Sunday, March 31, 2013

Podcast Episode 11

We did it! An episode with no audio malfunctions! Again, you can listen to the podcast on the player on the right side of this page. Unless you're viewing the mobile version, in which case you can CLICK HERE and go directly to it. Or subscribe and listen on iTunes. Don't forget to rate and review us there! What did we talk about this week? I don't remember. Something about the Starcade at Disneyland, Disneyland's new age rules, movie-based rides versus original ideas, and...I don't know. Other things. I don't even know if anyone actually reads this part. I could probably say whatever I want and no one would ever notice. Boobies! (Blue Footed Boobies, of course.) See? Nothing. Alright. Well, even though you didn't read this, listen anyway!

That's our van. Not a sheep. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

It's a Huge Song After All...

I was taking a shower today, which is where I do my best thinking. I was thinking "Hey, I need to write a new blog post. I wonder what it should be about? There is so much, but I need to narrow it down to something! Whatever it is, I hope it's good. And I really hope I don't write about being in the shower while thinking this."

Aw, crap.

So in my embarrassing moment of pondering, I started to sing It's a Small World. And I realized that I feel like that song is just constantly on a loop in the back of my mind. Then I realized that song is probably on a constant loop in most people's minds. Then I realized that there could be a countless number of people singing this song to themselves! With me! While I was in the shower! Why are all these people in my bathroom?!

But seriously, the Small World song, written by Richard and Robert Sherman for the 1964 New York World's Fair attraction of the same name, has got to be the most successful song in the world. Not monetary success, but success by the means of recognition. Try to find a person that doesn't know this song. I dare you! I don't think it can be done. In order to do it, you'll probably end up in some South American native village, and even then I bet someone in the tribe would know it. They don't know what a toaster is, but they can sing the Small World song! 

Yeah! This part rocks!
Now, most people are in denial and claim the song makes their ears bleed, but I quite like it. I even listen to it on purpose! And there are dozens of people out there that would take my side in this. Dozens! But it's a great song! It's simple, easily translatable into other languages, and hot damn if it isn't catchy as hell. I really like the part of the song that coincides with the Africa scene on the ride. It has that sweet jazzy upbeat tempo, those horns, and it just makes me want to snap my fingers and swing my way around the boat! (But the other passengers complain every time I capsize the boat from dancing, so I try to keep it to a minimum.)

And that's how I feel about the song. And just to get it stuck in your head, here it is, ride and all:


Monday, March 25, 2013

NOT a gem...

So on a bi-weekly basis I usually like to write about gems that you can find around Disneyland and Disney World parks. Gems are everywhere, yet nowhere. What the heck does that mean? Well, it means that unless you're looking for them, you usually won’t see them, unless they’re right out in the open, punching you in the face...metaphorically speaking of course. Sometimes, however, people confuse gems with things in the parks that just are not. Things like food. You can eat food. You can’t eat gems! At least, not without bouts of indigestion and the occasional bladder stone. Another example would probably be the golden spikes in the ground through out Disneyland: not gems. Those are survey markers, just like the ones in front of my house and every house.  This bit, as you would have guessed, is called NOT a gem, and the first on my list is none other than the Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Sweet glory and majesty rolled into one!
Such intricate work went into the trunk. Truly a masterpiece!
The Tree of Life is huge, and it was erected in the center of the park much like the castles are at both Disneyland and the Magic Kingdom. It's the center piece and a ton of Imagineering and hard work went into creating that magnificent tree with the animals all over it. It really is a sight to be seen, so why then is this not a gem? I’ll tell you why. Because the damn thing is falling apart! Gems stand the tests of time! They weather the storms, they are well kept, and probably the most important thing is that they DON’T FALL APART! That’s right, the Tree of Life has become the Tree of Death!

