Soarin' Over California

Soarin' Over California

Infobox Disney ride
name= Soarin' Over California


caption=
park=Disney's California Adventure
land= Golden State (Condor Flats)
designer= Walt Disney Imagineering, Mark Sumner
manufacturer=
type= IMAX type hang glider simulation
theme=
control_system=
propulsion=
soft_opened=
opened= February 8, 2001
closed=
host= Patrick Warburton
music=Official Album 2001
vehicle_type=
vehicle_names= Alpha, Bravo, Charlie
guests_per_vehicle= A & C- 27 B-33
cars_per_vehicle=
guests_per_car=
duration= 4:41
length=
attraction_height=
track_height=
speed=
height_requirement= 40
site_area=
lift_count=
audio-animatronics
custom_label_1= Capacity
custom_value_1= 87 guests per show
custom_label_2= Screen height
custom_value_2= 80 ft
custom_label_3= Film speed
custom_value_3= 48 frames per second
custom_label_4=
custom_value_4=
custom_label_5=
custom_value_5=
custom_label_6=
custom_value_6=
custom_label_7=
custom_value_7=
custom_label_8=
custom_value_8=
sponsor=
fastpass=1
single_rider=1
accessible=
transfer_accessible=1
assistive_listening=
cc=
Infobox Disney ride
name= Soarin'


caption=
park=Epcot
land=Future World (The Land pavilion)
designer=
manufacturer=
type=
theme=
control_system=
propulsion=
soft_opened=
opened= May 5, 2005
closed=
host=
music=
vehicle_type=
vehicle_names=
guests_per_vehicle=
cars_per_vehicle=
guests_per_car=
duration=
length=
attraction_height=
track_height=
speed=
height_requirement=
site_area=
lift_count=
audio-animatronics
custom_label_1= Previous attractions
custom_value_1= Kitchen Kabaret (1982-1994)
Food Rocks (1994-2004)
custom_label_2=
custom_value_2=
custom_label_3=
custom_value_3=
custom_label_4=
custom_value_4=
custom_label_5=
custom_value_5=
custom_label_6=
custom_value_6=
custom_label_7=
custom_value_7=
custom_label_8=
custom_value_8=
sponsor= Nestlé
fastpass=1
single_rider=
accessible=
transfer_accessible=1
assistive_listening=
cc=

Soarin' Over California is a simulator attraction at Disney's California Adventure Park, part of the Disneyland Resort. The same attraction was built four years later at Epcot, part of the Walt Disney World Resort, as Soarin'.

Description

The attraction takes 87 guests at a time on a simulated hang glider tour of the Golden State, flying over San Francisco, Redwood Creek, Napa Valley, Monterey, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite National Park, Palm Springs (actually shot in nearby La Quinta over the golf course at PGA West), Camarillo, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, San Diego, Malibu and Los Angeles. The ride ends with a flight over Disneyland at Christmas, with a Christmas parade traveling down Main Street, U.S.A., decorations on Sleeping Beauty Castle, and fireworks.

Concept

The original idea for Soarin' Over California (which was originally to be called Ultra Flight--which is the name inscribed on the Tower Consoles at DCA) was conceptualized in 1996. It was to feature an OMNIMAX screen with an inverted track allowing guests to fly over California's landmarks. The attraction would have three load levels and the system would operate on a horizontal cable, much like a dry cleaner's rack. This plan was canned, however, when it was determined that the construction and labor costs for that design would be astronomical. It seemed that Soarin' wouldn't become a reality until Imagineer Mark Sumner came up with an idea using an erector set and string. This design would allow for efficiency and the ability to load on only one level, thus cutting construction and labor costs greatly. The engineering design, with the motors and use of cable, is very similar to The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.

