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26-03-2009, 07:05 AM
Today, 26th March.....
1994: At Disney's EPCOT, Food Rocks - an animatronic musical food group revue - replaces Kitchen Kabaret (which has been closed since January).
2000: "You'll Be In My Heart" - written and performed by Phil Collins for the Disney feature Tarzan - wins an Oscar for Best Song at the 72nd Academy Awards (hosted by Billy Crystal).
2003: The film Wonders of China ends its run at Epcot. It will be replaced with Reflections of China.
2007: A 10-year-old giraffe named Nikki gives birth to a calf, named Rori, at Disney's Animal Kingdom.
27-03-2009, 06:29 AM
Today, 27th March....
1989: The Walt Disney World Casting Center building opens in Florida.
2008: A baby giraffe named AJ enters the world at Disney's Animal Kingdom. The calf (the third giraffe to be born this year at the theme park) stands at about six feet tall, and weighs in at 145 pounds.
28-03-2009, 08:20 AM
Today, 28th March....
2003: Wetzel's Pretzels opens a store and kiosk in the Downtown Disney area of Walt Disney World.
2008: A circuit breaker trips at Disney's Epcot Center, causing parts of the park to lose power and some rides to close down temporarily.
29-03-2009, 10:55 AM
Today, 29th March....
1954: The ABC-Paramount board approves a deal with Walt Disney. In exchange for Walt Disney's commitment to produce a weekly television series, ABC-Paramount will contribute $500,000 to Disneyland, guarantee $4.5 million in loans, and become a 34 percent owner in Disneyland, Inc. (The actual contract won't be signed until April 2.)
30-03-2009, 07:09 AM
Today, 30th March....
1838: Mary Richardson (Walt Disney's paternal grandmother) is born in Ireland.
1968: Two children come across the lifeless body of a homeless man in an abandoned tenement building on East 10th Street in New York City. Because no one identifies the body, the deceased is buried in an unmarked pauper's grave on Hart Island.
(A fingerprint check in 1969 will identify the corpse as Bobby Driscoll, 31, the voice of Disney's Peter Pan. It is also discovered that the cause of death is a heart attack. His long history of alcohol and drug abuse was a strong contributing factor to his sad and early end.)
31-03-2009, 06:56 AM
Today, 31st March....
2001: In Florida, the new Animal Kingdom Lodge holds a 3-day open
house for Walt Disney World Annual Passholders. The 1,307-room deluxe hotel is about one mile west of the Animal Kingdom Park.
2004: After a $92 million expansion, the U.S. Army reopens its military-only Walt Disney World resort Shades of Green.
01-04-2009, 07:22 AM
Today, 1st April....
1946: Animator Frank Thomas (one of Walt's "Nine Old Men") returns to work at the Disney Studio after serving 4 years in the Army Air Corps during the second world war.
1976: Treasure Island reopens at Walt Disney World as Discovery Island, after being closed since the beginning of the year for the addition of a walk-through aviary, exotic flora and fauna, and a snack bar. This natural 11-acre island, located in the middle of Bay Lake, is a lush forest environment with birds, reptiles, & mammals and hundreds of tropical specimen plants
from all over the world. (In 1979 it will be accredited by the American Association of Zoological Parks and Aquariums.) The only way to reach Discovery Island is by one of the many ferries which depart from the Magic
Kingdom, Fort Wilderness, and the Contemporary Resort.
1995: Walt Disney World's water park Blizzard Beach debuts in Florida. A "melted ski resort," it is the third WDW water park (after River Country & Typhoon Lagoon).
2001: The Main Street Electrical Parade, in the Magic Kingdom at Disney World, has its last run. (The Spectromagic parade will return to the Magic Kingdom in its place.)
Effective this day, Walt Disney World combines the Port Orleans and Dixie Landings resorts into a single resort called Port Orleans Resort.
02-04-2009, 07:37 AM
Today, 2nd April....
1930: Clarabelle Cow first appears in the Mickey Mouse comic strip.
1940: Walt Disney Productions offers shares in the company to the public for the first time. 155,000 shares of preferred stock are offered at $25 per share and 600,000 of common stock for $5 per share.
