On Sunday night, June 22nd, Theme Park Adventure hosted its first Summer Nights at Sam’s fan mixer of 2014. More than 140 enthusiasts, haunters, and industry professionals gathered under the watchful eyes of the tikis at Trader Sam’s and Tangaroa Terrace at the Disneyland Hotel and did what we all do best – eat, drink, and network! It was one of the largest gatherings that we have had at Sam’s, and we were thrilled by the number of folks that showed up, including many first-timers, which is always fantastic!
“Tonight marks the beginning of our third Summer Nights season here at Trader Sam’s,” said Theme Park Adventure founder Rick West as he addressed the group during the event. “That means tonight begins our third year of mixers, which is really amazing! Some of you have been with us from the very beginning, and others are here for the first time tonight, and that is fantastic! Tonight is your night! This is your party!”
TPA’s mixers at Trader Sam’s at the Disneyland Resort are held once every month at the Disneyland Hotel. The gatherings are open to everyone, and the group often takes up the entire patio space between Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar and Tangaroa Terrace. These monthly mixers are always a who’s who of industry professionals, haunters and themed entertainment fans from all corners. You never know who you might end up sharing a table with – from Knott’s Halloween Haunt legend John Waite (one of the earliest Scary Farm employees who worked with Bud Hurlbut) to team members from Garner Holt Productions, or even a TPA regular, Mark Silverman (the voice of Disney’s Twilight Zone Tower of Terror)! It’s a wild grab bag of unexpected surprises each and every month that fans can’t get enough of!
One of the highlights of the event is TPA’s raffle prize giveaway. Each month, Theme Park Adventure gives away unique and fun gifts, ranging from theme park souvenirs and admission tickets, to haunt props and other items, mostly donated by fellow fans! It’s a raffle that has grown into a true community event, as everyone wants to share and show their appreciation for one another, and that is very cool! June’s raffle prizes included:
- 2 Disney CDs – It’s a Small World Holiday, and the Official Album of Walt Disney World – courtesy of TPAer Ken S.
- Minion Operation game, courtesy of our friends at Universal Studios Hollywood
- 5 Calico Mine Ride commemorative coins designed by Knott’s historian Eric Lynxwiler, celebrating the grand re-opening of the attraction, courtesy of the great folks at Knott’s Berry Farm
- 2 Haunted Mansion board games, courtesy of Eric Lynxwiler and the always-awesome couple David W. and Brittney S.
- A group of Knott’s Halloween Haunt magnets, courtesy of Eric Lynxwiler
- A 2014 Raymond Hill Mortuary haunt gift bag (including tickets) from the great team at Evil Twin Studios
- A Walking Dead zombie mask from our friend Larry Carr of Abracadaver Productions
- A creepy and awesome skull sconce from our friend Cliff Allen of Necrotic Creations
- 2 Zombie Walk: San Diego Zombie Prom VIP tickets, courtesy of Jennifer Muzquiz
- 2 ScareLA 2014 Weekend Passes, courtesy of the production team at ScareLA
With a new year, comes a brand-new TPA tiki logo! Once again, our dear friend, Tom “Thor” Thordarson delivered a vibrant, uber-cool tiki design for us! This new tiki marks a special milestone, which TPA will celebrate later this year – our 20th Anniversary, which officially begins this coming September. The new TPA tiki holds a ceremonial bowl with a “20” illuminated in its center, signifying our big anniversary year; this is the first piece of 20th Anniversary gear that Theme Park Adventure has released, with more planned for the coming months!
Our next mixer is coming soon; Summer Nights at Sam’s 2 will take place on Sunday, July 13th at 7 P.M. Please visit the Theme Park Adventure Facebook page and RSVP for this event, if you haven’t already! It’s going to be another night of great friends and loads of laughs, and we want to see all of you there!
A very special thank you to the Disneyland Cast Members at Tangaroa Terrace and Trader Sam’s for being such great hosts, as usual – we appreciate them and know it can be challenging handling so many fans at once in such a small space!
Thank you all for your continued support! We look forward to seeing you in the glow of the tiki torches soon!
TPAers, join in the conversation! What are your favorite things about our monthly mixers at Trader Sam’s? What advice do you want to share with others thinking of attending? We’d love to hear your thoughts below!