Ride design

The vehicle (called a carriage) consists of three rows of seats under a wing-like canopy. After guests have been safely restrained in the vehicle (using standard lap seat belts), the canopy descends and a cantilever system lifts the chairs forward and into the air with the guests' feet dangling free. The vehicle is lifted forward so that guests look into a large, concave movie screen onto which scenes of California are projected. Since the vehicle is moved forward into the dome, the effect is such that guests can only see the images projected on the screen and are given the sensation of flight. The attraction features two theaters, each with three carriages.

To enhance the illusion of flight, subtle vertical movements of the seats are synchronized to the film. According to cast members who operate this attraction, the carriages do not move horizontally. Sensations of horizontal motion are created using a combination of vertical carriage movement and the turning image on the screen. In addition, scents complementing the various scenes are injected into the air streams blowing on riders. In the Ventura orange field scene, for example, guests are treated to the scent of orange blossoms. The mountain scenes are accompanied by the aroma of evergreens. The Monterey and Malibu scenes have the scent of a sea breeze while the Palm Springs and Anza-Borrego scenes feature the fragrance of sagebrush. The ride also features golfing, snow skiing, river rafting, kayaking, horseback riding, hot air ballooning, and the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

The ride system is a Walt Disney Imagineering-developed motion-based technology, based on a conceptual Erector Set model created by Imagineer Mark Sumner. One million pounds of steel provide the ride structure and 37 tons are lifted during each ride cycle.

The scenes were shot on high-definition film displayed with OmniMax projectors running at 48 frames per second, twice the speed of traditional motion pictures.

Versions

Disney's California Adventure

Soarin' Over California is one of the most visited attractions at the entire Disneyland Resort (facing tough competition from fan favorites over at Disneyland) and usually has wait times from 30-150 minutes. However, the attraction is tied into the park's FASTPASS system, thus giving the option of bypassing a long wait. The actual show is four minutes and fifty-one seconds long.{citation}

Queue

While waiting in line, guests have the opportunity to visit the Wings of Fame, an homage to aircraft giving significant contributions to the Aviation Industry of California. Such planes included in the Wings of Fame are the P-51 Mustang, SR-71 Blackbird, and the Bell X-1. Further passing the Wings of Fame is a small section dedicated to inividuals who have also contributed significantly to the Aviation industry of California such as Amelia Earhart, Jack Northrop, The Wright Brothers, and Chuck Yeager. With each acknowledgement of their contribution is a small informative background of each aircraft or individual.

Preshow

Before being boarded into the hangar, guests will be placed into a preshow area, thematically named "Alpha Gate", "Bravo Gate", or "Charlie Gate." While waiting in this area, guests will have the opportunity to interact with Cast Members. Just before boarding guests will watch a Pre-Boarding video hosted by their chief flight attendant, Patrick, portrayed by actor Patrick Warburton.

Epcot

Soarin' officially opened inside The Land pavilion on May 5, 2005.

The Epcot cast member costumes resemble flight attendant costumes, while the Disney's California Adventure versions are airfield crew costumes. The idea is that you take a flight "to" California, rather than already being there and touring.

Queue

The Epcot standby queue originally featured pictures of natural wonders from around the world, not just California. In fact, there was, and is still, very little reference at all to the fact that the ride will take you only to California. Currently the queue utilizes a new infrared technology that allows guests waiting to participate in various interactive games.

oundtrack

* Outside the ride building at the California Adventure version and in the queue hallways in both versions, inspirational music from a variety of films, many of them war- or flight-themed, is played, including "Patton", "MacArthur", "Air Force One", "The Blue Max" (all by Jerry Goldsmith), "" (by Randy Edelman), "The Last Starfighter" (by Craig Safan), "Apollo 13" and "The Rocketeer" (both by James Horner), "Always" (by John Williams) and the HBO miniseries "Band of Brothers" (by Michael Kamen). "The Air Force Song" and "Jupiter" from Gustav Holst's orchestral suite "The Planets" are also included, based on their use in "The Right Stuff". In the California Adventure version of the attraction, the "History of Aviation in California" hallway of the queue is supplemented with the score to the film "The American President."

