Friday, July 29, 2005

Disney Park Update—MGM Studios adds Extra Magic

When we went to MGM for the Extra Magic Hours last Sunday, we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into.

The first thing we noticed walking up to the gates around 9pm were the curiously good smells, like hors d’oeuvres and finger foods--smells that are pretty much synonymous with the word “party”.

The second thing we noticed was the thumping bass beat. We started dancing in line before even realizing it was out of place.

So up Hollywood Boulevard we go to try to track down the source of all these curious happenings, and possibly crash whatever private event we assumed they were having.

Well, lo and behold, right there, on a stage set up smack dab in front of that big old annoying hat (Can’t tell what we think of that, now can you? We’re very subtle)—right in front of it was a DJ, all set up with his discs and mix tables and a pile of shiny stuff on the floor.

We were still looking for the party.

Took us a minute to realize that this was the party, and better yet, it was for us…and all the other resort guests. In a word (pay attention here, this is the whole point of the article…actually I could have just said this in the beginning but that’s way too easy)—in an effort to liven up their late nights, which up until now have been rather dull, Disney has added a DJ in the hopes that it will help bring in more guests.

Frankly, I’ve wondered about this—how much does it actually cost to keep the park open the extra three hours? If only a handful guests show up to take advantage this resort guest perk, will they in turn spend enough on food and merchandise in those three hours to justify the Extra Magic to continue? It makes sense that Disney would try to up the attendance, and a DJ is a great idea.

Although it wasn’t quite like New Year’s at MGM—all the tunes were decidedly family-friendly—it didn’t matter much, because people like to dance. The playlist for the night included the obligatory dance songs—YMCA, the Electric Slide, etc.—along with Disney remixes and a bunch of pop tunes with a good beat.

The DJ, though, didn’t just play the tunes and leaving the crowd to fend for itself—he threw out Mardi Gras beads at random intervals, dug through his pile of costumes for wigs and sequined jackets, among other things --and he made sure that we all kept moving by leading us in funky routines that had us jumping and kickboxing, doing the grapevine and disco, and a whole slew of other moves I’m sure he invented on the spot to throw us off (i.e. “the sprinkler”?). Not that we and the other two hundred people cared—we were just having fun. We did the limbo, the cha-cha, the hula-hoop, washed an invisible car, mowed an invisible lawn, and much, much more.

Three hours later, we were sweaty and tired, but in a good way, like we’d just been through a workout…my running theory is that that was part of the idea—to trick our fast food nation into exercising.

A more probable motivation was that thirsty dancers buy more drinks.

Whatever the reason, it was a fun night (even though we never discovered the source of the good smells…?) and I hope the change in the Magic Hours is permanent because hey, who doesn’t like to do the “John Travolta” all night long?


Blogger Christopher Trottier said...

Disneyland now has live DJs?

11:28 PM

Blogger Nadia said...

I don't know about Disneyland, but Disney World does now. They used to bring them into the parks for special occasions only--private parties and holidays mostly; they've always been a staple at Pleasure Island, for the club crowd--but last night they had a DJ at Downtown Disney Marketplace, in front of World of Disney--it was pretty much the same setup as MGM, with the dancing and costuming antics, except the called it a "Kid's Dance Party".
I still think they were trying to get the people to work off the McDonald's food though:)

10:29 PM

Blogger Admin said...

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8:48 PM


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