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Disneyland Article
5 Lightning Lane Attractions Closing In January For Refurbishment
Orange County Register
Brady Macdonald
It’s just about that time of year again when some of Disneyland’s most popular attractions go out of commission for a few weeks or several months to get a little TLC.

The end of the Christmas holiday season always brings a flurry of seasonal refurbishments at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure in January — with nine attractions getting a refresh in early 2023.

January 2023 will see “Pardon Our Pixie Dust” signs posted in front of Radiator Springs Racers, Grizzly River Run, Mickey’s Philharmagic and Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind at DCA and Indiana Jones Adventure, Haunted Mansion, It’s a Small World, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln and the Disney Gallery at Disneyland.

That’s a high-powered lineup of popular attractions that will be on the disabled list — with Disney charging extra to skip the lines on Racers, Mansion, Indy, Small World and Grizzly using Genie+ and Lightning Lane services.

Radiator Springs Racers is arguably the most popular ride at DCA — designated as the park’s lone Individual Lightning Lane attraction. The slot car-style dark ride will be closed for refurbishment on Jan. 17-23, according to the Disneyland website.

Relatively frigid January — at least by Southern California standards — is always a good time to shutter a water ride. Grizzly River Run will close on Jan. 9 for a seasonal refurbishment. The Genie+ river rapids ride will be down through spring, according to the Disneyland website.

Indiana Jones Adventure will be closed for 10 weeks to 6 months for a much more comprehensive refurbishment. The popular Genie+ Adventureland motion-base dark ride has been prone to downtime issues that are expected to be addressed in the latest refurb that begins on Jan. 9.

The curtain will be pulled on Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln and the adjacent Disney Gallery on Jan. 9-25 for seasonal refurbishment, according to the Disneyland website. A Disney100 exhibit celebrating 100 years of Disney animation is expected to occupy the Disney Gallery once the space reopens.

Mickey’s Philharmagic will go dark starting on Jan. 24 for a seasonal refurbishment. No return date has yet been set for the Hollywood Land 3-D film.

Haunted Mansion Holiday and It’s a Small World Holiday — both Genie+ attractions — typically take turns closing following the holiday season. Mansion usually goes first, followed by Small World two weeks later — but this year the order will be swapped.

It’s a Small World will be closed Jan. 9-19 for the transformation from holiday to classic version, according to the Disneyland website. The perennially popular Haunted Mansion will close Jan. 30 to remove the holiday seasonal overlay with a return date yet to be set, according to the Disneyland website.

Pixar Pier’s Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind at DCA will close Jan. 30 for refurbishment — with no return date announced yet for the spinning balloon ride.

The recurring Jan. 9 closure dates are no coincidence. The Christmas holiday season ends on Jan. 8 at Disneyland and DCA.

January will be a busy month at Disneyland with the new Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway attraction set to debut on Jan. 27. Runaway Railway will be the centerpiece of the reimagined Mickey’s Toontown — which will return a few weeks later on March 8.

A Splash Mountain closure date has not yet been set for the log ride’s transformation into Tiana’s Bayou Adventure in 2024. The Magic Kingdom has set a January closure date for the Florida version of Splash Mountain — and a Disneyland closure date is expected to be announced soon.

Tarzan’s Treehouse has been closed since 2021 with a makeover as the new Adventureland Treehouse featuring a Swiss Family Robinson retro theme set to return in 2023.

The future of other attractions is less certain. The Hyperion Theater, Star Wars Launch Bay and Blue Sky Cellar have remained shuttered since the parks returned following the yearlong pandemic closure.

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