1943: Disney's Private Pluto, the first Chip & Dale cartoon, is released.
03-04-2009, 06:55 AM
Today, 3rd April....
1941: Walt Disney hosts a luncheon and conference at his studio for government officials and representatives of the defense industries. With a studio strike looming, Walt feels an urgency to obtain government work.
1994: Disney president and Chief Operating Officer Frank Wells is killed in a helicopter crash on a skiing trip in Nevada's 's Ruby Mountains. He is 62. (Ironically Billy Joel & Christie Brinkley escapes injury in a similar simultaneous helicopter accident.) Actor Clint Eastwood had turned down the ride in Wells' helicopter! Wells' death will spark the breakup between studio chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg and Michael Eisner and lead to the creation of Dreamworks SKG. A building will be constructed at The Walt Disney Studios (which will house the Disney Archives) in Wells' memory.
04-04-2009, 08:59 AM
Today, 4th April....
1990: Rock 'n' Roll Beach Club, a rock-themed dance club, opens in Disney World's Pleasure Island. It replaces XZFR Rockin' Rollerdrome, a short lived club where guests could strap on skates and dance to rock music.
1999: Chart-topping acts Britney Spears and 98 Degrees hip-hop down Main Street, U.S.A. during the 14th annual Walt Disney World Happy Easter Parade. The event is broadcast on ABC-TV.
2006:Western Way, the new rear entrance to Disney World from the new Western Beltway expressway opens in Florida. The 4-lane, divided
boulevard gives Disney a western entrance for the first time, allowing
tourists coming in via Interstate 75 to enter Central Florida on Florida's
Turnpike and the Western Beltway (State Road 429), without ever entering Orlando or driving on Interstate 4
05-04-2009, 09:11 AM
Today, 5th April....
2006: The Walt Disney Company Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Tom Staggs presents on behalf of Disney Worldwide Outreach a donation of $1.5 million to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America President Roxanne Spillett on ABC News' Good Morning America. The funds donated by Disney will go towards rebuilding 16 Clubs in the Gulf Coast that were severely damaged by hurricanes last year.
06-04-2009, 10:08 AM
Today, 6th April....
2006: George Britton, who was hired in 1969 to run the railroad at Walt Disney World, puts in his last day of work. Two years before Disney World opened, Britton was hired to restore discarded, turn-of-the-century steam engines. The day the park opened in October 1971, they were in pristine condition ... and they still are today! Britton (the only railroad foreman Disney World has ever had) is presented with one of their highest honors - a window to one day be put up along Main Street.
2007:At Epcot, Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros! opens replacing El Rio de Tiempo (which had closed January 2) in the Mexico pavilion. A gentle boat ride, the attraction features Donald Duck, José Carioca (the parrot), and Panchito (the Mexican charro rooster) from the 1944Disney film The Three Caballeros.
07-04-2009, 10:22 AM
Today, 7th April....
1983: Walt Disney World welcomes its 150-millionth guest - Carrie Stahl!
1995: Walt Disney's sister Ruth (the youngest of the family) passes away.
2005: A themed airplane adorned with the image of Tinker Bell on the
fuselage and golden Mickey Mouse ears on the tail from Alaska Airlines soars
into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The bright blue Boeing 737-400 named the "Magic of Disneyland" celebrates the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney's Anaheim park.
2006: Disney World's biggest ride yet, Expedition Everest, a 20-story,
white-knuckle roller coaster spin officially opens in Animal Kingdom. The attraction is currently Florida's tallest peak, sculpted from 1,800 tons of steel, and covering more than six acres!
2008: The United States Air Force "Thunderbirds" fly over Walt Disney World. The Las Vegas, Nevada-based air demonstration team, who are celebrating their 55th anniversary, soar over the resort following an air show in Punta Gorda, Florida.
08-04-2009, 09:21 AM
Today, 8th April....
1974: Walt Disney World's Treasure Island (later to be called Discovery Island) opens to the public. Located on Bay Lake behind the Contemporary Hotel, the 11.5-acre island features wildlife (such as birds, reptiles, and mammals). A beached hull of a sailing ship on the island's southwest shore and a light pirate theme (complete with Cast Members in costume) set the stage for this "tropical island paradise."
