Google+

DisneyDaze

Disneyland Explored

Disneyland explored.

Filtering by Category: Orange County CA

Music Monday: Richard Sherman Holds Masterclass for Local High School Students

A couple weeks ago, I referenced a visit by Disney Legend, Richard Sherman, to my daughter's high school. I have to admit that I was a bit jealous of my daughter but happy that she was given the opportunity for such a unique experience at her school. The website, Disney Examiner, was also in attendance and they put together a short video to give you some highlights. It's about 20 minutes long but it is was fun to hear some of the of students talk about this visit and also to hear some of the advice that Sherman shared with these high school student. 

You can view the video on YouTube HERE

 image from Orange County School of the Arts

image from Orange County School of the Arts

Happy Music Monday!

-Daisy

Disney Themed CANstruction Displays 2017

Every September, the CANstruction event happens at South Coast Plaza. This year marks the 10th Annual Design-Build Competition that benefits the Orange County Food Bank. This year, the number of displays/participants were smaller at the 3 designated locations that houses these creative structures. 

I was only able to visit Crystal Court at South Coast Plaza and saw these Disney themed displays. Remember that these are all mainly constructed by cans of food and other food packages. 

The following is called "CANtasmic! Don't Let Hunger Drag On!" and it was created by the Disneyland Resort (Design & Engineering). My favorite thing about this display is how they used the Fire Cheetos to create the dragon's fire breath. 

disneydaze.com

The next one I discovered is called "Stack Up on Tsum-Thing to Fight Hunger" by WATG & Oltmans. 

disneydaze.com

This last one that I came upon is called "May the Fork Be With You" by AECOM Orange. It was too hard to capture on a photo but they had lights set up this display to mimic the tie fighter shooting at the wall. There are designs on the back of the main wall. 

disneydaze.com

The participating teams are so creative. Specific cans, food packages, and placement of the canned goods all help to create a design. When you stand far away, you can see the image that they are trying to convey. When you get close to the sculptures, you really see how clever they were with their use of canned goods and the intentional placement of items. 

There are a total of 13 CANstruction displays this year that can be seen in 3 different Orange County locations. The bulk of them are at South Coast Plaza while several are actually at the John Wayne Airport. There is one structure at the ARTIC (Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermediate Corridor). You can vote for your favorite sculpture and donate to the OC Food Bank HERE. The event ends September 24, 2017.

Cheers!

-Daisy

Team Disney Anaheim & Its Connection to the Medal of Freedom Ceremony 2016

Today, President Obama honored the 2016 Medal of Freedom recipients. This particular award is considered the highest civilian honor given by the President of the United States. According to Executive Order 9586, the recipient is someone who has "an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors." The Medal of Freedom was established by President John Kennedy in 1963. 

 Main entrance of Team Disney Anaheim (TDA)

Main entrance of Team Disney Anaheim (TDA)

One of the 2016 recipients is Frank Gehry.  If you drive by Disneyland on the 5 Freeway, you pass a Frank Gehry building. The Team Disney Anaheim Building was designed by Gehry. The building opened in 1995 and continues to be the home to a variety of Disneyland operations teams including Disneyland Casting.  

This photo is of the main entrance of the building. If you have to go for an interview, this is where you would go and enter. The story that I heard about how the building got its yellow color is that Gehry was slow to choose the color for the main entrance of the building. He was being pressed when he saw a construction hat and said "That color. Scan the construction hat for that color." Again, that is just a story that I heard. 

The side of this building that faces the freeway is actually an entirely different color.  It is kinda of a green metallic and kind of shimmers as you drive by it. It's hard to tell that the other side of the building is a very bright yellow.

 Freeway side of Team Disney Anaheim.

Freeway side of Team Disney Anaheim.

If you drive by the freeway side, sometimes you'll see some signs on the windows or decals that Cast Members have placed so they can see their office window when driving by. The inside of the building is full of cubicles to maximize the workspace. Most Cast Members who have an office with a window share that space with another person. I did share an office with someone when I worked in this building. My Disneyland job back in the 1990s was in Documentation and I shared an office on the third floor, yellow side, with an office mate.

