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  1. #1

    2019



    Dec. 31, 2018
    3 years and 5 days from our last trip to the resort, we activated our 2019 Annual Passes. The two olders (now 14 & 11) were grateful and nostalgic to be back where so much of their early childhood was spent. The little fella, now nearly 8, surprised us with how much of the parks he'd forgotten in three years.
    We were in DLP from about 9 to 2pm and then again 8pm to 10:30. In DCA we rang in the New Year 10:30pm to 1:30am and were there for a short stint 7:30 to 8:15 to ride IncrediCoaster for the first time since it was rethemed.
    Speaking of retheming, everyone was pleasantly surprised at how fun and cool the Guardians of the Galaxy ride is. As purists and The Twilight Zone enthusiasts, we all groaned at the thought of moving on from the original ride. Rod Serling will remain a favorite, but we're big fans of what the imagineers did with this. We got the Jackson 5 "I Want You Back" version. According to the cast member it's a difficult one to get. I know next to nothing about the ride so that was the first I'd heard of there being more than a single version. Rumor is there are six. Looking forward to seeing them. RSR & TSMM beckoned though.

    The day's rides, in order:
    Pirates, Haunted Mansion Holiday, it's a small world Holiday, Casey jr., Indiana Jones Adv. (the little guy is not a fan. At. All.), Mater's Jingle Jamboree, IncrediCoaster, Matterhorn, Autopia, Space Mountain, Monsters inc., Turtle Talk with Crush, Guardians of the Galaxy, Radiator Springs Racers, IncrediCoaster, TSMM, Soarin'.

    NYE 2018 Album

    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

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  3. #2

    Nice! Sounds like a successful return! The NYE thing is really something else, isn't it!?

    I decided to try that last year, spent most of the day in DL IIRC, though I might have migrated over to DCA very briefly (wanted to be safe about not getting locked out of DL if it reached capacity, so I didn't do much at DCA, I don't think - would need to check my notes). My strategy for the insanity at midnight was to mill around in the circular walkways around the Hub (since I could not see camping for hours and hours to get a normal stagnant spot on Main Street or in the Hub). At a point, the traffic essentially froze, so wherever everyone was at that point was where they would be for the countdown to midnight. I ended up in a spot behind some of the trees, but could see the Castle a fair bit through them and enough of the fireworks to call the strategy a success for my purposes.

    Hope you and your family had (or are still having) a good trip. (Hoping you got to spend more than just one day after a 3 year absence.) I see your IASW pic was during daylight, so hopefully you get to at least see the facade at night also. I love what they do to that ride for the Holidays.

    -Dave

  4. #3

    Thanks for the welcome back, Dave. Due to high winds, NYE fireworks were cancelled at the resort. We discovered the best place to be at the stroke of midnight is entering Cars Land and then the RSR queue which (reopened a minute or two after midnight) was empty. We walked right on.

    Just the single day visit for now and were fine with it. We activated on a blockout and have to wait a few to return, but from Jan. 6 to Dec. 20 or so well have nearly a full year of uninterrupted access to the parks. There are a lot of visits upcoming.

    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  5. #4

    Nice to see you back. Have always loved reading your trip reports. Wow the kids have grown a lot!

    My daughter, sister and I just visited December 17 - 21 and had a great trip. Look forward to seeing more trip reports.

    Last edited by Disney Scrapbooker; 01-05-2019 at 07:28 PM.

  6. #5
    At home in the hills candles71's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
    Location
    foresthill Ca

    Hi! My goodness the kids have gooten big but still look just the same. Looking forward to your trips as we may not make 2019 at all.
    ETA: we are doing WDW in 8 days.


  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by candles71 View Post
    Hi! My goodness the kids have gooten big but still look just the same. Looking forward to your trips as we may not make 2019 at all.
    ETA: we are doing WDW in 8 days.

    I know you are. I noticed and have been excited to hear about your trip. We were there for Spring Break nearly 5 years ago. Fell in love with AK.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  8. #7
    Jan. 12



    MaxPass ranks right up there with the printing press, the wheel, the steam engine, and electricity. Great, great invention. I may be late to the party on this. For someone, such as myself, who spent an inordinate amount of time running around collecting paper fastpasses, MaxPass completely transforms the park experience. What a delight.

