By Ted Schredd
Well I went to Disneyland with Fun researcher #36 and #53. It was the day before the grand 50 th celebration so it was relatively quiet.
Disneyland is really a wonderful place for kids and adults alike. It is still in alignment with Walt Disney's original concept of fun for all.
Now before I go on my rant - I do have to tell you about my favorite moment. Disney has a fleet of electric scooters for the oldies to get around. While touring the grounds I heard a large scraping sound. When I looked around there was Gramma taking out a garbage can and some empty baby strollers. She stopped and immediately hit the go button to keep pushing that garbage can all the way into Tomorrow Land . Now you say this isn't funny but it all happened at the raging speed of 3 km/h (2 mph). The Out of Control Disney Scooter Patrol quickly helped Gramma from her terrifying death ride. Nobody was hurt and gram managed to get her joy ride in. (Sorry no pictures available).
Now back to the rant.
There are three major aspects that I noticed on my fourth visit to Disneyland;
- People go on the rides to get an adrenaline rush. If you are not creating your own adrenaline experiences in your life, a roller coaster ride is a great way to get your fix. I prefer to ski, bike or inline skate to get mine. I like my rushes surrounded by beautiful scenery and not loud music, line ups and general chaos. I like my adrenaline served to me in a dish that I can control. Being strapped in like a space monkey wasn't nearly as satisfying.
- Disneyland is a massive marketing machine. Nearly every ride is built so that when you exit you have to walk through the souvenir store on the way out. By the time you pay for parking, passes, food and souvenirs, hotels and transfers - you could easily spend over 700 dollars a day for a family of four. What other fun activities could you do with 700 dollars a day?
- At the end of the day - everybody is bitchy and tired. Nearly every fun activity that I like to participate in (outdoor activity or just hanging with friends) makes me feel tired but I am never bitchy. I feel invigorated, inspired and my soul has been giving a car wash of happiness. Every time I have gone to Disneyland, the march to the parking lot at the end of the day has yet to reveal a giddy person. They are ALL tired and cranky.
But Disneyland should be on your top 100 fun things to do list. It is fascinating to watch children's eyes light up and to hear the laugh and giggle of kids of all ages. Even though I did have some negative things to say, maybe I am just a cranky old fart that doesn't like crowds and putting out cash at every turn. For some people Disneyland is one of the great fun adventures on the planet.
Here is a quick review of what we thought were the best rides:
The Twilight Zone Hotel of Terror
Amazing set design but the ride itself was a little disappointing. Basically it was an elevator ride that went up and down really fast. 4/10
Soaring over California
Kind of an Imax film with wings. You are strapped into your seat and then you are moved towards the giant screen. Great photography and a pleasant feeling of actually flying. 6/10
Grizzly River Run
A simulated white water rafting experience. After going whitewater rafting with Hyak at least two dozen times I would say that Disney has done a great job on this one. You get wet , you ride some rapids and the time and effort spent on the design of the details is truly amazing. 8/10
Great roller coaster. O to 90 km (55 mph) in less than five seconds. Big speed - big thrills. I only rode it once but Fun Researcher #36 and #53 when four times in a row. 8/10
Indiana Jones Adventure
Wow! What a ride. It was interesting to see how a little technology can make a ride way more fun. Less jarring of the ribs and plenty of action. I really felt like I was in an Indiana Jones movie. We rode it at the end of the day which was good because we all felt it was the best ride in the park. 9/10
One of the orginal Disney rides. A rollercoaster through a mountain. But holy smashed body parts. Every turn I slammed into the side of the coaster and didn't find it enjoyable at all. I just wanted to get off - the other two Fun Researchers loved it but I hated it. 2/10
Another epic Disney adventure. This ride has a combination robot variety show of Briar Rabbit and a log ride combined. So it was either thrills or entertainment. Nobody build a ride like these original Disney experiences. 8/10
Pirates of the Caribbean
Another epic Disney attraction. The thrill part isn't that thrilling but the theatrical can not be beat. Only Disney has this kind of huge presentation that really pushes oyur imagination buttons. Good Job Walt! 7/10