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Do you love the house of mouse? Do you hum songs from “Aladdin” or “Beauty and the Beast” as you walk around cleaning? Is your house decked out with hidden Mickey Mouse-s (Mickey Mice?) in your kitchen and bedding? If you figure your TruBros can answer each of these queries above with a resounding Daniel Bryan-inspired “YES! YES! YES!”, well….you really wouldn’t be describing either one of us. That being said, like millions of other people we’ve a soft spot for all things Disney, and before hitting up #SDCC2015 I decided to spend a couple days exploring the theme park walked by the namesake of the Disney Corporation. Below you’ll find a summary of everything I did, and you can bet this Bro can’t wait to hit up the most magical place on earth one of these days.
Long before I immersed myself in the multi-faceted world of all things #NerdLife, I was just a little Bro who enjoyed watching his cartoons. Many of said animated features were crafted by the creative minds over at Disney, so needless to say I’ve always had a soft spot for all things Disney. Although I’d never been to any of the Disney theme parks prior to this visit, I utilized many of my #ConLife-honed skills such as camping and advance planning to maximize my limited time in the house that Mickey built (I was only there for the 4th of July weekend). I endeavored to try and hit all the big attractions in both parks and get my hands on all of the #Exclusive #BroFuel options offered up only at the Disney theme parks. Getting my hands on #GoodEats is always a big part of my travel plans, and venturing to a place where everything is shaped like the head of a mouse means I needed to eat, well, EVERYTHING.
My partner in crime and I decided to start things off Saturday morning at the newer of the Disneyland theme parks, Disneyland California Adventure. Having read many great things about Cars Land and its most popular attraction, Radiator Springs Racers, I decided to make this my first stop. The ride did not disappoint in the slightest. A combination of Disney’s patented dark -ride style and a mini-rollercoaster, the ride (and Cars Land in general) was highly detailed and one of the best rides I’ve ever experienced. You know when you spend so much time trying to notice all the meticulously detailed sights and sounds the ride has to offer you feel as if you simply HAVE to go on the ride again; the creators of the attraction are getting it all right. The ride was so intricate we decided we had to ride it again later that night, and it was even better once the sun had set.
We wanted to make the most of our time in the park before the crowds became too heavy, and being big fans of Toy Story we raced over to Toy Story Midway Mania, where we were greeted by a friendly face:
This ride was another dark ride using 3D glasses, coupled with an on-rails shooter vibe. Another solid attraction, and your boy was able to come out on top in the high scoring, not-really-a-competition-competition!
After this it was time to hit up one of the attractions I’d heard a great deal about, The Tower of Terror. I’m a sucker for anything with an authentic, old -school vibe (probably why I’m digging the look of the Ant-Man suit so much) and this ride hit all those marks. It felt like a classic, and although it wasn’t nearly as high tech as either of the previous two I could see why it’s as popular as it is. By this time I was in dire need of some #BroFuel, so we crossed over to Disneyland in order to partake in some Mickey beignets and a mint julep, two things I’d been dying to try since reading about them. Both were great, although seconds after taking my seat a mosquito crashed straight into my refreshing green concoction. Don’t worry, Bros-a bug isn’t going to deter your Bro from eating something he is looking forward to!
Indiana Jones is one of the best characters ever created, portrayed by a hero to all those enamored with all things #NerdLife-this is a fact your boy swears by. As such, the Indiana Jones Adventure was a ride I was looking forward to. Unfortunately at this time it was closed, so we huffed it over to Star Tours, as we were in a bit of a Harrison Ford mood. For this ride we ventured into our air-conditioned spacecraft with C-3P0 as he took us on a wild ride while the seated area moved. This ride is an absolute must for #StarWars fans, and as such was easily my second favorite after Radiator Springs Racers.
After this it was time for a little more #BroFuel, so we grabbed a pretzel shaped like the Disney mascot. Sure, it was a bit pricey and was just a regular pretzel, but how often will I get to eat a Mickey head?
Fortunately after this the Indiana Jones ride reopened, so we were able to hit that up. Another cross between a dark ride and a mini-rollercoaster, the Indiana Jones ride was a bit more rickety than the other attractions we experienced that day. Nevertheless it was thoroughly entertaining, detailed and immersive, and this Bro labels it a must do for any fans of all things #NerdLife (or perhaps just fans of cool rides, Indiana Jones, Harrison Ford…you get the idea).
Having knocked out a majority of the rides we wanted to, we spent the remainder of the day strolling through California Adventure, going into every shop and taking in all the sights. We stopped for #BroFuel yet again at the Cove Bar, which came in the form of some decent (but not great) drinks and some positively stellar Lobster Nachos.
I spent a significant amount of time planning our trip to Disneyland and we’d been fortunate enough to knock out everything we wanted to on day one by this point…just about. After some chilling, grabbing a churro (apologies for the lack of pix) and hitting up every, single, shop because my partner in crime enjoys that sort of thing, we went to camp out for that evening’s World of Color show in Disneyland’s California Adventure. We managed to snag a good spot (as we heard the front was the place to avoid unless you were aching to get soaked) and waited for the show to begin. Being as we were venturing to the land of Disney on Independence Day, we were fortunate enough to see a tribute to those who serve their country prior to the show.
We were looking forward to World of Color, and for the most part the show did not disappoint. However, the beginning of the show was marred by technical issues. For reasons unbeknownst to me (I confess, I’m not a hardcore Disney parks enthusiast, so perhaps there’s some connection I’m unaware of), Neil Patrick Harris serves as the show’s narrator, along with Mickey Mouse. I’ve no qualms with this casting choice, however for the first ten minutes the audio of the dialogue between Neil and Mickey was inaudible. Although of the allure of these shows are undoubtedly the music and impressive visuals, as someone who enjoys the immersive aspects of all things #ConLife and #NerdLife, I was looking forward to the dialogue. Still, the blend of vintage songs and scenes intermixed with more modern pieces was quite entertaining, and although I believed the show was a bit too Frozen-heavy (I believe they played the whole song of Let It Go) I was glad I got to see World of Color. I was most excited for the multiple Disneyland shows and Disneyland eats, and neither disappointed!
After World of Color let out it was still fairly early. Considering we wanted to see the Disneyland fireworks and parade the following night, we wanted to call it an early night. That being said, Radiator Springs Racers was easily my favorite attraction of the trip and considering it consists of an incredibly elaborate setup, I had to experience it at night. Radiator Springs Racers was a-m-a-z-i-n-g at night: the attraction itself is situated in an immense area and was lit incredibly well. Couple this with the land of Radiator Springs oozing the retro-ambiance from the film courtesy of a bevy of neon lights, and the entire Cars area was easily my personal highlight of the trip.
After grabbing a hot chocolate it was time to head back to the hotel and get some rest. We had tons planned for the second and final day of Disneyland and we wanted to ensure we were well-rested. Scope the next post to see what we did!