On a final note, another Disney building that Gehry designed is the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.  

 Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles

Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles

Next time you pass by the green building near Disneyland on the 5 Freeway, know that it was designed by note only a famous architect, but a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient.

Congratulations, Frank Gehry!

-Daisy

My Favorite Things About Mickey's Halloween Party (Disneyland)

My family and I were able to attend Mickey's Halloween Party a couple weeks ago. In the last couple years, more dates have been added as the yearly event has become more popular. Many dates sell out early and it is rare that there are tickets available the day of. This year it started as early as September 23rd with another sixteen dates including Halloween (Oct 31st). 

How does it work?

disneydaze.com

Mickey's Halloween Party is a separate, hard ticket event. It is an additional cost as it is a premium event. It's really a good value ($79-$99) if you don't have an Annual Pass, and just want a chance to go to Disneyland. You can enter the Park as early as 4pm and enjoy some of the daily offerings. The event ends at midnight. 

There are special food offerings that are Halloween themed. All the entertainment is exclusive to these Halloween party nights. There is a special event map that provides a lot of information. 

Here are some of my favorite things from Mickey's Halloween Party, 2016

COSTUMES, COSTUMES, COSTUMES!

Seeing what costumes people wear is one of the highlights for my family. People get really into it and can get clever. There are groups of people who will all dress to the same theme. You know they all enjoyed thinking up their costumes together. Here are a couple of my favorites:

 Tangled group

Tangled group

This was a family who came dressed as the floating lanterns from Tangled. They decorated their stroller to be the gondola from the scene. My husband spoke to the group. One of the ladies had the idea so it got done. Someone in the group owned a shirt shop and had these black shirts with the sun image on the front. Sorry, I didn't get a photo of that. It was really fun to see this group walking around the Park that evening. You knew immediately what they were. 

disneydaze.com

This moment was by far the funniest of the evening for me. To witness this scene at this particular location made me laugh. It was just the perfect setting. 

disneydaze.com

There are costume guidelines but so long as you don't have a mask that covers your face, than you are good. Seeing this family of dinosaurs walking around Disneyland made my night. 

My family kinda went east on our "costumes" this year. We all dug deep into a vast Disney library of characters that included a Disney movie, a Pixar short and Disney animated feature. 

 The Sparks family - Halloween 2016

The Sparks family - Halloween 2016

My daughter dressed up as Mia Thermopolis from the Princess Diaries. My husband, MacSparky, and I dressed up as Tadashi and Hiro from Big Hero 6. MacSparky bought the logo hat and shirt from Etsy. Sorry we didn't get a great photo of that. My younger daughter went as Bambino, from the Pixar short, La Luna. Hey...when else and where can you get dressed up in some fun costumes at Disneyland?

Halloween Party Entertainment

There is exclusive entertainment for Mickey's Halloween Party. There was a new parade this year that was shown twice during the evening. Billed as the "Frightfully Fun Parade", it featured a variety of Disney Villains along with some themed floats and ghoulish dancers. The pre-parade anticipation was all about the arrival of the Headless Horseman that made his way through the parade route. 

 The Headless Horseman. Photo by T. Dobson

The Headless Horseman. Photo by T. Dobson

 Opening parade float. Photo by C. Dee

Opening parade float. Photo by C. Dee

 The Haunted Mansion float

The Haunted Mansion float

 Princess and the Frog theme with Dr. Facilier

Princess and the Frog theme with Dr. Facilier

 The Evil Stepmother and Stepsisters

The Evil Stepmother and Stepsisters

There is a special fireworks show called "Halloween Screams - A Villainous Surprise in the Skies Fireworks." Check out THIS LINK is you want to see the entire fireworks show. 

We came upon this interactive scarecrow in Frontierland. He seemed to be enjoying the evening by making remarks at Guests' costumes as well as having conversation with passerbys. 

disneydaze.com

On the Rivers of America, the Cadaver Dans sang ghoulish songs all night. 

