Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Grim Grinning Ghosts Come Out To Socialize

I'm skipping day 5 of our trip and going right into the Haunted Mansion 40th Anniversary Event. I've never been to a Disney event like this before so I wasn't sure what to think. I think it was amazing, but then again, it doesn't take much to make me happy. I'm not going to go into all the details of the event but I'll list some highlights for you:

*Meeting Jim Shore. This isn't the first time I've met him but he's always so friendly.

*Meeting Jason Surrell

*The lecture with Jason Surrell, Kim Irvine and Tony Baxter.

*Seeing Alice Davis and X Atencio

*The "wedding" of Constance and George.

*Seeing Phineas, Gus and Ezra. Too bad I didn't get to have a picture taken with them.

*The food wasn't too bad, but I think I liked the cake the best.

*The highlight of all highlights was when X Atencio sang a part of Grim Grinning Ghosts. I found a clip of it on You Tube. Check it out:

I hope you enjoy the pictures.

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Our Disneyland Adventure: Day 4

I'm finding it hard to put into words our experience at Club 33. First of all, to be lucky enough to even dine there (for 4 hours) was amazing. The moment we walked through the door we didn't want to leave. Ever inch of Club 33 was gorgeous and the staff was so friendly. It seemed that once you get a job there, you never leave. Our waitress has been there for 26 years and the top person has been there for 40 years. While we didn't see any famous people, we heard wonderful stories about John Lassiter and others. It was nice that you could go out on the balcony and take pictures and enjoy the view. Plus, laughing at the people below you that weren't in Club 33 was fun too (ha ha).

I owe a HUGE thank you to someone that I've never met before but sprinkled me with some pixie dust and made a dream come true. I won't mention his name but THANK YOU, you are a wonderful person! I hope we get to meet someday...maybe at Club 33 (wink, wink)

You know by reading this blog that I'm not a great writer. So I thought the best thing to do is to copy here what is printed on the History Sheet.

Club 33, Royal Street, New Orleans Square, Disneyland

The colorful realism and the precise architectural detail of New Orleans Square in Disneyland captures the atmosphere of the nineteenth-century New Orleans French Quarter. Glancing upwards to the second balcony and the ornate iron railings hung with flowers, one would hardly guess that they surround the little-known but quite elegant Club 33.

Years ago, Walt Disney felt that a special place was needed where he could entertain visiting dignitaries and others in a quiet, serene atmosphere where superb cuisine and distinctive decor would complement one another. He asked artist Dorothea Redmond to provide watercolor renderings of what such a place might look like. Accompanied by renowned decorator Emil Kuir, Walt and his wife traveled to New Orleans to select many of the beautiful antiques that are on display. After years of planning, Club 33 became a reality on June 15, 1967. Sadly enough it was never seen by its creator because of his untimely death six months earlier.

Club 33, so named after its address, 33 Royal Street, is comprised of two dining rooms and several adjoining areas, all of which hold a wide array of magnificent antiques and original works of art. After ascending in the French lift to the second floor, guests enter into The Gallery. Here they find interesting items such as an oak telephone booth with beveled leaded glass panels adapted from the one used int he Disney motion picture "The Happiest Millionaire" and a rare console table which was found in the French Quarter of New Orleans. In The Gallery, as elsewhere in the Club, are many original works by Disney artists and sketches done as design studies for New Orleans Square and the Pirates of the Caribbean attractions.

The Gallery leads into Lounge Alley which serves as a vestibule and also the buffet for the Main Dining Room and Trophy Room. One wall displays several conceptual sketches of New Orleans Square, and directly across from these sketches is a custom-designed harpsichord decorated with a hand-painted scene depicting New Orleans harbor in the nineteenth century. The furnishings are a combination of antique and reproduction pieces.

The Main Dining Room is decorated in First Empire, recalling the era of Napoleon and the early nineteenth century. Three glimmering chandeliers and wall sconces illuminate the entire room. Much of the framed artwork on the walls is again, the work of Disney artists. Fresh flowers, parquet floors and antique bronzes create an atmosphere of serenity and warmth.

