I’ll admit it, I’ve been falling a bit on making this the year of Disneyland on the blog, but I’m about to start again in full swing. Both A. Because I’ll be there on Friday! and B. Because I’m happy to announce it’s my turn to participate in the amazing 60 Days to 60 Years Of Disneyland project, focusing on 2009 or as it’s known to my family – the year Morgan went to Disneyland. Twice.
First off – the major events of 2009. In California Adventure Mickey’s Fun Wheel opened to the public (and quickly gained the name ‘Mickey’s Wheel of Death in my book) and Blue Sky Cellar also gave guests a chance to imagineer the future of the park along with the best of them.
Across the way in Disneyland proper Fantasmic (my all time favorite Disney show) introduced a fire breathing Dragon, Celebrate! A Street Party made it’s big dancing debut, and just wrapping down from the Year(s) of A Million Dreams, Disneyland launched the ‘What Will You Celebrate’ campaign, which offered guests free admission on their birthday.
That promotion was part of what brought me on my first Disneyland trip of 2009. One of my younger sister’s birthdays fell over spring break that year, and my family thought it would be a great idea to use that free park ticket on a Southern California Vacation.I’ve shared my favorite photo from this trip before, but there are some others that bare sharing, because our spring break adventure stands out as one of my top five favorite Disney memories of all time:
This trip was amazing because it allowed me to see the world of Disneyland through a child’s eyes again. Being able to visit the park with my six and eight year old sisters reminded me what it was like to visit Disneyland as a kid, and being able to tap into that child like excitement with no fear of judgement was a turning point in my love affair with Disney. I had never fallen out of love with the parks, but this was the time that my passion for them was renewed, and I knew as I danced down Paradise Pier in a rainstorm that my love of the parks would live on for the rest of my life.
It was with this attitude that I approached my second, more adult, Disney vacation – which I took with two of my high school friends after graduation. This was my first real trip anywhere that I planned, payed for, and fully executed with out my family, and I couldn’t think of a better place to end up on such an adult endeavor. We had such a fun time that five years later one of my friends (plus a few more) and I returned to Disneyland for our five year high school reunion.
For me, 2009 was a year of figuring out who I was becoming. Where I was going to college, what values were important to me, and what I wanted to do with my life were all major topics on the table while I was 17/18 years old. I will forever be grateful to Disneyland for helping me ease the transition between those first steps into adulthood and the childlike joy, sense of fun, and stress-free life style I never want to loose. So thanks, Disneyland – for proving that no matter what crazy changes life throws my way, you’ll always be there for me.
Where you lucky enough to visit Disneyland in 2009? What stands out to you most about the parks as they wrapped up the first decade of the 2000s?