1998: At Disney-MGM, Rock 'n' Roller Coaster (which began construction last month) sets the record for the largest "concrete pour" at a Walt Disney attraction! On this day, the gravity building's mat foundation is poured.
09-04-2009, 10:43 AM
Today, 9th April....
2002: It is reported that the Jacksonville, Florida radio station
WBWL (600 AM) has been purchased by Disney. Sometime within the next 3 months the station will become a Radio Disney affiliate.
2006: Expedition Everest: Journey Into Sacred Lands airs on the Travel Channel. The special takes a look at Disney World's newest and most elaborate attraction, Expedition Everest (located in Animal Kingdom).
2009: The grand opening and ribbon cutting of Tren-D, Disney’s stylish new boutique store, takes place at the Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida.
10-04-2009, 09:27 AM
Today, 10th April....
1964: Walt Disney arrives in New York City to oversee his four exhibits at the upcoming World's Fair.
1994: At Epcot, the Stargate fast-food facility (opened since 1982) closes.
Armored trucks loaded with collectible prizes, Mickey Mouse and Regis Philbin arrive at Disney-MGM Studios to launch the opening of the "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire-Play It!" - a live-show attraction at Disney World. The show will run continuously throughout the day in a 600-seat studio located in Soundstages 2 and 3 at the Disney-MGM Studios. (The attraction had opened to the public on the 7th.)
2006: Building a Thrill Ride - Expedition Everest airs on the Science Channel. The special gives a behind-the-scenes look at Animal Kingdom's newest attraction Expedtion Everest.
11-04-2009, 10:04 AM
Today, 11th April....
1980: To help celebrate the 25th anniversary of Disneyland, the Dapper Dans of Florida are flown in to assist their compatriots. Over the next 4 days, both quartets perform on Main Street; one quartet working the day shift and the other working in the evening.
12-04-2009, 10:48 AM
Today, 12th April....
1925: Roy Oliver Disney (Walt's brother & business partner) marries Edna Francis at Uncle Robert Disney's house in Los Angeles, California. It is the same house where Walt lived and set up shop after first arriving in Hollywood. As Walt owns a motion picture camera, he shoots the days events. (In 1930 Roy and Edna will have a son named Roy Edward.)
1995: In Florida, the Polynesian's Papeete Bay Verandah, opened since 1971, becomes the 'Ohana restaurant - featuring the world's largest fire pit.
2007: Hilton Hotels Corp. breaks ground for a resort development adjacent to Walt Disney World Resort.
13-04-2009, 10:17 AM
Today, 13th April....
2002: Lucky Disney World fans get an opportunity to see Chester & Hester's Dino-Rama!, the newest area of Animal Kingdom. The after-hours event features 17 limited edition pins and pin sets; a private dinner in DinoLand U.S.A.; access to the theme park's newest attractions, TriceraTop Spin and Primeval Whirl and a special performance of the "Tarzan Rocks" stage show. The special event, which runs from 7 to 10 p.m., is at a cost of $125 per person.
14-04-2009, 08:24 AM
Today, 14th April....
2007: Heritage Auctions holds a 2-day music and entertainment signature auction at its headquarters in Dallas, Texas. Among the highlights are Walt Disney's passport from 1965 and a Walt Disney signed contract from 1953.
15-04-2009, 08:49 AM
Today, 15th April....
1930: The first issue of the "Official Bulletin of the Mickey Mouse Club" (a twice-monthly newsletter) is published. It contains stories on different Clubs around the country, contest ideas, and advertisements for merchandise featuring Mickey.
1964: Lawyer Robert Foster leaves New York bound for Florida. Representing Disney, he is to begin land purchases in the Orlando area for a new theme park. He uses the name Robert Price to keep his identity secret.
1973: "The Walt Disney Story" - a film narrated by Walt about the history of Walt Disney - debuts on Disney World's Main Street. It is a free attraction (at a time when ride coupons are still in use) sponsored by Gulf Oil.
