Haunted Mansion gets a shiny new graveyard!

Sorry posts have been sparse lately.  I am getting ready to head out of town for a few days (leaving poor Tadd behind yet again) and there is just SO much to do!

So I thought I would put together a quick little post showing you something neat we experienced for the first time last Saturday at Magic Kingdom (I realize this has been complete for a few months now, but the last few times we went, we chose the quicker queue route that bypasses the new stuff).  I’m sure many of you have been to Walt Disney World before and remember how the line for Haunted Mansion trails alongside a graveyard that contains a plethora of headstones with funny pun-like epitaphs.  Recently Disney Imagineers revamped the queue and expanded the “graveyard”.  The line now weaves in and amongst lots of different interactive crypts and gravestones.  We almost had more fun waiting in line than we did on the ride!

The first area you come across are these monuments.

I just love the detail and facial expressions on the busts!  Incredibly well done and lifelike.  And of course, they each have funny poems about how each relative died.

Next is a crypt for a desceased musician.  When you touch the different instruments on the sides, different music plays.  There are different sets of instruments on each side.  The epitaph at the top says “He’s gone from this world of trouble and strife, but a touch of your hand brings his music to life.”

At one end of this crypt is a pipe organ that you can “play” in much the same way as the instruments on each side.  You touch the “keys” and you can hear the pipe organ play.  But every so often, it will spit “dust” (a small cloud of mist, really) at you.  So cool!

Perhaps you can see that the name of the pipe organ manufacturer is “Ravenscroft”, which seems to be an ode to legendary voice actor Thurl Ravenscroft, who voiced/sang, among other things, the lead in the song “Grim Grinning Ghosts” in the Haunted Mansion, some of the singing pirates in Pirates of the Caribbean, Buff the buffalo in Country Bear Jamboree, the narrator from the beloved animated Christmas special How The Grinch Stole Christmas, and even the voice of Tony the Tiger (“They’re GRRRRRRRRRRRRREAT!”).

Along the original graveyard fence line, you can see that they have expanded the original graveyard almost to the Rivers of America.  At one end was this shovel sticking in the ground, wrapped in barbed wire.  I thought that was a nice (but creepy) touch.

This next part was really cute.  This giant bathtub-shaped monument made all kinds of noise, squirted water and mist in a bunch of different ways, and even randomly blew bubbles!

The epitaph reads:

Here floats Captain Culpepper Clyne,

Alergic to dirt so he’s pickled in brine,

He braved the sea and all of her wrath,

But drowned on land while taking a bath.

He even sneezed on us!  We heard heaving and then all of a sudden ACHOOO!!  And a little bit of water flew out of the top of the tomb and landed on the crowd waiting below.  Eww!

But I think my favorite part of all was the library crypt of Poet Prudence Pock (who apparently died from writer’s block)!

This isn’t a great picture, so let me show you a better one from a different site:

Click for source: WDWFacts.com

The “books” on the side of the crypt would randomly push out from the “shelves”.  If you pushed the book back in, another book (or several books) would push out elsewhere.  It was like playing a game of whack-a-mole.  Great fun and very cute!  The way it was done, it really felt like “something” (and not something mechanical) was pushing them out.

I hope you enjoyed this tour through the new and improved graveyard at WDW’s Haunted Mansion!

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