Take a bit of the Old West, mix in a hair-raising thrill ride or two, and what do you get? A great way to have fun on this year's family summer vacation.
For 2010 Disneyland offers great combinations of fun rides and touches of Western heritage for the family.
Here's a quick run down of what's going on at the park for this summer season.
Since the park opened in Anaheim, California in 1955, Frontierland has been a major attraction. One of the centerpieces is Tom Sawyer's Island, along with the paddlewheeler Mark Twain sailing on the Rivers of America. For 2010, the waterway not only got a good scrubbing, but several upgrades for visitors to see.
Along with a major cleanup, Disneyland's Rivers of America added some new shoreline figures for visitors to see, such as these Native American warriors out scouting.
Disneyland crews drained the concrete-bottomed waterway in January, cleaned it (no treasures were found, just a few cell phones), added some new shoreline scenes, then refilled the river with 6 million gallons of recycled water. Crews also installed a new 2,500-foot track to guide the Mark Twain and the Sailing Ship Columbia, the first new track since the park's 1955 opening.
But the biggest change for 2010 is to the character of the river. Known since 1955 as the Rivers of America, the river was called that in name only. Now, the waterway represents four of America's great rivers: the Mississippi, the Columbia, the Potomac and the Rio Grande.
Each section has a distinct look, with Disney crews planting more than 4,000 shrubs and 130 trees to represent the distinctive vegetation found along each river. For example, evergreens and ferns were planted for the Columbia, while pinon pines, manzanita grasses and red shoreline rocks give a feel of the Rio Grande. The Mississippi section has a somewhat swampy look, with weeping willows and weeping juniper.
New features include a change of residence at the old settler's cabin; Mike Fink (from Disney's Davy Crockett TV show of the 1950s) now lives there, and his keel boat the Gullywhumper is out in front.
There also are 10 new figures to see along the shoreline, including two American Indian warriors scouting.
Other fun "Wild West" offerings for Frontierland guests to enjoy still include Big Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain. Oh, and don't forget New Orleans Square and the Haunted Mansion.
President Abraham Lincoln returns to the Main Street Opera House in Disneyland with stunning new Audio-Animatronics technology that makes this the most lifelike and expressive Lincoln figure yet.
Over on Main Street, USA, "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln," a beloved Disneyland attraction for nearly 45 years and a historic landmark in the development of Audio-Animatronics technology, has reopened.
The new Lincoln figure and an enriched presentation that combines the best elements of the park's original 1965 show and the most advanced technical enhancements, that make for the most lifelike and expressive Lincoln figure yet. (The show first opened at the 1964 New York World's Fair.)
Upon entering the Main Street Opera House, guests encounter a redesigned lobby, including both The Disneyland Story - an entertaining display of the past, present and future of Disneyland - and a separate presentation of items relating to Abraham Lincoln's life and work.
In the auditorium, guests will first view an onscreen program about Lincoln and the Civil War that features digitally enhanced versions of pictures and sound created for past versions of the show along with new material.
Next, Lincoln takes the stage to deliver his speech. When the 15-minute show concludes, guests exit through a gallery depicting notable Americans who have followed in Lincoln's footsteps and continue to inspire others in areas such as perseverance, innovation and imagination.