By Charly SHELTON
Though the “Frozen Fun” event at the Hollywood Pictures Backlot area of Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort is garnering much attention, the “Frozen” experience is not limited to California Adventure. Yes, it’s at California Adventure where guests can find Olaf, snowman and lover of all things warm, a snowfield play area to while away the three-hour wait to meet Olaf, the Crown Jewel Theatre with the sing-along show and Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post. But across the esplanade at Disneyland, “Frozen” is cemented as one of the classic Disney princess movies.
Storybook Land, a ride in Fantasyland where the great castles and homes of favorite Disney characters have been miniaturized in a process known only to Tinker Bell and a few Disney Imagineers, now features Elsa’s “Frozen” palace, thereby ensuring that future generations will include her among the core group of Disney princesses.
Storybook Land is a hall of fame for some of the great Disney movies and being among the exhibits indicates that a movie – and its princess – has achieved no small level of success. The most popular princesses have their homes immortalized in Storybook Land. “Cinderella?” Check. Ariel from “The Little Mermaid?” Check. Jasmine from “Aladdin?” Check. No “Brave,” no “Princess and the Frog,” no “Atlantis.” These films weren’t as popular – and neither were their princesses.
But there’s more “Frozen” fun to be had, this time geared for adults. Heading back to Disney California Adventure, grown-ups will find the “Freeze the Night” party in the Hollywood Pictures Backlot.
“Freeze the Night” was first introduced as “Glow Fest” in summer 2010. The concept has basically been the same, though in various ideations with various themes, over the years. After “Glow Fest” was “elecTRONica” from October 2010 to April 2012, with updates to the projection tech, the performances and the nightlife feel. Then in June 2012, “elecTRONica” was replaced with “Mad T Party,” an “Alice in Wonderland” themed party focusing more on live rock than dubstep and electronica. “Mad T Party” was all about live music and the band was amazing. Then in December 2014, “Mad T Party” was pushed aside for the new “Frozen” themed nighttime party, “Freeze the Night.”
Keeping some of the “Mad T Party” live performers and repurposing the drink stations from “elecTRONica” and the dance floor from “Glow Fest,” the evolution of this party is clear and it seems to be received well. With alcoholic drinks at the bars, as well as non-alcoholic freezers for the kids, this is definitely a place adults will want to spend the last part of their Disney night, rather than trying to squeeze onto that last ride.
However, I must advise: Do not buy the drinks. I can’t say it any more plainly. The Snowberry Blue martini is $11.50 and tastes like there is no alcohol in it. But it does smell like there’s alcohol in it – rubbing alcohol – and tastes like blue gummy bear extract that has been reduced down to the extract of the extract. After drinking half of it I had to pour it out because it was so sweet. Instead, consider heading over to Trader Sam’s at the Disneyland Hotel (worth the walk), or Hearthstone Lounge at Grand Californian, just outside the park’s side entrance, or The Cove Bar in the park at Paradise Pier. These offer amazing cocktails for almost the same price.
“Frozen” fans should plan now to head to the Disneyland Resort to see these limited time only events.