Following the Maleficent dragon fire during “Fantasmic!” that resulted in an evacuation of the western end of Disneyland Park and the total destruction of the dragon itself, new construction walls are up around the area this incident occurred, and one of the temporarily closed attractions — Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes — is running once again.
Post-Fire Repairs Continue on Tom Sawyer Island
The positioning of these new work walls seem to indicate the island itself will likely re-open, albeit with access to the nighttime show performance area restricted.
A sign has been placed on the walls, but is quite difficult to make out from a distance. Tom Sawyer Island is not open today.
Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes — Disneyland staples with varying names since 1956 — were spotted encircling the Rivers of America again today. There is no track or special engine on this ride; you, the guest, and your accompanying Cast Member guides make this boat row with paddles and manual labor.
It’s an arduous workout, but a scenic journey for anyone willing to put in the effort.
Maleficent Eviscerated by Inferno
“Fantasmic!,” is a nighttime spectacular which first debuted in Disneyland on May 13, 1992. The show stars Mickey Mouse as he explores the possibilities of his imagination, but the Disney Villains team up in an attempt to create an unstoppable nightmare for him. Featuring characters and music from Disney films including “Fantasia,” “The Jungle Book,” and “Pirates of the Caribbean,” the show incorporates projections on screens of water, pyrotechnics, and both the Sailing Ship Columbia and Mark Twain Riverboat as they sail past guests on the Rivers of America. Similar versions debuted later at Walt Disney World and Tokyo DisneySea.
On the evening of April 22, a possible leak of flammable fluid from the dragon’s structure caused Maleficent to be dramatically set ablaze.
Our onsite reporter caught footage of the dragon, still burning, as the show came to a premature end for safety. The fire fell from the dragon’s mouth onto Tom Sawyer Island below. The cause was potentially a leak of flammable fluid, seen dripping down from the mouth moments before the fireball effect went off — though Disney stated on Sunday that they are investigating the incident.
Six Disneyland Cast Members were treated for smoke inhalation by Anaheim Fire & Rescue, though luckily, no serious injuries were reported. All guests were escorted far away from the area and large swaths of the park closed early out of an abundance of caution.
The Maleficent dragon was completely obliterated by the fire, but the rest of the “Fantasmic!” set remains intact. Future performances of “Fantasmic!” have been removed from the Disneyland schedule, with nothing posted until May 26 at the earliest.
April 28 performance dates were restored for a brief period on the Disneyland website, suggesting a potential early return of the show with a temporary “B-Mode” dragon; however, those showtimes have since been removed.
Stay tuned for any alteration or announcement about the show’s return timeline.
What is your favorite memory of “Fantasmic!”? Are you eager to return to the park when it eventually returns? Let us know in the comments.