View Full Version : Trip Report (Week of 27-30 June)

07-06-2005, 08:12 AM
Although I have read the posts here for years, this is my first trip report. I apologize in advance for the detail but it is fun to relay the details of a good trip. A little background on us first. My wife and I are Disney veterans (I lived in LA as a teenager) and we currently live in southern New Mexico. We have an 8 year old boy and a 5 year old girl. The kids last visit was 2 years ago. For this trip we were staying at the Park Place Inn and MiniSuites so we would be able to walk into the parks and DD.

Monday, 27 June 2005
We arrived at the gates an hour and a half before the park opened for our early entry. Early entry started promptly at 7:00 am. By 8:00 am we had ridden Dumbo, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, The Teacups, The Matterhorn, The Astro Orbiter, Star Tours, and Buzz. Early entry is really great!! (Both our kids were apprehensive about riding the Matterhorn and Star Tours but after riding they wanted to ride each again! All I heard coming down the Matterhorn was “Wheeeeee!! This is fun!!”) We obtained fastpasses for Buzz when the park opened and got in a very short line for Autopia. After riding Autopia we obtained fastpasses for Autopia for use later. (We knew Buzz and Autopia were going to be favorites for our kids!) As we were starting to get hungry we went over to the River Belle Terrace for breakfast. The line was not too bad and the service was moving along at a reasonable pace. I had read the posts about the food services issues at DL so I was pleasantly surprised. I commented to the cashier CM that things seemed to be going smoothly and she replied that they had a lot of call-ins this morning. I then noticed that one of the CMs working to ready the plates for the customers was in a different style uniform and was clearly in training. When I got closer I noticed the class date on his name badge was in the 1990s whereas everyone else I saw was “Class of 2005.” However, breakfast was excellent. After breakfast we got fastpasses for Indy, let the kids talk us into climbing through the Treehouse and then rode Pirates. After Pirates we went over to Tom Sawyers Island and burned off a little excess energy!! We then went to ride Winnie the Pooh. As a break, we went and bought Gold mouse ears before hopping over to California Adventure. After getting fastpasses for GRR and Soarin’ our intent was to go to the Hyperion Theater and see Aladdin. But, the place was already packed! We then noticed the sign outside animations saying that princesses were holding court so we went in for signatures. (Getting signatures was a new thing this year…) An interesting note here that will make sense as you read through this. Here we met Character Helper Charles. Charles was quite fun! After getting signatures and pictures with Snow White, Jasmine, Belle, and Aurora we went to see the muppets. After the muppets we went to the bugs land and rode pretty much everything there. We then proceeded to GRR (and got more Soarin’ fastpasses on the way). Finally we rode Soarin’ twice in a row! After having dinner at ESPN we called it a night. Our little ones were VERY tired! It had been a very big day!

Tuesday, 28 June 2005
Tuesday we got a later start. Our first stop was the Tiki Room. It was very nice to see the attraction in good condition. We then rode the Jungle Cruise. Our Captain was really a dud for this trip. Unfortunately, we never made it back for another. After the Jungle Cruise we went to Aladdin’s Oasis. The show was excellent and very funny. While there, we saw Charles again. He remembered us and even the fact that my son likes baseball. After the show, we headed over to California Adventure for lunch at Ariel’s Grotto. The kids were able to get autographs and photos with Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Max, and Pluto. After riding Soarin’, we went back to Disneyland for the Parade of Dreams. My wife hadn’t really felt good all day so we called it an early night and went back to the hotel. After getting everyone else in bed, I went back to DL, saw part of the Fireworks and rode Indiana Jones. However my main objective was to collect all 50 of the Magical Memories squished pennies. Two machines were out of order, and the other was in the Disneyland Hotel gift shop which was closed. So I managed to get all but 9! Collecting all 50 was something of a goal for me!! (Over the rest of the trip I would manage to collect the remaining 9!!)

