Category Archives: Adventureland

Jambalaya Jazz Band

As I’ve said before, one of the biggest surprises for me during MYWTM is the amount of roving entertainment all around the park. Walt was a huge music lover and I knew about the Disneyland Band and the barbershop quartet known as the Dapper Dans, and some people in Victorian costumes who sing at Christmas, but other than that I had no idea about the little groups and bands that are all over Disneyland. I’m so glad MYWTM is making me slow down and enjoy the atmosphere because I really would have missed these fabulous gems just like I have every year before MYWTM.

The day I rode the Lilly Belle, I caught sight of these guys in New Orleans Square:

Natty outfits, swingin' tunes, New Orleans Square...

It’s the Jambalaya Jazz Band! Nope, it’s not the Dixieland Band, although they are often confused with each other.

Jambalaya. Jazz.

They even had Mardi Gras beads in their pockets that they tossed to a few of the little kids standing around. And said children didn’t even have to…*ahem*…do anything to get some beads ;).

I only listened to them for a song to  two, but like the rest of the bands I’ve discovered, they were lively, very fun, and fabulous to listen to. It’s so exciting to make these discoveries. So far I’ve stumbled across:

The Pearly Band, a jolly performance in front of the castle with special guest stars Mary Poppins and Bert!

Supercalimumblemumble

The Straw Hatters, a group of musicians clad in straw hats with special guest stars Pluto, Donald Duck, Mickey, and Minnie:

Over in the corner of Town Square

The Dapper Dans, which everyone seems to know about. No special guests that I saw but their singing is second to none, and their chime-playing (Kelli knows the proper term for that) is really fantastic.

About halfway down Main Street

The Hook and Ladder Company, a bonny group of firemen and their mascot Spot, who is nearly kidnapped by the evil Cruella DeVille, and we’re also entertained by Chip and Dale and Goofy.

Town Square right in front of the fire department (and below Walt's personal apartment)

Arrrrr, the grimy band of pirates, the Bootstrappers, singing traditional pirate tunes (sans ale) in New Orleans Square.

What's a pirate's favorite letter? Arrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

And of course, the Disneyland Band.

Middle of Town Square at the flagpole

Now that’s entertainment! And all of that entertainment–the kind you can basically trip over on your way to somewhere else–I think that’s a part of the Disneyland Magic, don’t you?

 

Tropical Imports

I’ve talked about the Adventureland bottleneck in a couple of different places. It can be frustrating, and that’s really a bummer because there’s SO much to see in just that little stretch of the park. I’ve already covered the geographically confusing South Seas Traders, getting your fortune told (when working) at the Adventureland Bazaar, how to buy a hat at the Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost, the ride I would kill to work on (Jungle Cruise) (and I wouldn’t kill, I’d just shoot cap guns in the vicinity of wagging hippo ears),  and the best kebabs in the park at the Bengal BBQ. But there’s still one more detail-filled shop I need to cover–Tropical Imports.

(yes, I hear you purists saying that I haven’t covered Tarzan’s Treehouse or Indiana Jones Adventure, but those are attractions and I’m talking stores and food. So just ignore that niggling voice in the back of your mind and be patient 😉 )

Tropical Imports is an open-air store located as a part of the queue for the Jungle Cruise.

The architecture is a little funky, but it works.

I love the hilarity of the Jungle Cruise. I never realized that there’s  painted warning on the exit that says “Escaping Passengers Exit Only”

Man, I really need to be more careful about other people in my pictures.

There’s sort of a patio thing above Tropical Imports. I can remember in the past that sometimes you’d see a Calypso band up there, but I haven’t seen that for a while. Any insight, Sharp-Eyed Readers?

Insert Calypso band here!

Tropical Imports has a great sign. I’m not really sure why, but I totally love this sign.

Go figure.

The thing that always immediately catches my eye is the display of fruit. It’s just like the fruit cart on Main Street for your standard apples, oranges, and bananas. They also sell things like craisins.

Craisins? Seriously people, you're at Disneyland. Splurge on a churro and enjoy yourself.

But the main thing that catches me eye is this:

A big steel tub? Wow!

