PICTORIAL: Star Wars brings new experiences to Disneyland, Pixar Pier progresses, Dumbo returns, and more!

It’s been a decidedly Interstellar weekend for the Disneyland Resort as preparations are well underway to take the resort into the busy summer period.

With the Star Wars May the Fourth Be With You celebration we saw the debut of the character Rey who is now greeting guests at the Star Wars Launch Bay. Captain Phasma has also landed with a full First Order batallion who march through Tomorrowland throughout the day. Hyperspace Mountain also returned to round out the Star Wars festivities. This weekend there was also some Star Wars Day photo-ops and this is all in early celebration of the upcoming STAR WARS: GALAXY’S EDGE which is still well under way with construction.

Around the Resort we saw the return of Dumbo the Flying Elephant which has a new shady queue and new loading setup. We also got a checkup on other construction projects including Downtown Disney’s new dining establishments and of course Pixar Pier which is in progress for its June 23 opening. Ahead of that official opening, we found the official debut of Adorable Snowman’s Frosted Treats which came just in time for the soaring temps.

Of course, there will be a nice little merch run for you with Solo, Fourth of July, retro nostalgia, and more available for you. All of this and more in our latest pictorial. ENJOY!

May the Fourth Be With You

Although the Disneyland Resort is well underway with its Pixar Fest summer promotion, the LucasFilm universe is still buzzing with activity with the upcoming SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY due out later this month.

Plus, the fourth of May is Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You!) so there’s some more fun in store to satiate your fandom ahead of next year’s opening of STAR WARS: GALAXY’S EDGE. Here’s what you can expect to find at the Happiest Place on Earth relating to STAR WARS:

Hyperspace Mountain

The popular layover of Space Mountain is back once again embarking riders on a journey through the stars for an epic battle against the First Order.

A Rey of Light

You can now meet and greet with Rey at the resistance base inside of STAR WARS LAUNCH BAY. She joins the existing character lineup which includes Chewbacca, Darth Vader, and Kylo Ren.

Captain Phasma and the March of the First Order

Throughout the day you’ll be able to find Captain Phasma on the hunt for new recruits to the First Order. Plus, several times a day she leads a battalion of Stormtroopers on a show of force with a March through Frontierland that starts at the STAR WARS LAUNCH BAY.

May 4th Photo Ops

Two photo-ops appeared inside the former Starcade. They were originally part of the Disneyland After Dark party experience but were open through the weekend. It’s unclear how long these will be around.

Of course, this all builds up to the excitement of STAR WARS: GALAXY’S EDGE…

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

Cinco de Mayo

If you were looking for some Latin/Hispanic flavors at the Disneyland Resort, there’s options at DCA (Cocina Cucamonga) and Downtown Disney (Tortilla Joe’s) as well as Rancho del Zocalo at Disneyland.

Dumbo’s Circus

Dumbo The Flying Elephant is back once again at Disneyland and the refurbishment includes a completely new shade structure for the queue and a reworked loading system.

The entire queue now wraps more efficiently around the attraction and is entirely contained uner the new circus canopy.

The Experience

The attraction is basically the same charming experience it’s always been but there’s been some changes to getting on. It seems to be a more organized system but as far as we could tell, it could use some fine-tuning to make sure guests are understanding what to do.

New Loading System

A new series of numbered mosaics are found on the floor near the attraction’s entrance.

A Cast Member assigns you to your number.

Each of the numbered mosaics is colored to correspond with the number and color of the elephant upon which you will be riding.

For extra measure, the beams attached to each of the elephants are also numbered.

Queue Changes

The queue is now completely wheelchair accessible so that guests can remain in their chairs with their families.

For guests with other boarding needs, a merge point right at the entrance will allow for smoother integration of those guests into the attraction.

Thoughts?

It’s a smart system but will need to be fine-tuned to ensure guests are understanding that they are being pre-assigned to their elephant and not making the choice themselves. Of course, guests have the option to request a certain color if they want, they just need to make that clear with the Cast Member who gives them their number. Still, the system is not without some kinks.

When we rode on Saturday, we found one rider who was not able to ride with her family because some party along the way decided to split up into two elephants instead of one as they were assigned. There are assuredly ways to help fix this in the future but the method will probably never be full-proof once those gates open and people run to their elephants.

Going for a spin in the happiest kingdom there ever was!

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New Queue Details

New frames line the back wall of the queue. It seems that these will become television screens due to the aspect ratio and the fact that the “D” icon seems to be masking a speaker on each frame.