Wait...what the..
Ok, so no, it hasn’t killed anybody...yet! (Cue dramatic music.) However it did leave an emptiness in my heart seeing that pieces of this magnificent tree have been falling off, and Disney World's solution was to put trampolines over the queue of It's Tough to Be a Bug and the surrounding nature trails just so people don’t get knocked the eff out by a falling chunks of concrete. I feel that they've just lost their grasp on the parks at Disney World. Things are falling apart quite literally. Here's what you do: close down It's Tough to Be a Bug for a while. Trust me, people can live without that one for a few months, and fix the damn tree!


No! Stop! What are you doing to my view?!...



YOU MANIACS! YOU BLEW IT UP!
DAMN YOU!
I wouldn't think that it would be a tough decision to say “Hey, we need to fix this thing because it’s awesome to look at”. Nope, Team Disney Orlando went in the total opposite direction and made the area, which was once majestic, look like some ramshackle thing you would see at a carnival! Not okay in my book, and thanks to Team Disney Orlando's laziness, this is NOT a gem. It very well could have been, but nope! I refuse! Gems don’t fall apart and break peoples heads open. I love the Animal Kingdom. It's by far my favorite park. But when things that used to be amazing start falling apart, it’s less than unexceptional. So in conclusion, and in my professional opinion, the Tree of Life is officially NOT a gem....could have been though. It was so close!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Podcast Episode Tim...er, 10

It's our 10th episode ever! Double digits! Huzzah! You can listen on that player over there on the right side of this blog. Unless you're viewing the mobile version. In that case, CLICK HERE to go directly to the episodes page and listen instantly. Or find us on iTunes. Anyway, this week we tackle the new Disney Springs concept and punch it in the face. We also sit in our Imagineering armchairs and come up with new Deluxe Resorts for Disney World. Then there are other things like the Disney Cruise, food at Disneyland, roofies, and some light cuddling. I don't know. Thanks for listening!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Attraction Clashin': Space Mountain

Hey gang! I'm here to introduce a new column (is that term only used for newspapers? Do we even have newspapers anymore?) called Attraction Clashin'! Basically, I'm going to take a Disneyland attraction and pit it against the same attraction from Walt Disney World, throw them in the octagon with some spiked clubs and crow bars, and make them fight to the death, wherein I will crown a winner! To start this out right, this inaugural edition challenges a huge fan favorite against its doppelganger:

SPACE MOUNTAIN
MAGIC KINGDOM...

...VS DISNEYLAND
First, a very brief history lesson. Space Mountain opened in the Magic Kingdom in 1975 and was renovated in 2009. Disneyland's Space Mountain opened in 1977 and was renovated in 2005. Okay, brief history lesson over. Let's ROCK!

Let's start with the basics. Both parks sport track layouts unique to themselves, but Magic Kingdom comes in with a one-two punch! That's right, there are two tracks under its dome while Disneyland only has one! But Disneyland makes a comeback with its two-across seating arrangement instead of Magic Kingdom's single in-line seating. So both parks have essentially the same capacity! A Disneyland Space Mountain train holds twelve people, while a Magic Kingdom train only holds six, but its has twice as many tracks! So far it's a tie!
Magic Kingdom's trains. Very Matterhorny.
(hehehe...) 

Disneyland's setup. You can slap the person next to you!
Music. Music? Music! Both rides feature a pretty good rocking soundtrack while your on the ride. But here's where the Magic Kingdom stumbles. Its music is played through speakers along the ride track, giving it an awkward Doppler effect as you zip through the inky space. Disneyland's sound system is blasting right into your ears from the very seat you're sitting in and is nicely synced to the track itself. Disneyland takes the upper hand!

What about appearance? Both Mountains feature very similar sparkly white domes and pointy spires. It's almost too close to call! But what's this? Oof! Disneyland's Space Mountain had an awful identity crisis in 1998 and decided to sport a coat of puke green and poo brown! What the hell, Disneyland?! What. The. Hell... Point to Magic Kingdom! (Don't worry. Disneyland is now shiny and white again.)
Sweet clean Magic Kingdom goodness
Arrrrghhh!! Kill it with fire! Seriously, Disneyland.
What were you thinking?!

