Louisiana's master blacksmith creates custom handcrafted weathervane for Tiana's Bayou Adventure at Walt Disney World

Jan 05, 2024 in "Tiana's Bayou Adventure"

Tiana's Bayou Adventure weathervane
Posted: Friday January 5, 2024 11:15am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

Walt Disney Imagineers have installed a custom handcrafted weathervane by Louisiana's master blacksmith, Darryl Reeves, at Tiana's Bayou Adventure in Magic Kingdom.

Darryl, a 3rd generation master blacksmith, and Vietnam Veteran has his work displayed across the city and worldwide.

"I take metal and do anything I want with it," the master blacksmith proudly says. "To have a free hand to design and fabricate the weathervane for Tiana's Bayou Adventure… that's an honor."

Tiana's Bayou Adventure replaces Splash Mountain with a planned opening in 2024 at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom.

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EricsBiscuit3 hours ago

Yeah the screens look very sharp and well done. There’s also enough in the Laughing Place scene with the frogs and jumping water to where, if you don’t want to look at the screens, you don’t have to.

SilentWindODoom4 hours ago

Wow! That really is a huge glitch in the system if animatronics from the Norway Pavillion are suddenly showing up! It's the prevalence of comments like this that make me feel like this may be true, not an attempt at goalpost-moving as the dismissive charge was levied. I only know the stories of Br'er Rabbit from this ride and learned the most about him from Defunctland's video on the original flume based on them. I don't know how often they're taught. My introduction to the term "trickster" and my frame of reference for the trope before meeting Loki was this book from childhood:

Brer Oswald5 hours ago

He also sings the line "I've had enough of this old Briar Patch". The ride gave you more than enough to clue in to what was going on. The left was up to the rider.

BrerFoxesBayouAdventure6 hours ago

That's interesting because he's shown living in the briar patch in the first scene.

MickeyLuv'r6 hours ago

Apologies for discussing the old ride again, but that makes me a bit sad to hear. Every adult/most students should have known that Brer Rabbit is a classic Trickster character, and that he was using classic tricks to outwit the fox. I fault your teachers more than problems w/ the ride. Did you ever read the Cherokee Legend, How the Rabbit Lost His Tail? Or Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit stories? Or Bugs Bunny cartoons? Those should be stables of every child's education. sigh. If you - or anyone else participating in these forums is not well versed in the above, then I encourage you to seek them out now. Admittedly, many classic bugs cartoons are a bit dated, as many of the old Disney cartoons are dated, but still worthwhile. After that, make sure you know Homer's Odyssey! (One of the greatest tales ever told.) Every adult should know Odysseus is a classic trickster. And Loki, and ...

EricsBiscuit6 hours ago

I got to ride it today! Overall, I enjoyed the experience. Starting with the queue, it is an improvement. The air conditioning upstairs being the highlight. I also appreciated the nod to WWI veterans, a war which is often forgotten. Onto the ride. I was surprised by how much rock work was left alone at the beginning. Most of the outdoor portion of the ride is an improvement, with the exception of no Brer Frog replacement. The bayou scenes are very well done but go by quickly. The scenes are much darker than on SM. To me this makes a lot of sense as it makes redoing all the set pieces from Splash much easier. The scenes are very detailed and have lots of kinetic energy, but there are a few stretches where I wish more was going on. The transition to the former Laughing Place is not as bad as I thought it would be based off the videos. The screens look much better in person. There is also much more going on than the videos relate. The animated figures are very well done and I like the Afro Cuban music. The lift hill is a little bland until you get to Mama Odie, who is very well done. The drop itself is mostly the same, minus the water cannons, an improvement in my book. I ducked so I didn’t get wet. The finale is also very detailed. I love the building facade and all the figures look great. I just wish that Tiana wore her princess dress. Like the other scenes, it does go by pretty quick. As for the ride system, the dispatches were quick! The line moved fast and everything looked like it was synced pretty well. Most if not all of the AAs were working. I think the 2nd Louis AA might have had issues with his mouth. Besides that, all looked good. In sum, a great experience. Is it as good as Splash? If it had just a little more in the bayou scenes, it would be as good as Splash. This coming from someone who has opposed this change from the beginning.

