The Tiki Den is still in planning stages for the most part. We ripped up the smelly old carpet, moved furniture out of the way, and had the cable installed. Perhaps if we have time later this week we can move some of the furniture to the garage and get the couch and a nice rug out there. May could be up by Christmas!
Thinking more about history brought me back to my old class and textbook project. I was thinking about the first Snow White-themed dark ride, actually just the Gold Mine ride rethemed by painting a Snow White mural on the front of the dark ride - with Disney's permission. It was on Surf Avenue, according to renowned Amusement Park historian Jeffrey Stanton (who also penned a couple of game design textbooks back in the 80s). We've come so far, but, then again, we haven't. The Little Mermaid dark ride is an Omnimover, Garner Holt did an amazing job on the animatronics (Disney says Imagineering did it. No, they didn't.) - they're colorful and full of personality. It's going to be a fun attraction.
Disney's dark rides are unlike any other - those that Disney did for Disneyland and such. I love to go to sites like Laff in the Dark so that I can experience what I was born too late for - those seaside wonderlands with garish Pretzel rides and walk-throughs. Next weekend, we'll be visiting Santa Monica Pier - near the former home to what arguably was Disneyland's strongest competition, Pacific Ocean Park. All that's left now is some machinery in the water, and they've popped up a lot of generic, off-the-shelf rides on the Santa Monica Pier to try to capture the spirit of the old days (and the tourist dollars); but Pacific Ocean Park was a hoot! I love this very enthusiastic and loving (and low-tech) fan site: http://pacificoceanpark.tripod.com/ ... http://www.rippop.com/main.htm is a loving tribute to the site as well. There was a Peter Pan-esque flying carpet dark ride! There was a jungle-themed dark ride where they gave little boys rifles to shoot! The skyway was clear flying balls!
I'll have fun there in the present, and think fondly and appreciatively of the past.