    The main order of the day was to add MaxPass and get acclimated to it. You can add the single day $15 version on your phone, but have to visit a ticket booth for the AP version good all year. That was not efficient process and actually required several trips to the ticket booths, but once it was finally dialed in, I was amazed at how well it worked. And the park wi-fi blows the doors off what it used to be.

    The second order of the day was getting a hot link corndog at Corn Dog Castle. Only then did my return to the parks feel complete. The boys dined on fusilli pasta Pizza Port and the ladies ate at SmokeJumpers, but I held out for the corndog and apple slices, a decision I did not regret.

    We were in the parks roughly 2:30 to 10:30 and took very few pictures.

    Rides were:
    Splash, Winnie the Pooh, Splash again, Space Mountain, Star Tours, IJA (the little fella did far better this time), Silly Symphony, Aeriel's, RSR, Guardians, Mater's, Buzz, BTMRR, PoTC, Autopia, Buzz again.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  9. #8
    Jan. 19

    The three-day weekend crowd is not to be underestimated. Completely oblivious, I showed up about 4:30 expecting light crowds and short waits of a week ago. I should've known better. That said, the security check was backed up all the way to Harbor Blvd. and took nearly a half hour. The security checks are noticeably less efficient than three years ago, and for reasons that will probably remain unclear there is a express line for those without bags from only about 8:00-9:00 am. Dropping the fam on Harbor at the drop area & parking at Toy Story used to be a dependable time saver. We've yet to try Mickey and Friends this year but are about to. It can't be worse than the east side of the Esplanade.



    Oldest had a special seasonal Oreo shake at Schmoozies that was to die. With an inordinate amount of downtime we indulged in other types of entertainment, namely eating: Fiddler, Fifer, & Practical; Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta; CornDog Castle; Award Weiners; Schmoozies. What we lacked in rides we made up for in restaurants & specialty drinks.
    Although the Star Tours and Guardians versions were the same as a week earlier, the voice guy playing 'Crush' was among the best we've heard. Most of the Crushes don't stray too far off the script. This one wasn't afraid to do his own thing and ad-lib in a seamless way that was effective and comical. He managed to get a couple special needs kids involved in asking questions. Was cool to see. We headed home about 10:00.

    Rides:
    PotC, Star Tours, Ariel's, Goofy's, Crush, IncrediCoaster, Silly Symphony Swings, Goofy's again, Guardians

    photos

    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  10. #9
    Jan. 27

    Arrived about 11:30 and headed home about 4:30.

    Rode:
    IncrediCoaster, Toads, Pinocchio, Space, Autopia, Disneyland Railroad, Jungle Cruise, Radiator Springs Racers.

    A couple firsts:
    1. we ordered daughter's food to go using the Disneyland App from Stage Door Cafe.
    2. exited Disneyland Park back behind the Emporium and got to snap a couple pics of where they keep the Jungle Cruise boats. They're here.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  11. #10
    Feb. 15

    We arrived 9:00am and left 4:30pm.
    These were the rides: Matterhorn, Thunder, Star Tours, Space, Jungle Cruise, Guardians, RSR, Grizzly Peak Recreation Area (where I napped), IJA, Haunted Mansion, Space again, Winnie the Pooh, Splash Mtn.

    We had a nice lunch at Skyjumpers then had several desserts through the rest of the day.

    the lemon things from Pixar Pier:

    you've got to really be in love with lemon to be in love with these things



    I couldn't resist the caramel apple with peanuts from Pooh Corner. Neither could the little fella come to find out:


    If Guardians has six songs and Star Tours has 86 variations, how come we keep getting. the. same. ones. ??? If I never again hear Burning Love by Elvis it'll be too soon.


    We found this gem: Karl, the Jungle Cruise skipper.
    Hilarious. In fact, both skippers we've had in 2019 have been exceptional leading me almost to believe Disney is recruiting top shelf stand-up talent.


    Karl is in rarified air as JC skippers go. The guy is totally legit.