Is that all? Nay! Disneyland pulls a rope-a-dope out of nowhere and smashes Magic Kingdom over the head with Ghost Galaxy, its temporary Halloween-time overlay! Is Ghost Galaxy better than the normal ride? No, but it's still really damn fun. And it adds some seasonal variety. And makes children cry! Bonus points!
I highly recommend any roller coaster in the dark
with a galactic monster trying to kill you.

Disneyland pulls ahead FOR THE WIN!!!


Our Champion!

What attractions do you want to see beat the snot out of each other? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Half of Epcot



Out of all the Disney parks that I have been to, I think Epcot is my favorite. "Why?" you ask. Because awesome! That's why! Anyways, let's go to my favorite half of my favorite park first: World Showcase!
American Adventure, Japan, Morocco, and France 

Why do I like World Showcase? Well, it's kind of relaxing and you can get a somewhat clean taste of different countries. Almost anything you desire is there. Sweet tooth? There are napoleons in France. Hips hurt? Margaritas in Mexico.  Maple leafs? Yeah, Canada is there too.
Inside  the Mexico Pavilion 




Unfortunately, World Showcase doesn't open until 11:00 on most days, so you need to either wait or come late. I choose to wander Future World for two hours and then work my way through the world.
Usually, I start in Mexico and jump around in a clockwise direction. But hey, that's me. There are a few things that are a "don't miss," such as the Maelstrom, and well, hmm.  OK, lets back up.  
World Showcase is not loaded with rides.  In fact, there are just two, but there are also movies, gardens, little train sets and Perry the Platypus.  
Norway's Stave Church. Go inside! I dare ya! 

World Showcase is a place to slow down and to take in the scenery and some of the culture in a clean and friendly representation of each country. In other words, no you will not be kidnapped by drug cartels and held for ransom. I suppose I could go into a detailed description of each country, but that would drag this article out and my ADD would kick in and oooh! Shiny!... See what I mean?  So instead of that I'll just touch on a couple of my favorite things to peruse through.     
Look at how awesome Japan looks! Look, dammit!

First off, I love walking through the Stave Church in Norway. Did you know you could walk through that?  Not many people do.  It's got a few viking artifacts in it and I think it is interesting.  Next off is the miniature railroad in Germany. Deutsche(Editor's note: Please refrain from calling the reader a douche.)  I like trains and there used to be a really neat Hidden Mickey there. Maybe someday he will return.  Also, Germany has German beer, go figure. My next "must stop" is the funnel cake stand to the right of the American Adventure. Don't miss this one. Goes great with your German beer. Then it's on to the Japan Pavilion for the Mitsukoshi department store. But that isn't the reason I like Japan. The walk through the garden after sipping on many glasses of hot sake is what life is all about.  Also, Hidden Mickey in the Koi pond. Find it. Now if I am lucky I can finish up at the Rose and Crown sipping on black and tans. If I am lucky. Usually I'm face down in the stream back in Japan with the water bamboo thingy hitting me in the head.
I still say England could use a TARDIS sitting on the sidewalk...



Monday, March 18, 2013

Ahoy There!

So you've been to the parks. You've been to all of the Disney Parks state side. You've done the rides, you've seen the shows, you've danced and skipped with your kids down the streets...or without kids! Kids optional. You've enjoyed your Disney experience to the max, so now what? What more does Disney have to offer? How much more entertainment can they possibly entice us with? The answer is hidden in the sea. Well, not really hidden, they have a few gigantic ships floating about, but yes, Disney has taken over the entertainment business on the sea as well with four amazing ships. The Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy, Disney Magic, and the Disney Wonder!

The Disney Wonder in all of its sleek and sexy glory!
Top deck of the two new ships
These ships are remarkable to say the least. Beautifully crafted to look like the classic cruise liners of the 1900’s, the four ships are as elegant as Cinderella’s glass slippers and 20 times as comfortable! The Magic and the Wonder were built by Fincantieri in Trieste, Italy, while the two newer ships, the Dream and the Fantasy were built by Meyer Werft shipyard. The Disney ships are all amazing and each one takes you to amazing destinations that include the Bahamas and Disney’s private Island, Castaway Cay, which is flippin' awesome! But don’t hang upside down on the water playground there! Come to find out, the cast members frown upon that.

