Disneyland Preview — Week of September 8, 2018

first_imgShare This!Halloween and Dia de los Muertos celebrations kick off at Disneyland! Read on to find out about this and more in this week’s Disneyland preview.Special Events and NotesIt might be just past Labor Day on the calendar, but that means it’s Halloween time at Disneyland!  In addition to lots and lots of Halloween decor, you can expect characters to be in special costumes (including the Cars cast, which is fantastic), plenty of unique seasonal treats, and several rides with holiday-themed overlays. This year sees the return of perennial favorites Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy, and last year’s new Halloween makeovers at California Adventure — Luigi’s Honkin’ Haul-o-Ween, Mater’s Graveyard Jamboree and Guardians of the Galaxy: Monsters After Dark — will be back as well (note that the latter transforms in the evening only). For more information, make sure you check out our preview here.This will be the last week before Disneyland Park sees early closures for Mickey’s Halloween Party, so make sure you take advantage of that this week. These parties do sell out, so get tickets as soon as possible if you’d like to go in the weeks ahead.Finally, the Dia de los Muertos celebration is underway at Zocalo Park in Frontierland in Disneyland Park. Stop by there, and nearby Rancho del Zocalo Restaurante for photo opportunities, face painting, and treats like Pumpkin Flan.CrowdsLow post-summer crowds continue this week, with only Saturday seeing even average level crowds — every other day is predicted to be level 3 or below. Rosh Hashanah should not alter this — Monday is predicted to have level 3 crowds.Full details, including park-by-park crowd levels, are available on our Crowd Calendar.WeatherThe weekend is going to be HOT, with highs approaching 100 on Saturday, which is also the day we’re predicting to have the highest crowds. The work week will be slightly more moderate, with highs in the mid to upper 80s. As is normal this time of year, there’s no chance of rain to speak of.As always, it’s wise to double check the weather as the day of your visit approaches. Check out the most up-to-date forecast here.ShowsThere’s a light entertainment schedule during the week — for example, neither the fireworks nor Fantasmic! will be shown at all Monday through Thursday — with regular schedules on the weekends (including Friday). Detailed show schedules, including smaller diversions like The Straw Hatters can be found here. Pixar Play Parade2211112 California Adventure9-108-109-99-99-99-59-10 Fireworks1100001 SatSunMonTuesWedThurFri Paint the Night1111111 Fantasmic!2200002 ShowSatSunMonTueWedThuFri As per usual, the parks will open one hour early for eligible guests at Disneyland Park Saturday, Tuesday, and Thursday, and at Disney California Adventure Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Resort guests can take advantage of these hours every day of their stay for Extra Magic Hours, while guests eligible for Magic Mornings can use that benefit one day at Disneyland Park only. Full park hours can be found by clicking on each date in the Crowd Calendar.RefurbishmentsThe Enchanted Tiki Room continues its refurbishment through October 3 (note, this is a revised date), the Main Street Cinema is offline through September 27, and the Matterhorn is down indefinitely; we’ll let you know when Disney announces its anticipated return.  The Sailing Ship Columbia will also not be running during the week, just on the weekends.Over at California Adventure, Golden Zephyr will be undergoing a brief refurbishment from September 10-17.  World of Color remains offline until further notice — we’ll let you know when we have a better idea of when it will return as well, but we are not anticipating it back until the latter part of the year. All other attractions are currently operational, but as always, be aware that refurbishments can pop up unexpectedly, so check out our refurbishments page for details on exactly what will be down and for how long.That should do it for this week’s preview. Check back next week and every week to find out what’s coming down the pike. Got questions? Aware of anything else that prospective guests should know about? Let us know in the comments. Admission and HoursPassholder blockouts taper off a bit this week; Southern California Select Passholders are blocked out Saturday and Sunday, and Southern California Passholders are blocked out on Saturday only. All other passes are honored every day this week. For those of you buying tickets as day guests, single-day tickets are at Regular Price ($117/$110) on Saturday, Sunday, and Friday, and Value Price ($97/$91) the remainder of the week.Regular park hours (excluding Extra Magic Hours/Magic Mornings) are as follows this week: Disneyland9-128-129-109-99-99-99-12last_img read more