 Photo by C. Dee

Photo by C. Dee

 Fog along the Rivers of America

Fog along the Rivers of America

Photo Ops with Disney Characters

There are plenty of locations where people could take photos with Disney characters dressed in their Halloween costumes. There were also locations where you could take photos with lesser known or not frequently seen characters.  

disneydaze.com

Here's a photo of my sweet friend, Corrine, with Mickey & Minnie in their Halloween finery. Corrine went all out with her handmade and clever costume choice. It is a tribute to a classic DIsneyland attraction paying tribute to a famous Imagineer.  

disneydaze.com

Treat Stations

Where else can grown-ups trick-or-treat? When you enter, each Guest gets a small treat bag. There are designated treat stations throughout the park. You visit one and the area might have anywhere from 3 or more kiosks where you visit and "trick-or-treat." You'ld be surprised at how much candy you get. Some people love to visit them all and go back for more. We just went to get enough treats to snack through the night and then went on some more rides. 

disneydaze.com
 Treat station markers

Treat station markers

Halloween Projections

I think my favorite is all the different Halloween projections throughout the Park. It really adds to the atmosphere and are fun to see. At "it's a small world" and at the Castle, the projections have music that accompany the images. 

disneydaze.com

If you attend or plan to attend next year, make sure you go in costume. You will have more fun being dressed up. Make an effort. Or even better, plan to go with friends/family and think of a fun group costume. Get there early and have dinner so you can get that out of the way; then you have time to take photos with characters, make your way through the treat stations, see entertainment, or get on some rides.

Trick or Treat!

-Daisy

Friday Find: SADNESS CANstruction Design

It's that time of year at South Coast Plaza (Costa Mesa) where you can view some very creative designs that are all made out of food cans. The 9th Annual CANstruction® Orange County Design/Build Competition is on display. I found this entry by the Disneyland Resort. 

 CANSstruction entry by Disneyland Resort (2016)

CANSstruction entry by Disneyland Resort (2016)

It's Called "Together We CAN Turn Hunger Inside Out!" Clever, right? It's always interesting to see what materials are used to create the display. 

disneydaze.com
disneydaze.com

Here are some other photos so you can get an idea of how they used the particular food items to create things like the memory orbs and the facial features. 

 Face made with sardine cans and hair made from Licorice Ropes.

Face made with sardine cans and hair made from Licorice Ropes.

disneydaze.com
 Memory Orb made with Dole Fruit Bowls

Memory Orb made with Dole Fruit Bowls

 Memory Orb made from Dole Pineapple Cups.

Memory Orb made from Dole Pineapple Cups.

disneydaze.com
disneydaze.com
disneydaze.com

Here are some other CANstruction entries.  

Ewing Cole: Lose Hunger. Find Dory! (Dory Character) – 5,036 cans

  Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

Withee Malcolm Architects: Fighting Hunger Madders (Mad Hatter) –  6,000 cans

  Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

JRMA: BB-ATE (BB-8 from Star Wars) – 3,008 cans

  Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

Photo from CANStruction OC Facebook page

BB-8 is actually on display at the ARTIC (Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodel Corridor). Voting ends September 22nd. You can go to to this LINK to view each entry and more info. This annual event benefits the Food Bank of Orange County. 

Happy Friday!

-Daisy

Photo Tour: 2016 Disney CA Adventure Food & Wine Festival

These are the final days to experience Food & Wine as Sunday, May 1st will be the last day. 

disneydaze.com

The 2016 Food and Wine Festival at Disney California Adventure (DCA) has been a fun event offering. First, I think it's great that DCA finally has something exciting offered at this Park (vs. Disneyland). Second, how can you not love an event that has special food and wine offerings?

Each event booth has been inspired by California cuisine. There is a special Food & Wine Map that you can pick up to guide you. Here is my photo tour of the Festival Marketplace.

LA Style:  Celebrating the ethnic food fusion in the LA scene.

The Vineyard and Wine Country: Celebration of the Northern California vineyards and farms.

!Viva Fresca!: Experience Mexican inspired favorites made with some street flair.

Gold Rush: Try some small plates that reflect the California spirit.

The Farm: These dishes are packed with flavor and have that "farm to table" note. 

By the Bay: Delicious food offerings to celebrate the San Francisco area. 