Making port at Castaway Cay
Castaway Cay has some amazing features like an “adult only” beach! If you're allergic to children, then that's the place for you! They have scuba, snorkeling, biking, and more. It's a Disney paradise! In the family section of the island, Disney thought it would be awesome to make a ship wreck scene under the water for the snorkeler's to explore. Lots of amazing fish, and one really grumpy red one that sleeps inside of a canon. Don’t stick your hand inside!

Is that all Disney has to offer? Their own island? Man, if that was the highlight I would be happy, but it's not! This is Disney, folks, and everything has to be top notch and excellent. On board of the ships is no different. You get amazing food, amazing entertainment such as Broadway-style shows, amazing pools on the top deck, dancing, singing, and the food...is...AMAZING!

Aside from the food being amazing is the fact that you get to dine in different restaurants. Each one is themed differently and each one is amazing in their own way. My personal favorite is the Animator's Palate. Not only is the food intoxicating, but as you eat, you literally get to see drawings come to life, and towards the end of your dining experience, the entire restaurant breaks out in classic Disney song and dance! Goosebumps immediately pour out of your skin as colors ignite into action all around you.  Characters come out and dance, your waiters are dancing, and before you know, or even realize whats happening, you’re dancing! Fantastic!

Animator's Palate on the Wonder and Magic.





Look at that fancy chandelier hanging in the atrium! Each one is vastly different! 
Disney prides itself in doing things right, and making sure your get your moneys worth. The Disney Cruise Line is no different. It is hands down the best cruise line I've had the pleasure to sail on, and I've done a lot of them. The care and pride that is on those ships resonates in the cast members and their positive attitudes as they strive to make sure your time aboard the ships are memorable to the max! The very first thing that set it off on a good foot for me was the way you board the ships. Your walking up the ramp, and you look ahead of you. The brilliant white ship glistening in the Florida sun. Just as you walk inside a Cast Member reads your boarding pass on a loud speaker, “The Hess Family from Redding, California!” Immediately you hear a roar of applause from the other Cast Members as you walk into this huge room with probably the most amazing light fixtures I've ever seen. From the moment you set foot on any of their ships, Disney makes you feel like royalty. So, in conclusion, if you feel like you've done all the things Disney has to offer in the parks, look to the sea, there is so much more out there! Happy Sailing my friends!
Did I mention the freakin' water coaster on the top deck of the Fantasy and Dream?
It's there! And it's amazing!

(Editor's note: Also, no one has ever had to crap in a bag and eat poorly made sandwiches while being slowly towed back to land while on board a Disney Cruise Line ship. Just sayin'...)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Podcast Episode 9!

First and foremost: There are a few sound issues in this episode, but it's still listenable. Apparently it's really hard to record in a bouncy castle and have all of us hold still at the same time. Anyway, hey! Episode 9! You can listen on that player over there on the right, unless you're viewing the mobile version of the site, in which case you can just CLICK HERE or find us on iTunes! This week we clone Tim and talk about the proposed Main Street U.S.A expansion in Disneyland. Other topics we half-assedly try to stay on include: Innoventions at Epcot, awesome Cast Members, the Disney water parks, holiday decor, Jake's Travel Tip O' The Day, a listener question, and what Tim's legs are actually made of. Tune in and tell a friend!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Fun Little Walt Ditty

Hey readers! We apologize for the lack of material on the blog this week. We are all working on some new stuff that will be out soon! So for today, I just wanted to share something I ran across on the Net of Inter. This:


It's a fun look into unscripted, candid Walt. Also, this doesn't sound like a Mutineers post, so... hobos and crap and stuff! There. Got that out of my system. Enjoy the video!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Hotels Around Walt Disney World Part 2: Staying On Property

Welcome back! If you made it through Part 1, then you know the kind of direction I'm taking this. If you didn't read Part 1, I'll catch you up really fast: I don't make direct recommendations, I just let you know the choices available so you can make your own educated decisions. Because if you give a man a fish, he eats for a day. If you teach a man to fish, he buys a boat and lies to his wife so he can go out and get drunk with his friends he eats for a little longer and then gets tired of fish. What? Where are we? Okay, let's just ignore that and jump right into this.

