Disney California Adventure park to reopen for food and shopping event

Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure park
Visitors walk along Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure in November. During a ticketed event starting March 18, visitors will be able to walk throughout the park.
(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

About a year after the COVID-19 pandemic forced the closure of theme parks statewide, Disney California Adventure park plans to reopen starting March 18 at limited capacity, welcoming visitors who buy tickets to stroll through the park and purchase food, drinks and merchandise.

Months ago, Disney reopened its park-adjacent Downtown Disney shopping and dining area, as well as parts of the food- and retail-centric Buena Vista Street in California Adventure. But the “A Touch of Disney” event will mark the first time in nearly a year that guests can explore the entire park, including Cars Land and Pixar Pier, albeit without jumping on the attractions.

Disney announced Wednesday that the admission price will be $75, which will include parking and a $25 dining card. Tickets will be available only on beginning March 4, for Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays, starting March 18 through April 5, 2021. Tickets for dates beyond April 5 will be released later.


Disney officials declined to say how many visitors will be allowed in each day.

To help launch the event, Disney previously announced plans to recall about 1,000 employees who were laid off or furloughed after Disneyland and California Adventure closed last year.

Most of the food will be snack-size, including favorites from Disneyland eateries such as Dole Whip from the Tiki Juice Bar and the Monte Cristo sandwich normally sold in New Orleans Square. Outdoor tables will be available throughout the park. In addition, visitors can make table reservations for outdoor dining at Lamplight Lounge and Carthay Circle Lounge beginning March 11.

As for entertainment, Disney characters will be featured in “unexpected settings” throughout the park, the company said — but not close enough for parkgoers to take selfies with them.

Disney isn’t alone in finding ways for a California theme park to do business during the pandemic.

Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park recently announced plans for a boysenberry festival with more than 80 boysenberry-infused foods and drinks on select days from March 5 through May 2. Park visitors will get access to most of the theme park during the festival but cannot get on the rides.


The Knott’s festival is the latest of several events the park has launched since the pandemic struck. Park officials wouldn’t disclose an exact number of attendees, but said Knott’s is allowing enough guests in to reach 10% to 15% of normal capacity.

Tickets are available at They are priced at $45 for adults and $20 for children ages 11 and younger.