Yes, it sells bottled water (which you won’t need to buy because you took my advice and brought along a refillable water bottle, and have been getting free ice water at quick service restaurant windows to refill it) and juice, but the best part is in those little plastic containers: fruit. Not boring fruit like apples and bananas, but interesting fruit like mangoes and pineapples and strawberries. And if that isn’t good enough, the fruit, which looks juicy and irresistibly tasty, is sitting in a bathtub full of ice. So you’d like a sweet but mostly healthy treat and it’s really hot out, it’s not just fruit, it’s COLD fruit.

Man, it makes me want to buy some now. I’ve always been a sucker for mangoes.

They do close off Tropical Imports at night using these high-tech security curtains:

Curtains?

And like the rest of the stores in the Adventureland bottleneck, the decorations on the ceiling are fabulous.

Disney really does an excellent job with the details, even if you can't always figure out what the things are.

You can buy stuffed animals to go with your fruit. The monkeys you can mostly see hanging by their arms in the bottle left of the picture. That always looked a little uncomfortable to me, but then again, I’m not a monkey.

So there you have it–the Tropical Imports store.

Now I made you crave cold fruit, didn’t I? Heh.

 

South Seas Traders

As commenter and former cast member Jamie pointed out, the South Seas Traders store is located in between the Middle East (Bazaar) and Africa (Indy), which makes Disneyland’s conceptual geography even more…creative.

Fake apartments up there, too! They're everywhere!

So I’ll admit it, I didn’t really have a grasp on where the South Seas supposedly are. I mean, I thought they were in the Pacific and obviously south of here, but that was about as far as I got. So I used my Standard Research Methodology (3 minutes on Google) and found the following definition on the always-reliable Wikipedia:

South Sea or South Seas may refer to:

Geographic region of the Pacific
  • The Pacific Ocean south of Panama
  • South Sea Islands (Polynesia)
  • Oceania, east of Australia

On a side note, I’m currently working on my critical thesis for my graduate program and I’m really trying to use as much Wikipedia material as humanly possible, since it’s such a reliable, fact-based source. What could possibly go wrong with that approach?

Kidding.

Anyway, so it looks like the definition of “South Seas” is, um, very large. I mean, there’s a whole lot of “Pacific ocean south of Panama.” That’s like saying “Yeah, I’m going to tour the Southern Hemisphere.” Confusing things even more is the “South Seas Island Resort” located in the Pacific ocean south of Panama  South Sea Islands (Polynesia)  Oceania, east of Australia  Captiva, Florida.

Hunh.

Well, the Disneyland version also seems to have a bit of a geographical identity crisis in addition to being situated between the Middle East and Africa. Some of the decor hints at vaguely Polynesian-themed items:

The sign for "assorted tropical fruit" is a lie. They do not sell assorted tropical fruit in this store.

The cash register area seems to suggest some sort of aboriginal flair???

Aboriginal where?

I have no idea why I took this picture:

This doesn't even really SHOW anything except a rather awkward angle of a cast member

There’s a fake boat rental window, which is probably good because I’m just not sure I’d want to hit the Pacific Ocean south of Panama in a boat that came from here:

Are there any schooners available? No? Damn.

Disneyland all but admits their difficulty in pinning down where exactly the South Seas are by decorations like this:

What is this even supposed to be?

Oh, wait a minute…hold the phone! So it looks like in the back of this inexplicable display there’s a sign for a ferry to Antigua, Barbados, and Curaco, as well as what looks like “Caribe” (the Caribbean) at the top.

I mean really Disney, geography was never my strong suit, but I’m pretty sure that the Caribbean Islands are located in the Caribbean Sea, which is definitely NOT in the Pacific Ocean, nor is it on or near the South Seas Islands aka Polynesia, or anywhere NEAR Oceania and/or Australia. And they are certainly not south of Panama.

I’m so confused.

Adventureland Bazaar

So right next to the Indy Outpost (connected even) is the Adventureland Bazaar. Now the Adventureland Bazaar is closest to the now closed Aladdin’s Oasis Dinner Show. First, I never attended the Aladdin’s Oasis Dinner Show which, according to Yesterland, only ran for a couple of years. Those years I happened to be living in the Midwest and completely missed it.

