Thursday, October 29, 2015

Disney Daze: Halloween Happiest Haunts

Earlier this week we trekked down to Anaheim to partake in Disneyland's wildly popular Happiest Haunts Tour. When I say wildly popular I mean that I had to call at 7:00 AM a month in advance otherwise it sells out in 15 minutes. DL already does a Halloween themed series for locals, Mickey's Trick or Treat something or other where you get a separate ticket to go around the park and collect candy. Ticket holders are limited each night and the park closes early so it's a fun experience we've checked out a couple times and come home with way too much candy we never eat. Happiest Haunts is billed as a three hour tour and we had two guides, your usual Disneyland one who told you about old attractions and park info while the other was a representative from Haunted Mansion who gave you the straight dope on where Halloween customs came from. This was probably the biggest tour we've been on in the park as our group reached 20 members. The park was pretty crowded so that made it a little more difficult to hear in the ol'd ear piece. The tour is solid if not as exclusive as Walk in Walt's Footsteps or eye opening as Cultivating the Magic. It scores by giving you a couple of treats (dipped marshmallow pop and sugar cookie) and getting you onto five rides (Ghost Mountain, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain and The Matterhorn). On the Disney side I learned that the Kirk Douglas classic 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea had an attraction in the 60's, when it was dismantled, the organ went to the Mansion (which I knew). Apparently the giant squid was there though! Kirk! Mr. Toad's Wild Ride is the only opening day attraction in the park and we were shown a small pond by The Matterhorn has been site to many a closed down rides. All in the tour came in at under three hours and you get a Haunted Mansion Death Certificate along with a pin. You're not invited to stay in the park to enjoy the Trick or Treat party, in fact, you're escorted out!

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