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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Big Thunder Ranch at Disneyland






Note:  Disneyland has announced that Big Thunder Ranch will be closing in mid-January 2016 to make room for Star Wars Land.

Nestled in the back of Disneyland Park between Fantasyland and Frontierland, Big Thunder Ranch was one of our favorite locations.  Of the four days we were in Disneyland, we stopped here three times and passed by on the fourth day.

Big Thunder Ranch has animals in the cleanest penned area I've ever seen for guests to interact with.  The area pictures had goats.  No feeding of the goats, just petting. 


 There were other animals to say hello to as well.  The boy was incredibly happy!

Hand washing stations were available for guests to wash their hands after interacting with the animals.  And, I'll say again, the areas holding the animals were the cleanest I've ever seen!

 Then there were the characters.  Woody and Jesse were on hand to greet guests.  We eye-spied Jesse first and learned that Woody wouldn't be far behind.  No Photopass photographer, but we had our own camera.

Then there was Farley, the quick-witted, fiddle playing cowboy.  He had us all in stitches with his one-liners and played recognizable melodies on his fiddle.  The boy very much enjoyed interacting with Farley. 

On one of the days we were wearing our Star Wars shirts (yes, I see the irony of this) and Farley played the Star Wars theme on his fiddle.  I had said something to him the first day we met about everyone needing a theme song to follow them around, so he was giving us a theme song.  Memorable!

Then there's the history.  A small  log cabin is located in Big Thunder Ranch and while we didn't catch all of the history, I'm sure there is as this cabin wouldn't be there without a story.  Great rocking chairs were outside on the porch!



Then there is the food!  We had lunch at Big Thunder Ranch.  The food is delivered family style and includes ribs, chicken, sides, and drinks.  Dessert is an additional charge.
Depending on the timing of your lunch, there is also a stage with entertainment.  We had an 11:00 reservation for lunch and the entertainment did not begin until 12:30, but the performers did come and say hello as they were interacting with the crowd prior to the show.  Our family did not choose to wait for the show.

Restrooms were nearby, just behind the stage, and were roomy and well themed.

Speaking of shows, there is also a bit theater at the back of Big Thunder Ranch that includes a stage and seating, but the show was not operating while we were there and the gates were closed.
 Then there was the beauty.  Many colorful displays were located throughout and I was drawn to them as the red, yellow, blue combo are my colors.  I posted on our Facebook page about how I wanted to take home a tablecloth!

Big Thunder Ranch, for us, was a well themed respite from the rest of the park.  We are so glad that we got to discover and enjoy this area multiple times during our trip.