16-04-2009, 08:27 AM
Today, 16th April....
2001: Disney World's newest resort, Animal Kingdom Lodge opens at 2901 Osceola Parkway. The six-story resort, which features deluxe facilities and luxury suites, recreates the feel of a South African game reserve lodge.
17-04-2009, 09:16 PM
Today, 17th April....
1994: Thirty-year-old Randle Charles "falls" about 20 feet from one of the Skyway cabins in Disneyland. He lands in a tree near the Alice in Wonderland attraction. Charles is helped out of the tree by paramedics and taken to nearby Western Medical Center, where he is treated for minor injuries and released. (Charles will later file a $25,000 negligence lawsuit against Disney, claiming that he had suffered permanent neck and back injuries as a result of his fall. The lawsuit will be dismissed just before it is to go to trial in September 1996, when it is discovered Charles indeed jumped from the cabin.)
18-04-2009, 09:41 AM
Today, 18th April....
2002: An area of Disney World's Animal Kingdom - featuring the new attractions Triceratops Spin and Primeval Whirl - has an official grand opening.
19-04-2009, 08:57 AM
Today, 19th April....
1987: Animator Milt Kahl, one of Walt's "Nine Old Men," passes away in Mill Valley, California of pneumonia. Often considered the finest draughtsman of the Disney animators, he contributed to such classic films as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Cinderella, Mary Poppins, and The Jungle Book. (He will be named a Disney Legend in 1989.)
Team Mickey's Athletic Club shop opens at the Walt Disney World Village in Florida.
20-04-2009, 07:00 AM
Today, 20th April....
1991: The Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant opens in the Disney-MGM Studios.
2000: Al Weiss (President of Walt Disney World) and Michael Capellas (CEO of Compaq) announce plans for Disney World's newest Epcot attraction, Mission: SPACE (on the site once occupied by Horizons).
21-04-2009, 07:37 AM
Today, 21st April....
2000: The Orlando Sentinel reports that Walt Disney World's next big attraction, billed as a "one-of-a-kind astronaut experience," will lift off at Epcot in 2003. The attraction (in the former Horizons Pavilion next to Test Track) will feature a 5-minute ride that simulates space flight 20 to 30 years in the future.
2006: The U.S. Postal Service unveils new 39-cent stamps (featuring Disney characters) at Epcot - the same day the park's Flower & Garden Festival begins. The new stamps, which feature Cinderella & Prince Charming, Belle & the Beast, Lady & the Tramp and Mickey & Minnie Mouse, will be available at post offices the following day. They are illustrated by Peter Emmerich, a teacher who worked as a Character Artist for the Walt Disney Company for a little over six years.
22-04-2009, 07:32 AM
Today, 22nd April....
1998: Disney World's Animal Kingdom opens in, Florida with 5attractions, 9 exhibits, 12 live entertainment shows, 11 merchandise
locations, and 8 food locations. Spanning 500 acres, Animal Kingdom is billed as "a new species of theme park." Two of the three major "lands" - Africa & DinoLand U.S.A. - open on this date, Asia will open in early 1999.
2003: At Animal Kingdom's 5th birthday celebration, Walt Disney World announces an opening date of December 14 for their new Pop Century Resort.
23-04-2009, 06:41 AM
Today, 23rd April....
1969:Musical cues and various sound effects are recorded at the Whitney Studios and the Walt Disney Productions Recording Stage (both located in California) for Disneyland's much anticipated Haunted Mansion attraction.
1986: In Florida, ground is broken for Walt Disney World's Grand Floridian Beach Resort.
1993: At a dedication service, Walker Ranch officially becomes Disney Wilderness Preserve. Disney and the South Florida Water Management District had come to an agreement in 1992, allowing Disney to develop on an area in Central Florida if Disney would purchase and preserve Walker Ranch, 8,500 acres of wetlands located twelve miles south of Disney World. (The ranch is home to two endangered species, the bald eagle and the wood stork, as well as several other threatened species.) Disney will use the remaining area to build Celebration, a new city themed after a typical small American town of the 1940s and '50s.
