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Old 01-05-2011, 11:45 AM   #1
ironpig70
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Join Date: Nov 2004
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Disneyland at Christmas 2010

First time we have gone at Christmas and while the crowds were insane we saw everything we wanted and then some. We stayed offsite at the Ramada. on our last day we did the majority of shopping at DTD and the discount on the food reciepts paid back big time.

Due to the lenght of the report I am going to post each day seperately.

Tuesday 21
LEGOLAND rained like mad place near empty. Only a few select rides open. Sea life is a small aquarium took about an hour to do. They had Leg men in the tanks with the fish aside from that there is nothing exceptional about it. Park closed early at 2pm due to rain.
LaQuinta Inn was a great hotel. The staff was friendly and there continental breakfast is exceptional. All kinds of pastries, toast, juice and make your own waffles.

Wednesday 22
Got to LEGOLAND to find that with an incoming storm they decided not to open the park. Due to reservations could not go to park at Disneyland. Went to DTD. Had pizza at Naples. Exceptional food. Exceptional service. The cost does reflect this. Looked into DVC by doing the tour DVC gave everybody 2 fast passes for any ride that takes Fast Passes for the next 3 days. The Grand California Villas are great but pricey. Walked through the lobbies of all the Disney hotels. Checked into our Hotel the Ramada Inn about 4pm.

