Tag Archives: Cars Land

Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree

Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree is one of the three new rides at Cars Land, and in my opinion, a hidden gem. It’s one of those rides that actually is a lot funner than it looks.

Is funner a word? More fun? Meh, my blog, I’ll use whatever words I want.

First, let’s be honest: Mater’s looks a bit dull–there’s a little tractor and you’re in a little cart behind the tractor and the tractors all go around in a figure-8 type motion while the seats move. Here’s a picture.

Your little tractor and seat

What makes it cool is that the little trailer swings way out around each curve with some major g-force action, as it whips you around (but not in a “Ouch! My neck!” kind of way) each curve.

The whole setup is very cute.

Despite being Mater’s ride, Mater is not actually IN this ride

It’s a true testament to Disney imagineering that they make a miniature tractor look both adorable and slightly confused.

This is the “petting zoo” part outside the ride–you can take a picture here

The queue is straightforward–switchbacks under a tin roofed open building. The decor is best described as “hipster junk.”

A big collection of signs and stuff

Totally unrelated, but when did Pabst Blue Ribbon turn into the hipster beer of choice? That stuff tastes like crap!

Anyway.

There’s a hidden Mickey in here. Can you see it?

I actually rode this ride on two separate occasions. The above pictures are from June. Last week we went on Mater’s with Kevin and Theo and I got a couple more shots.

I thought this was cute

The license plates are a combination of actual state plates and made-up ones.

Did you find that hidden Mickey?

Here it is!

Here’s a kind of action shot. Because MYWTM just wouldn’t be the same without some questionable photography.

Boy, makes you feel like you’re on the ride yourself, huh?

One nice thing about Mater’s is that two normal-sized adults and one small child fit comfortably, unlike Dumbo where I wasn’t sure the three of us were going to be able to exit our shared elephant without a crowbar or emergency personnel.

And there’s something particularly embarrassing about “Help! We are collectively too fat to get out of our elephant!”

Plenty of room for Mommy!

Another great thing about Mater’s is that there are actually two ride areas that run simultaneously. That really bumps up ride capacity, even though it’s not a continuous load ride. We only waited about 15 minutes to get on.

And then the music starts and you’re off! Right after we whipped around the first corner, Theo cried out “I LOVE IT!!!!!” Which was very cute.

Self-portrait attempt to capture the joy and delight on my darling child’s face

Okay, I realize it looks like he’s being squeezed to death in that picture, but I assure you that the tractors ARE fairly roomy.

Really, Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree is awesome. Don’t pass it by because it looks boring. It’s really a fantastic ride. The only bad thing about it was Theo’s unhappiness when we told him he couldn’t ride it again.

Because we’re really mean parents.

He’s not getting a pony for Christmas either.

Flo’s V8 Cafe, or I Should Have Had a V8!

Finally, the blockout period ends and I make my triumphant return to the Mouseland. I’ll admit I was feeling a bit of withdrawal.

We (Kevin, Theo, and I) headed to CA Adventure for the night. Kevin and Theo had obviously never seen Cars Land or Buena Vista Street–the sad consequences of being the spouse and child of the blogger rather than paying for the pass the blogger has. Theo, of course, spent a number of hours talking about how he wanted to see the castle and the fireworks.

That’s my boy.

Theo was a bit nonplussed about Cars Land, but Kevin was impressed. We decided to catch some dinner at Flo’s V8 Cafe.

I’ll admit I was nervous. Disneyland has really made a huge effort lately to improve their food–diversifying menus and giving greater value for the money. But my brain is still partially stuck in that place where they served nothing but dry overprocessed burgers at exorbitant prices (not counting the churros and corn dogs). So I’ll totally cop to the fact that Flo’s made me nervous.

I shouldn’t have worried.

They hand you a menu outside so you don’t spend your time at the register trying to read the menu board and holding everyone else up. I will warn you, the price on the printed menu is not the same at the register. Which is kind of lame.

Their kids meal, you can get a roast beef sandwich, a turkey sandwich, or macaroni and cheese. Theo picked the mac and cheese–a bit surprising since he generally doesn’t like mac and cheese (I know, right? What kid doesn’t love mac and cheese?). You could also get a Lightning McQueen racer with your kid’s meal.

It’s in the display case

To be honest, I’m not entirely sure what it does. The wheels don’t move and it’s got two handles, so I guess it’s some kind of box or something?

Anyway, it cost $6 more and we have a remote control Lightning McQueen at home, so we passed on that valuable opportunity.

Up at the counter, the V8 Cafe does its best to be very 50s.

The jukebox doesn’t work. Yes, I pressed the buttons to check

It’s all shiny and stuff in the background

 

Actually that picture kind of freaks me out a little. Also, on the left? Flames!!!

The interior has plenty of seating. Actually more than you might think.

And by you, I mean me. And by think, I mean assume.

Interior seating with giant wrenches on the wall

Even MORE interior seating! Can’t beat that with a stick!

 

The silverware and condiment section was festive as well.

Route 66, which no longer looks like this

 

Also, Doc Hudson was a big-wig here, since he’s got all of these diplomas on the wall and stuff.

Little known fact: Doc Hudson only paid off his student loans right before he died

 

Now Doc Hudson is voiced by the late Paul Newman in Cars 1 (also known as “Cars”). Which is totally awesome and all, except that he died before Cars 2 was recorded, so he (Doc Hudson) becomes this kind of posthumous character, without ever really explaining how a car ages or what it means to die.

I mean, does a car go all Thelma and Louise and throw itself off a cliff? And how old are the cars in Cars anyway?

Sorry, I digress.