 

There are a total of 8 Festival Marketplace booths to visit. Two of them sell only alcoholic drinks while the other six have a combination of food and drinks. Some of the nearby restaurants offer Festival inspired items. 

Go early to beat the crowd. The last weekend is sure to be busy. Pace yourself and go with a friend. Visit my post, My 3 Tips for Food & Wine Festival, for more.

Happy Eats!

-Daisy

My 3 Tips for Disney CA Adventure Food & Wine Festival 2016

I was excited to hear that the Disneyland Resort was finally going to host a Food & Wine Festival. I've been to the one a Walt Disney World and really enjoyed the international theme there. I knew the west coast addition would have to be smaller and quite different. I looked forward to having a fun new event in California. 

disneydaze.com

This food festival is a month (April 1- May 1) long event at Disney California Adventure. There are booths (referred to as the Marketplaces) for food and wine that are open everyday. Special events, guests and presentations only occur Friday, Saturday & Sunday. They have had special Food & Wine info and maps available at the turnstiles. After having experienced it the last two weeks, here are 3 of my personal tips to enjoy the  Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival. 

1) Go with a friend or 2 or 3... Sharing is caring.

Not only will it make the event more fun but going with a group will allow you to enjoy a small bite so you don't get too full. Then you will also have room to sample more food offerings. If you want to sample wine and beer, sharing sips will help you get to the next drink without having had too much at one booth. Friends will make standing in lines more entertaining.

disneydaze.com
disneydaze.com

2) Do some homework before you go.

The menus are online HERE so you can make a list of some dishes that intrigue you. Plus, if you or your friends have any food allergies, likes or dislikes, you can figure that out before you go and you won't be disappointed. Knowing the food offerings and also how much they cost will help you figure out how much money you'll need for this food adventure. Make a list of some things you really want to try. The food locations are divided up into 5 main booths and 1 alcoholic beverage booth. There is usually some sort of protein, appetizer and dessert offering. Suggested wine pairings are available, too. 

If you want to see detailed pictures and some reviews, I recommend visiting the Disney Food Blog (not official) and read their post.  Bookmark their site if you are a Disney foodie. They cover just about anything Disneyland and Walt Disney World food topics. 

3) Create a food & wine budget. 

Purchase a wearable event wristband. It will help you stay on a budget and make each food transaction easier. You won't be pulling out your wallet at every location. There are several designated locations to purchase these. You decide how much you put on it (if you did your homework, you'll know how much $$ you need). If you don't use it all up, you can still use it at any food or store location. It works like a gift card. 

Food & wine wearable gift card & 2016 event baseball cap (all separate purchases). 

BONUS TIP: Get a Boudin Baguette

Some of the food items have some delicious sauces. You'll have it leftover on your small plate. If you go purchase a bag of fresh sourdough sliced bread from the Pacific Wharf (Boudin Bakery), you can use that to dip into some of the festival dishes. The bakery will slice up their baguettes for you. It's also a good way to share a small plate with your friends. You can make sure not to waste any of those delicious sauces or festival food. 

 

Some other notes:

disneydaze.com
  • Pace yourself. Getting caught up in the fun atmosphere can happen. Everything always looks good and when you are Food & Wine and you'll want to try almost everything. Your eyes are usually bigger than you stomach. Go on a ride or see a show in between sampling the Festival Marketplace (food booths).
  • While the food booths are open everyday (11-8), the special events, wine and beer seminars are only available on the weekends. Check the website for reservations and more info.
  • Some of the restaurants at Disney California Adventure are also offering special menu items that are "festival inspired" entrees. 
  • If you are an Annual Passholder, make sure to stop by the Blue Sky Cellar and pick up a commemorative button and recipe card. You can also purchase an event lanyard that includes food tickets. 
  • Check out some of the third-party vendors that are participating this year. There are several small businesses that have things like olive oil and sauces available for purchase from their carts. 
  • Finally, there are some special event merchandise available. It's a small and basic offering of event logo caps, t-shirt, kitchen towels and plastic appetizer holders. 

There are only a couple more weekends to enjoy the Food and Wine Festival. If you have been to the one at Walt Disney World, leave that experience and expectations there. Hopefully this will be a Disneyland event that will continue to evolve and grow every year. 