2004: Walt Disney World confirms that It's A Small World will be closing for almost a year for improvements. (Disney hopes the boat ride will re-open in March 2005.)
24-04-2009, 07:27 AM
Today, 24th April....
1989: MMC - also known as The All New Mickey Mouse Club - debuts on the Disney Channel with host Fred Newman. The show is a mix of live skits, recorded comedy and songs - the Mouseketeers perform their own versions of popular songs live and in music videos. Today is Music Day! (The cast over the years will includes future stars like singer Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, actress Keri Russell, and members of NSYNC.)
25-04-2009, 09:20 AM
Today, 25th April....
1961: Disney's loan from the Bank of America is finally paid off. Revenue from movies can now go directly to Walt Disney Productions.
1972: Academy Award-winning actor George Sanders, the voice of Disney's Shere Khan in The Jungle Book (and the husband of Zsa Zsa Gabor) passes away.
2003: The 10th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival kicks off at Walt Disney World.
26-04-2009, 09:31 AM
Today, 26th April....
1998: The Wonderful World of Disney airs "Disney's Animal Kingdom: The First Adventure." The one-hour television special gives viewers a
first look at the new Florida theme park.
27-04-2009, 07:03 AM
Today, 27th April....
2008: A massive crowd of teens turn out in Long Beach, California for the first open casting call for ABC's new summer reality TV series (tentatively titled), Disney's "High School Musical: Summer Session."
28-04-2009, 07:02 AM
Today, 28th April....
1989: A Typhoon Lagoon sneak preview takes place for members of the press. (The new Disney World water park will open June 1.)
1997: The restaurant in Walt Disney World's Cinderella Castle is renamed Cinderella's Royal Table. Although originally called King Stefan's Banquet Hall - King Stefan was actually Sleeping Beauty's father ... not Cinderella's!
29-04-2009, 07:09 AM
Today, 29th April....
1994: The first phase of Disney World's All-Star Sports Resort, Surf's Up (locatedat 1991 West Buena Vista Drive) opens. A haven for sports fans, the Florida resort will eventually consist of 5 themed hotels (10 buildings in all) each bordered by a giant sports icon.
2000: Actor Michael J. Fox pays a visit to Walt Disney World to add his handprints to the Disney-MGM Studios collection.
30-04-2009, 07:05 AM
Today, 30th April....
1969: During a press conference at the Ramada Inn on Highway 50 in Ocoee, Florida (a little suburb on the outskirts of Orlando), Donn B. Tatum (president of Walt Disney World Co.) details the more than 3 years of planning for a "Destination Vacation". It has been two years since special legislation had been passed to allow Disney to build its Florida project, and now the Disney Company has rented out the entire Ramada Inn for Walt Disney World's official first press event. A large circus tent outside the hotel is filled with models and artist renderings of Walt Disney World for this three-day gala. Among the Disney officials in attendance is Walt's brother Roy O. Disney and Disney publicist Charlie Ridgway. A 16-mm 17-minute film titled Walt Disney World - Phase 1 is screened at the Parkwood Cinema Theater. It shows the master plan and artists' depictions for a theme park (which will open in 1971).
01-05-2009, 07:18 AM
Today, 1st April....
1940: Walter E. Disney, of Los Angeles, receives patent #2,201,689 from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, for the "art of animation" camera. The multiplane camera allows for a more realistic three-dimensional image as well as depth and richness to the animation. The device uses up to seven layers of artwork (painted in oils on glass) shot under a vertical and moveable camera.
1983: Card Walker steps down as chairman of Disney, turning the job over to Ray Watson.
1986: At EPCOT, The Good Turn Restaurant (opened in The Land since the park's debut in 1982) closes. It will become Garden Grille Restaurant.
1989: The Disney-MGM Studios theme park at Walt Disney World
(located south of EPCOT) opens to the public. It is Disney's 5th theme park in the world. Although it rains throughout the day, the park is packed. It is the largest opening day press event in Disney World history. Attractions in the park include Walt Disney Studios Animation Studios (where guests can watch story personnel, animators, artists and technicians produce motion pictures), The Great Movie Ride, SuperStar Television, and The Monster
1989: Disney World's Pleasure Island officially opens on this day(although Disney has been admitting guests since April 28.)
