Stolen Trophies

Most Disney fans would love to take a piece of the park home with them, but some fans take this to an extreme. Instead of buying a souvenir or ride photo, some guests go so far as to steal from the rides themselves, taking mementos as “stolen trophies”.

In the early days of the Disneyland, these kinds of thefts were a huge problem. Younger visitors would reach out from dark ride vehicles and snatch any small pieces of décor within reach, and without much surveillance within the rides, there was little cast members could do to stop them. As Disneyland evolved and dark rides incorporated sensors and monitors, these thefts all but disappeared. But during the 60s and 70s, the peak time for ride theft, two stolen trophies became infamous in the park: Snow White’s apple and the Pleasure Island donkey bow.

The most commonly sought after Disneyland artifact in the park was the poisoned apple, found inside Snow White’s Scary Adventures. At the end of the ride, the Evil Queen/hag opens a door and holds a small red apple she will soon offer to Snow White.

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In the 60s and 70s, students attending Grad Night events at the park developed an unfortunate tradition of attempting (and sometimes succeeding) to steal the apple mid-ride, leaving the witch’s hand occasionally empty, or even slightly damaged. To remedy this problem, Imagineers removed the apple altogether during the 1983 Fantasyland refurbishment project, replacing it with a projected image of an apple instead. Today, the witch still proudly displays her apple, but there is no tangible object for anyone to steal.

Another frequently targeted “trophy” was the yellow bow within Pinocchio’s Daring Journey. After vising Pleasure Island, guests see the boys becoming donkeys, one of which still has on his yellow bow tie as he stands against the edge of his cage. Riders would grab at the bow as they passed the cage, and the bow frequently went missing.

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In recent years, Imagineers seem to have taken more precautions to protect the looser decorations and objects inside the dark rides. There are now sensors all over Pinocchio’s Daring Journey, and watchful cast members monitor riders as they make their way through the dark ride.

In the past, guests caught trying to steal from the rides received little to no punishment, but Disneyland is much stricter today. Guests will be escorted from the park, and often have their tickets or annual passports revoked. Since 1983, Disneyland has constantly refurbished and updates rides to protect their decorations and tiny treasures, so that all park guests can fully appreciate what the park has to offer.

Mulholland Madness

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February 2001 – October 2010

LOCATION

Paradise Pier – Mulholland Madness sat in the corner of Paradise Pier, where the track is now part of Goofy’s Sky School. To find Mulholland Madness, guests could follow the Paradise Pier main path, toward the ferris wheel, and would find the ride on the right, just after the Corn Dog Castle.

BACKGROUND

When California Adventure first opened in 2001, the park was much more heavily focused on showcasing famous California landmarks. Mulholland Madness, named after Hollywood’s Mulholland Drive, was a California-themed, more aggressive version of Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. The ride was built as a winding, chaotic adventure, taking guests along a truncated and extra turbulent journey along the huge highway.

EXPERIENCE

The exterior of Mulholland Madness was large road map, highlighting the landmarks along the highway. Guests boarded into small cars, before climbing up onto Mulholland Drive. For about two minutes, guests twisted, turned, and dipped around road signs and billboards, before driving safely back to the loading dock.

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CLOSURE

When California Adventure began its major expansion and refurbishment project, Imagineers wanted to incorporate more Disney characters into the park. Mulholland Madness was an obvious choice, since the ride already had lots of technical problems and needed substantial refurbishment. In 2010, Mulholland Madness closed for good, before shortly being replaced by Goofy’s Sky School.

TRIVIA

Alamo officially sponsored Mulholland Madness from 2004-2010.

Mulholland Madness’ billboards were loaded with gags and puns, including a movie billboard starring fictional actors “Teri Fide” and “Rolly Coasta”.

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Tomorrowland Terrace

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LOCATION

Tomorrowland – When entering from Main Street USA, follow the main path and keep left. You’ll find the Terrace on your left, just around the corner from the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters building. If you’re coming from Fantasyland, head toward the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, and the Terrace will be straight ahead.

