Archive for July 28th, 2008

Vault 28 at Disneyland’s Downtown Disney Monday night 7/28

We were shopping in Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort on Monday night, 7/28/08.
Lisa brought us into the Vault 28 store to see the edgy items for sale there.
-Carol Koster

Vault 28: Edgy “Steamboat Willie” Cap

photo posted from my iPhone

Edgy Cap Sold at Vault 28

photo posted from my iPhone

Vault 28: $30.00 Edgy “Steamboat Willie” Parody Shirt
-Photo by Carol Koster

photo posted from my iPhone

$50 Ladies Disney Shirt, Vault 28
Trendy edgy Disney and avant garde apparel shop in Downtown Disney.
-Photo by Carol Koster

photo posted from my iPhone


To Wine Country Trattoria from Paradise Pier on Monday night, 7/28

After seeing Paradise Pier, we headed towards the Golden Vine Winery for our dinner reservations at Wine Country Trattoria.

We were walking this way, as these unknown people were also doing. Look how uncrowded the park is as the sun is going down!

We walked past the Golden Dreams theater, with the recommendation from Lisa to see the attraction sometime that week, so we did another day (and we enjoyed it).

We only saw this much of the Pacific Wharf-themed part of DCA, but Lisa told us about the Boudin Sourdough Bread Baker Tour and the beer wagon/microbrewery on the other side of these buildings.

Dinner at Wine Country Trattoria

From Carol: Foodies will want to dine at the Vineyard Room upstairs, but know they just lost their chef to Napa Rose at the Grand Californian. Our waiter was Mike who was soooooooo knowledgeable about wines and food pairings, he’ll make a good sommelier someday. They have an outdoor counter service of only wine tastings. And you can book VIP priority seating outside to dine, enjoy fine wines, and watch Electrical Parade. It’ll cost you to do that, though.

See Deb Wills Disneyland/DCA section for menus.

Wine Tastings at Wine Country Trattoria,
seen before we entered with Lisa / Jiminy for dinner.

Dessert: Fresh Orange Sorbet

Taken by Carol Koster of Rich Koster’s dessert, served inside a frozen orange while watching Disney’s Electrical Parade while eating dinner with Lisa at Disney’s California Adventure Monday night.

After the very-enjoyable, leisurely dinner with Lisa (the way fine dinners are supposed to be), served by the Trattoria’s excellent staff, we headed back to Condor Flats to use our FastPass for Soarin Over California… although we thought the park was staying open another hour later than it was, but it wasn’t (so our FastPasses were wasted).

We headed out of Disney’s California Adventure and walked through Downtown Disney towards the Disneyland Hotel.

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Other things on Paradise Pier at DCA we saw Mon., 7/28

After enjoying Toy Story Midway Mania, we walked along the boardwalk in the Paradise Pier district of Disney’s California Adventure.

Here is part of the roller coaster track of California Screamin’, a stand for churros, and a lot of parked strollers — near Toy Story Midway Mania.

These carnival-like attractions are left over from the Paul Pressler-era of Disney’s California Adventure. We just walked by them and looked. Not interested!

We didn’t ride the Sun Wheel on Monday, but did it later in the week and enjoyed it.

That day we walked past these Paradise Pier attractions because it was getting late, but Carol and I rode them later in the week.

The sunglasses-wearing dinosaur has a good selection of sunglasses inside that store.

We needed to backtrack a little bit to make a pit stop…

Burger Invasion at DCA. Not McDonalds… But it is a McDonalds! At least for now…

There is a handy restroom to the right of this, with the inside themed like Route 66 (similar to a section of the nightclub district on the Disney Wonder cruise ship.

After our vacation was over, it was announced that McDonalds would soon be kicked out of DCA and Disneyland. Yay!

I couldn’t help thinking of White Castle Hamburgers, especially since the lettering and look of the castle on the sign are similar. The billboard says “Visit the Entire Corn Dog Kingdom and shows the king at 3 other (fictional) locations of the Corn Dog Castle eateries.

