Within the final version of Nonetheless Goofy About Disney, we featured seven classic photographs from Disney’s “very historic previous,” as Walt as soon as stated … press photographs that had been, on common, at the very least three a long time previous. We determined to achieve into our assortment once more and got here up with seven extra photographs from Disney’s days passed by.
Benefit from the subsequent version of Disney Reminiscence Lane, Classic Picture Version.
A FREE-FLOATING SPACE COLONY WAS ON THE HORIZON
The Horizons pavilion in EPCOT’s Future World debuted on Oct. 1, 1983, one yr to the day after Walt Disney’s World’s second theme park opened to the general public.
The pavilion was sponsored by Normal Electrical, which additionally sponsored the Carousel of Progress within the Magic Kingdom. In reality, Horizons was thought of a sequel to GE’s groundbreaking attraction, which had its origins on the 1964-1965 New York World’s Truthful.
The Horizons attraction makes use of Disney’s Omnimover journey system. Company boarded small journey automobiles and had been proven a wide range of scenes depicting visions of the longer term.
The journey confirmed future communities positioned on land, sea and in outer area. Three-dimensional settings, Audio-Animatronics figures, computerized particular results and cinemagraphic strategies had been utilized in every scene.
Within the photograph above, the life-size scene confirmed area vacationers arriving at Brava Centauri, a free-floating area colony the place weightlessness created a number of check-in issues for arriving friends.
The lady within the scene seems up as her son, her husband and their canine grapple with being weightless above Brava Centauri’s entry portal.
There’s even a “hidden Winnie” floating with them, left.
On the finish of the Horizons journey, friends got a option to expertise what life is perhaps like sooner or later in three totally different environments: Underneath sea [Sea Castle research base]; in area [Brava Centauri] and in a desert [Mesa Verde].
Horizons loved a long term, closing completely in 1999. Mission: SPACE changed Horizons in 2003.
SCARY CLOWN IS FINALLY TAKEN DOWN
The realm in and round Disney’s Boardwalk Resort is paying homage to a typical resort alongside the Atlantic seaboard.
There are components of Atlantic Metropolis in New Jersey and Brooklyn’s Coney Island sprinkled all through the resort, which opened in 1996.
Even the pool, known as Luna Park, was a carnival-themed space which featured a carousel pool bar and a herd of playful elephant statues spraying water from their trunks.
One of many Boardwalk Resort’s most adorable sights is the Keister Coaster, a water slide that appears very very similar to the form of basic wood curler coaster you’d discover at any beachside city.
One of many least endearing facets of the Keister Coaster was the ultimate drop into the Luna Park pool, the place friends would slide by means of the mouth of a smiling clown earlier than splashing into the pool.
Virtually from the pool’s opening, that less-than-amusing face grew to become referred to as The Scary Clown. Some friends had been amused by its Twilight Zone-ish aura, others [particularly younger guests] discovered the clown downright creepy.
In 2020, The Scary Clown was lastly taken down, changed by a Mickey and Minnie-themed, extra household pleasant billboard.
THE MILLENNIUM CELEBRATION AT EPCOT
Walt Disney World basically, and EPCOT, specifically, celebrated the millennium in grand trend.
Twice an evening for 15 months [from 1999 into 2001] across the World Showcase, the Tapestry of Nations procession delighted friends as a part of the World Millennium Celebration.
Greater than 120 larger-than-life “puppets” had been accompanied by 32 drummers and a dramatic authentic rating to create a road pageant ambiance.
The puppets had been designed by Michael Curry, who designed the puppets for “The Lion King” present on Broadway, in addition to different Disney Parks reveals.
The puppet proven within the photograph above was referred to as Hammer Man, a humanoid character created from items of sheet metallic.
Different puppets within the procession included Disc Man, The Sprite, Hen Man and Aztec Man.
All the puppets had been managed by human beings through the mile-long tracks round World Showcase.
GONE, BUT CERETAINLY NOT FORGOTTEN
Earlier than there was the “Journey the Mild Unbelievable” track in Mary Poppins Returnsyou could possibly journey the sunshine unbelievable on the Disney-MGM Studios throughout a number of magical weeks across the vacation season.
From 1995 to 2016, the Osborne Household Spectacle of Dancing Lights was a serious attraction on the MGM [now Hollywood] Studios.
The present was initially conceived by Arkansas businessman Jennings Osborne as a present to his then-6-year-old daughter. Osborne began small, adorning his personal home with Christmas lights. He then purchased the 2 homes on both aspect of his, permitting him to broaden the show.
However when Osborne’s neighbors complained concerning the huge visitors jams every night time, authorized issues ensued, with the case going all the way in which to the US Supreme Court docket.
When Disney discovered concerning the show and the authorized points, they labored with Osborne to put the twinkly gentle present alongside the residential and metropolis streets inside the Studios.
Over time, the show within the Studios expanded and have become extra subtle.
Every night time through the Osborne’s yearly run, the huge assortment of lights and Christmas music had been synchronized to offer friends with a shocking show of vacation cheer.
And for added enjoyable, snowflakes would fill the night time sky.
It was common for friends to enter the park for the only cause of watching the gorgeous show of seasonal magic, spend an hour or two having fun with the present, then depart.
When the choice was made to create new lands dedicated to Star Wars and Toy Story, the New York road space was demolished … and the Osborne Household Spectacle of Dancing Lights grew to become a part of an extended and rising checklist of Disney Parks sights which might be gone … and afternoon missed.
