Local 6 Theme World: New mine ride with 42-year past

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By Ken Pilcher - Producer
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December 5, 2013

New Mine Ride With 42-Year Past

Sorry to those of you asking about part two of the rumor roundup. It is coming soon, but I am following up on some new information that could change things, so I'd rather verify first and publish second. Still the future of Universal, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom is coming soon.  And once again, Universal is the one to watch for new rides.

Speaking of new rides -- the ONLY one under construction in all 28,000 acres of Walt Disney World is nearing completion in the Magic Kingdom.

The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is set to debut  next Spring: 3 YEARS after its announcement. (still a better track record than Avatarland -- also announced in 2011. Now coming in 2017. Well, the first PHASE of it)

 We've talked before about the innovative little coaster. It's big claim to fame is that you ride in mine cars that swing back and forth while you ride. While visually it will be a great addition at the heart of "New Fantasyland," from what I hear, it will be a C-ticket on the old A-E ticket book scale)

The announcement of the ride in 2011 made fans both cheer and boo at the same time. While most preferred an actual ride to a couple of more meet and greets, news came that opening the Mine Train meant closing the classic "Snow White's Scary Adventure Ride" and its terrifying-for-the-little-ones witch encounters.

The ride that closed last year was reworked in 1994 from the 1971 original to be less scary, but many props were still intact. Including these guys:

Vultures designed closely after the ones in the Snow White movie, where they make a very brief, but memorable appearance as the witch meets her demise.

While many people were sad to lose the classic ride, Disney Imagineers are paying tribute to it in the new ride.
They sent out these pictures of them installing props along the ride's first lift hill. They installed a prop "wooden" pulley, and atop that prop -- are the 1971 vultures

 No doubt they have been repainted (the original ride was painted with black light colors) but it is a nice tribute. I just hope in their final placement the vultures are protected enough to survive Florida's steamy and stormy summers.

Disney is trying hard to show the mine ride isn't the only new thing to see. They sent out a "new for 2014" press release featuring 7 additions (hmm... wonder if that's a tribute to the dwarfs):

1. Nothing sleepy about it! The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train will crown New Fantasyland with family coaster fun.
2. Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade will bring the magical stories of New Fantasyland to Main Street U.S.A.
3. Fit2Run, the Marketplace Co-Op, new Starbucks and more kick off the multi-year transformation of Downtown Disney into Disney Springs.
4. Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts opens a luxury resort hotel within the Golden Oak community.
5. The Orlando City Soccer Club makes ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex its home for 2014 regular season games.
6. New races welcome runDisney enthusiasts and first-time runners alike.
7. New 2014 itineraries for Disney Cruise Line will include an expanded collection of European sailings.

So --- stores, races, soccer, an EXTREMELY high-end hotel. They also have a new restaurant opening in Morocco at Epcot. At least we are also replacing the 2001 parade (and I hear the new Festival of Fantasy parade is quite an upgrade).

Look for both the parade and mine to open next Spring. I understand Disney hopes to have the Mine Coaster in testing with guests as soon as late February.

Keep your emails, questions, tips and comments coming! I always appreciate the feedback.

You can always find all of my blog entries at www.clickorlando.com/themeparks

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