    As we made our way back to our car on the top deck of Mickey and Friends it began raining for the first time all day. Perfectly timed getaway.

    photo album
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  12. #11
    Feb. 17

    A few trip reports ago I raved about the ingenuity of MaxPass. The Mobile food order function is nearly on equal footing. No need to agree on a time and location to eat as a family of 5 anymore ... the mobile order App lets us each order what and when we want and grab it without waiting. "When you're hungry ... eat!" Did we ever.
    I kicked it off around 4:00 by grabbing a chili dog at Award Weiners using Mobile Order. 20 minutes later oldest ran his little brother over to Pizza Port for fusilli pasta and grabbed himself chicken and fries at Stage Door on the way using the App .... 30 or so minutes after that, daughter ordered chicken and fries at Smokejumpers on the App. Later, after we all five made it into DLP and following the parade, we ordered Stage Door again on the App (this time for dear wife who had the fish & chips). Five meals at five separate sites and times. Grab and go. Not a wait to be had.
    Oldest capped it off with a double waffle scoop at Gibson Girl and bypassed the mother of all lines by getting it via Mobile order ... youngest held out for a caramel apple while daughter was bound and determined for Mickey beignets, and answered the question "what's the most powdered sugar you can get on a beignet"?



    Soundsational was nice. We were seated on the curb between the fire station and City Hall with a flood/spot light facing us which made it a challenge to get pics of performers in front of us. Got some treats from Pooh Corner for the road and a set of giant white Mickey hands for youngest's birthday without him seeing. Headed home around 10:00. We had arrived at 2:00.

    Things we did:
    Grizzly Peak Challenge Trail, Frozen live at Hyperion, Ariel's, IncrediCoaster, Soundsational Parade, BTMRR, PotC, Star Tours, Haunted Mansion, WtP twice, Splash twice, and Buzz twice.

    Photo Album
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by MidwayManiac View Post
    Feb. 17


    Things we did:
    Grizzly Peak Challenge Trail, Frozen live at Hyperion, Ariel's, IncrediCoaster, Soundsational Parade, BTMRR, PotC, Star Tours, Haunted Mansion, WtP twice, Splash twice, and Buzz twice.

    Photo Album
    That's quite a good list of things done for only 8 hours, especially including a parade and show which take a fair amount of time (and food too)! Sounds like you all had a good time.
    -Dave

  14. #13
    Feb. 22



    We arrived at 5:30 and exited 11:30.
    Rides were RSR, IncrediCoaster, Animation Academy, Sorcerer's Workshop, Monster's Inc., Teacups, Storybook Land Canal Boats, BTMRR, HM, BTMRR (again), Matterhorn, Buzz.

    Here's a few things we discovered.

    1) RSR single rider is a winner. Youngest and I even got to ride in the same car (separate rows of course).

    2) Animation Academy is as legit as ever. Darren, the artist, gifted the kids his sketch of Dumbo.

    3) if the fireworks begin on your Storybook Land Canal Boats ride, the boat stops and you take in the show from that spot in the water until it concludes, which is pretty cool since the fireworks are almost directly overhead.




    Here's the full album.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  15. #14
    March 9

    We arrived at noon and left around 10:30.

    In order rode/ visited Toads, IncrediCoaster, Grizzly River Challenge Trail, RSR, Guardians of the Galaxy, Tarzan's Tree House, Matterhorn, IJA, BTMRR, Buzz, Star Tours, Guardians again, and IncrediCoaster 2 more x.

    Bought a couple DCA Food & Wine Festival Sip and Savor passes. I had the pork belly Banh Mi and daughter had the creamy Mac and cheese. Both were quite good. I'm all in on the shrimp boil tacos next trip and eventually the impossible burger with guac.

    Was a good time with several several pictures to tell the story.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  16. #15
    Mar. 25

    All day all night partied til the wheels fell off. 9am to 11pm.


    Started as a party of 6 (including DMIL for the first time in 2019). Around mid-trip DW, DMIL, and oldest headed home. For two youngest and myself a pretty epic day of rides and attractions that included:

    Incredicoaster
    Toy Story Midway Mania
    Incredicoaster again
    Ariel's
    Incredicoaster yet again
    Grizzly Challenge Trail
    Soarin'
    Guardians of the Galaxy
    HM
    Laughing Stock Co.
    IJA
    BTMRR
    Space Mountain
    Monorail
    Star Wars Path of a Jedi
    Star Wars Launch Bay
    Matterhorn
    Star Tours
    Space Mountain again
    IncrediCoaster for the 4th time
    Mater's
    Guardians of the Galaxy again
    Toy Story Midway Mania again
    Space Mountain yet again
    BTMRR again
    Splash Mountain

