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Trip Report 2018-2019 A Year in the Land (Disneyland)...a multi-trip report


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Time for another chapter of my year in Disneyland....June 2019. This chapter will include other journeys in California as well, I hope you don't mind about that.

Okay...let's start.

Sunday June 16, 2019
Brad and I had a late afternoon flight out to Los Angeles so he wouldn't have to miss church and take one off one of his Sundays. We had a late lunch at the airport at the Minnesota Wild themed restaurant. He got a burger and I went with a grilled chicken. The salad was supposed to have a citrus vinaigrette dressing but it only had an oily flavor. The chicken was good at least and the potatoes were good too.


The plane is here and we are ready to go!

The company we flew, Suncountry, doesn't do first class anymore but the seats up front still have more leg room and are considered premium and include an alcoholic drink. We were in row 2 and 3 so we enjoyed a beverage with the flight. A local Surly Furious for me.

And a rum and Coke for B.

The flight was fine and we were in La La Land. What greeted us at the airport? This got Brad even more pumped up, tomorrow we would be there!

After we got our luggage we had to catch the shuttle to get our rental car. I hate that there are no rental companies on site at LAX and a shuttle must be taken. And the traffic and shuttles in that area is so unorganized but we were doing a lot of driving this trip and I couldn't just get an Uber or private driver like I've done before. I got the best deal from Avis and when we got to the shuttle area the Avis bus was pulling away. We had to wait about 20 more minutes for it to come by again. What was frustrating was that we saw at least 10 buses for Alamo, Enterprise, and Hertz in that time. At one point I told B that if any of those buses come by again we will take their bus and walk to Avis. But Avis did come shortly after that and check in went fairly quick and we were soon acquainted with our ride for awhile a Toyota which we called LaToya. Soon, Amy, Brad, and LaToya were on the L.A. freeways.



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Original Poster
Sunday June 16, 2019

For the first part of our trip we were staying in the Burbank/Glendale area. Brad had never done any of the sightseeing in Hollywood/LA before so that was supposed to be the first part of our trip with Disneyland at the end. Although when I decided to get a reservation for Galaxy's Edge I scrapped one LA day for that. It also meant cancelling our tour I had booked for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at CalTech, but Brad was cool with that because...Star Wars!

Anyway, about a year ago when I was looking into this idea for a trip I stumbled on a house rental that looked cool and had been part of the Betty Davis estate. The cottage we booked had been her caretakers home I believe. As I said it looked neat and had a cool history. It also had a good price and was comparable to decent hotels in the Glendale/Burbank area. We both liked the idea of a house as our base on this leg of the trip so I booked it and we both loved it. The cottage was cute, the place was really clean, and the owner had it outfitted with nice amenities. It also had a pool and a hot tub which we never got around to using.




Inside our cottage


The only drawback was the bed, it was a queen and had one side next to the wall. We are used to a king and having both sides open. With one side against the bed this meant one of us would need to crawl in and out if one of us needed to get up in the middle of the night. Any guesses on who got the wall side?

We did have neighbors right outside our door. They were great neighbors though. We had horses!


Sweet Summer

After we checked out our digs for a couple of days we realized how hungry we were, it was after 7pm current time but after 9pm our home time so we looked at the list the owner had left us but we wanted something quick and classically Californian. Where did we go? Yep, In-n-Out Burger! There was one about 5 minutes away and it was delicious. We both got double doubles animal style and fries.

We went to bed early that night because we were planning on getting up early. We had an 8 am reservation for Galaxy's Edge!


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Monday June 17, 2019: Disneyland and Star Wars Galaxy's Edge

As you know we were staying in Glendale so that was about a 45 minute drive or so to Disneyland our plan was to leave early to beat LA traffic and get near the front of the turnstiles at Disneyland. Well, with the time change it was easy to wake up early and early it was. We were headed out the door a little after 4 am. Yep, early maybe too early but we are both people that are always early places. (The exception is when we travel with our families, or some of our friends, they are always late....)