EXPERIENCE

Service Type – quick service

Seating – adjacent patio, stage seating in front of Jedi Training Academy

Reservations – no

Entertainment – none

Menu

CONCEPT

Hungry Tomorrowland guests flock to the Terrace for food, entertainment, and to enjoy the sights of the area. The Terrace offers a variety of quick service snacks and meals, as well as a number of tasty desserts. Guests can sit at central tables and watch the Jedi Training Academy, or find seating at the side tables for a quieter view of the rear of Tomorrowland. Thanks to its central location, Tomorrowland Terrace boasts a panoramic view of the Matterhorn, the Submarine Voyage, and the Monorail. Whether you’re looking for dinner and a show or just stopping by for a drink in a souvenir sipper, Tomorrowland Terrace has something for everyone.

MY RATING – ★★★☆☆

The Tomorrowland Terrace is definitely a fun place to stop and eat, especially if you want to watch the Jedi Training Academy show. I like to stop by the Terrace for a smaller lunch, because I typically order off of the kid’s menu. But the desserts, larger meals, and drink choices are all pretty decent. If you want something other than standard hamburgers and sandwiches, you won’t find much at the Terrace, but if you want to indulge in some comfort food and check out Tomorrowland, the Terrace is a great option.

MY FAVORITES

  • Grilled Chicken Chop Salad
  • Chicken Breast Nuggets (kids menu)

TRIVIA

The Terrace opened as part of the first Tomorrowland expansion in 1967.

From 2000-2005, the Terrace was renamed “Club Buzz”, and had a live stage show featuring Buzz Lightyear and his fellow space cadets. When the Astro Blasters opened in 2006, the restaurant returned to its roots, reopening as the Tomorrowland Terrace once again.

During Mickey’s Halloween Party, the Tomorrowland Terrace hosts a dance party, including DJs and exclusive snacks and drinks.

Musical Sewer Covers

Mickey’s Toontown is by far the most interactive land in the park, and almost every building has some sort of feature with a gag, visual trick, or a mini activity. But did you know there’s a hidden gem tucked underfoot, and many guests step right over it without even noticing?

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Toontown has a series of Musical Sewer Covers, surrounding the central fountain (the one with the band as its centerpiece). Each sewer cover has a different musical instrument on it, and when you step on that cover, the corresponding instrument in the fountain plays music.

So if you hear the sound of trumpets, a violin, or some drums as you stroll through Mickey’s Toontown, check out what’s happening around the Musical Sewer Covers. On less crowded days, you can compose your own music by hopping from cover to cover!

Clarabelle’s Frozen Yogurt

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LOCATION

Mickey’s Toontown – When you arrive in Toontown, head to the central “downtown” area, near City Hall. You’ll see Clarabelle’s Frozen Yogurt on your left, next to Pluto’s Dog House and Daisy’s Diner.

EXPERIENCE

Service Type – quick service

Seating – adjacent shared patio

Reservations – no

Entertainment – none

Menu

CONCEPT

Clarabelle’s Frozen Yogurt is Toontown’s dessert spot, offering a variety of ice creams and souvenir sippers. If you want a meal before you have dessert, Clarabelle’s also offers a turkey sandwich or salad options. This quick service restaurant sits in the plaza alongside City Hall, and has seating on the shared patio that overlooks the heart of the town center.

MY RATING – ★★☆☆☆

Calling this place a frozen yogurt spot is definitely a misnomer, because Clarabelle’s sells a yogurt parfait, not frozen yogurt. This stand does have the biggest menu in Toontown (3 meals and 4 desserts), and the best food, but it’s still not a great place to eat. If you’re in Toontown and hungry, this is your best option, unless you want to head into another land.

MY FAVORITES

  • Nestle Mickey’s Ice Cream Bar

TRIVIA

Don’t confuse Clarabelle’s Frozen Yogurt with Clarabelle’s Hand Scooped Ice Cream, a separate ice cream parlor on Buena Vista Street.

Like most of the buildings in the park, Clarabelle’s Frozen Yogurt uses forced perspective to seem taller. Pay attention to the slanted windows, and you’ll see that the second floor is way too small, even for a toon!