    Youngest asked me at the end of the night "Dad who's got two thumbs and rode the most rides? ... THIS kid!" He's right. He didn't sit out once.
    Stumbled upon two new-to-us things in Tomorrow Land that the kids quite enjoyed: Star Wars Path of a Jedi in the theater where they used to run Honey I Shrunk the Audience -AND- Star Wars Launch Bay.
    Dinner at Flo's was a pleasant surprise. Cheeseburger there "is my new go-to" youngest says and daughter and I shared the club sandwich, which I'll have again for sure. Oh and I almost forgot .... earlier in the day, wife and I each got a sample of the shrimp boil tacos at the festival; oldest had the beef tenderloin slider and I also sampled the fried artichokes. All good.
    The night ended perfectly, as all nights should, with a Mountain trifecta: Space, Big Thunder, and Splash.




    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  17. #16
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Drexel Hill, PA

    Great report and awesome pics. You have a beautiful family. I love Disneyland and California Adventure but dont get there much since I live in the Philly area. I usually go to Disney World. Thanks for taking the time to post your report and sharing your pics


  18. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by suejacken View Post
    Great report and awesome pics. You have a beautiful family. I love Disneyland and California Adventure but dont get there much since I live in the Philly area. I usually go to Disney World. Thanks for taking the time to post your report and sharing your pics

    Thank you. That's very kind of you to say. I was in a hurry earlier and failed to post the day's photo album.


    Here it is.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  19. #18

    That was one impressive day! If I counted right, something like 19-20 E ticket type attractions (plus quite a few other things). Nice!

    -Dave

  20. #19
    Mar. 28

    2pm to 11:30.



    It so happened Grizzly River Rapids opened a day ahead of schedule and the kids couldn't have been more excited. It wasn't a particularly hot day so I had no interest in it. Before dark the kids made two separate attempts to ride, and both times the ride shut down after they waited in line a considerable time. They were persistent though, and hung around. Finally the ride re-opened around 8:00, and they rode three consecutive times.

    Speaking of openings, Jessie's Critter Carousel "is close" the CM told me. No soft opening today, he assured me.





    At the food festival, the kids each got a serving of the mac and cheese and I tried the pork tacos from Paradise Garden Grill.

    Here's the day's events: Star Wars Launch Bay, Star Wars Path of the Jedi, Space Mountain, Monorail, Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters, IncrediCoaster, Grizzly Challenge Trail, Guardians of the Galaxy, Grizzly River Run 3 times, PotC, Matterhorn, Space Mountain, BTMRR.



    Photo Album
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  21. #20
    Apr. 13

    This was a wild day of park-going that had youngest two and me in the parks between daughter's soccer games and then again when the day of soccer ended. We were at the resort 1:30 to 4:30 and then again about 8 to 11:30.



    The first stint in the park: GRR, IJA, Space, and BTMRR
    Evening: Guardians, TSMM, GRR 2x, Soarin', Space, BTMRR, IJA, Matterhorn
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  22. #21
    Apr. 19 & 20

    For youngest's upcoming birthday we splurged on a hotel room and made an evening / morning trip of it. The birthday boy:



    I'll rank the highlights of the trip in descending order:

    3. Jesse's Critter Carousel. Exactly like King Triton's Carousel, only different.

    2. Fantasmic! We secured reserved seating via MaxPass. Fantastic show as always and our first time seeing it in over 3 and half years. Not exactly the same show as then but great nonetheless.

    1. Dinner Friday night at Carnation Cafe. A little magic occurred after we were initially seated in the back of the outdoor section (near the restrooms kinda). One of the restaurant workers (manager?, server?, hostess?) came over and asked "Would you like the table up near the rail?" Whether she saw us eying that table when we walked in or just had an intuition I'll never know ... we didn't hesitate. YES!, we'd like that table. With 5:20 dinner reservations we were there in perfect time for the 6:00 Parade. This was our view from said table:



    The food was outstanding: meatloaf, sourdough bacon cheese melt, pot roast, a burger, fried pickles, Walt's Chili. Not your run of the mill park food. Great service and atmoshpere ... a birthday treat the little fella will not likely forget.

    I just realized I didn't keep a record of what we did Friday night. But it's no matter ... It all pales somewhat compared to the two highlights: F! and Carnation Cafe.

    The kids were unyielding Saturday morning and in the park at ropedrop. We could only stay about 4 hours before having to get to a basketball game. Oldest sent me a Saturday morning ride log that included all the following in those four hours:
    Guardians, Incredicoaster, Goofy's, GRR, Space, BTMRR, IJA, HM, Guardians again, Incredicoaster again, Mickey's Fun Wheel, TSMM, and GRR again.

