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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Fireworks Above Sleeping Beauty’s Castle – California and the Canyons

Here is the latest from California and the Canyons!

DearCalifornia and the Canyons Parents,

As the song “We always get what you give” played on our bus, we arrived at Universal Studios full of excitement. Walking past the Universal globe, the theme park unfolded before our eyes: crowds of people snapping shots of the gates, characters waving, and a glowing billboard of shows and rides beckoning us. We started our day with a super studio tour, where our guide detailed the behind the scenes TV shows (like Desperate Housewives) and movies being produced as we passed through. After the studio tour, we all went on the rides and rode the afternoon away.  Phillip recalls, “I like the twisty-turny, on the mummy ride, I didn’t think about it, I just screamed.”

The next day we experienced the UCLA campus; some went swimming in the enormous pool while others hit the basketball courts and gym. Four of our guys and I defeated another squad in basketball 13-10.

After lunch, we drove to the famous Rodeo Drive, split into our groups and took over the street seeing our favorite styles. As Lauren came back with her group she said, “The scenery was amazing, it kinda looked like its own town.”

That night comedy filled our ears at the Improv Comedy Club. It was a trip highlight!

We started our next morning with an interactive and inspiring guided tour of the Museum of Tolerance. For lunch, we ventured onto Venice Beach, where we saw performers and artists on the boardwalk.

That night, we became stars standing in front of Manns Chinese Theater, where we saw the hands and footprints of celebrities. Rachel E. commented, “I walked down the street and I had to take a picture… it was Tom Cruise’s star.”

The LA food bank embraced our group as we pitched in, sorting through drinks and snacks preparing them for departure to those in need. After leaving the food bank, we embarked for the happiest place on Earth: Disneyland. We ran off towards the various lands, our excitement outpouring onto the streets.  Josh added, “The way everything was made and how everything is set up, is really cool!” The sun set and the Disney sky lit up; at first we stared in awe at Fantasmic, the light show portrayed on shooting steam on the river, characters dancing on floats and Mickey Mouse defeating Ursula and the Wicked Witch. Our night ended with fireworks above the castle.

We are now on our way to San Diego. As we left Los Angeles, Alli expressed, “LA was so pretty, you see it in the movies… But we were actually there!”

We will keep you posted!