So the goal of beating LA traffic was definitely accomplished, it was easy breezy on that freeway. The majority of traffic was semi trucks. As we neared closer to Disneyland it was clear that we would be at the Mickey and Friends parking ramp well before it opened. So we revised the plan, we would drive past the Mickey and Friends ramp and then go to either the IHOP or Denny's on Harbor for some breakfast. Well, the drive by didn't happen because the route we drove took us directly into the ramp and there was really no turnaround. And we were not the first ones there and waiting, there was one other car. So at 4:40 am we decided to wait until the ramp opened. Shortly after we parked at the gate we saw a cast member in one of the booths so Brad went over and asked what time the ramp opened. I thought it would be 5:30 am but they would open at 5 am, so really we only had 20 minutes of waiting.

I let Brad put on Star Wars music while we were waiting.

By the time the ramp opened there were about 10 other cars waiting. So we parked and from the top of the ramp we got view of SWGE.

The tram area was fairly empty, which was good because Brad had to go back up to the car to get his sunglasses.

On the tram.

We found where the check in spot was and took nerdy pictures with the sign.


As you can see we weren't the first in line but we were near the front.

Then the gates opened and we were in, well at least into Disneyland at 6 am. Upon entering the park we were led to the Launch Bay in Tomorrowland to get our wristbands. Actually this process was very smooth.


Then we grabbed some breakfast at the Galactic Grill and stood in the gathering mass of people over by the subs until they would lead us to SWGE. It was a long wait but we were near the front of the group and we chatted with some people nearby.

As it got closer to 8 am the anticipation in the crowd was rising and Brad and even I was getting more excited.


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

The time finally came and we were all led through Fantasyland to the Big Thunder Entrance. This was the entrance B had taken the most pictures of, posed the most in front of, and had tested the door the most times. So we were both pretty pumped to be taken in this entrance for the first time.

Brad had a couple of goals for SWGE this trip but they didn't have to be done today because he knew we would be back and this wouldn't be our only day. Today the main goals were to ride the Falcon a couple times, try some of the food, enjoy the atmosphere, do some shopping, and go to Oga's Cantina. B wanted to make a droid at some point too but he was cool with it not being today. He had already decided that he would not be building a light saber at all in Disneyland's SWGE he plans to save that for WDW; he wants to save some of the special experiences for WDW.

Anyway, here we go to enter the land....


We stayed to the right of the crowd as I had read that upon entering the land the Oga's Cantina line forms to the right and Savi's to the left. And this is how it worked and actually the cast members/citizens of Batuu had this routine down and the lines formed quick and orderly.







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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

Just a look around while we waited to get into the Cantina. We only had about a 10 minute wait until we got to go inside the Cantina. We had a stand up table with a good view of the whole bar and DJ Rex.

The card we were issued to get into the Cantina. Everyone had to have one in order to get in.

Entering the Cantina

The atmosphere inside was really fun and DJ Rex was awesome. Both of us want to get a clean copy of the music in there.

The Skyhopper (kiwi) and the White Wampa ale.

Bezpin Fizz and the Fuzzy Ton Ton (the ton ton foam makes your mouth numb I suggest asking for a straw so you can taste the drink too)
Nothing like drinking multiple alcoholic drinks before 8:30 am!






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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

Some more pictures of inside the Cantina. Since we were drinking we did get the Mustafarian Lava Roll (a cinnamon roll, with a little citrus glaze and crushed Oreos). It was fine, it would have been better warmed up.

Another look at the drinks.









Coming up soon: exploring more of SWGE for the first time!


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The Cantina looked like so much FUN!! Love the interior designs. :cool:

By the way, what a great selection to go with the cottage -- your own private space. Hotels are nice and all, but sometimes it's more relaxing if you find alternative accomodations -- particularly with some old Hollywood reference (Betty Davis' estate)!! :jawdrop::happy: I mean, how many people can that say they stayed there -- bragging rights! :)


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Original Poster
The Cantina looked like so much FUN!! Love the interior designs. :cool:

By the way, what a great selection to go with the cottage -- your own private space. Hotels are nice and all, but sometimes it's more relaxing if you find alternative accomodations -- particularly with some old Hollywood reference (Betty Davis' estate)!! :jawdrop::happy: I mean, how many people can that say they stayed there -- bragging rights! :)
Yeah, have the privacy of the house was really nice. It will be something I look into again in the future for non-Disney vacations.


