Theme Park Bits: A Toy Story Restaurant, May The Fourth Celebration, And More

In this edition of Theme Park Bits:

  • Toy Story Land is getting a BBQ restaurant.
  • Celebrate May the Fourth at the Disney theme parks.
  • The Disney Cruise Line is getting a new captain.
  • And more!
  • Roundup Rodeo BBQ Restaurant

    Earlier this week, the Disney Parks Blog unveiled a brand-new restaurant headed to Toy Story Land in Disney's Hollywood Studios. The good news is that this new, as-yet-named restaurant is all about barbecue, themed to Woody's Roundup. Having said that, and realizing that concept art is just concept art, the notion that the restaurant has a backstory in which Andy stitched together three cardboard boxes is...less than appetizing. Eating great barbecue? Yes, please. Eating in a restaurant built by "using three cardboard boxes cut and taped together"? (And please note: that is an actual quote from the article.) Not so much. Hopefully, the Imagineers will either revise this "story" or not lean on it so hard.

    As you're no doubt already aware, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge is right around the corner at Disneyland Park, opening at the end of this month. But the beginning of this month has its own celebration themed to the galaxy far, far away: May the Fourth. At Disneyland, they'll be celebrating in style this weekend all throughout Tomorrowland. The specially themed Hyperspace Mountain is taking over the iconic roller-coaster attraction for a limited time, and you can even get limited-time meals at the Galactic Grill while watching the nefarious Captain Phasma and the First Order march through the land. If you're at the park this weekend, be one with the Force (and the Fourth).

    Captain Minnie

    For too long, the Disney Cruise Line has only let Mickey Mouse be the captain. Well, no more, as Minnie Mouse tells Mickey, "I am the captain now." Glibness aside, that's actually true — later this year, Minnie will be in her captain's gear on the various ships of the Disney Cruise Line. Minnie's presence as captain is part of Disney's attempt to encourage young girls to explore pursue work in the maritime industry, and she'll be part of a new interactive experience focused on STEM education. (Disney really loves leaning on STEM with young women, as evinced in recent films like A Wrinkle in Time, Dumbo, Beauty and the Beast and The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. Getting a bit lazy!) Plus, there'll be Minnie merch, with the tagline "You Can Call Me Captain".

    Heading back to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge for our last two stories of the week, it's no secret that everyone expects the new land to be full of crowds when it opens in Anaheim on May 31. Even with the attempt to corral people by creating reservations and time limits, Disney is preparing for a crunch of people. The downside to this — well, one of the downsides — is that the walk-around droids that were going to be part of the mysterious planet of Batuu won't be there on opening day. Though the droids were tested last year at the D23 Expo, because of the amount of people flooding the new land, it looks like they'll be held until the crowds die down. (Try reading that with a straight face. I couldn't type it without snickering.)

    UPDATE: New Merchandise Coming to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland Resort, Disney's Hollywood Studios

    To wrap things up, let's talk about something that will be bountiful at Galaxy's Edge on opening day: merchandise. (Say it like you're Yogurt in Mel Brooks' Spaceballs. It's fun!) The merchandise will be flowing, and there's plenty of stuff for you to buy for yourself, your kids, your spouse, your parents, and your complete strangers. The pins and mug seen above are just the tip of the iceberg, with Savi's Workshop being the hopeful favorite. Why? That's where you can get handbuilt lightsabers from "the Gatherers", a secretive group of people who pass on their knowledge of Jedi lore to you as they build your lightsabers. (That attitude doesn't sound secretive, but whatever.) So, not that you weren't prepared to do so already, get your wallets out and prepare to lighten them considerably when Galaxy's Edge opens.