    Dear Wife and I took is easy Saturday morning while the kids ran from ride to ride. She and I rode Soarin' and hit the shops. Before exiting we used the last few of our Food & Wine Festival passes on the shrimp boil tacos. So good and easily our favorite of the things we tried this year. We're making these at home soon. I've been to my share of low country boils in Savannah, GA. but only now did it occur to me to make the contents into a taco. Genius.

    Here are some more pictures from the weekend festivities
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  23. #22
    May 3

    Early in the evening daughter and I split off from wife and youngest. We headed to RSR single rider and they to Pirates. We met back up in Disneyland a bit later.



    At the last minute our Friday night freed up and so we rushed down to Anaheim. We were there about 6:30 to 10:00. It seemed like a good idea at first but was too rushed and the crowds were immense (nearly no blockouts ?) and we were distracted by goings on back at home with 14yo.


    May 11

    The 3 kids and I were in the parks about 10am to 11pm. They rode more rides than I could possibly remember or recount.



    This gentleman put the kids in the Soarin' fastpass queue "just to make some magic", he said.

    Youngest got to meet Black Panther.

    Couple new things .... 1. Stumbled upon Philharmagic at the Hollywood backlot theatre (or whatever the thing is where they used to run Muppets) and the kids and I watched a show. When we were at Walt Disney World 5 years ago, I recall this show being one of our favorite things. and 2. The castle curtains were down but not the barricades to walk through it. Impressive paint job.


    The three kids and I had a really nice dinner again at, wait for it, Carnation Cafe. The kids so enjoyed the birthday trip there a few weeks earlier that no one balked at the 25 minute walk-in wait.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  24. #23
    May 25

    Most anyone who's tried it knows that boarding the tram to Mickey and Friends between 9pm and midnight is pretty time consuming, given the waits/crowds. This trip and the one prior I came up with an alternate approach that works quite well, by boarding the Monorail in Tomorrowland and riding to Downtown Disney station and walking the rest of the way to Mickey and Friends.



    As you can see, far less crowded than the trams. If you finish your night at DL at or near Tomorrowland and are headed to M&F, why not just hop on?

    One drawback to the MaxPass for us, I'll admit, is it has made the trips too fastpass-centric, to the point we nearly neglect the rides without fastpass and ride fastpass rides almost exclusively. We need to get away from that since it cuts us off from the majority of rides in the park. We're fully five months in on these APs and I haven't been on Peter Pan or Alice at all. Today was my first go this year on Silly Symphony, an oldie but a goodie:



    We made a full day of it. 11am to 11pm. Crowds were surprisingly manageable. Shocking for a 3 day weekend. Call it the calm before the Star Wars Galaxy's Edge storm.







    ETA: The Toy Story 4 sneak peak at Tomorrowland Theater was a nice surprise. I didn't time it, but I'd guess it ran at least 12 minutes. Some trailer material but also some full scenes: one scene is a flashback to Bo Peep's departure from the Andy house (iirc this was never fully explained in the earlier Toy Stories so it's a bit of plot backfill); the other scene is of Bonnie attending day 1 of kinder or preschool, where she creates the spork chartacter. Good stuff.
    Last edited by MidwayManiac; 05-27-2019 at 10:15 AM.
    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  25. #24
    May 31



    SWGE opening day. Although our reservations to get into the land were 10 days away, the kids will at least be able to say they were at the resort the day it opened. They got a kick outta the idea of telling their grandkids someday. It was really low key though. You'd probably not notice it's opening day of the single largest park expansion in the resort's history if you didn't already know about it. That said, the special glossy / cardstocky (my daughter's observation) commemorative maps at the turnstiles are cool and draw attention to the event:





    Friday night trip. We were there about 5:30 to 11:30. All five of us in the parks together is not always all it's cracked up to be. It can be a challenge, the likes of which I will never fully tell you about. Suffice it to say sometimes if one kid is not stirring the pot, another one is. Ultimately I told the three of them they deserve each another and dear wife and I went on our own for a bite and to watch Philharmagic and later the Toy Story 4 sneak peak.



    SWGE from the top of BTMRR:

    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  26. #25
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Drexel Hill, PA

    Thanks for posting. Great pics. I love reading about peoples trips


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