To borrow a phrase from Darth Vader, May 31 will forever be “a day long remembered” as the gates to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge are officially open at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, California.

Following more than three years of construction, Star Wars fans at Disneyland Resort can be among the first to visit the physical embodiment of a galaxy far, far away as they step into the Black Spire Outpost on the remote world of Batuu. Of course, those trips are limited to those guests lucky enough to have booked a four-hour visit to the 14-acre land, and should they attempt to overstay their welcome, security forces dressed as First Order Stormtroopers will happily escort them out. On Wednesday night, Galaxy’s Edge was officially dedicated, as Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger was joined by Star Wars creator George Lucas, along with actors Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Harrison Ford (Han Solo), and Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian). To formally start the Millennium Falcon, Ford gave a special shout to the late Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca), just before giving the legendary ship a couple of bangs on its hull.

The world created for the Black Spire Outpost aims to drop fans into the Star Wars universe like never before. Everything has been carefully crafted to be a part of the environment, from cast and crew costumes to the food and even the items available for purchase in the gift shops — designed with an artisan look as if they were individually made by an alien shop owner.

Kids will be able to build their own lightsabers and droids while encountering familiar characters, such as Hondo Ohnaka (The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels), who will come to life as one of the most-advanced animatronics ever created.

The sold-out reservation blocks for Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland Park inside Disneyland Resort continue for the first few weeks, but it’s open to park guests with no reservations beginning on June 24. Additionally, the East Coast version of Galaxy’s Edge will open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort on Aug. 29. The Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run attraction is available to enjoy upon opening, with the immersive Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance set to open at a later date.

FURTHER TRANSMISSIONS

  • Fancy an intergalactic Coke? It’ll cost ya! As revealed at Star Wars Celebration, even the real world beverages at Galaxy’s Edge have an intergalactic spin. Some resourceful scrappers are already selling empty containers for Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Sprite, and Dasani on eBay. If you can’t get to the park, but still want an unopened sample, smugglers are scalping them for as much as $100 each! That’s a lot of credits for a refreshment.
  • On the latest episode of The Star Wars Show, Matt Denton, electronic development and design supervisor on the current trilogy, stops by to show off the inner workings and creation of the fantastic Droids and creatures of the recent films.

Cardboard Galaxy

The Pop Insider’s Transmissions from a Galaxy Far, Far Away is our regular column focusing on everything Force-related. For more adventures in the Outer Rim, click here!

Photos: Disney Parks, Cardboard Galaxy