* The score for both versions of the ride is the same and was composed by Jerry Goldsmith, who is said to have come down from his first ride in tears. In addition to finding the ride visually beautiful and magical, he said that his father was a pilot who loved all things Californian. "I'd do anything to be part of this project," Goldsmith said. "I'd even score the film for free." The ride's score can be found on Music from Disney's California Adventure and the newer Walt Disney World official albums, and is also played as part of a loop in the Disneyland Resort's and Epcot's entrance plazas.

Information About Each Scene

an Francisco

Disney had to get special permission from the state of California in order to fly the helicopter over the Golden Gate Bridge.Fact|date=July 2008

Redwood Creek

It is illegal to fly a helicopter over Redwood Creek. Disney had to pay a fee in order to film this scene.Fact|date=July 2008

Monterey Bay

Sea lions can be heard, but not seen while flying over Monterrey Bay.

Lake Tahoe

When the flight passes the top of the mountain, we see a sea of clouds on the other side. Due to weather conditions and budget limitations, Disney was unable to film a clear picture of Lake Tahoe.Fact|date=July 2008

Yosemite

Disney had to get Congressional approval to fly a helicopter in Yosemite Valley. Also, the hang glider is computer generated because it would have been unsafe to fly a hang glider that close to a helicopter.Fact|date=July 2008

Palm Springs

The computer generated golf ball features one of the attraction's hidden Mickeys. The ball is rumored to have been hit by former Disney CEO Michael Eisner, though it is hard to tell because of the camera angle.Fact|date=July 2008

Camarillo

The "orange" trees in this scene are actually avocado trees.Fact|date=July 2008 The field filmed in this scene was demolished and turned into housing tract in 2002.Fact|date=July 2008

Anza-Borrego

The horseback riders are riding to the edge of a cliff.

an Diego

At the very beginning of this scene, you can see the shadow of the helicopter on the side of the aircraft carrier. The number on the carrier deck, 74, identifies the carrier as the USS "John C. Stennis".

Malibu

In this scene, a "sea air" scent is injected into the air.

Los Angeles

This scene is exceptionally fast because Disney illegally flew over downtown Los Angeles. They had only one attempt, hence the dizzying film in this sequence.Fact|date=July 2008

Disneyland

At the time of filming, Disneyland was closed to the public for a Cast Member Christmas party. The Christmas Fantasy Parade is halted so that the helicopter could make several passes over the park. Disney's California Adventure was being constructed at the time, so that area is completely dark. The final hidden Mickey of the attraction can be observed in the fireworks at the end of the scene.

Pre-Show

The pre-show is hosted by Patrick Warburton. It was filmed in theater B (which can be realized by the placement of the emergency exit stairs and placement of the carriage). In the scene where the lady buckles her seatbelt, her son is already buckled in. In the following scene, she buckles his seatbelt. In the sequence with the carriages taking off, the worklights are on, the canopies are up, and the carriage does not move at full speed, which indicates that it was powered up into maintenance mode.Fact|date=July 2008

References

* - Mechanism to lift riders into dome and simulate flight.
* - System to project into dome while maintaining illusion of being at the same point of view as the camera.
* cite web
url = http://www.wdwhistory.com/Epcot/FutureWorld/Land/Soarin/
title = Soarin'
work = WDWHistory.com
accessdate = April 10
accessyear = 2006

* cite web
url = http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0253725/
title = Soarin'
work = IMDB.com
accessdate = April 10
accessyear = 2006

*Soarin' Over California Attraction Operating Guide

ee also

* Epcot attraction and entertainment history

External links

* [http://disneyland.disney.go.com/disneyland/en_US/parks/attractions/detail?name=SoarinOverCaliforniaAttractionPage Attraction Page at Disneyland.com]
* [http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/wdw/parks/attractionDetail?id=SoarinAttractionPage Walt Disney World Resort - Soarin']
*


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