getting down there and checking in was easy. we got there with half an hour to spare before check-in was cut off at 8pm.
the area formerly known as "condor flats" had been redesigned and spruced up for the resort's 60th anniversary, and it looked really nice.
because we were so early, we had time to enjoy a ride on "soarin' over california," one of the bean's favorite rides. it'd been closed for a few months while it was refurbished, and now it has a new screen and enhanced video.
by the time we got out of the ride, we noticed that people were gathering off to one side. knowing how crowded these things get, we headed over to join them and found delovely details with mr. DD and mama DD. i didn't get a picture with them, but here's one of the bean:
we waited around for awhile, just hanging out and chatting, and then we were escorted through the park and around to the pier to find our spots for the show. all of a sudden, the ponchos we'd been given at check-in made sense - we were positioned right in front, standing next to the railing that separated us from the water.
we noticed something else too - a piece of equipment in the water that was literally right in front of us. hmmm.
the chairman of disney parks and resorts came on to say a few words from somewhere nearby, although we couldn't quite make out where he was standing. and then he introduced neil patrick harris, who's the host of the new world of color show (and also does the countdown when you ride the california screamin' ride). i grabbed this photo from the disney parks blog, because who doesn't love NPH?
the camera that took that shot must have been positioned just right, because it looked like we should have been right in front of him here. we were standing right next to that ride that you see in the background. but no - we never got to see him until his image was projected onto the fun wheel's new screen - and then onto the water during the show.
a lot of the show was about walt and the dream that led him to create disneyland.
and then look - walt and NPH together!
as the show continued on, we learned the hard way what that piece of equipment was for - especially when the breeze kicked up and sprayed us all down.
someone was very, very unhappy with this part of the show.
unexpected shower aside though, it was a pretty spectacular show. i hear that people aren't huge fans of it because it starts off a little slow, but it picks up as favorite rides and movies are highlighted.
even the new star wars movie, set for a december 2015 release, gets a place in the show. parts of the trailer are shown along with more pyrotechnics - which was a welcome change and warmed us up a little after the shock of the cold water.
that last fireball left an eerie-looking smoke ring that took a long time to disappear - and apparently caused all sorts of confusion outside the park. yes, aliens took over disneyland. duh.
on our way out, we saw the tables and stations set up all along the walkways for various media outlets.
it was a late night for the bean, who passed out as soon as we got into the car. but it was worth it, since we'd gotten to see the show before the general public - which means that we won't have to fight for a spot to watch it when we return to california adventure this summer.
because we will be returning. mark my words.