A couple weeks ago, I was trolling Twitter like I always do and saw that Disneyland would be announcing their next meetup in 30 minutes. I stalked their Twitter, kept refreshing, 3pm passed and no announcement. I was getting antsy, Duke wanted my attention, the baby was up for a feeding and I waved my Husband off like I needed to concentrate. I was on it. After I hit send on the email, I started freaking out and wondering if I did everything right.
And I did! I was one of the 33 invited guests to preview Cars Land
! We were allowed to each bring in 1 guest (33 x 2 = Route 66!) and I decided to take Duke because I wanted to spend time with him to show him that he is still important after the birth of his baby brother. He was so excited!
There was a table set up outside the Disney California Adventure gates and we checked in a little before 5pm. People kept asking what the sign-up for was and one Mega-Fan actually approached me and offered $300 for our spots. I told him, "No, Thank you." - I mean really, how would that make me look to my 6 year old that I promised?
Security was super tight. It was a long walk from the gates to Blue Sky Cellar where we checked in our electronic devices and signed out headsets to listen on the tour. We sat down to watch the Cars land promo video - it was interesting. After the video, Duke and I took a look at the models. It seemed to take forever waiting for all the guests to show up. Since I didn't have my Droid, I had no idea how long we were in there but it felt like a good hour.
Erin Glover - Disney Anaheim's Social Media and Print Manager gathered us around and told us that we would be split into groups of 2 led by Imagineers Kathy Mangum
(Executive Producer and VP Disney Imagineering) and Kevin Rafferty, Sr. (Walt Disney Imagineering Senior Concept Writer/Director) - This is when I realized what a once in a lifetime opportunity we were given. What an honor!
Walking into Radiator Springs was magical. There is no other way to explain it. All of us adults were cheering and Duke was clapping his hands. Seeing Cadillac Range was breathtaking. After taking it all in, we took a group photo. Since Duke was the only kid he got us right in the front next to Kathy and Kevin! Our group was led by Kevin and he had the best stories. Walking down Route 66 and stopping at the corner of Cross Street was memorable. When will I ever get the chance to stand on that corner with less than 100 people? Probably never.
Other highlights: The flowers outside of Luigi's are made out of car parts, Luigi's Flying Tires ride looks amazing (Duke was sad we didn't get to ride it), Sally's Cozy Cones are HUGE! Duke was sad that none of those food stands were open. Kevin commented that the Chili Cone Queso is AMAZING. You can also peek in Sally's office and there was a little Buzz holding a cone up. Cute. Flo's Diner looks sweet in it's 50s glory. Kevin said that there will be Coca Cola BBQ Sauce. Doc's clinic is cool, I liked the x-ray and eye chart. Kevin commented that Ramone listens to War & Malo. That made me laugh. Cali is cultured, baby!
We got to ride Mater's Junkyard Jamboree. It looks innocent enough but it really whips you around. My advice: Hang onto the bar or you will slide and smash each other.
After the ride, we said thanks and headed back to Blue Sky Cellar to pick up our things. And to my surprise we were given gifts! I was blown away by the gifts. We each got a Cars Land drawstring bag, Disney Parks Blog pin and tin sign Mater's Junkyard Jamboree mounted on wood with a small plaque commemorating the night. IT IS AWESOME.
THANK YOU SO MUCH DISNEY!
CARS LAND Officially Opens on June 15th, 2012!
We finished up around 730pm and invited to enjoy California Adventure and meetup again at 9pm to view World of Color from a reserved section. Duke wanted an ice cream and to hang out in A Bug's Land - we had such a good time! We debated watching World of Color but it was getting late on a school night and we were missing the baby. We jumped on Ariel's Undersea Adventure and called it a night.
I'm not greedy with information - If you want in on special events...
Disclosure: Duke & I were invited guests along with 64 others for reading Disney Parks Blog. All opinions are my own.
Labels: Cars Land Preview, Disney Parks Blog Cars Land Meetup