I ordered the pork loin dinner. I was very hesitant (can you tell I’ve been burned by Disneyland food before? And not in a temperature kind of way), because badly-done pork is REALLY bad. Like it’s all dry and chewy and you’re totally screwed once you go past that tipping point of nice and juicy and just plain overcooked.

However, at Flo’s, the pork came with a Coke BBQ sauce. Coca-Cola, not the drug. And that kind of appealed to me. It came with two sides, so I got the corn medley and the baked beans.

Here ya go!

 

It also came with a roll I found a bit uninspiring.

But overall, my pork was actually excellent! It was nice and moist and non-chewy. The BBQ sauce added the right amount of tang with just a bit of spiciness. I would totally get it again.

Kevin, in this slightly dazed picture, got the beef strip plate with gravy. It too was also very good. Go figure. He couldn’t resist a strawberry milkshake, but got it in a regular cup rather than the collectible Flo’s glass, which we really don’t need. The milkshake also came with “road gravel” which was basically little malt balls that just kept getting stuck in the straw. Cute, but not practical.

Kevin sporting his Anaheim Brewery t-shirt

Theo got, as I mentioned, the mac and cheese (sans Lightning McQueen racer car thing). It came with grapes, apple rounds, carrots, and peas. I actually really like that they put all the healthy food out there and if you wanted something else you had to ask.

This is what happens when I beg him to smile for the camera

 

All in all, I was very impressed! The food quality was great and the prices were on par with the rest of the park. Plus the outdoor seating area was ideally located for people and car watching.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cars Land After Dark

One of the coolest things about Cars Land is the way it looks after dark. Which makes sense, because in the movie they make this huge deal of sprucing up all the neon and such.

Why do neon signs make that buzzing noise as they light up? Not a trivia question–I want to know.

Postcard perfect

I knew from my original Cars Land post that Cars Land at night was going to be spectacular. I was so excited to see it all lit up.

Flo’s and Ramone’s

The neon really makes you feel like you’re living the movie.

Of course, there’s my favorite Cars Land eatery area:

I mean seriously, this sign alone is awesomeness

Here’s some more:

Even shots from an angle are awesome

Luigi’s looks particularly cool after dark, although I didn’t ride the ride itself this visit.

Cars Land is not to be missed day OR night.

Luigi’s Flying Tires

Luigi’s Flying Tires is one of three new attractions in Cars Land, found inside (well, actually in the backyard of) Casa Della Tires.

It’s not a tire shop–it’s a ride!

 

But before I talk about Luigi’s, I need to talk about the Flying Saucers.

The Flying Saucers was a much-loved but short-lived attraction at Disneyland, opening in 1961 and closed in 1966. Walt himself reportedly loved the idea. Picture a giant air hockey table with people sitting on the pucks and moving around on a cushion of air, bumping into each other like bumper cars. And also beaning each other with beach balls. Or just watch this short video I found on Youtube.

Cool, hunh? Unfortunately it was expensive to maintain and there were safety issues. Although my favorite part of the video is the guy at 0:15 taking a picture and smoking a cigar.

Talk about a different era.

Well, Luigi’s Flying Tires is an updated version of the Flying Saucers.

It’s like the Flying Saucers!

You sit on your very own tire, capacity 1-3 people, and ride around on a cushion of air, leaning in the direction you would like to go.

In fact, right outside the building, you can get a good look at your ride vehicle.

You can even take a picture in it!

Oh, just like in the movie, you can find Casa Della Tires by its distinctive leaning tower of tires!

Not a great picture to capture the leaning aspect. Derp.

Okay, so you go into the building right into a tire showroom.

It’s all like mahogany and stuff

Oh, and here’s probably the most BRILLIANT thing in all of Cars Land–roaming vendors.

Popcorn and cold soda/water

Not only can you find these vendors walking around on the streets, they also wander through the lines, so if you’ve got that long wait for Radiator Springs Racers and feel like you’re going to die of dehydration halfway through, there’s a vendor to the rescue!!!

Plus the popcorn smells so danged good I almost bought it right there in line.

Genius.

Anyway, after the tire showroom, you think you might be getting closer but you’re kind of not, as you hit a bunch of switchbacks in a souvenir room.

Cars and Route 66 stuff

But finally, you make it out of the building! So you’re there, right?

Nope

But at least you get to see the ride!

And the top of someone’s head

There are fun signs telling you what to do

Lean. That’s basically it.

You might think you’re there, but around the corner are more switchbacks.

Over by the fence

There’s a cool-looking topiary Francesco.

Well, it will be cool-looking when it grows in and fills out, but hey, the land just opened.

I love Disney’s little details. Even the planters are stacked tires.

And the fence posts too!

When you go to board, you get your little…triangle. It’s like the feathers on Dumbo where you hold them up and they collect them to make sure nobody’s riding twice or something.

I’m not sure why it’s a triangle

It was at this point that I asked the cast member why there were beach balls. He answered in a very fabulous voice, “Because it’s festive!!! And also as an homage to the original Flying Saucers ride.”

The beach balls do tend to congregate around a certain corner by the end of the ride however.

Over here

And actually the MOST important thing (other than the leaning thing) is that you’re not supposed to step on the rubber part of your tire, you’re supposed to step on the platform.

No feet on the rubber!

Stepping on the tire part could cause it to deflate, which is bad, since the ride depends on being inflated.

There’s an unfortunate downside of Luigi’s Flying Tires, which is that the tires can be difficult to maneuver. You need to lean, but not too far or you’ll over balance. There’s definitely a sweet spot. I had fun, but I wouldn’t wait more than 45 minutes or so for it.

And my biggest piece of advice is that the lighter the tire is, the easier it is to maneuver around. Weighing the tire down just makes it less mobile. So when boarding, I think it’s worthwhile to break up your group into smaller numbers with a weight balance so you can get the maximum fun from the ride.

 

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