PART 2: STAYING ON PROPERTY of the Walt Disney World Resort!

The whimsical main pool of the Pop Century Resort. A Value Resort. 
The first thing that you need to know is the hotels in Disney World come in three different categories: Deluxe, Moderate, and Value. Deluxe is going to be your more costly, big fancy-pants hotels with extra amenities, restaurants, and things to do. Moderates are...moderate. Value hotels are the cheapest hotels available, but with a lack of amenities and extra features. And they all of the same theme of "Hey, giant whimsical plastic things!" And that's not necessarily a bad thing. I like big, plastic whimsy.

Let's tackle transportation. There are three and a half main modes of free transportation around the Walt Disney World Resort. The main one is by bus. Buses stop at every hotel, park, and Downtown Disney. Need to get anywhere? Take a bus. It should be noted that buses don't travel from hotel to hotel. To get from one hotel to another, take a bus to a currently open park or Downtown Disney and transfer to a bus going to the hotel you're trying to get to. Buses are your easiest way around.

Boats and Monorails at the Magic Kingdom!
The second way to get around is by boat. There are a few thing to know, however. First, boats don't go everywhere, and they don't come from everywhere. They're mostly found around the Magic Kingdom and Epcot hotels, and also Hollywood Studios. Secondly, anyone singing the "I'm On a Boat" song immediately gets thrown overboard. By me. I won't stand for it. Cut that crap out. There's also a ferry from the Ticket Transportation Center to the Magic Kingdom front gates. But that's just a big boat. Noted? Noted. Moving on.
The Monorail has a stop INSIDE the Contemporary Resort!
(A Deluxe resort) 

The third and coolest-looking way to get around is by... MONORAIL! I feel weird after what Josh said about it, but regardless of its staleness, there is something satisfying about it. It's a frikkin' monorail. However, it only goes to three hotels (Contemporary, Polynesian, and Grand Floridian) as well as the Magic Kingdom and Epcot. Try it out if one of those are a destination for you.

The half mode of transportation is your own two feet. You can't walk everywhere, but you can walk to the Magic Kingdom from the Contemporary Hotel. Also, you can walk to Epcot and Hollywood Studios from the hotels between those two parks. Sometimes it's a nice change of pace. Yeah, I can't say much about walking. It's walking. Woo.

What about food? I like food. And it's essential for living. Thank goodness Disney has food at their hotels. The Deluxe hotels will have a small variety of well-themed table service restaurants or buffets, and a small food court tucked away somewhere that's damn near impossible to find. Moderate resorts will have one table-service restaurant and a food court that is much easier to find than the Deluxe ones. Value resorts have only food courts, and they're so big, you can't get away from them. Like black holes of deliciousness. Oddly, the Value food courts have a lot more variety to them than the higher class hotels, since it's the only place to get food at those particular hotels. It should also be noted that Value hotel doesn't mean Value food. The food is great at these places! Ribs, meatball sandwiches, salads, all sorts of goodness to shove in and around your face. Okay, I'm getting hungry, we better move on before I eat my keyboard.

Food court at the Caribbean Beach Resort. A Moderate resort.
Things to do! What is there to do at the various resorts on the Walt Disney World property? That, my friends, will have to be a whole other article, because there is way too much to quickly just jot down here.

So there you have it. A brief guide to help you on your decision-making when making decisions on what hotel you want to stay at and the kinds of things that are available.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Podcast Episode 8!

