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Disneyland Article
Adventureland Day And More
Jan Wagner
I’ve been a Disneyland annual passholder for many years. Since COVID-19, however, when I visit Disneyland (and the adjacent Disney California Adventure) it has changed significantly. That is because reservations are now required, and Disney limits their number.

Now I must plan all of my visits in advance (INSIDER’S TIP: Try going online to make a reservation close to midnight the night before you want to go. Passholders get penalized if they are no-shows too many times, so they must cancel no later than midnight the day before their reservation is to not incur the penalty. That is often when new reservation opportunities become available. I sometimes make my reservations well in advance, when reservations are more plentiful especially if there are special events coming up that I do not want to miss.

I belong to an online Meetup group of like-minded Disneyland fans. It is called the Disneyland Fan Club. It mostly attracts people from Southern California, but that is not a requirement. Beginning during the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us started meeting there online to chat and view worldwide Disney Parks-related YouTube videos. However, since COVID-19 became manageable, many of us have resumed meeting in-person at the Southern California Disney Parks (as well as Knotts Berry Farm and Universal Studios Hollywood).

Our online participation has continued too. We meet online most Saturdays from 5:30-7 p.m. (Pacific Standard Time). The schedule is on our Meetup page. Anyone may attend, no matter where they live. All they need is an internet connection.

One reservation that I booked well in advance was for the annual, unofficial “Adventureland Day” at Disneyland (March 3, 2024). It is an exciting day of widespread Indiana Jones cosplay throughout the park. It includes a fun treasure hunt, for which the prize that everyone can win is a cool pin. The organizers post information and clues online, and then we walk around the park trying to solve them (HINT: what has always worked best for me is to team up with a few people who are much better at solving these clues than I am).

We also had a Meetup of our Disneyland Fan Club Meetup group that same day, so we went on a bunch of rides together. One was particularly memorable. We were meandering through the river on the Jungle Cruise when our boat stopped. At first we thought that it was just part of the entertainment, since our boat captain was doing a good job of entertaining us, so when she asked us if we could hear the motor running — and we could not — we assumed that she was kidding. Well, it turned out that she was not kidding. Soon another boat arrived and towed us back through the river to the dock, where we disembarked. That was actually pretty cool! I recorded a video of the experience, from which I’ve extracted a few still photos for you to see.

I have already booked a reservation with a friend to celebrate Disneyland’s “Season of the Force.” To quote Disneyland: “Touch down in a galaxy far, far away filled with epic encounters, thrilling attractions, exciting flavor adventures and favorite characters from Star Wars!” This event runs from April 5 to June 2, 2024. We have reserved May 4 — a date which is a popular play on words. It brings to mind the famous Star Wars line: “May the Force be with you!”

I spent the late afternoon and evening exploring on my own. After having a hearty and reasonably priced dinner at the Rancho del Zocalo Mexican restaurant, I headed over to “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge,” where I rode “Rise of the Resistance.” Then I walked over to Main Street USA where I staked out a great spot to watch (and record video of) “Mickey’s Mix Magic” fireworks show and projections on Sleeping Beauty Castle.

Next, I rushed over to Disney California Adventure, where I rode on “Soarin’ Over California” and then watched the World of Color “ONE” water show spectacular.

Finally, I visited the Disneyana shop, where I could not resist buying a couple of keepsakes (memo to self: do not tempt yourself when you are getting tired!).

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