one out there using it/having it, they the forget about the thing they profess to be doing so well - and that is storytelling. Someone on Radiator Springs forgot the story. I really wanted to like this ride a lot, but I just find it ho-hum.

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            • #7
              Re: First Time Experiencing DCA with BVS and Cars Land: My Experience (9/16/12)

              One side of Soarin' was down for rehab in June.

              The scents on Soarin haven't been working well for years because the citrus smell is too overpowering. I've never noticed the ocean breeze smell, only the pines and citrus, but for years I can smell the citrus the minute I walk into the auditorium.

              Your suggestion to get different sequences would not work. Star Tours utilizes digital projection, which is inferior to the IMAX 15/70 projection system that Soarin' uses. You're not able to project a quality image using digital projection on a screen the size of Soarin'. Since film is not used in Star Tours it is possible for a computer to mix and match different scenes to create the experience. We DO NOT want to see Soarin' go digital. It's inferior to the IMAX 15/70 film and would degrade the current experience. Universal went digital for The Simpsons Ride and attempts to project on an IMAX sized screen - the result sucks.

              The black spots I suspect were a dirty print or lens. The prints will be replaced periodically from wear and tear and they are probably cleaned once or twice a week. The IMAX projector also has a dust removal wiper that needs to be cleaned. This wiper goes across the lens removing dirt that would appear as a black spot on the screen. Screens don't usually show spots from dirt unless someone splashes something on it and in a movie theater that is usually soda, which shows as a glossy, reflective mark. A dirty screen usually goes gray over time. The dust accumulation on the dome screen is usually worse at the bottom of the screen.

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