Wednesday, 29 June 2005
After rising from bed we proceeded directly to the Plaza Inn for the Princess Breakfast. We arrived 20 minutes early and were seated after only 5-10 minutes. My daughter wore her yellow Belle dress. While waiting we again encountered Charles. We all had a very good laugh for having seen him 3 days in a row. The kids wanted his signature and also to take a picture with him!! The kids got to see Mary Poppins, Cinderella, Belle, Pluto, Jane Porter, Peter Pan, Aladdin and Jasmine, We had read on the boards many reviews for the Princess Breakfast. Most were not so good but felt we should try it. The food was very good. The characters were great. The guests seemed to be more of the problem than anything else. Also, an announcement was made inviting kids outside for autographs and pictures with Cinderella. This causes a break down in the system of characters going from table to table and encourages the guests to go seek out the characters instead of waiting for the characters to come to them. Although it wasn’t terrible, I don’t think we will do the princess breakfast again for a while. After lunch we rode the Astro Orbiter and then Buzz. We then proceeded to the Snow White musical. While waiting for the show to let us into the amphitheater, we were approached by a Mom with two teen aged kids. She asked if her 15 year olds could get our daughter’s autograph and picture! (She is still in her Belle dress). Of course we said yes, and she very seriously signed their books with her name and the number 5 (her age). The Snow White musical was very enjoyable and the mirror is very impressive! We then proceeded to spend some time in Toontown and then rode IASW. After lunch at Rancho del Zocalo, we spent some time at the shooting gallery. We then went to ride Splash Mountain. This was my daughter’s first time to ride it and she loved it! We then rode Winnie the Pooh and Big Thunder, Autopia, and Honey, I Shunk the Kids. We decided to have dinner at Rancho del Zocalo. During dinner we noticed that people were claiming spots for the fireworks at the hub. So we went and got spots too. While waiting I got ice cream for snacks/dessert. Our spot had a very good view of the Castle and the Matterhorn but was somewhat left of center. Since we were very close to the castle (sitting in the street!!) there was a tree in the way for most of the fireworks except the very high ones. After the fireworks we waited at the front of the castle for the CMs to lower the rope so we could go into Fantasyland. While waiting we took some pictures of the castle. During this time, the CMs were very rude. When we pointed out that there were people getting onto the carrousel and Peter Pan they wouldn’t even look! The response was that they were just cycling the ride to ensure operation. When we finally got them to look and they saw people, the response was confusion. They didn’t know why those people were there. Although we didn’t get all the CMs names one that was particularly outspoken was Sophia. When we were finally allowed to proceed, the line for Peter Pan was all the way out to the stroller parking! So, we rode Casey Jr., Alice in Wonderland, Pinochio, the Carousel, the Tea Cups, and IASW.

Thursday, 30 June 2005
We got a late start today because my son got sick during the night. After sleeping in a bit he felt 100% fine. So, we did some shopping and then spent some time in Innoventions and saw ASIMO. We saw the stage and backdrop for the unveiling of the commerative stamps but continued on our way. Lunch was enjoyed at the Blue Bayou. We got a table next to the water and our food was excellent. After lunch we sailed on the Columbia. I was surprised to see the formerly burning house somewhat overgrown by plants and apparently occupied!! After lunch we rode Winnie the Pooh, Splash Mountain, and Big Thunder before heading over to California Adventure. We enjoyed Playhouse Disney and GRR before having Dinner at Taste Pilot’s Grill. After dinner, we got superb seats for the Electrical Light Parade. We were on the right hand side right next to the falls on the back side of GRR. While waiting for the parade to start, we wanted some coffee and the kids wanted some popcorn. Although I found the coffee (which was very good), I never found an ODV with popcorn. Has anyone else noticed less ODVs at parade time or was this an anomaly? After the parade, we went back into DL and stood in an open spot in front of the trainstation and watched most of fireworks. (We got to this spot just as the soundtrack has Casey Jr. say “Lets go…”. The changed perspective from way back here was fun. We all like the fact that we saw the show from up front where we could see the castle and Tinkerbell, and also from in back, where we could see the fireworks better. After the fireworks, we headed to Tomorrowland. While in route we saw some of the same CMs from the previous night. Again Sophia was rude, and even said “Don’t stop walking so we can all go home and enjoy the 50th celebration.” My daughter didn’t understand what she meant, and I couldn’t really explain it to her. After all, we had driven across two states to celebrate the 50th at DL!! We checked out Space Mountain which was only open for people working with WDI (Walt Disney Imagineering). However it looked REALLY good. We very quickly rode Autopia and Buzz before heading to Fantasyland. Our plan was to finish our time in DL at Fantasyland. We hoped to ride just a couple of rides before the park closed but we were able to ride IASW, the Tea Cups, Alice in Wonderland, Casey Jr., Peter Pan, and the Carousel.

Friday, 01 July 2005
We had reservations for breakfast at the PCH Grill in Paradise Pier. The food was excellent as usual. We particularly enjoyed the Bananas Foster French Toast. Does anyone have this recipe?? The kids got autographs and photos with Minnie, Pluto, Lilo, Stitch, and Daisy Duck. After breakfast we did some shopping in DD. We then went to Huntington Beach and built sand castles and played in the surf. This is a BIG deal when you live in the desert of New Mexico. After the beach we did some more shopping while waiting on the list to eat at the Rainforrest Café. After a few minutes of shopping we went back to the hotel to rest up for our trip home the next day.

07-06-2005, 08:44 AM
Thanks for your great trip report. I really enjoyed reading it.