After rescuing Tim from his misstep last week, we bring you more things this week! Jake introduces a new segment called Left for Dead, (not to be confused with the popular series of video games by the exact same name.) Tim talks about his favorite walk-around characters at the parks. Josh decides to talk about trains, and cabooses. Caboosi? Whatever. Tim discusses a poll he took (and never put back) and then we wonder why Grizzly Peak looks like a wolf. Also, listener questions and the Travel Tip O' the Day! So enjoy, everybody! You can listen on that player over there on the right side of this page, or if you're viewing the mobile version of our site, CLICK HERE, or subscribe to us on iTunes. Remember, if you want to support the show, click the Amazon banner there at the top of the page and do your normal shopping! Many thanks and high fives all around.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Autopia That Will Never Be.



Autopia!
I'm going to have a seat in my armchair imagineering, uh, armchair and I am going to tell you what I want to happen in the Autopia.  But first Disney needs to strike a deal with Nintendo to use some of their stuff.  I'll wait... Well? Oh yeah, this is my armchair, I don't have to wait. So let us pretend it's done. You. Yes, you.  Start pretending or so help me....  Where was I?
I think that Autopia needs to be transformed into a live action Mario Kart track!  How flippin' cool would that shit be?  Shooting turtle shells at people, invincibility stars, banana peels and a rainbow road tunnel!
You can't tell me this wouldn't be awesome.

It could happen easy enough. The items and all the actions that the cars need to complete are handled by the ride's computer.  Now how do we race, you ask? Welllllll.......  Sorry, keyboard stuck. Instead of two side by side loading lanes, the cars need to be at least five abreast, then that group goes. And so on.

Now to make it seem real-ish, the cars need personality and handling characteristics just like in the game.  If you've played Mario Kart, you will understand. Also, the tracks need to somehow criss-cross (no not the 90's hip hop band) maybe using a virtual track ala Tokyo's Pooh Bear Ride. I think it could kick some major ass and would be fun.  Hmmm... I guess since Disney has Wreck-It Ralph, they can use that Sugar Rush race game as a basis....


To save on licensing fees, I suppose Disney could just use their own similar franchise.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Sweet, sweet, Monorail goodness!

As promised, I am touching on Disneyland's Monorail system, but it's consensual, so it's fine. To understand Disneyland's monorail, we must first go back in time to what came before it: The Viewliner

Ah, Tomorrowland's Viewliner train. And an Autopia car.
R.I.P. Viewliner. 1957-1958. You won't be missed.
Walt liked trains. A lot. He liked them so much that he pretty much had them everywhere. Casey Jr. Circus Train in Fantasyland. The Mine Train Through Nature's Wonderland in Frontierland. The Jungle Cruise in Adventureland (just go with it, I'm on a roll here.) The train around the park itself. You get the picture. What about Tomorrowland? The Viewliner opened on June 26, 1957. Some short time after that, Walt took a trip to Europe, saw a monorail, and basically said "Crap, that's what I wanted! Get that Viewliner out of there!" So on September 15, 1958, the Viewliner made its last loop around Tomorrowland and was sent to that big train track in the sky.

The Disneyland Mark I Monorail
 The Disneyland monorail debuted in 1959 as the Mark I for a sightseeing tour of Tomorrowland.  Unlike the Walt Disney World trains, it was not designed as a transportation system, but rather a showcase for a transportation system. (Think big toy train... Not that big! Jeeze, tone down the imagination some.)  Two years later the track was expanded to the Disneyland Hotel and the Mark II trains where added.  From there it has changed here and there and the trains have been upgraded over the years. (We are currently riding the Mark VII fleet.) Also, the Disneyland Hotel traveled west a little bit, claiming it "just needed space" from the monorail station it neighbored. So the hotel station invited Downtown Disney to move in and they've been happy ever since.