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U-23 world champ wins Drak Challenge

first_img22 January 2013An action packed weekend on the mighty Umzimkulu River for the 20th edition of the N3TC Drak Challenge was one to remember for under-23 world marathon champion Grant van der Walt as he earned his first senior singles river marathon title.Van der Walt narrowly outsprinted Len Jenkins on Sunday’s second and final stage and in so doing smashed the men’s overall and second stage records by 11 and 20 minutes respectively.The win will be one the Team Best 4 Kayak Centre athlete with treasure for many years to come. Under the guidance of Hank McGregor, he has worked his way through the ranks over the past few years.The pace of the two-day contest will no doubt become a topic of conversation for quite some time in the paddling community as no fewer than 26 K1s crossed the line faster the previous overall record.‘Super stoked’“I’m just super stoked!” said an elated van der Walt. “It was an awesome couple of days of racing and to have won is amazing!”“It’s also really special to have won my first here at the Drak. The Drak has been my favourite race since I raced it for the first time seven years ago, so to have won here, in the 20th year, is awesome!”“It’s always nice when Hank and I race against each other and it was unfortunate he wasn’t here, but I’m just chuffed with the win and am looking forward to the next K1 race that we can hopefully have a good race against each other,” he added.Having started side-by-side, the lead pair were soon joined by Brandon van der Walt (Team Jeep) and Donavan Wewege and the four-boat group watched each other closely until the compulsory portage at Mineshaft Weir saw things shaken up quite abruptly.Made his moveJenkins made his move shortly before the portage and had soon opened up a significant lead shortly after the put in.“Len put in first and really worked hard to get away from there. I unfortunately got a bit stuck as I tried to put in, which cost me about 30 seconds, and when I looked up Len was almost out of sight,” said Van der Walt.“Len was really working hard to really get away after that, but fortunately I managed to pretty much hold the gap but kept losing a little bit more on the portages.”Option“I was faced with either settling for second place or really dig deep and try go for the win. I just put my head down and gave it a go and finally managed to catch Len with about a kilometre to go.”“I then edged ahead in the final rapid and was able to finish a couple lengths ahead of Len and I’m just super stoked to have won!” he added.Three times Drak winner Jenkins had to settle for his third consecutive Drak Challenge second place, having finished behind McGregor in 2011 and 2012.He will, however, take confidence from his performance, especially ahead of The Unlimited Dusi in just a few weeks’ time.PodiumThe younger of the two Van der Walt brothers, Brandon, came home to claim the final step on the podium and in so doing also secured a first, having never previously set foot on a river marathon podium in the senior category.Under-23 newcomer Don Wewege (Team Best 4 Kayak Centre) claimed the surprise result of the weekend finishing fourth overall with Gauteng-based veteran Jacques Theron rounding out the top five.Another notable mover in the men’s field on day two were Dusi podium hopeful Lance Kime, who made up for his two day one swims by finishing sixth.Outside of the top three it was multiple Drak winner Ant Stott (Team Matelec) who posted the fastest time of the day in the men’s top 20 as he rose from 11th to seventh.Czech Republic marathon paddler Jakub Adam also had an impressive second day’s performance moving up from 20th to 14th overall.Women’s raceThe women’s race was once again dominated by Team Best 4 Kayak Centre team mates Abby Adie and Robyn Kime, with Adie coming out trumps for the third time in four years and in the process smashed the women’s second stage and overall records by 17 and 37 minutes respectively. She also claimed a hugely impressive top 20 finish overall.Kime erased Adie’s overnight lead of 33 seconds by halfway through the 38km second stage and the pair continued side by side until shortly before Heaven and Hell Rapid where Kime had a contest-ending swim and handed Adie the title.“Robs and I had a brilliant race and I’m obviously very happy to have won,” said Adie. “The fact that we were together for much of the race and that I could stay with her when she tried to get away was also a big confidence booster ahead of Dusi.‘Making the least mistakes’“It was a shame Robs swam towards the end there because she was probably the stronger of the two of us on the day but I guess, like I said yesterday, it came down to making the least mistakes and fortunately that’s what I was able to do.”Having been disallowed to paddle on Saturday’s heaving river the junior members of the field enjoyed their return to action on Sunday’s second stage and it was one, two, three for Maritzburg College in the junior boys’ race as Louis Hattingh, Damon Stamp and Travis Wilson claimed all three spots on the podium. Epworth’s Bianca Haw walked away with the junior girls’ spoils.It was a memorable two days for Pope’s Canoe’s Owen Hemmingway, who when he crossed the finishing line became the only man to have completed all 20 editions of the event.Big river“The first one definitely sticks in the memory but this one, having made it through yesterday’s massive river, is probably just as special considering it was probably even a bit bigger than it was in the first race in 1994,” said Hemmingway.“I was only happy once I got under the final bridge just before the finish line because with the river being so full so much can happen at any stage.”SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