The dinosaur used to be pink but was repainted to be green. I like him better that way. Mulholland Madness (wild mouse, but does not spin like the one at Disney’s Animal Kingdon) is behind the dinosaur. It will eventually be rethemed to become Goofy’s Flying School rather than a car-themed mini-coaster.

The Sun Wheel and the Golden Zephyr (and the ride vehicles are actually chrome, not golden…)

The curving building in the middle of this photograph is the roof of the Anaheim Convention Center, across the street from DCA, and it fits in quite well with the round shapes and curves of what is at Paradise Pier.

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Toy Story Midway Mania on Mon., 7/28/08

Toy Story Midway Mania Queue

Mr. Potato Head is a large Audio-Animatronic character who interacts with Guests in the queue as they go by him.

He asked, “Who is you favorite toy?” and wanted to hear us say that he was our favorite, so of course I told him that Woody was my favorite! 😉

Note that in the picture below he is called “Mr. Potato Head Boardwalk Barker.” The Cast Members here are all referred to as Boardwalk Barkers and even the doors to backstage areas at this attraction are not marked Cast Members Only but instead Boardwalk Barkers Only.

When you get into the covered area, there is refreshing air conditioning. We think all the lights are LEDs, so they won’t burn out light old-fashioned light bulbs…

…but they still have the look of the old-fashioned lights to keep that boardwalk theming.

Light Fixture Detail at DCA Toy Story Midway Mania
In the picture below, the bubbles of air trapped in the glass during the manufacturing process gives this fixture quaintness. But if you squint real closely you’ll see a detail that shouldn’t be there: bits of styrofoam packing are still inside the fixture, never cleaned out before it was installed. “Bad show”, in Disney-speak. This photo was taken about 30 minutes into a 45-minute long line. If we had opted for the “single rider line” and didn’t mind that we all probably wouldn’t sit near each other, we would have had much less of a wait time — but then we would have missed a lot of the theming in the queue area which we also wanted to see.

From Carol: Our 12-year-old son’s score at Toy Story Midway Mania is shown in the picture below: 77,900.

He beat his mom, but not his dad! The attraction itself is an arcade shoot ’em up with the twist of wearing 3-D glasses. It is more fun than Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters although a comparable Tomorrowland attraction. You’ll love this! And of course, a store is at the exit!

When you exit the ride vehicle on the attraction’s second floor, you see Toy Story Midway Mania as Andy would have in a room in his house. We were shrunk down to be inside his toy!

After going back down to the first floor, you enter a shop with toys related to ones you’ve seen in the attraction as well as Mr. Potato head in various disguises.

Indiana Jones: taters of the Lost Ark

Star Wars: Darth Mash

A rerelease of a cool 50’s/60’s Disneyland game about Adventureland. This game’s box is shown in the attraction.

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Disney’s California Adventure Mon. afternoon, 7/28/08

photoFrom Carol: We’re checked in and picking up where we left off in March 2008 — touring Disney’s California Adventure to see things we didn’t get a chance to do on our Easter vacation. This time we’re with Lisa/Jiminy.

From Rich:
After Lisa picked us up at the airport see here, brought us to the In-N-Out Burger place see here, then to Target to pick up a few things we’d need, she was our personal tour guide of Disney’s California Adventure on Monday.

That day we walked a lot — starting from the Disneyland Hotel, through Downtown Disney, most of DCA, and then back again — a total of 2,305 steps (1.08 miles) — in just that part of the afternoon and night.

Compare that to what I usually walk in an average day at home — 1100 to 3500 steps — and that explains why I already have two blisters!

All of us wound up getting blisters, but they were not as bad as they were on our Easter trip. This time we were using inner and outer wicking socks, which helped a lot!

Tuesday we walked a grand total of 5619 steps — that’s 2.65 miles.

Wednesday the counter on my pedometer was reset somehow during the day, so I can’t report how much we walked that day.

Thursday we walked the most: 11,111 steps for a total of 5.24 miles!

On Friday we took 9,342 steps — 4.41 miles.