MickeyLuv'r7 hours ago

The ghost of Brer Rabbit is still up to his old tricks?;)

lightningtap34714 hours ago

Some observations from my ride this morning: It's pretty and the animatronics are cool. I unfortunately felt nothing in terms of emotion, and I think that has to do with the weak story and poor dialogue in the ride. There's no reason to feel anything because there's nothing to feel for. It was a bit harder to suspend disbelief than normal, and I feel that's because I don't believe Tiana would be doing any of this. They seemingly pigeonholed themselves with the structure, and it was hard to ever get invested in what was occurring. Something I found alarming was the guest discourse after my ride. I stayed by the picture booth for about 25 minutes after to listen to others as they got off the ride. Maybe it was just the environment (AP preview) but I not once heard a comment that wasn't essentially directly comparing against Splash. I also didn't hear a single comment that I would evaluate as anything beyond "light praise." It's concerning to me that no one appeared able to give the ride an honest shot, but in my personal attempt to do so I think I'd give it a 6.5/10. Unfortunately, Disney was seemingly unable to detach this attraction from its past, and in my opinion, this just isn't a good enough replacement, regardless of technological advancement. The ride will definitely pull a line, and probably sell merch so it will be deemed a success by those who define those metrics, but for replacing a top five attraction of all time (my opinion), this just wasn't the grand slam it needed to be.

Kristamouse1 day ago

We will be in MK on 6/25. We do no have AP’s. Does anyone have an idea on how we will attempt to ride? Just the typical GoG or RoR grab for VQ? Any idea on if LL will be avalible? Edited to be clear, we are between the AP preview and actual opening day. Yall are the smartest Disney Nerds I know any ideas?

easyrowrdw1 day ago

I rode it yesterday and if anything was broken it wasn’t evident to me or the people I was riding with. I dunno.

Ayla1 day ago

It isn't open to the public. Much ado about nothing.

_caleb1 day ago

Right. But all these things are "scorecard" issues, not show issues. If a single scene with only 3 AAs offers a compelling show (meaning, it grabs your attention and is so entertaining that it makes everything else around you fall into background), that can be a different experience than 10 AAs randomly dispersed to fill in empty spots. You've posted at length about how you value range of motion and degrees of articulation on AAs. I'd say AAs should perform what the story needs, even if it's limited movement. Why waste 10 points of articulation on a critter playing a trumpet drums that guests fly past while focused on a more central character? In my opinion, limited-motion AAs can actually be better for the story by not competing for attention against scenes elements that are more important to the story. And POVs don't typically do a great job of providing that dynamic. Right. I'm not saying we shouldn't discuss/analyze what we're seeing. This is fun for most of us! I, on the other hand, try not to formulate strong opinions about attractions I've not experienced in person. One of my favorites is the PeopleMover, and to me it is much more than the sum of its features. The only reason I keep bringing this up around here is because I want people to share the enjoyment of things I find enjoyable. From my perspective, there are positive posts from people reacting to what they see on the ride, negative posts reacting to what they see on the ride, and negative posts reacting to what they don't see on the ride. (I'm sure there are other groups and posts that don't fall into these categories). But it's posts from that last group that I don't care for, and there seem to be quite a lot of them here.

MerlinTheGoat1 day ago

The problem again is that the specific issues that are being levied against Tiana are by and large issues that are not going to change or become better by riding it in person. The number of AA's is not going to magically go up if I am physically sitting in the boat, all of those areas that used to have characters before are not going to suddenly become occupied again. Nor is the movement of the new critter figures going to improve upon riding it either. I'm also not going to enjoy the finale song more by riding it. Nor is the dialog going to get any less stupid. These are comparisons that incidentally do not require a person to have ever ridden Splash either. For instance, i've never ridden the Disneyland or Tokyo versions of Splash and can still easily tell they are still far and away better than TBA (and both have quite different scenery compared to WDW's Splash). Already good rides are typically more enjoyable when you're physically present in them. That isn't up for debate. There are nevertheless still a ton of elements that are possible to analyze without having ever been on them. My overall opinions on an attraction's scenes do not typically shift significantly in the opposite direction after experiencing it in person. An attraction that I already enjoy will either remain relatively the same or be improved somewhat, while an attraction I already thought is poor will usually remain that way or occasionally become even worse (Frozen and Little Mermaid are examples that are worse in person than on video, i'd argue Test Track v2 as well). Same goes for the middling ones. Keep in mind that there were also people who were and are praising TBA without ever riding it as well. Quite a few in this thread. And yet there is a conspicuous lack of proportional complaining towards them by comparison.

_caleb1 day ago

I was the one comparing POVs of those attractions to TBA's. Did you see the post I was quoting? He said: Good point about most of us having ridden Splash (I know Brer Panther certainly did!) and therefore having a reference point. But wouldn't you agree that experiencing most rides in-person is different than watching them on video? Often in ways that can make a huge difference on our perception of what makes a ride impressive?