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Quick guidelines for getting users info they need in chatbots

first_imgQuick guidelines for getting users info they need in chatbotsYou are here: Image from Reve MarketingIt’s best to think of a text-based chatbot as an “automated customer service rep.”That’s the advice from Kaye Chapman, learning and development manager at digital engagement platform Comm100. As a conversational format sometimes assisted by AI, chatbots provide a different opportunity for marketers than, say, the structure and presentation of information in pages or screens for websites or mobile apps.Conversations, not pagesIf you think of a chatbot as just a “website with interaction,” she said, you don’t focus on the ways it can lead to your desired outcome, which might be making a sale or resolving a customer’s issue.A web page presents a chunk of info that users find through navigational clicks or a site search, whereas a text-based chatbot presents information in small bites based on inputs from the user; it’s a different kind of information gathering and requires a different presentation.Because of that central difference, it’s important to keep a chatbot’s information hierarchy relatively simple and shallow, said Vivek Lakshman, co-founder and VP of products at Reve Marketing, which offers chatbot creation and deployment.Minimum before choicesLakshman suggests that a marketer’s operational question in designing chatbot information flow should be: What is the minimal relevancy of input before presenting choices?In other words: If you ask a chatbot for shoes, you should quickly see shoe choices.One way to flatten the hierarchy, he said, is to group products in ways they may not be grouped on a site, followed by a drilldown. Shoes might be included in a new, higher level of “footwear,” for instance, that includes shoes, sneakers, boots, socks and so on.Another way to flatten the drilldown is to determine the user’s persona and need up front via queries from the chatbot, instead of assuming the user’s persona will reveal itself through choices.A different kind of personaWebsite information designers, of course, frequently create profiles of targeted users, called personas, in order to determine their approaches and needs. One persona, for example, might be a mother of small children, while another is a male senior citizen. The typical information quests of each user type is then taken into account in deciding how the information is grouped, structured and reached by menus or site search.But a chatbot can simply ask up front: how old are you and what are you looking for? This establishes the persona and need immediately, so that end-result choices can be presented more quickly. It’s a different kind of choice tree.Conversational flow also means that a marketer can inject highlighted information at specific times in the interaction that might increase their impact. A daily special, for instance, doesn’t need to be on the site home page or in a pop-up window, but can be injected into the conversational flow at opportune moments, such as when it seems the user’s answers point away from a purchase.Different background info for chatbotsNot all chatbot interaction is created equal, of course. In addition to such obvious differences as the quality of any assisting AI, there’s also the basic fact of differences in how much is known about a user.A chatbot where a user has logged on with credentials from a brand website, for instance, will likely have more brand-related purchase history on the user than, say, a chatbot on Facebook Messenger, where the user is logged on with Facebook credentials.Text-based chatbots can be an integral part of a brand’s marketing and customer service team, if brand information is designed for the particular requirements of this delivery mechanism.If not, users can get wary of using chatbots that are less efficient than other means in helping them find what they are looking for — even if the idea of chatting initially seems more engaging.This story first appeared on MarTech Today. For more on marketing technology, click here.The post Quick guidelines for getting users info they need in chatbots appeared first on Marketing Land.From our sponsors: Quick guidelines for getting users info they need in chatbots HomeDigital MarketingQuick guidelines for getting users info they need in chatbots Posted on 31st October 2018Digital Marketing FacebookshareTwittertweetGoogle+share Related postsLytics now integrates with Google Marketing Platform to enable customer data-informed campaigns14th December 2019The California Consumer Privacy Act goes live in a few short weeks — Are you ready?14th December 2019ML 2019121313th December 2019Global email benchmark report finds email isn’t dead – it’s essential13th December 20192019 benchmark report: brand vs. non-brand traffic in Google Shopping12th December 2019Keep your LinkedIn advertising strategy focused in 202012th December 2019last_img read more

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Rampaging Kings seek IPL glory, resilient KKR stand in way

first_imgThe focus has remained firmly on cricket this time around and in what seems to be the perfect finale, the season’s most consistent team Kings XI Punjab would eye a maiden triumph against the ever-resilient Kolkata Knight Riders in the title clash of the seventh Indian Premier League here on Sunday.After a few controversy-marred seasons, the IPL organisers can finally heave a sigh of relief with the ongoing edition passing off rather smoothly.Having cracked a 58-ball 122 that paved the way for KXIP’s entry into their first IPL final, veteran opener Virender Sehwag along with Glenn Maxwell and David Miller will be the biggest threat for KKR, who will bank on their strong bowling unit, led by Sunil Narine.Players from both sides will have their job cut out as they will look to gift their owners Shah Rukh Khan and Priety Zinta, who had played on-screen lovers in Bollywood film Veer-Zaara, the trophy.Unlike Kolkata, who have won the title once before, Punjab have never been a part of the finals.For Kolkata, to repeat the feat of lifting the trophy for the second time, however, will be a daunting task considering the opponents they are faced with.Kolkata will also have to cope with Maxwell, who is among the top run-getters this season.Boasting of a strong middle-order in Miller, Manan Vohra, skipper George Bailey and Wriddhiman Saha, KXIP should not worry too much about Maxwell’s lean patch of late.The 25-year-old Australian will like to take a leaf out of his 90-plus run knocks in Abu Dhabi and Cuttack in the group stage of the tournament.advertisementlast_img read more

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