Thursday, January 19, 2017

A Look Back at Walt Disney World's Buena Vista Land Company

By Keith Mahne

When Walt Disney World first opened its gates in 1971, the entire Vacation Kingdom utilized only 2,500 acres of the total 27,500-acre site owned by the Disney Company in central Florida. The 43-square miles of land represented a substantial opportunity, and an equally significant responsibility, for the Walt Disney Company to develop and enhance the lives of those that would live, work and visit there. Out of this need came the Disney owned Buena Vista Land Company. Let's take a look back at the organization originally responsible for the development of the Walt Disney World property and examine what plans it had back in 1972 in today's new article...

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Story Behind Disneyland's Original Main Entrance Music Loop

By Chris Lyndon

Background music in the Disney Parks is an important subliminal way to help transport guests into a different time and place. Join us in today's new article as Disney Avenue contributing writer Chris Lyndon, through his extensive digging and research, explains the story behind Disneyland's Original Main Entrance Music Loop...

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Donald Duck In Nazi Land

By Stokes Laird

Throughout the years of the United States’ involvement in World War II the entire country was involved in helping out with the war effort. Walt Disney and his company were no exception. During the years of the war, Walt Disney Productions released a number of films and short cartoons that were meant to encourage citizens to buy war bonds to help out the Allied cause in the war. These films varied in topic from attempts to sell theories on how long range strategic bombing could help win the war to more whimsical cartoon exaggerations meant to serve as propaganda. No other character short film released by Disney during the time of the war has had as lasting of an impact as one starring Donald Duck appropriately titled, “Der Fuehrer’s Face”...

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Force Is With Carrie Fisher and Me

By Ron Baxley

When Disney bought the "Star Wars" franchise, they inherited a different kind of princess, a feisty, independent one named Princess Leia played by the recently deceased Carrie Fisher. (In fact, some people are petitioning on the Internet to make her an official Disney princess.) Although Disney Avenue contributing writer Ron Baxley, Jr. will, of course, never be able to interview Ms. Fisher, he did write this tribute column shortly after her passing in December 2016 and has adapted it specifically for Disney Avenue readers. It is sure to resonate with many long time "Star Wars" fans…

Sunday, January 8, 2017

HORIZONS: A Detailed Look Into an EPCOT Classic

By Ted Linhart

There isn't a former Disney attraction that inspires as much passion presently as Horizons. From 1983-1999 GE’s follow-up to the Carousel of Progress took EPCOT guests on a ride into the 21st Century for a purportedly realistic look at life in the future. Join us today as we take a detailed look back at Horizons via a 1983 cast member booklet and a GE corporate magazine as we remember the most legendary dark ride to have ever come out of the minds of Imagineering...

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Forever Remembered: The Lasting Influence of Walt Disney

By Dave Mason

In the final chapter of his four-part series on the lasting legacy of Walt Disney, historian Dave Mason provides an eyewitness account of Walt’s 1965 visit to the Walt Disney School in Anaheim, California. Join us as we travel back to 1965 and witness the lasting influence of Walt Disney...

Sunday, November 6, 2016

A Rare Look at How Disney Decided to Build Tokyo Disneyland

By Ted Linhart

By 1975, combined attendance at the Disney Parks had reached over 22M (12.5M at WDW and 9.8M at Disneyland) and most of the USA populace was no more than 4 hours by plane from at least one of the Parks given their locations on the East and West Coast. It was only natural that Disney would look for ways to expand their empire and bring the Park experience to the rest of the world. Today’s article will provide a behind-the-scenes look at how the first international Disney Resort, Tokyo Disneyland, was developed through two must see documents. The 1st is a very rare August 1975 document with a now politically-incorrect title — “Oriental Disneyland: Feasibility Study Executive Summary." The 2nd is a less-rare but very interesting Cast Member opening day booklet for Tokyo Disneyland. Join us as we go back in time and look at how Tokyo Disney went from concept to reality...