2001: Animal Kingdom's thrill ride Countdown to Extinction changes its name to Dinosaur!.
02-05-2009, 08:36 AM
Today, 2nd May....
1982: Today is the first day of EPCOT Center site tours for Cast Members and their families. Narrated tours for the soon-to-be-open theme park leave every half hour. (EPCOT will have its grand debut on October 1.)
1993:The Theater of the Stars, a 1500 seat amphitheater located just to the right of the Hollywood Brown Derby restaurant in the Disney-MGM
Park, temporarily closes. It will be moved to make way for the construction of the new Sunset Boulevard area.
03-05-2009, 09:44 AM
Today, 3rd May....
1994: Disney announces plans to create a cruise line.
2003: James Brown (the Godfather of Soul) performs at the House of Blues in Downtown Disney, Florida on his 70th birthday. He will visit Disney World the following day.
04-05-2009, 08:50 AM
Today, 4th May....
1944: Russi Taylor, the voice of Minnie Mouse since 1985, is born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (She is married to Wayne Allwine, the voice of Mickey!)
2001: For 4 consecutive weekends beginning on this day, the Disney-MGM Studios joins forces with Lucasfilm Ltd. to present the second annual Star Wars Weekends. With the popular Star Tours attraction, Hollywood-style motorcades and star conversations, a Cantina Street Party and
celebrity autograph sessions, MGM is transformed into a Force-filled fan-fest.
05-05-2009, 07:13 AM
Today, 5th May....
1987: Disneyland introduces Disney Dollars, its exclusive line of currency featuring Mickey Mouse on the $1 bill and Goofy on the $5 bill.
2005: Epcot's new Soarin' (a simulator attraction) officially opens as does the Disney-MGM Studios' Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show.
Cinderellabration officially debuts too - at the Magic Kingdom. Also officially debuting is Disney's Magical Express - a complimentary round-trip airport transfer for Disney World hotel guests.
06-05-2009, 07:09 AM
Today, 6th May....
1988: The second new World Showcase pavilion to be added to the original roster, Norway, opens at Disney World's EPCOT. It includes the Flording shop, Puffin's Roost shop, Kringla Bakeri og Kafe restaurant, and the Restaurant Akershus.
2005: Legendary Disney artist and writer Joe Grant passes away days before his 97th birthday at his home in Glendale, California. His work ranged from the early classics like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Alice in Wonderland, and Dumbo to modern animated features such as The Lion King, Pocahontas, Mulan, and The Incredibles.
07-05-2009, 07:12 AM
Today, 7th May....
1973: Neel Tyree replaces Jerry Siggins and begins performing with the Dapper Dans of Walt Disney World (the popular barbershop quartet who appear in the Magic Kingdom).
08-05-2009, 08:54 AM
Today, 8th May....
1960: Jennifer Miller-Goff, Walt Disney's granddaughter, is born in Los Angeles County, California.
2008: One hundred Central Florida students are honored as Disney Dreamers & Doers during its 25th anniversary ceremony at Epcot. The finalists were selected from 400 students nominated by schools in Orange, Lake, Polk, Osceola and Seminole counties.
09-05-2009, 09:23 AM
Today, 9th May....
Walt Disney's daughter Diane marries USC football player Ron Miller at the All Saints by the Sea Episcopal Church in Montecito, California. The "football" ceremony features a minister who was a former player & coach, and a five-tier cake topped with female and male football players. (Diane and Ron will have seven children.)
10-05-2009, 08:34 AM
Today, 10th May....
1959: Walt Disney's daughter Sharon marries Robert B. Brown (a designer with an architectural firm) at the Presbyterian Church in Pacific Palisades, California. A reception follows at the Hotel Bel Air in Beverly Hills.
2008: Disney's Hollywood Studios previews Toy Story Mania for annual passholders only. The new 3-D attraction will officially open May 31.
11-05-2009, 06:56 AM
Today, 11th May....