DISNEY’S COMMITMENT TO NATURE TAKES FLIGHT
Ever since Disney’s award-winning TrueLife Journey collection within the Fifties, the Walt Disney Firm has been dedicated to conservation, being environmentally pleasant, all whereas instructing its friends easy methods to be conscientious stewards of our planet.
Among the many first hints of that dedication to nature on a grander scale was at Walt Disney World in 1974, when a tropical sanctuary referred to as Treasure Island was opened.
The island, which is about 11.5 acres, sits in the course of Bay Lake and may be seen from the shores of the Up to date and Wilderness Lodge resorts.
Later renamed Discovery Island, the attraction was solely accessible by boat. As soon as on the island, friends might observe many species of animals and birds in a pure setting.
Discovery Island was a nationally acknowledged zoological park. Lots of the uncommon birds on the island [three of which are seen in the photo above] roamed freely, whereas others had been protected in one of many world’s largest walk-through aviaries.
Many noticed Discovery Island as a precursor to the opening of Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park.
Certainly, after Animal Kingdom opened in 1998, the choice was made to shut Discovery Island. A lot of the birds and animals had been transferred to the brand new park.
As soon as Discovery Island closed in 1999, Animal Kingdom renamed its central hub space from Safari Village to Discovery Island.
The unique Discovery Island has been deserted since its closure, with a number of deteriorating buildings nonetheless seen from watercraft plying the waters of Bay Lake.
EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY … EXCEPT THIS ONE
The photograph above is taken into account THE official dedication photograph taken through the opening of Walt Disney World in 1971.
That is Roy O. Disney, Walt’s brother, who seems to be studying the dedication for the brand new park on Oct. 1, 1971. At his aspect is Mickey Mouse.
Roy’s phrases of dedication on that momentous day had been:
“Walt Disney World is a tribute to the philosophy and lifetime of Walter Elias Disney … and to the skills, the dedication and the loyalty of all the Disney group that made Walt Disney’s dream come true. Could Walt Disney World carry pleasure and inspiration and new data to all who come to this completely satisfied place … a Magic Kingdom the place the younger at coronary heart of all ages can snort and play and be taught … collectively.”
Once I have a look at this photograph, nonetheless, I do not see an official dedication ceremony going down.
I see a costume rehearsal.
Whenever you look over Roy’s shoulder and Mickey’s ears, you see a bunch of parents [likely Disney execs and cast members] milling about, some laughing, some speaking … nearly all wanting away from Roy, not paying a lick of consideration to him as he stands at a podium arrange in City Sq..
Had this been the precise studying of the dedication, you’ll be able to guess these solid members would have been dealing with Roy, in all probability seated, and paying rapt consideration because the historic event unfolded.
WHO DOESN’T LOVE A NIGHTLY PARADE OF BRIGHT LIGHTS?
In the case of night-time electrical gentle parades, nobody has achieved it higher than Disney.
It began a number of weeks after Walt Disney World opened in 1971. That is when the Electrical Water Pageant on Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon debuted.
A collection of pontoon boats appeared on the water round closing time every night time. Hooked up to the pontoons had been hundreds of twinkling lights, affixed to skeleton-like aluminum cages, in addition to massive audio system.
The present had a nautical theme, with dolphins and dragons and fish “leaping” from one pontoon to the subsequent. All of the whereas, music blasted from the audio system hooked up to the pontoons.
The conga line of pontoons made its method from the Magic Kingdom boat dock space to the Polynesian Resort, over the water bridge, to the Up to date Resort, giving friends “a kiss goodnight” as they had been leaving the park.
The Electrical Water Pageant was a giant hit, a lot in order that the powers that be at Disneyland grew to become a bit … let’s assume, envious.
They needed their very own “kiss goodnight,” however since there aren’t any massive our bodies of water at Disneyland, they needed to give you one thing else.
And so, the Principal Road Electrical Parade was born.
As a substitute of boats, brightly lighted themed floats [powered by nickel-cadmium batteries] rode alongside Principal Road, to the delight of friends lined alongside the route.
Disney devised a radio-activated “set off zone” system, which meant that each particular person watching the parade would expertise the identical present, regardless of the place they stood alongside the parade route.
The unique parade at Disneyland ran from 1972 to 1996, and once more in restricted engagements in 2017, 2019 and 2022. In Florida, the Principal Road Electrical Parade ran between 1977 and 2016, with two main gaps throughout 1991–1999 and 2001–2010.
When the Principal Road Electrical Parade went on hiatus, it was changed by SpectroMagic, a portion of which is pictured above.
In response to press supplies, SpectroMagic “celebrated the magical world of Disney characters in a parade section greater than 100 toes in size and that includes fort towers, a carousel, a bejeweled coach and different dreamlands.”
SpectroMagic ran from 1991 to 2010 [with a few breaks in between] earlier than it was completely disbanded. Whereas SpectroMagic was typically well-received, the Principal Road Electrical Parade was – and nonetheless is – beloved by Disney followers.
In the meantime, the Electrical Water Pageant remains to be going robust each night time within the waters across the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.
Chuck Schmidt is an award-winning journalist who has lined all issues Disney since 1984 in each print and on-line. He has authored or co-authored seven books on Disney, together with his newest, The Beat Goes On, for Theme Park Press. He additionally has written an everyday weblog for AllEars.Web, known as Nonetheless Goofy About Disney, since 2015.