Click any of the pictures to see them larger.

We’re glad we got to see the monorail’s Golden Gate Bridge recreation — because it will probably have been removed the next time we’re back at Disney’s California Adventure.

The Pixar Play Parade was going on while we arrived, pretty much blocking us after entering through DCA’s main gate.

We took a few photos, then Lisa / Jiminy directed us towards the Condor Flats district of DCA.

On the way to Condor Flats, we checked out the California Zephyr train-themed area. We liked the theming, but it is a shame all that trouble was spent by Paul Pressler just on shops rather than into better attractions when DCA first opened.

Every Disney park needs a train… that’s the way Walt would have wanted it. Too bad this one doesn’t move, huh?

Here’s our friend Lisa / Jiminy being an excellent tour guide for us! We opted to get Fast Passes for Soarin’ Over California rather than wait in line, and then come back after our dinner at Wine Country Trattoria that night — but we didn’t notice that DCA was closing at 8 pm and not 9 pm that night, so we missed out on using the Fast Passes!

Above you see Jiminy/Lisa, Michael and Rich Koster outside Taste Pilot’s Grill in the Condor Flats section of DCA.

Even if you don’t want to buy anything, check out the store in Condor Flats to see how the Imagineers incorporated real life events and items into the theming.

This is how a door to the Cast Member-only backstage area is marked in a little-seen part of Condor Flats.

At Grizzly River Rapids there are historical artifacts as part of the theming.

Talking with Lisa near the Brother Bear area, something we didn’t take time to see.

Walking by Grizzly River Rapids on Mon., July 28th. Michael and Rich rode it later in the week.

The sun setting behind (and to the right) of Paradise Pier.

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In-N-Out Burger on Monday, July 28th

We all had lunch at the airport between flights but Michael didn’t care for the Schlotzsky’s deli sandwiches we ordered in the Houston airport, so he didn’t eat much for lunch and was starving when we arrived in Anaheim.

Our original plan was for all of us to eat burgers with Lisa at IN-N-OUT on the way to Disneyland so we stopped even though it was later than we had planned.

Michael had his own Double Double Animal style cheeseburger, Carol and I shared another one, and all of us shared an order of French fries – animal style.

Carol and I shared a chocolate shake and Michael had a strawberry shake.

Words cannot describe how great everything tasted!

photo photo

Carol, Lisa and Michael in the parking lot before we all entered.

Note the palm trees…  Continue reading ‘In-N-Out Burger on Monday, July 28th’

Arriving in California Monday, July 28th

Lisa was at the John Wayne airport in Orange County, California waiting for us. She is there beyond the escalators, in the dark shirt taking a picture of us while I took this picture of her.

photo photo

We went downstairs and met up with her in the baggage claim area, then got into her car after retrieving our luggage.

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The Disney Echo at is your interactive online magazine to discover new wonders and share magical Disney memories.

The display on this page is set up to show the posts in reverse chronological order of when they were posted originally, so if you want to read the reports from the beginning, go to the last post on the last page and work forward. The first entry about the Koster family's July 2008 Disneyland trip can be found by clicking here and the first entry about their Easter 2008 Disneyland trip can be found by selecting this link.

That link goes to the very first travel-related article on this website: Welcome to our Trip Report.

The entry made after that first one is found after clicking the link named "Our Vacation Plans At-A-Glance" and that link is found above and below the first entry.

The third entry is similarly found after clicking the link above and below the second one, where the link is named "Packing Up"

One can read all the travel-related entries in the order they were posted by going to the next entry and the next entry the same way. Otherwise, this website defaults to displaying the most-recently-posted entries followed by older entries below it on the page as well as on the pages after it.

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FTC-Mandated Disclosure: As of December 2009, bloggers are required by the Federal Trade Commission to disclose payments and freebies. Unless otherwise noted, Rich Koster did not receive any payments, free items, or free services from any of the parties discussed in these articles. He pays for his own admission to theme parks and their associated events, unless otherwise explicitly noted.

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