One question or comment that I seem to get a lot lately from readers is regarding all the changes that are going on across Disney Parks. Disney fans are creatures of habit, myself included. We like things as they are, and when attractions or shows either retire or get revamped, our initial thoughts are often mixed. Change is hard normally, but sometimes change is good when you give it a chance. I’ll use my own instances for examples, let’s start with Wishes.
Last year when I first heard that the beloved fireworks show “Wishes” was retiring at the Magic Kingdom, my heart was shattered. I’m not even kidding. “They can’t retire Wishes!” was my first thought. Everyone loves Wishes, how can this be? Well, before that “Celebrate the Magic” was retired, and I was still upset about that. I absolutely loved the Wishes/Celebrate the Magic combo, and now we were losing BOTH. My kids grew up watching Wishes, I have fond memories of the boys and their first Disney trips when they were little. The look on their faces watching my favorite fireworks show will always be in my head and heart, that’s something that never can be replaced. On the last night of us watching Wishes together as a family, I cried. Oh gosh, did I CRY! The kids knew it was coming too, because we stopped to get napkins before taking our spot for the show, they know me so well. That was one of the only times I watched Wishes without taking pictures. We watched that last time, arm in arm, a kid on both sides. I wanted those memories to stick, and I knew it was over. That following weekend was media weekend for Pandora and the new show, “Happily Ever After.” I’ll admit, I was still a little heartbroken about Wishes, so this replacement had a LOT to live up to with me. The media had a blocked off area in the hub, so I went and waited in anticipation. As the show started, I was still giving it some “side eye” as they say. It wasn’t my Wishes. As Happily Ever After went on, my heart started to thaw more and more, and by the end I was crying. I think the point I fully gave in was at the Tangled scene, I was sold. So you see, change is rough, but sometimes it’s not horrible if you just give it a chance. I know, I know…. I still miss Wishes too. But Happily Ever After is pretty darn amazing too!
Another hot button change last year was the re-theming of the Tower of Terror at California Adventure in Anaheim. Gasp, Disney was turning the beloved tower into a Guardians of the Galaxy ride! The sadness of it all! I remember putting out that information, and our Facebook page blew up with comments. Needless to say, people weren’t happy. Here we go again… more change. In July we were going out to cover the D23 Expo, so our first trip to the Disneyland Resort was happening. To say we were excited was an understatement. The day we went to California Adventure, one thing on our “must do” list was certainly “Guardians of the Galaxy; Mission Breakout.” I had to see what the hype was about, plus my husband and kids love Marvel, so we were making it a priority. They still have the old Fast Pass system out there, so we didn’t ride Guardians until the end of the day. Anticipation, right? As we approached the line, I was excited but still…. here comes the “side eye” again. I love the Tower of Terror, and I truthfully didn’t WANT to love this revamped version. The queue line was awesome, and we were ready to ride. As the experience went on, I liked it more and more. We walked off Mission Breakout LAUGHING, it was fantastic. Honestly, this ride is like a party, it’s like nothing we’ve ever done. My only regret is that we rode at the end of the day, because we all wished we could go on a second time. In this case, change was good…. and fun. We can’t wait to go back again!
These are just two examples of the evolution of Disney attractions. Right now, there is SO much going on across Disney Parks. Disneyland Resort is adding Star Wars Land, and changing Paradise Pier into Pixar Pier. Here at Walt Disney World, we have changes happening everywhere. Toy Story Land at the Studios is opening in June, Star Wars Land is progressing quickly too. Let’s not forget that Epcot is getting a Guardians of the Galaxy ride where Universe of Energy was. There is so much happening at WDW, from parks to resorts, and it’s all pretty exciting. Hollywood Studios is getting the biggest overhaul, and in my opinion, it was needed and I’m happy to see what’s coming. While we surely will miss our Disney favorites that close (The Great Movie Ride, Osborne Lights, etc), we can also try to be positive about it and look forward to the magic that is coming. Disney never disappoints! I for one am thankful for the memories that I have with my family when it comes to attractions and shows that are gone, but I look forward to making new memories too. Walt said that as far as the Parks go, we have to keep moving forward, and that’s exactly what’s being done.
What about you? What attractions do you miss, and what are you looking forward to? Be sure to tell us about them in the comments!
Featured image courtesy of Joe Diebold!
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