Saturday, January 31, 2015

Tomorrowland 2

By EPCOT Explorer

40 years ago, Walt Disney World’s Tomorrowland finally opened it’s long awaited and much needed expansion that added highly valued and exemplary attractions to the Magic Kingdom’s roster. Adding Space Mountain, the Carousel of Progress, the Star Jets, and a few months later, the WEDWay PeopleMover, Tomorrowland was elevated from being a paltry afterthought, to a showplace for space age optimism, ideas, and fantastic aesthetics. Continue after the page break as we take a look back to Tommorrowland of 1975...

Thursday, January 29, 2015

A Walk in the Park: Disneyland Edition - A Diamond Celebration

By Daisy Sparks

January usually brings in a flurry of closures and walls around buildings to signify refurbishment time. This year, there are some popular attraction and area closures in order to get ready for Disneyland's 60th birthday. There is even an entire land, Critter Country, that is completely inaccessible until April 2nd. It looks like there has been more thought into how these huge refurbishment walls should look. There are huge printed canvas tarps placed over some of the attraction facades so it looks like a giant photo of the building. The walls are more decorative to blend in with the area and include special posters featuring information about the refurbishment itself. Let's take a look at all these preparations taking place at Disneyland in this week's A Walk in the Park article...

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Walt's Special Charm Bracelets for Lilly

By Keith Mahne

Have a look at this beautiful Oscar charm bracelet that Walt had made for Lilly in the early 1960s. Made of 18K gold, the bracelet is fashioned with 20 miniature statuettes, each of which is engraved with the name of the work for which it was awarded. Originally, Walt envisioned having a necklace made with these charms given to him by the Academy; but when Lilly said she’d prefer a bracelet, the tiny statuettes were put into a different design.  After the bracelet was constructed, Lilly wore it often and with great pride. Continue after the page break for more on this wonderful piece of history and another commemorating Snow White...

Monday, January 26, 2015

Motion Mondays: Building Main Street, USA

By Keith Mahne

This week's Motion Mondays article features the construction of Disneyland's Main Street, USA. Footage is from Kodak Presents Disneyland ‘59. Continue after the page break and have a look...

Saturday, January 24, 2015

An End of an Era: Mickey’s Sorcerer Hat

By Ryan Reed

As most of you know, the Sorcerer Mickey Hat has been in the news over the last few months.  As it turns out, Disney has decided to dismantle the magical icon in what seems to be related to the rumored changes to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  As I’ve said before when talking about other changes in Walt Disney World, we should appreciate it evolving right before our very eyes.  I feel the removal of a park icon is bigger than an attraction (sorry Maelstrom) because it means much more to each and every guest that sets foot in a park.  You can avoid an attraction; you can’t avoid a park icon.  So for this post I just want to share some of my opinions on why this upsets some folks and what direction Disney may be going next. Continue after the page break for more...

Thursday, January 22, 2015

A Walk in the Park: WDW Edition - Disney's Hollywood Studios

By Krista Joy

It’s a cool, breezy, beautiful January day here in Orlando. It’s the kind of day where you just can’t stay inside. Let’s step out…and take a step back… in time today, as we enjoy the sights of Old Hollywood, here at Disney’s Hollywood Studios! Be our guest at Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage! Check in over at the Hollywood Tower Hotel, and then let’s go get a beer at Dad’s Tune-In Lounge! Are you hungry for some of Mom’s cooking over at 50’s Prime Time Café? We’ve got it all for you and more, right here on Disney Avenue's A Walk in the Park: Walt Disney World Edition...

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Disneyland IS a Museum: Historical Appreciation of both Form and Genre

By EPCOT Explorer

“The idea of Disneyland is a simple one. It will be a place for people to find happiness and knowledge. It will be a place for parents and children to share pleasant times in one another’s company; a place for teachers and pupils to discover greater ways of understanding and education. Here the older generation can recapture the nostalgia of days gone by, and the younger generation can savor the challenge of the future. Here will be the wonders of Nature and Man for all to see and understand. Disneyland will be based upon and dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and hard facts that have created America. And it will be uniquely equipped to dramatize these dreams and facts and send them forth as a source of courage and inspiration to all the world. Disneyland will be sometimes a fair, an exhibition, a playground, a community center, a museum of living facts, and a showplace of beauty and magic. It will be filled with accomplishments, the joys and hopes of the world we live in. And it will remind us and show us how to make these wonders part of our own lives.”   –Walt Disney

If you’ve spent any time as part of the Disney community, online or otherwise, debates and discussion about the nature of Disneyland or any of the parks practically define the terrain of popular thought. One of the most fundamental of these questions in the community is the role of history. Disney is a very historical company. Walt brought his enterprise to fame during the early decades of the 20th century, when Hollywood boomed and grew into the monolithic entity that it now is, not only for American culture, but the greater entertainment culture of the world. Disney’s early films, while not all ‘high art’ (I would place Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Fantasia into that category, however.) have come to be seen as the bedrock for Disney’s legacy in the entertainment world. Disneyland is no different. With this in mind, Disneyland deserves preservation. And Disneyland IS a museum that holds vital parts of this entertainment legacy. Continue after the page break for the rest of this story...