The Mark V resembled Disney World's Learjet-style monorail. 
Okay, the somewhat brief history lesson is over.  On to my review of the Disneyland Monorail. Unlike Walt Disney World's system, I do not miss a trip on Disneyland's.  It's small, quick, clean, and a piece of my favorite nostalgia.  Does it take you places? Yeah, sort of. It takes you anywhere you want, as long as you only want to go to Tomorrowland and Downtown Disney. Can you see things?  Hells yes you can!  Great views from all around the park! It had gnarly (and eventually disappointing, and then gnarly again) views of the California Adventure construction. A section of the ride travels down Harbor Boulevard where you get to point and laugh at those suckers driving their automobiles. Another section of the ride zips overhead of the Autopia, where you get to point and laugh at those suckers driving their automobiles.
The current Disneyland Mark VII Monorail. Sleek. Sexy. Stylish. Supreme.

Simply put, the Disneyland monorail is awesome, and I like it. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

GEM-O-RAMA!



Walt on Main Street before the park opens.
Many of us enjoy taking a walk down Main Street; I would dare to say that all of us do considering that you have to. Taking that walk can be meaningless to some, but to the Disney aficionados, it’s full of nostalgia and memories of days gone by. Main Street U.S.A was made to commemorate the memory that Walt had of the industry in small-town America while he was growing up. Walt had fond memories of those types of streets and he loved walking up and down that street whenever he stayed in the park. What people may not know, or wonder about, is the names that are on the Main Street windows. Why are they there? Are they real names or fake ones the Imagineers conjured up in a dream? If you don’t ask, you’ll never know, and one time on my many Disney trips, I finally asked, and the answer I got amazed me.

Rolly Crump's window!
When I was little, I remembered walking down Main Street and seeing the names on the widows, I didn't give it any thought. But what it actually is, basically, is a credit reel for the park! Everyone who contributed in a big way to Disney, their names are up there. Artists, Imagineers, Walt’s family, lots of important people are on those windows, and most of them are dead. It’s almost a memorial as well. I love it because this is the type of Disney Gem that people could just walk by and not even think about the men and women on the windows who've made Disneyland what it is today. People who had visions of grandeur and made them into reality! It’s fantastic to research the names and find out how they contributed to the park.

The window of Walt's dad.
It would seem fitting that Elias Disney is on one of the windows, being Walt’s father and all. Aside from Walt’s Father, there are many more names that are honored as you stroll down the street. Good ol’ Don DaGradi’s name can be found above the Market House. Who is Don DaGradi? Well I’ll tell you. He was another intricate tool that Walt used. Don was a story man and writer for great Disney films such as Pinocchio, Mary Poppins, Peter Pan, and many others. Are you getting why the windows of Main Street deserve to be Gems yet?

Marc Davis and Alice Davis's window
The other amazing thing about the windows is that each one has a story to tell. Each name on the windows was an intricate part of making Disney what it is today. When you walk down Main Street USA, you’re literally walking down memory lane. I know that a lot of websites have already written about the windows, but this is my bi-weekly Gem…not theirs. What I’m telling you is that there’s always so much more to Disneyland than you realize. So much more history and stories. Everything in the park has its own story to tell, and on Main Street USA, every window with a name on it has a different story as well. So you see, if you don’t look for the Gems, you’ll miss them. Next time you’re at the parks, take some time to look up at the windows and salute those who have made Disneyland a wonderful place! They all put their hearts and souls into it, and it shows!
Walt even gets his own window on the train station at the Magic Kingdom! (And another
above the ice cream parlor.)

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Podcast Episode 7

You wanted more? We're bringing you more! This week, the Mickey Mutineers jump into some more Blue Sky News regarding Animal Kingdom, Tim feels he needs to cement into our heads what constitutes as a Disney Gem. He also talks about poopy snacks. Literally. Josh brings up the old TV special Disneyland After Dark and then discusses his favorite hobby at Epcot (Drinking!) We answer some listener questions, beg for someone to take us to Club 33, and get into all sorts of shenanigans in the broadcasting van. So listen on that player over there on the right, just under the Amazon banner. Or download directly from HERE, or subscribe to us on iTunes! Don't forget to tell a friend, do your Amazon shopping through our link there, and enjoy this week's episode. It's a good'n!