10 best things to do at Disneyland’s Pixar Fest

Disneyland’s Pixar Fest is officially underway from now until September 3. Follow these tips for making the most of your next visit:

1. Watch “Together Forever — A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular”

It starts with a familiar Disney character soaring high above Sleeping Beauty Castle. No, it’s not Tinkerbell. For this new fireworks “Spectacular,” Buzz Lightyear kicks off the show. In addition to introducing new characters to the Disneyland nighttime staple, “Together Forever” creates an immersive experience complete with pyrotechnics, special effects and projections on four locations including the castle and Main Street, U.S.A. In one sequence, the castle and the buildings on Main Street transform into a flurry of colors as a mass of balloons carry the house from “Up” above the crowd. Later, as Miguel from “Coco” sings “The World es Mi Familia,” his family from the Land of the Dead emerge over Main Street.

2. See the updated Pixar Play Parade

Pixar Play Parade premiered at Disney’s California Adventure. And Pixar Fest has inspired a move to Disneyland as well as the inclusion of three new elements. The Pixar Lamp and Luxo ball now lead the parade. Russell from “Up” rides his favorite colorful flightless bird, Kevin, ahead of a float that carries Mr. Fredricksen and his flying house. And Joy and Sadness stand atop a mound of memory orbs on the “Inside Out” float.

3. Try cheeseburger pizza at Pizza Planet

It’s a safe assumption that 9 out of ten first-time Disneyland guests looked at Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port and said out loud, “That should really be a Pizza Planet.” And it’s finally happened. The Pizza Planet takeover has brought little green aliens to the Tomorrowland restaurant. It has also brought a specialty cheeseburger pizza. A sesame seed crust is topped with all the classic cheeseburger fixings and, while it may not qualify as “pizza,” it’s super tasty.

4. Revisit “Paint the Night”

Following a brief hiatus from Disneyland, the parade favorite of over one million lights is back, only this time at California Adventure. The show features a slew of floats from Disney and Pixar movies along with an infectious theme song that will get stuck in your head.

5. Meet new characters

New characters including Buzz Lightyear and Woody, Russell and Dug, Flik and Atta, Mike and Sully and Mr. and Mrs. Incredible are coming to California Adventure. You can find them, meet them and greet them at Paradise Gardens.

6. Rewatch your favorite Pixar shorts

The Pixar Shorts Film Festival has taken over the Sunset Showcase Theater. Each presentation includes a trio of Pixar favorites: “For the Birds,” “Lava,” and “Piper.” Pro-tip: duck inside the theater to rest your feet and escape the midday heat.

7. Eat an Alien Macaron

The most attractive of the new food offerings, this bright green cookie is filled with a sweet blackberry-lemon curd and is as likely to delight your palate as it will your Instagram feed.

8. Split a Pixar Celebration Cake

The Pixar celebration cake is three cakes in one. It’s layered with lemon, blue vanilla, and red velvet sponge cakes with raspberry purée and cream cheese frosting.

9. Shop at Knick Knacks

A new fest means tons of new merchandise. Among them are new ears decorated with Pixar’s best friend duos, a light-up tumbler with an alien reaching for “the claw” and a variety of t-shirts and souvenirs adorned with new characters.

10. Ride Pixar-inspired rides

June 23 will bring about the opening of Pixar Pier as well as the first new Pixar ride: The Incredicoaster. Until then, revisit other rides that feature familiar Pixar characters including Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blasters, Toy Story Mania! and the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage.

Contact Janna Karel at jkarel@reviewjournal.com. Follow @jannainprogress on Twitter.

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