1944: Columbia Pictures' Once Upon a Time is released. Starring Cary Grant, the film tells the story of a boy, his dancing caterpillar, and the man who wants to make them famous. Walt Disney's name is mentioned throughout the film and there's even a scene of Walt (played by actor Walter Fenner), over long-distance phone from Hollywood, offering $100,000 for the caterpillar!
12-05-2009, 07:28 AM
Today, 12th May....
1932:The Mickey Mouse film Mickey's Revue is released. Pluto and Horace Horsecollar also appear. Goofy appears for the very first time - but with the name Dippy Dawg.
1934: Winnie-the-Bear (the real life inspiration for Winnie-the Pooh) passes away at the London Zoo at the ripe old age of 20 (a good life span for a bear).
2007: Happy 75th birthday Goofy!
13-05-2009, 07:18 AM
Today, 13th May....
1997: The London production of Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" premieres at the Dominion Theatre.
14-05-2009, 07:32 AM
Today, 14th May....
1942: Academy Award-winning composer and songwriter Frank Churchill passes away in California. In December 1930, he joined The Walt Disney Studios where he scored nearly 65 animated shorts and wrote such timeless tunes as "Whistle While You Work," "Heigh-Ho" and "Someday My Prince Will Come."
1972: In Los Angeles, Sotheby's holds the first auction devoted to Disneyana
2005: Sadly, a 26-year-old African elephant whose calf died in its womb last month at Walt Disney World's Animal Kingdom, dies from a uterine infection.
15-05-2009, 07:33 AM
Today, 15th May....
1928: Plane Crazy, Walt Disney's first silent short to feature Mickey & Minnie Mouse, premieres as a sneak preview at a theatre on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, California. The film, a parody of the Charles Lindbergh craze, has cost $1,772 to make. Plane Crazy also features the very first appearance of Clarabelle Cow.
16-05-2009, 10:04 AM
Today, 16th May....
1928: Walt Disney applies for a trademark for "Mickey Mouse," for use in motion pictures.
1946: Walt Disney and his wife Lillian arrive in St. Louis, Missouri (after a brief stopover in Walt's boyhood town of Marceline). They have traveled to St. Louis in order to attend an awards ceremony, being held the following day.
1990: Muppet creator, filmmaker, and television producer Jim Henson dies of pneumonia less than 24 hours after being rushed to a New York hospital. The fifty-three-year-old was misdiagnosed earlier in the week and had he been put on antibiotics only 8 hours earlier, it is believed Henson would have survived. A memorial service for Henson will air on PBS and draw millions of viewers and dozens of celebrities in reverence for his life and work. (He was completing negotiations with the Disney company to include his Muppets at their theme parks at the time of his death.)
1991: Jim Henson's Muppet-Vision 3-D opens at the Disney-MGM Studios theme park at Disney World. The attraction is housed in a 1000 seat multi-media 3-D theater located in a further expansion of the backlot annex area.
17-05-2009, 10:18 AM
Today, 17th May....
1991: Disney's Port Orleans Resort, a re-creation of the streets and rowhouses of New Orleans' French Quarter, opens at 2201 Orleans Drive in Walt Disney World. The Downtown Disney area resort, which offers 1008 guest rooms, also includes Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory food court, Jackson Square Gifts and Desires shop, and Bonfamille's Cafe restaurant. (In 2001 it will be renamed Port Orleans Resort French Quarter.)
Also opening on the Florida property is the Disney Vacation Club Resort (Disney's first attempt at a timeshare resort). It will later be re-named
Disney's Old Key West Resort.
It is announced on this day that Roy and Patricia Disney have pledged $10 million to Providence Saint Joseph Foundation to build the San Fernando Valley's first and most comprehensive free-standing cancer center. In recognition of their generosity and commitment, the California cancer facility, the largest provider of cancer services in the valley, will be named "The Roy and Patricia Disney Cancer Center."
18-05-2009, 07:13 AM
Today, 18th May....
1997: Today is the last day Epcot guests hear non-classical music accompany Illuminations 25.
19-05-2009, 07:06 AM
Today, 19th May....
1997: Epcot's Illuminations 25 debuts with classical music.
