Thursday, February 26, 2015

A Walk in the Park: Disneyland Edition - Lunar New Year 2015

By Daisy Sparks

Last weekend I had a chance to check out the Lunar New Year festivities at Disney California Adventure. They have offered this celebration the last couple of years now. The Lunar New Year events were only offered this past weekend (Thursday - Sunday) so it was pretty popular due to its very limited engagement. Join me as we take a look at the event in this week's A Walk in the Park: Disneyland Edition article...

There is just enough Disney mixed into the Lunar New Year celebration. It was all located at Paradise Garden in Paradise Pier. I learned that there is a big focus on family being together during this annual celebration.

There were several activities that you could participate in. You could sit at these Mickey decorated tables together with your friends or family to color and create a paper lanterns. There was face painting offered at an extra charge. You could also write down a New Year's wish and leave them on the Wishing Wall.

One of the best things about these special Disneyland holiday offerings is seeing some characters you would not normally see like Mushu and Mulan. There was a long line to meet Minnie and Mickey dressed up in traditional red Chinese attire. They were enjoying being in front of the cameras. The character greeting in this area was only available 11am-5pm so it was pretty popular as the wait line snaked through the area.

Here is the food and merchandise that was offered. I couldn't resist the Boudin sourdough shaped bread.

You have to kind of take a second look at the goat/sheep/ram head baked in the round bread. Boudin Bakery every now and then makes special shaped bread for holiday events.

There was also live entertainment available in the gazebo area. I also caught this dragon dance that took place right outside the entrance area.

Here were the signs they had on display to help people discover what their Chinese Zodiac is.

Almost a week ago, the Disney Parks Blog shared a post titled: "Chinese Zodiac and Disney Characters in 'The Garden of Twelve Friends' Shanghai Disney Resort". Go to THIS POST and you can see some of the Disney characters that were chosen to symbolize the Chinese Zodiac.

It's great that Disneyland continues to offer multicultural holiday celebrations when they can and in areas of the Parks where it makes sense. These limited time offerings are examples of how Disneyland Parks can connect with the local population and tap into the multicultural Southern California communities. It also supports the idea that Disneyland is for all ages.

"The important thing is the family. If you can keep the family together - and that's the backbone of our whole business, catering to families - that's what we hope to do."
-Walt Disney

Daisy Sparks grew up in Southern California and Disneyland was a regular part of her life. While in college, she started working at Disneyland as a Main Street Merchandise Host. Her "college job" led to 12 adventurous years working with Mickey Mouse. She was a trained Magic Demonstrator, Hat Writer and was even signed off as a Disneyland Monorail Ride Operator. Daisy loved every minute of it while she held various management positions in Merchandise, Business Operations and Attractions. 

Daisy is married to her college sweetheart, David (a former Jungle Cruise Skipper). David solicited Daisy's Duck's help in memorable engagement proposal that took place at Disneyland's Club 33. Daisy left Disneyland in May 2001 to raise her two daughters. She continues to visit the Disneyland Resort multiple times a week as a Guest. Daisy particularly loves the Disneyland heritage because of all of the little details and stories that make it "the happiest place on earth."

You can read more about Daisy's Disneyland adventures over on her personal blog at DisneyDaze .

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