Last edited by ironpig70; 01-05-2011 at 12:01 PM.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:46 AM   #2
ironpig70
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Thursday 23
First day at Disneyland. Got to the gate early and watched folks due early entry all the way up to 15 minutes prior to gate opening. Don’t know if they had multiple days or not but there were a lot of them. They let us in to the end of Main Street for a rope drop. Got there 10 minutes before opening we were about 8 people back. By 8 am the crowd was all the way back to the ice cream place. For this trip we decided to use Ride Max and also head into Frontier area first.
Well Frontier Land was empty first up was to get a Fast pass at Indian Jones; ride was down so we jumped on Jungle Cruise and got the second boat. Got off and got a fast pass. Then off to Pirates and we just walked onto a boat. So empty in fact the boat behind us was empty. Ride Max said to get another fast pass for splash but we were too far ahead for one. Then off to Tarzans Tree which was closed. We headed to the haunted Mansion and walked on with about a 5 minute wait. Then off to splash. Got there in time to get another Fast pass, so we got one and then rode it. Also little waits. Then hit pooh. Decided to try and get us back on track and my fast pass window was open so we grabbed a fast pass from Big thunder and headed for Indiana Jones. It was down yet again. So off to the tiki show. Left tiki and did Indiana jones. My fast pass window was up so the wife took the 2 little ones and went to Pooh while me and the oldest went over to Space and got a fast pass. Met up with everybody and got in line to grab Poohs autograph. Left Pooh and headed to lunch as it was now 11am. WOW is all I can say. We scheduled lunch into ride max for an hour but only needed about half that. We then wanted to get on the Columbia but by the time we got there it were pulling out and the Twain was coming in so we hit that. The Big thunder. Got Off that and headed for the Columbia which was final boarding and we lucked out in timing and got on. By this time the area was a zoo and decided to get out via the train. Took 2 trains till there was room for us. Got off in tomorrow land and nabbed an autotopia fast pass before riding space. At 130 wait tome was 75 minutes, fast pass return was 950-1050. Yet we got onto the ride in 15 minutes. Then off to the Jedi training. When the Jedi Master came out I was standing behind my son in my Oregon Ducks sweatshirt and the boy had one on also. He was the 2nd kid called. The Jedi master is a duck fan. LOL. He also called up a boy in a duck shirt. Boy had a great time. We then decided to check out the monorail and jumped on it to dtd for a snack at the candy store. Back to the park and grabbed a fast pass to Buzz before hitting autotopia. Then off to see Santa and reindeer. While there we got autographs from Pluto, woody and Jessie. Needed a potty stop so stopped in fantasyland which was packed. Big named rides like Dumbo or peter pan where 45-60 minutes lines. We hit peter pan which was quick loading. It was now 6 and we decided to grab dinner and decided to leave the park. Not a great idea at parade time but we found out that there is a back way out of the park Disney opens for this. You actually walk out behind the buildings in a “service” area so it’s not that bad to get out. Got done with dinner around 7 and decided to call it a night as we have been going for the last 12 hours and the kids needed a break. That and my feet.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:47 AM   #3
ironpig70
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Friday 24
Today we did DCA. The park did a soft opening at opened at 930. Everything was closed except Soarin. Most people near us were not in the know about this. Headed to Soarin and they were having technical difficulties. Grabbed FP’s and wanted in the line while the wife took the kids for pictures with Towmater and Lighting. We then decided to head out and what else may be going. Saw Goofy at the plane and got an autograph and pictures. Headed to GRR and a line was forming so we hoped in line. Used the free lockers for the back pack. The day was already warm so the wait was longer as they were letting out lots of empty boats. Oldest daughter had on a poncho and the water came from the bottom of boat and got her wet. Went back towards soaring had a snack then did soarin which was fantastic. Headed to Bugs land and chip and dale where there with Donald got there autographs. Hit “it’s tough to be a bug” and then toured bugs land which was great for the kids as all the rides where there size. Then off to the pier. Grabbed a fast pass to screamin and then crossed back over to the zephyr. Did all the rides in order from there minus the swings. Kids where not thrilled with mickeys wheel to start but once we started pointing out stuff they joined in and started pointing out stuff or asking about stuff. Then we hit toy story mania which had about an hour wait. It was a pretty fun ride where you sit in a car and pull a string on a gun and hit targets when the car stops. Had several different areas where it stopped. Kids enjoyed this. Wife took the kids on tritons carousel while we did California screamin. When we got to the CM I asked for the front and she directed us to the right front area. We had to wait 1 extra coaster which was maybe 5 minutes but definitely worth it. Then lunch at “Mexican”. Food was good but the kid’s meals where small and any kid over 6 you’d might opt for the adult meal. Then we decide to see the Pixar parade. My son and I had on “ducks” sweatshirt like we did the entire trip. One of the guys on the “hop stilts” stop in front of us and said “Go Ducks”. That was so awesome. After the parade we hit electronica which was a neat little show that was a preview for what was happening backstage which we skipped. Left DCA for DL and arrived at parade time. Found a spot on Main Street in front of the “hat shop” where the parade was coming out. Kids made their way to the rope in front. After the parade we decide to see the fireworks that are why we came over. Well it was a cattle drive to the castle. We needed a bathroom break so we split up. Wife found a spot while I took the kids. We ended up just to the right of the castle(while looking at it) there was a tree in our way which made picture taking a little hard but a great view none the less. Couple behind us had 2 little girls that they were trying to hold up to see the castle and there was plenty of room at our feet and the CMS didn’t mind that our kids where just outside the rope so we invited the kids up. Family was so thankful. I figured it was my turn to do it as somebody did it for us at the parade. The lighting of the castle was so magically. And the fireworks with the castle were just over the top. Getting out after the fireworks was another shuffle. Was kind of nice in a way because you were going slowly you could see all the park had to offer.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:48 AM   #4
ironpig70
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Saturday Dec 25