The Disney Room is the second dining room and offers a more informal atmosphere. The design of the room incorporates the use of microphones in the center of each chandelier and a vulture with the ability to speak. Walt Disney's intention for this concept was humorous in nature, as the vulture was to converse with guests during dinner. The pictorial time line that blankets the east wall offers an intimate view of Walt's life and highlights of Disneyland history. Brass plaques on each picture name the scene.

Today, Club 33 functions as an exclusive private club where members or their guests may enjoy a gourmet meal complemented by the finest wines. Tradition, accompanied by gracious hospitality, has been the hallmark of Club 33 since its opening day...and will continue to be for many years to come.

The history sheet refers to the second dining room as The Disney Room but I was told that it was called The Trophey Room. I'm not sure when the name changed or how up-to-date the history sheet is. If you would like to know more about Club 33 you can visit a nice website I found: Here you'll find some fun facts and more photos.

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Sunday, October 4, 2009

Our Disneyland Adventure: Day 3

Day 3 brought about the half marathon and the We Wants The Redhead meet. I already blogged about the half marathon and posted a slide show about it.

After the half marathon, we met up with some friends at Storyteller's Cafe for brunch. This is where I met Mark Taylor. Mr. Taylor was the country club manager in High School Musical 2. He was very nice and had also ran the half marathon.

But the second best thing about the day was my first We Wants The Redhead Meet. I handed out buttons and Blow Pops to everyone that attended. There was about 18 of us that meet up to ride Pirates. And then Jonathan picked up 2 more strangers in line to join our group. I asked the CM nicely if he could put us in 2 boats by ourselves but he wouldn't do it so he put all us together in one boat.

Let me just say that I was in the front row and when we went down the first drop it was like being on Splash Mountain. Needless to say, we laughed, we sang and had a pirates life.
Thanks to everyone that came! I really appreciate your support!

Coming up next: Day's first ride on any Space Mountain and CLUB 33!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Our Disneyland Adventure: Day 2

You would think that after being up for almost 22 hours one would sleep in. NOPE! Thanks to the time difference I was wide awake at 6 am. I turned on the TV in hopes that I would fall back to sleep. Instead I got up and checked my email and Facebook page. Next time I'm rolling over and going back to sleep.

Here are the highlights from Day 2 (Saturday)

*I went to the expo to pick up my race packet while mom finished getting ready and ate breakfast. Getting my race packet was easy except for the part when the guy didn't give me my waiver back and I had to go back to get it to get my shirt. This would be easy if everything was on the same level but it wasn't. You picked your packets up in the "basement" of the Disneyland Hotel and the rest of the expo was upstairs. At least when I went back the guy remembered and knew he had it.

*If you are there to participate in the Coast to Coast challenge go to packet pick up the first day. When I went to buy a shirt they were sold out the first day and that was all they had. I can't believe that over 1,000 people did the challenge and the only item they sold was a t-shirt. What about the pins and magnets??? Disney dropped the ball on this one!

*After I had my packet, I ran it back to the room where I met mom in the hallway. Then we went shopping at DTD for awhile. I picked up a cute dress, a few gifts and a photo album.

*Then we went to DCA and shopped some more. Actually, I had been looking for the Haunted Mansion version of the Game of Life and found it in DCA. After lunch we went ran into Mickey and Minnie. The CM with Minnie commented on my redhead tattoo. Minnie wasn't too happy that I didn't have a tattoo of her. Sorry Minnie!

*We made our way to Monsters Inc. This ride is very cute. So much so that we rode it twice.

*Next was the Aladdin stage show. If you are ever in DCA you MUST see this show. It was amazing!! I wish we could've gone back to see it again. Genie is hilarious!

*After the show we walked around DCA a little and then headed out. We were meeting up with a few new running friends of mine at Mimi's Cafe. On the way there we found the best thing... PEPSI!! Let's just say we stocked up.

*Dinner at Mimi's was so much fun. I think there was about 20 or more of us there and Jeff, our host, was great. He had prizes and gifts for everyone. Thanks Jeff!! You rock!!

*After dinner it was time to call it a night. I wanted to get my race stuff ready for the next day and get to bed early.

Coming up Day 3: race day and the We Wants The Redhead meet!