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

It was time to leave the Cantina and see more of the land. As we exited the Cantina we knew we were going to head over to Smuggler's Run and as we turned the corner we both gasped as we caught sight of the Falcon. That is when I saw Brad get a little misty (no actual tears though). It is very impressive to see full size, we both have seen models of it including some that were used in the movies but seeing it life sized was super cool. The wait time for the ride was posted at 30 minutes but it seemed a little less and it was fun checking out the queue.





Inside the queue



A view outside from the queue

I spy an unusual mountain in the distance. In the middle you can see the mountain spires of Big Thunder Mt. After riding Big Thunder so often and trying to get a peek into SWGE it was neat to get a peek the other way.


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

Time to ride the Falcon. For this ride we were both engineers. I know that the engineer job has gotten a lot of flack for being lame, but to be honest we liked it. It was our first ride though, but even on later flights we didn't mind it, it is interactive and we were both able to see the green light in our peripheral vision enough to press the button and still look at the screen. So I don't really buy into people's arguments that as an engineer you can't watch the ride at all. And being the gunner just seemed boring, if you leave it on automatic there is only one button to press. We also got to be pilots and that is the best job, but if I can't be pilot I'd rather be the engineer than a gunner. Anyway, here are some pictures on board.









And exiting


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

After getting a ride on Smuggler's we decided to explore the land a little so here are some pictures from around the land.



We tried the blue milk. It was just ok, it was tasty enough but I probably wouldn't get it again. To me it tasty like a thick berry slushie.

In the single rider staircase.

This time I was a gunner. On this ride I had the gunner card as you can see and as a single rider I was put with a family of five. So when we went into the cockpit the family seemed a little surprised that I was there and as I sat in the gunner's seat the dad turned to me and said I was in the wrong seat. I knew that it was the gunner's seat so I told him that I had a gunner's card and this was a gunner's seat. With that I buckled my seat belt and sat back. I think he wanted to argue but he just said well maybe there were 3 gunner cards to his wife. And I thought "um no, your wife had an engineer card in her had at boarding." Whatever, I put him out of my mind and enjoyed the ride.


After our single rider experience we went through the full queue together. At job assignment time we were given the engineer position again. But then the mom of the family in front of us asked if we had been pilots yet. We said no just gunner and engineer. She said that her family had ridden all the positions a few times and they would be willing to let us be pilots if we wanted. WOW! Thanks lady! So that is how we got to be pilots. Brad sat in Chewy's spot and I got Han's spot. It was fun and we did a decent job flying the Falcon.

A droid in the land.

Kylo's ship but no Kylo. We hadn't seen any of the walk around characters yet except for a few stormtroppers on top of the buildings when we first entered the land.


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

Next we went into Dok Ondor's Den of Antiquities (I probably spelled that wrong, and I'm okay with that) and looked around. It had some cool stuff in there and interesting easter eggs like the Arc from Indiana Jones.






The ceiling was beautiful.

It's the ark!


I guess these were kyber crystal things, but the box reminded me of a tesseract from Marvel movies.


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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

We had lunch at Docking Bay 7. We got the chicken and the ribs. The ribs were good and the chicken was fine. It wasn't very crispy and needed some salt.




Then back to the Marketplace and the toy shop had some really cute stuff.



It looked like this Darth toy was doing the robot dance.




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Original Poster
Monday June 17, 2019

Droid Tracks

And speaking of droids...the line looked pretty long for the build a droid so Brad decided to wait until we came back the following week. But we did peek inside.



And lots of droids outside the shop.


An entrance to the land. That reminded us that our time would be ending soon so we decided to ride the Falcon again a few more times. We were engineers again, which was fine.

After riding the Falcon again a few more times, it was around noon the end time of our reservation. And we honestly meant to leave fairly promptly but Brad (and I) were having fun taking in the details and the atmosphere. We ended up staying another hour and a half. We had planned to leave at noon and head to a botanical garden near our rental house but we wanted to ride Hyperspace Mt and Big Thunder before we left Disneyland and we figured that by the time we got to the garden we just wouldn't do it justice. So we lingered in the land. We didn't attempt to do the ride again or droid building. But we did check out the shops again and then we just sat in the land and enjoyed the atmosphere. It was during that time we were able to see Rey, Kylo, and Chewy (including Chewy fixing one of the ship). We also found an area that was playing a "radio" broadcast with some of the music from the Cantina. So we did feel a little guilty about staying but no one was fighting over the spot we were sitting in either.



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