It’s Christmas. Today brought a challenge as my brother and his 2 boys joined us so now we are a party of 8. Also I am a big Disney planner and he is not. But we he lacks in Disney he brings in craziness. Today was a shot gun approach. We started in fantasyland as my DD6 wanted to ride Dumbo. And DL had MM available everyday so people where already in Fantasyland and lines where forming so no ride plan here. We just let each kid pick a ride and went for it. Got all of FL done expect the train and Alice as Alice was not running yet. Went to get on Matterhorn but it was having problems so off to Nemo which had an hour long ride so we skipped it and hit Space Mountain for fast passes. We then hit Matterhorn. Got off and headed for it’s a small world which had an hour wait. Skipped it and headed for toontown. Grabbed a rr fast pass and my wife who’s not in the fast know didn’t know we could have a sm and rr fast pass. All the character signings where an hour long. We decided to ride whatever and do whatever despite the wait as an hour seemed the norm. We did the tree house and gadget coaster then used our fast pass. At this point the place was packed and it was futile to try and ride anything. Decided to grab the train out. The line for the train was all the way down towards the toon town tunnel so we walked out. Was a nice retreat. Sat on the bed and ate lunch with no shoes on. Went back in the park and tried for an autotopia pass but they were down so off to space mountain. Then off to NO square. As we went by the fast passes it was open so we grabbed some. Hit Tarzans tree while my oldest and brothers oldest hit Indiana jones using the dvc fast passes. We then got in line for poc. Kids loved it and my boy grabbed the rail as he knew there was a drop. LOL. We then headed for the Haunted mansion. Kids wanted splash instead so we headed there to use up the fast passes from DVC. Got there with no wait. My youngest dd didn’t wanna go so we did pooh instead. We then did the HM using the fast passes. Nice to do the ride over y now it was just before 7 so time to get a spot for F. The place was packed so we got a spot a little left of center. My oldest and brothers oldest headed for BTRR. My youngest fell asleep on my lap as we waited. At about 8 it started sprinkling and we decided to go as soon as the kids where back. Then the fireworks started so then after fireworks. The skies opened up and we headed for the rail depot, it was packed so we opted to try and walk out. There are 8 of us 3 of which are little kids and it was a cattle drive. Came out of frontier land to CMs directing traffic and wishing us happy holidays. We kept messing with them in a jovial way like when a CM had a different color light we asked if he was a rookie. They were very receptive and played along. It was raining pretty good and everybody was wet.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:49 AM   #5
ironpig70
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Sunday 26
Back to DCA. Got in again at 930 and this time the cm walked us up to get a world of color fast pass, I’d say it was more of a mess then needed. Then off to soarin. Came out to see Minnie and got an autograph and picture. Went up the hill and rode GRR. After 1 ride the wife took the 2 little ones to redwoods. We hit GRR 2 more times before heading to TTT to get a fast pass. Headed to redwoods for a break then off to monsters Inc. which was having problems so off to TTT. After TTT back to monster then off to bugs land. Hit the Aladdin show at 220. Great show with a lot of references to today like wikileaks, face book and Lindsey lohan. Took lunch at Asian and had chicken teraky which was great for park food counter service. After lunch we hit up the board walk. The mobile army band stopped in front of Ariel’s grotto for a little show. The kids hit up king Neptune’s while my brother and I headed for toy story mania. Wife and kids met up with us in line. Get to the boarding area and a Cm opened an emergency exit for somebody. Looked up and saw it was Chip Foose. I wished him and his family a merry Christmas and happy new year and shook his hand. Very nice guy. Got off the ride and went down stairs and Chip was there taking pictures with some folks. Asked for a picture and he obliged. Kind of felt bad as he was on holiday but he was very nice. Hit all the rides in order back around the pier. Got inline for world of color and I must say it was a mess. The red was on one side and blue and yellow on the other. There were no signs and if you didn’t ask a CM you’d be lost. They pushed us into the area and it was very crowded and the kids couldn’t see as everybody had to stand. I’d prefer if they did like all other outdoor shows and let us fight it out. Great show but not fun with a 50 pound kid on your shoulders trying to watch around the dad in front of me doing the same. Next up we hit GRR again. Got back into the dock and nobody in line so we stayed on and did it again. Got in again and the wife and little daughter didn’t want to ride again and my boy wanted to do TTT again so we hit that to close the night.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:59 AM   #6
ironpig70
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Monday 27
Last day. We hit the park for morning entry. Got to security about 720 and security was there but they wouldn’t let us in. About 10 till we got to go in and wait at the gates. At 7 sharp the gates to DL opened and we headed to nemo. Got on right away with just our party on the sub. Headed to buzz and walked on. Then onto space which had a minor wait of 5 minutes. Kids wanted to do it again and this time the wait was a bit longer the queue said 10 minutes. Got off at just after 8 and there were folks running to space. We hopped in line for orbital and got in on the second round. Then off to autotopia to grab a fast pass. By this time it was maybe 815 and the space queue was at 30 minutes. We split up the party into 2 parties of 4. My brother and his 2 boys and my son headed off to do rides while the wife and my 2 girls went to do princess stuff. We hit it’s a small world and I must say it is a must see for the holidays. Was really a great ride. Then off to the princess faire. Got in line at 845 and got Belle, tianna and Ariel’s autographs. Then had a snack while waiting for the show at 10. When the show started they asked for all the kids to come down and dance. My little girl got down there and had a great time. Many girls wore princess dress and mine was snow white. The princesses left and so did a majority of the audience. About 10 minutes after the show they returned and we got snow white, auora and Cinderella’s autographs. It was now 1030 so I’d say we did good with 6 autographs and a show in 1 ˝ hours. Then we hit pixie hollow and saw a couple fairies and tinker bell the line was not that long in length but the wait was an hour. Then we headed to autotopia to meet up with our group. Heard a person ask about the nemo wait and a CM said “to that umbrella it is 90 minutes so I’d say 100 to 120 minutes”. That whole area was a sea of people. Did autotopia and when you exit you are above the crowd and it was a parking lot. We decided to be lunch time so we headed for the gates. Made a quick stop to get a silhouette picture of the kids. Brother did some shopping. The waits in the store was absurd. It took near 5 minutes for the CM to ring up 1 person with a couple items. This was not the first experience this happened. Took a nice break in the hotel.
Got back to the park as a mass was leaving. We grabbed the train to NO and headed to Tom Sawyer Island. We just let the kids loose. Was really nice to let them run. About 5pm we headed back to NO square. We tossed down a blanket for Fantasmic. I know we where 4 hours ahead of the game but we where tired from the previous 4 days and this mornings early entry. We took turns watching our spot. My brother and I watched it while the wife and oldest DD where off. Then they watched it while we went to make light sabers. We then had dinner from the French Market while waiting. I had the bread bowl which doesn't look like much but it is so good and filling. After you eat the soup you can eat the bowl. It is kinda messy eating the bowl so grab extra napkins. Wife had pot roast which she enjoyed and oldest DD had the chicken. For the little kids they had mac and cheese. If you tell them it is to go they will put it in a to go container with a lid which makes it easier to transport. Trying to carry a tray through crowds is a fun game. After dinner we sat back and waited for Fantasmic. We where at the rail just to the right of the exit from the rafts. Just where it becomes flat. It was very cold while we waited. Would be nice to have an extra blanket or jacket for the wait. Next trip we will be bringing space blankets. After a great show the wife and I and 2 littelest kids headed back on the railroad back to the entrance to head to the hotel. My brother took the others and closed the parks.
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Old 01-05-2011, 02:08 PM   #7
amamax2
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Great report! You sure did a lot and seemed to have a good attitude despite the crowds.
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