Sunday, January 13, 2013

Management Changes at Disneyland and Walt Disney World

Management Changes at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts

            It seems that Disney has decided to shake things up at both DLR and WDW. This is according to Orlando Attractions Magazine. There are other changes as well but I'm focusing on DLR and WDW.
They are sending George Kalogridis, Current Disneyland President will transfer to WDW as President. Animal Kingdom Vice President Michael Colglazier will be relocate to California and be President of DLR.
While I agree it is good to shake up management and let them see the differences between how things are done at various locations I see a downside for DLR. I can see Mr. Kalogridis bringing the more intimate personal DLR style/feel to WDW while Mr. Colglazier could bring more of corporate/cold WDW style/feel to DLR.
For quite some time WDW has had what I call ‘Pay to Play’ (PtP) events such as Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Christmas Party. While I would not pay to play at MNSSHP or MCP I know others do. In fact I know many that plan trips around these events.
‘PtP’ events do work at WDW because there are 4 parks and many resort hotels with alternative Disney entertainment when the park with the party closes. These same events do not work well at DLR because of the limited options.
When you can’t see fireworks at MK due to MNSSHP you can swing over to DHS for Fantasmic or EPCOT for Illimunations. DTD and many of the hotels have entertainment as well. The campground has evening bonfires with story time.
When you can’t see fireworks at DL due to a PtP event you can’t see Fantasmic. Your options are limited to DCA with World of Color and Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. DTD at the DLR resort is small and has some ‘street performers’. There is nothing to do at the hotels other than explore the beautiful facilities and eat at one of the fantastic restaurants. No shows or events.
As an Annual Passholder I am sad that things at DLR are heading to the style of WDW. Halloween went PtP but that is ok because it is Trick or Treating. I feel the price is too high for what you get but for those that wish to pay it is fine. It does hurt those that purchase a single day ticket and lose out on hours in the park.
Rumors are they are planning on making Christmas PtP! DL will close early and you will miss the Christmas Fireworks, Fantasmic and Romantic strolls down Main Street under  the Christmas lights. If you are like me and don’t like this PLEASE write a letter to Disney! If you need to know how to contact Disney check out this post.


  1. Have you ever actually gone to MNSSHP or MVMCP at WDW? If you had, you would not feel this way. It is amazing and well worth the cost of admission to the events. You get your money for admission back with free merchandise, shows, and extras that are well worth the time- and the memories are priceless.

  2. I don't have much of a problem with WDW doing these special events as there are many other evening entertainment options available.

    DLR is another issue. With the limited size and only 2 parks when one park closes it causes much frustration to the guests. DLR also has a bad habbit of not announcing the days for these events until just a couple of months before. I met many frustrated and angry guests thay came from other states and even countries for vacation at DLR just to find they had to leave the park between 5-7 pm. When they first looked the park hours were until 9 or 11 pm. The tickets are the same price! They felt they did not get the value for the money they spent.

  3. My problem with this is that Christmas entertainment that was included with your admission (be it one day, multi day or pass) has always been available to everyone. Now one would have to pay "extra" just to see things that have always been included - magical lighting of the castle, the snow, the Holiday fireworks and the parade. All of that would be lost to us unless we want to fork over more money to Disney. This was a big complaint when the year before they moved the Trick or Treat party over to Disneyland we were able to view the Halloween Fireworks. What a show that was! I went to Disneyland more often just because of those fireworks. Then all of a sudden you could only see them on the party nights. Complaints galore hit Disney about this. Their excuse at the time was they were so popular that the crowds to see them became a problem - excuse me? They were no more crowded then the Summer crowds or the Spring crowds to see Remember! That was just excuse to make the fireworks part of the paying Party. I agree with Carolyn on this one that at WDW they have a better system for these parties but to try it at Disneyland which has a vastly different demographic then WDW is going to prove to be very unpopular with the regular attender and those that have made plans ahead of time. It's all part of their One Disney mind set which is slowly but surely eroding the magic for me at least!

  4. By the way Carolyn - having our comments show up in Script format makes said comments rather difficult to read, at least for me.

  5. I agree, we need to put a stop to this play to pay stuff quickly. Halloween is bad enough, it would be one thing if they offered a week or two that showed the special fireworks to everyone, but they don't. At least with Christmas the rumor is that there will be about two weeks where everything will be available, even if they do the pay to play, but I still take issue with it as it has always been included in the past.

    *IF* they try it at Christmas, we need to really start a campaign. I would suggest making written complaints in person, via phone, email and regular mail if they do start this.

    By the way, I agree about the script font making it harder to read the comments.

  6. I am in the middle of a terrible experience related to ptp at DLR. My terminally ill son will be given some breaks from the hospital on an upcoming trip. As a former passport holder I'm saddened by the changes. The only day my son gets for Disney is a Halloween party day. So either he gets cut short or I pay an extra 57 dollars per ticket. I have several questions regarding his special needs as well. 14 phone calls and two dozen emails later and no one can help me. I am going to try to contact Michael Colglazier. Any suggestions on how to go about it? Please email me at

    Thank you
    Kelly obrien

  7. Kelly
    I'm so sorry to hear about your son. I have several ideas for you. Number one there should be NO PROBLEM getting a GAC card at this time for your son. With the severity of his health issues you should get the one that allows you to go to the front of the line. I will look for contact information and other avenues of help for you.


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