Thanks everyone for telling me about this. Since we had our wristbands, we didn't have to go all the way past Soarin' to get into Buena Vista Street, we flashed our bands at the door CMs and we were let in. We were surprised that when we entered the park, they had to scan our event tickets, even tho we had the wristbands, but I guess that was the only way they'd know how many people were going into DCA yesterday.
What an amazing difference they've made to the area that used to hold those tacky stores, like Greetings, Engine Ears, etc. The only thing I missed was the drink I used to get at Brrrbank Ice Cream. I forget the name, it was a play on a town in California I think. It was like a Frappuccino, but with ice cream instead. The frapp I ordered at the place with Starbuck's came out with a VERY strong coffee taste, not like the ones I get at home, but it was fine. They may not have mixed it enough or something. It took a very long time to get it, since they only had one CM working on the side we were on, but 2 on the other side!
We really loved the Art Deco architecture and how well it all goes with the much improved main gate! Very reminiscent of the Disney MGM Studios main entry area. I really loved the Pan Pacific building the gate is based on, so it's nice to see it again. Also, the Hyperion Bridge is much less jarring and goes really well with the rest of the buildings, instead of the Golden Gate Bridge. I think DL should put in a nice gate to compete with DCA's, something having to do with castles would be nice!!
I especially loved the bas relief that was added to some of the stores walls - the bears with honey and things, the ice cream sundaes, etc. I definitely appreciated this area much more than Cars Land!!!
Our first stop was the Five and Dime. I found a similar headband to the Bride ears I had misplaced, but it didn't really say "Bride" to me. I really liked the new-ish Bride ears hat, with the crystals, veil and tiny tiara. My head has never been the right shape for ears hats, so it mostly was more on the back of my head more than the front. The CM asked if I wanted to pay for embroidery, I realized it would be on the back of the hat, where the small veil comes down, and any embroidery would be covered, so I passed on it. It was interesting to see the new styles of ear headbands they have there.
We "met" 4 of the Streetmosphere people on BVS, so that was really fun, especially since we know 2 of them! It was so cute seeing them all in costume and in character. We had our photos taken with the 2 we knew. The Red Car Trolley was not running, so my hubby just took some photos of it.
After everything was closing, when we left, they did not let us know ahead of time that they would close the door going straight out, like we came in by, so we ended up having to go all the way down to Soarin' and then back tracking to get to go out the front and into the esplanade. I was disappointed, since I saw a Storytellers pin at the Five and Dime, the CM checked to see what time they were closing and she came back to tell me they'd be closing 1/2 hour after park closing, but when we got to the wall, they wouldn't let us back onto BVS.
I picked up one pin of the Red Trolley at the curio shop at Cars Land, since she told me they'd have lots of pins there, but they didn't have anything commemorative of Cars Land or BVS street, so I just got the trolley pin. Had I known we weren't going to get back into BVS, I would've bought the statue pin there and if we received a duplicate at dinner, I could've just returned it, but I was trying to save myself doing that. I don't know if we'll be able to make it up there anytime on Friday, to buy the things I want from the catalog then, but the girl at BVS said that once the park was opened, they were going to be picking up all of the statue pins from them and taking them away!! Oh well. It was just pretty frustrating, since I wanted to spend money and they didn't let me!
Thanks again for the info!