Cheers!

-Daisy

Disney Characters Inspire CANstruction 2015 Designs

I was at South Coast Plaza the other day and was able to walk around and see some of the really creative designs the this year's Canstruction OC. Now in it's 8th year, the event usually takes place every September alongside the Festival of Children. It is pretty fun to see the creative teamwork that goes one to create the following sculptures that are all made from mostly canned goods. It is a building competition and these are some of the entries.

All the canned sculptures are roped off. There is an information board at each one so you can see exactly how many cans and what kind of cans were used in each design. The team makeup is listed. They also have a concept photo of what is is suppose to look like. I find that the most interesting. Most of the time you can see the design but it's fun to see what the concept was and how it is translated into the actual can art. 

This year there seemed to be a good number of canned sculptures that were inspired by Disney characters. This first set of photos is the Canstruction was done by Disneyland (Design & Enginerring plus lots of Disney VoluntEARS and other Disneyland segments).  

 Designed by Disneyland Resort Design and Engineering 

Designed by Disneyland Resort Design and Engineering 

The following Canstruction entires were inspired by Disney movies. 

This canned sculpture took much thought into finding the right canned good to create this simple yet impressive design. Let's say that THE DARK SIDE had a very strong influence over this team. 

disneydaze.com

IT STARTS WITH ONE CAN.
TO FEED THE HUNGRY.
TO LIFT THE SPIRIT.
TO CHANGE THE WORLD.

Canstruction is using one can of food as a catalyst for change.
One Can to represent the building blocks of massive sculptures.
One Can to prove that every act of kindness makes a difference.

The entries are judged in categories such as Best Use of Labels, Structural Ingenuity, Best Meal, and Jurors Favorite. Winners will be announced soon. At the end of the exhibit all the cans are donated to the Orange County Food Bank. This final weekend for this event so it's your last chance to see some of these cool canned sculptures.

"It starts with one can..."

-Daisy

On Board John Wayne's Yacht, Wild Goose

A couple weeks ago, MacSparky and I were invited to a dinner event on board the Wild Goose. This is the yacht that used to belong to legendary actor, John Wayne

 Photo taken just before sunset - Jan 2015

Photo taken just before sunset - Jan 2015

First, we had to explain to my kids that John Wayne was a real person who was famous actor known mostly for his cowboy movies and famous drawl. He's not just a statue that you see at the John Wayne Airport in Orange County. That is how they know him. Then we had to explain how John Wayne made his home in Newport Beach and that he had a well known yacht that he loved named Wild Goose. Kids can make you feel old pretty fast. 

All guests had access to walk through the yacht and see the various rooms. I remember reading how tall John Wayne was so, all I could think of was how he must have had to duck... a lot, to get through the doors and just walk around some of the rooms. The ceilings were pretty low. He must have spent a lot of time on decks. There was also a table where he used to play a lot of cards with his fellow actor friends. There must have been some pretty crazy bets around the card table in addition to their interesting conversations. 

There was not a tour guide to show us around but there was plenty of time to explore before we set sail on a harbor cruise. The captain and some crew members were available to ask questions about the Wild Goose. Some of the guests had done their homework or were familiar with the yacht so they provided a lot of historical information. I did learn that it was a US Navy mine sweeper in WWII before it was converted into a personal yacht. The Wild Goose is actually on the National Register of Historic Places.

Hornblower Cruises purchased the Wild Goose and now offers dinner cruises for weddings and corporate events. There's a full bar on the bottom level and the top level has been converted for a seated dining area. It was fun to have dinner and sail through the Newport Harbor on a rainy January evening. The food was your average catered event food. Knowing the history and stories of the Wild Goose made for a fun evening. 

If you want to know more about John Wayne and his yacht, here was a good article that speaks to the tough guy image and his love for the sea. Huell Howser also featured the Wild Goose in a California's Gold episode (#10009) about Newport Boats. 

Living in Southern California means access to many places and things to do. So from time to time, I may write about some of the things I get to do besides going to Disneyland. 

Sharing some virtual sunshine with you this weekend!

Daisy