On another note, I completely missed the Rocket Rods too–a ride using the Peoplemover track. But I heard it wasn’t that great.

Anyway, now Aladdin’s Oasis seems to be just a meet and greet for Aladdin characters. Which I very rarely see open, so I think getting in there is going to be a challenge. It’s really too bad because apparently the Oasis shares a kitchen with the Plaza Pavilion, another waste of space in the park–formerly a restaurant, currently useless. Anyway, it did inspire the Adventureland Bazaar, and that’s what I’m going to talk about today.

How bizarre

The Bazaar, representing the Middle East, is rightly located and connected to the Outpost, representing Africa. Because Disney is all into truncated geography like that.

The Bazaar is actually on the corner part of the store area.

You know, the corner part. Cause that makes so much sense to someone who hasn't been there.

There’s lots of different details around there, in true Disney fashion.

Adventureland "Traders"--quotes used correctly since they don't actually trade there, unless you consider money to be a trade

Like Indy, there are “apartments” above the Bazaar. I particularly love this window:

Because when I think about the Middle East or Africa or anywhere, really, I always think "Tattoo parlor and banjo lessons in the same building? Genius."

I guess it does say “Oriental tattoo” which makes it better? Or not. Check out Hanzi Smatter. But I can’t help but wonder what an actual Disneyland tattoo parlor would look like. I mean, getting permanent, real tattoos at Disneyland. I bet there’d be a big market for that, really, given how popular tattoos are these days, and I do see a lot of Disney-related tattoos on people at the park. It would be all guaranteed to be hygienic and stuff and then people could brag that they got their Disney tattoo at the Mouse and not some friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend guy working out of his “apartment” on top of the garage of his parent’s house while they were totally inebriated. I’m thinking it’s a solid idea!

Too bad Walt would personally and forcefully rise up from the grave and kill whomever allowed a tattoo parlor in his park. Making that even more complicated is the fact that Walt was cremated. But I’m sure he would be so offended by such a thing that he would go all Mummy or whatever and swirl his ashes back into a corporeal form to express his outrage.

And no, he was not cryogenically frozen.

But I digress.

You can also buy a magic carpet at the Bazaar, or so the door claims, though I wasn’t able to find any actual magic carpets for sale.

Did I really need two pictures of this doorway? What was I thinking?

The Bazaar is pretty intricately themed. Here’s an elephant on top of a squished penny machine.

Elephants are nice.

I used to love the squished penny thing. Actually, I can remember being a little kid at Knotts and you could clandestinely put a coin on the railroad track and after the train went by you had your very own squished coin, but I believe those days are long gone.

Some of the things for sale are more Adventureland-ish than Bazaar-ish, like these drinking vessels.

What's with the zebra print? Do people really buy these?

I love the totally authentic Panda bears. They’re Disneyland’s version of a Pillow Pet.

"Mommy, I want a panda to symbolize my visit to the Middle East/Africa section of Disneyland!"

Theo got a pillow pet for Christmas this past year. Great-Grandma saw a commercial for it and went out to find one. He has the doggie one–it’s really cute! And very soft.

Anyway, the Bazaar has some great theming around the ceiling and over the doors.

I have no idea what any of these things are. Xylophone? Maraca? Whatever--I'm sure they're authentic

Even the register area is exciting.

Exciting!

And then in the back of the store, I came to one of those things I never knew existed–Aladdin’s lamp!

OMG it's a genie lamp!!!

It was actually pretty cool, tucked away in the back there. The banner reads:

"Whosoever rubs the lamp (and places coins in the slot below) shall receive the wisdom of the GENIE and have their future revealed"

I mean wow, how cool is that? I was all ready to place my coins in the slow below and receive the wisdom of the GENIE, until I saw this.

Out of order??? What, is the GENIE on vacation or something???

Bad show, Disney. Bad show! There was the one free coin slot but I was a little nervous to place my coins in it lest that one be out of order too and just not marked. I didn’t want to waste 50 cents if the GENIE wasn’t going to pony up my future. So I’ll have to go back and check it again.

Anyone gotten a fortune from this machine GENIE? What did it say?

%d bloggers like this: