Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Pixar Fest at the Disneyland Resort!

Pixar lovers, this one's for you! Pixar Fest is going on now through September 3 and we were lucky enough to be there opening day. Here's the best of what you can expect to see at Disneyland and California Adventure.


The theme of Pixar Fest is friendship, and that comes through before you even walk in the gates. The giant Pixar Fest signs above the entry to both parks. Each letter spelling "Pixar Fest" is decorated to represent of a pair of famous Pixar friends. Can you spot them all? Try yourself before checking out our list.

P - Mr. Incredible and Frozone
I - Woody and Buzz
X - Joy and Sadness
A - Lighning McQueen and Mater
R - Mike Wazowski and Sully

F - Dory and Nemo (or Marlin?)
E - Russel and Carl
S - Miguel and Dante
T - Wall-E and Eve

All along main street you'll find bunting in the colors of the Luxo Ball.

The Monorails help pixar characters ride through Disneyland all day long, but to be honest, they really block your view when you're actually on the ride.

As always, Cars Land added more decorations, including a toy car version of Woody and Buzz for the perfect photo op at the entrance to the land and car themed Pixar movie posters.


The little green men from Toy Story have taken over the Pizza Port in Tomorrowland and (finally) turned it into Pizza Planet! There are a few new items on the menu, the best looking being the Little Green Man Macaroon.

Photo Credit: Disneyland News

And while we're talking about treats, take a peek at what's in the candy case: adorable Lighning and Mater caramel apples, a Grape Soda bottle cap cake pop, and a Mike Wazowski Rice Krispie treat!

Photo Credit: Personal Disneyland Shopper

Also keep an eye out for specially flavored Churros (cocoa for Coco, strawberry for Lotso in Toy Story), a Mike Wazowski shaped sourdough bread over at the Pacific Wharf Cafe, and color changing noodles inspired by Monsters Inc at the Lucky Fortune Cookery.


What would a Disneyland event be without special, limited time merchandise, amiright?

The Little Green Man cups are very popular and getting a little tough to find (along with the Sully popcorn buckets!), but there's so much cute merch to choose from, you'll have tons of options either way, including pins, shirts, hats, and backpacks.

All Three Photos: Personal Disneyland Shopper

Shows and Characters

Omg, the shows... We actually got to see Together Forever, the new fireworks show, two nights early, during their soft opening and wow. We just can't say enough about it. We were right on Main Street, basically next to the Refreshment Corner and it was a fantastic spot to see the projections on all of the buildings. While I'm a little short to have a great view of the fireworks from that spot, they were almost secondary to the music, projections, and of course both Buzz Lightyear and the house from Up flying across the sky over the castle. If you can get there early enough to get a spot by the castle, the projections should be amazing along with the spectacular view. Two other viewing spots where you can still see the projection show are along the Rivers of America and back by Small World.

The Pixar Play Parade is back with new floats added in and is as lively and fun as ever. Watch out for Crush - his float sprays water on the unsuspecting crowd!

If you're looking for some amazing Pixar photo ops, head to California Adventure near Goofy's Sky School, where you'll find lots of Pixar friends to choose from. Just beware there are some hefty lines. But it might be worth it to meet Mr. and Mrs. Incredible, Flik and Atta, Russel and Dug, and more!

Coming Soon - Pixar Pier

We're still two months out (at the time of writing this) from the opening of Pixar Pier, but you can tell something great is on its way. Work is visibly being done to the new Incredicoaster and Mickey's Fun Wheel.

If you're interested in learning more about the changes coming, head to the Blue Sky Cellar to learn more. 

Photo Credit: Disney Parks Blog

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Hotel Review: Grand Legacy at the Park

When it comes to hotels near Disneyland, we've stayed basically everywhere. That's why we were so excited to try somewhere new on our trip last week. The Grand Legacy At the Park was our family's home away from home for 6 nights. Traveling as a total of ten people in three groups (a family with kids, a family with a baby, and an all-adult family), it can be difficult to find something for everyone, but boy did we find it. Just a 5 minute walk from the pedestrian entrance to Disneyland on Harbor Blvd, the Grand Legacy exceeded our expectations. Let's break it all down for you so you can know what to expect if you make the choice to book your next stay here.


It really says something to find a hotel with multiple options for where to set up your port-a-crib (complementary, btw). But we found four options for where to place it and still have space to walk around the room.

Pool Area


Pool, hot tub, and "Splash Zone" open long hours (8am-10pm) with a cute beachy atmosphere offer something for everyone when you're taking a break to cool off, relax, or play.

The Fifth

Let's face it: sometimes you need a drink after a 16-hour Disneyland day. The Fifth is the Grand Legacy's rooftop bar and restaurant, with awesome views if you're there around fireworks time. It's 21 and over after 10pm, and there's live music on Fridays and Saturdays. Can I tell you how fun the Bon Jovi cover band was???

Here are some of our favorite parts of the menu. Check out the full menu here.
BTW, if you're concerned about an outdoor bar with live music at your hotel being too loud, we never heard it once we shut the door to our room at night, so no worries!

Helpful Staff

Let's face it, nothing ever goes perfectly. That's just life. But when you hit a snag (like needing to change rooms shortly after checking in), its wonderful to have the staff quickly and easily resolve the issues. Thanks, Grand Legacy!

Daily Snack Bags

If you're a regular reader of Dole Whip a Day, you know we love us some snacks, so this was a great one for us. Every morning we each got our snack bags, filled with water, cheese sticks, granola bars, and fruit and we were on our way to the parks! Best of all, it's one per person, not one per room! It's so helpful with kids (and even with the adults) to be able to have a quick snack on the way in the morning or to have it stashed away for the afternoon - you know, in between lunchtime and Dole Whip time.

Never Forget, You're in Disneyland

A huge mural of Walt Disney welcomes you as you enter the lobby! And, since I can't resist a photo booth, you know we took advantage of the digital postcard setup!