The Dumbo photo opp. remains, easily accessible.

More to Come?

It seems that the work is not quite finished yet with a small refurb wall and door still in place.

Here’s the backside of that refurb wall as seen from Casey Jr. Circus Train.

The backside of the new queue also leaves A LOT to be desired. It does not seem that this will be a final solution. At least, we hope there will be more done here.

You can see access ports in the blue wall which we assume are for the television screens on the other side that are visible in the queue. It also seems some hedges have been planted which should hopefully grow to cover the large expanse of the blue fence.

Around Disneyland

Getting ready for a busy summer!

The new cups finally arrived for Pixar Fest.

Having a ball? #PixarFest

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Looks like the parade gate work is also still not finished.

Name a cuter pretzel vending location. I’ll wait.

Soaring temps keep characters out of the center of Town Square leaving vistas like this! Who knew this was still possible?

Same, buddy. Same.

Pixar Pier

Pixar Pal-Around

Mickey’s face has been refreshed as has the star behind him.

Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats

The first complete opening of Pixar Pier! The new location offers new “lemon whip” soft serve in addition to vanilla and chocolate. You can also get the new specialties including Pixar Pier Parfait, $5.99 (a non-dairy lemon soft serve and blue raspberry frozen beverage) and It’s Snow-Capped Lemon, $4.59 (also a non-dairy lemon soft serve with a “snow-cap” of white chocolate).

Expect long lines!

Lamplight Lounge and Knick-Knacks

Both are partially open work continues on each.

Sketch artist inside of Knick-Knacks.

Incredicoaster

Testing has been going full-force on the attraction as it gets its revamped queue and loading station.

Jessie’s Critter Carousel

Looks like work is finally under way here.

Toy Story (Midway) Mania

The walls are mostly down around the attraction’s facade as it sports its new Pixar Pier color scheme. Signage on it and its accompanying Midway Mercantile shop are currently missing. Disney has been inconsistent with the attraction’s name in the past few months so it may return as just Toy Story Mania to match its Florida counterpart. We should find out soon!

The queue situation has changed slightly with a new pathway opening up through the construction.

Signage is currently missing.

More Pixar Pier

Work continues around other parts of the pier, as well.

Blue Sky Cellar

The Blue Sky Cellar is back to feature artwork, models, and video for the upcoming Pixar Pier enhancements coming to Disney California Adventure. We invite you to step inside for a closer look at what to expect when Pixar Pier opens on June 23 this summer!

MORE INFO: INSIDE AND IN DEPTH: Blue Sky Cellar reopens offering detailed looks at #PixarPier🎡

Around the Resort

The new parking structure prep work is wrapping up. Tons of tractors at the ready.

The south side tram boarding stations have returned to operation.

Work continues on the patio expansion of Naples. Some noticeable progress is now peeking up over the construction walls.

A lovely day in the neighborhood.

Construction continues to bring Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer as well as Ballast Point to Downtown Disney.

MORE INFO: ‘Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer’ coming to Downtown Disney, more to come

No confirmation on what’s going into the former Disney Dress shop (or if it’s going to be absorbed into the new breweries).

Salt & Straw

SALT & STRAW ice cream scoop shop will be opening up later this year. Assumed location is as a replacement of the current Haagen Dazs.

MORE INFO: Downtown Disney to add fancy SALT & STRAW ice cream

May the Fourth Be With You 2018 merchandise, only hats were left on Saturday.

Solo merch continues to grow.

Chewbcca with goggles is one of my new favorite things in the Star Wars universe.

New Disney Afternoon mugs are super nostalgic magic.

Great necklace at the Disney Dress Shop.

Tons of patriotic options available!

Grad Nite season is here!

Pixar Fest

This summer it’s a full-blown Pixar Fest at the Disneyland Resort and every inch of the property is ready for the celebration. A whole bunch of new entertainment, food, shopping, decorations, and more have debuted and are ready to enjoy now though September 3! That means there’s 119 days left to enjoy!

MORE INFO: PICTORIAL: PIXAR FEST launches at the Disneyland Resort bringing entertainment, food and fun

Tee Time!

If you are looking for a way to help support the site so we can continue to bring you more info about the mouse, feel free to browse our TeePublic Store! Aside from tees, you can also find coffee mugs, phone & laptop cases, and more!

Find more designs at our store: mouseinfo.com/tees.

THE END!

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Author: Joey Inigo

I have been a part of MouseInfo.com since 2003. I enjoy visiting the Happiest Place on Earth and am happy to talk about Disney Parks all day long.

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