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Bat's Day at the Fun Park

Featured in the "Release the Bats" chat session, this is a real-life yearly event organized by the local Goth community. I had the pleasure of attending the 'Black Market' and so decided to place the 'Angel Summoning ritual' there, effectively changing the tone of what I'd planned for MHC by changing its root. I blame lunakitten. I trust we're going again this year...

That said, I could regale you with all kinds of Disneyland links (and may get around to posting some of the photos I've actually taken). A simple description, for now:

The Disneyland district in Anaheim sprawls across several city blocks, well lit landscaped and maintained. Disneyland (the corporation) itself has some say in this, having used its extraordinary economic pull to effectively veto some low-cost housing in the area. Sure, that would give its employees somewhere to live close to work, but it would ruin the squeaky-clean image! Still, some old time shops hang on in strip malls, mom-and-pop convenience stores and Chinese restaurants that the less spendthrift tourists discover to eat at and shop at.

Anaheim itself, outside of these city blocks, is a normal California town. Caucasians make up only about half the population, with Latinos, Asians, and African-Americans filling out the other half. Like most places in urban and suburban southern California, you can find cuisine from around the world in varying degrees of authenticity, but you must have a car. The weather's perfect for walking much of the time, but the distances are too great.

Great Park at the former El Toro Marine Base,Irvine California

About twenty minutes from Disneyland (assuming the traffic is good, which is rare) is another city's attempt at a theme park. Orange County is already crowded with theme parks: Disneyland has its twin California Adventure, and just down the road is Knott's Berry Farm which is more about coasters than berries. Running between is Harbor Blvd., home of more little shows and museums than most people can name. So "Great Park" was folly from the start.
But really, what else can you do with a mothballed Marine base? It's got a lovely set of runways but greater Los Angeles is already crowded with airports and the good folk of Orange County don't want the noise. A simple park with lawn and lake wouldn't work either, given the amount of toxic byproducts of military aircraft maintenance seeped into its soil.
It's taken years of lobbying and palm-greasing, but someone's finally prepared to make a go of old El Toro. But even though the grumblings of the neighbors have died down, someone a bit older wants to stop the park, or slow it down long enough to deal what's there just off the runway near Irvine Blvd. here