Monday, December 24, 2012
Mismanagement of Disneyland
Mismanagement of Disneyland
Let me clarify yesterday’s post and some posts from before.
In the last few years and especially in the last year more and more changes have been made that are in line with what is going on a Walt Disney World. From what I’ve heard many of these changes have happened right after visits from WDW management teams. That is the reason I say WDW is trying to control DLR. Also where you could contact upper management for DLR in Burbank, Ca before now you need to make a call to Florida if you have an issue requiring management.
Some examples of how management has switched from California to Florida is shown in the Official Disney Parks Pin Site. Last year there were two people responsible for keeping the site updated. One was in Florida and was responsible for all pin release information on the East Coast. The other was in California and was responsible for posting on the same site all the pin releases for Disneyland and the Disney Soda Fountain and Studio Store. This worked well and information was up months in advance. Sometime in the last year I noticed that the site was not as well maintained and at some points not maintained at all! A good example was in October where the pins to be released during the month of October were not posted until a week or so into the month! I found out later that the decision was made to only have one person maintaining the site. The person kept was in Florida. Often WDW and DCL pins are posted long before the DLR pins even if they are the same as WDW.
Some of the most dramatic changes at the park happened to the Billy Hill and the Hillbillies show. In the first quarter of 2012 The Billys changed. Fist the Billys were told to eliminate the Elvis and Beatles impersonations they did in some of the shows. They were also told to shorten the show significantly. This happened right after the visit from WDW management teams.
The second change happened at the beginning of summer. The Billys were moved from their home in the Golden Horseshoe to the Big Thunder Ranch Jubilee stage. While the reason given for this change was the fact the Golden Horseshoe could no longer hold the crowds that came to see them, and this was true to a point the move is not a good one.
The move to the BTRJS has major problems. The Billys have to contend with trains going by on the other side of a hedge blowing its horn every 5-15 minutes. You can also hear the Mark Twain’s mighty horn as well during the show. During the summer they had Character wondering around meeting and greeting the guests as the show is being performed. During Halloween they had the characters and the Conjure a Villain Tent in the same area and even while the Billys were performing you would here the BOOM of the villain making their entrance in the tent. Christmas brought Santa to the area will all the fuss and excitement he brings. Throughout the entire year there have been food venders, games and arts and crafts going on before, after and even during the Billys show.
Another change that came along with the move is a big change to the Billy show itself. There are several teams of Billys. Each team has its unique style and strength. The teams knew hundreds of songs and you never knew exactly what you would hear! It was always a joy to go see them. Never quite the same show twice. When they moved to BTRJS the show became a set routine. Same songs and gags with every show. See it once and you have seen it period.
Many of the guests have also noticed an increase in paid events that are like holiday special events at WDW. Mickey’s Halloween Party caused many angry guests to leave during late Sept. and Oct. While this works at WDW because of the many nighttime entertainment options it does not work well at DLR due to the limits in space and availability of other things to do other than the paid, event many guests leave unhappy and feeling cheated. You pay for a full 8 am to Midnight day at the park and find out that you have to leave sometime between 5 & 7 pm! No reduction on the price of the ticket even though you lose significant time in the park! Unlike WDW that has many other entertainment options if one park closes early DLR only has 2 parks and not much going on at the hotels other than restaurants.
There also seems to be a total disregard for Disney and Disneyland History and Tradition. A stage that Walt Disney had put into the Carnation Gardens in 1958 so he and Lillian could dance is now gone. It will be replaced but will never be the same. The only tie to the old state will be the fact the new stage will have Swing Bands and a dance floor like the old one did.
Now they want to move Candlelight from the front of the Main Street Train Station where it has been since 1958 to inside and reduce the size and scope of the performance. They want to make it more like WDW’s show. The move would, by limit of the stage choices reduce the 600 member choir to 100. The uniqueness of this fantastic outdoor show would be forever lost! The history and tradition would be lost!
Disneyland cannot be run the same way as WDW is operated because it is totally different in size, space, entertainment availability, and guest demographics. Please let DLR know that it is NOT WDW and can never be! It is unique and special just as it is!