2000: Plans for Disney's newest attraction Mission: SPACE (to be
completed in 2003-2004) are launched into space aboard Atlantis, NASA's International Space Station shuttle flight (STS-101). The crew, made up of six American astronauts and one Russian cosmonaut, will spend nearly 10 days in space.
2001: A set of Mickey Mouse drawings from 1928 - estimated to be worth more than $3 million - fail to sell at auction, leaving The International Museum of Cartoon Art (at this time located in Boca Raton, Florida) scrambling for other ways to pay its debt. The six-page, 36-panel storyboard from the Disney cartoon Plane Crazy was the first appearance of Mickey Mouse.
2006: As of this day, the non-intense version of Epcot's Mission:Space opens to guests.
20-05-2009, 07:04 AM
Today, 20th May....
1973: Disney World's Tom Sawyer Island, the Tom Sawyer Rafts and the Plaza Swan Boats all first open at the Magic Kingdom. The Swan Boats are powered by natural gas engines, and are designed to run with an electric guidance system. Unfortunately the system will fail early in the attraction's life span and give way to a new steering mechanism - two jets of water below the hull (one in front, one in back) that can swivel 360 degrees and move the boat in any direction.
1996: Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf, located between the Walt Disney World Dolphin and Walt Disney World Swan hotels, opens.
2008: The Walt Disney Company announces that it will contribute $1 million in humanitarian aid to the victims of the recent earthquake in China. The donation will be put towards acquiring materials for immediate relief efforts, helping and supporting displaced and distressed children and rebuilding damaged schools. In addition, Hong Kong Disneyland Cast Members, as well as Disney’s China, Hong Kong and Taiwan-based employees, have made individual monetary contributions.
21-05-2009, 07:12 AM
Today, 21st May....
1933: A 23-year-old artist named Wolfgang Reitherman is hired at the Disney Studios in Hollywood, California. "Woolie" as he will be nicknamed, will start work in June and go on to become one of Walt's legendary "Nine Old Men"
1940: Disney's Pinocchio is generally released in the U.K.
2008: During the season finale of American Idol, Jordin Sparks, last year’s winner, announces that The American Idol Experience, a theme-park version of the show, will open at Disney Hollywood Studios in January 2009. David Cook, who is voted this season's American Idol, shouts "I'm going to Disney World!" during the celebration following the live announcement. (It is a rare off-field exception for those famous promotional words, which have almost always been uttered by sports figures.)
22-05-2009, 06:53 AM
Today, 22nd May....
1968: Walt Disney Travel Company is incorporated in Florida. The company will work with travel agents and individuals planning vacations to the yet-to-be-open Walt Disney World Resort. (The service will be expanded to California 4 years later.)
2001: Six cast members from the New York City production of The Lion King take part in the grand dedication ceremony for Walt Disney World's newest resort, Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge (which opened April 16). The cast performs the musical's signature song, "Circle of Life'' in the grand lobby of the African-theme hotel.
23-05-2009, 08:58 AM
Today, 23rd May....
1996: Disney joins McDonald's in a 10-year multinational marketing alliance linking McDonald's restaurants to Disney theatrical releases, theme parks and home video releases.
2001: The Magic Carpets of Aladdin soar to life at Disney World's Magic Kingdom
24-05-2009, 10:01 AM
Today, 24th May....
1968: In recognition of his distinguished public service and outstanding contributions to the United States and to the world, the President of the United States presents a Congressional Gold Medal to the widow of the late Walt Disney
1989: Raymond A. Disney (one of Walt's brothers & the second child born to Flora & Elias Disney) passes at the age of 98. He had been in the insurance business
25-05-2009, 10:05 AM
Today, 25th May....
1986: Today is the last day EPCOT guests will hear the original narration of the Spaceship Earth attraction. It will be replaced with a new narration by legendary newsman Walter Cronkite.
1990: "Here Come the Muppets," a live action and puppet stage show based on the Muppets, opens at the Disney-MGM Studios park in Florida. (It
will be replaced by the Voyage of the Little Mermaid in 1992.)
26-05-2009, 09:48 AM
Today, 26th May....
1986: EPCOT's Spaceship Earth reopens with a new narration by legendary newsman Walter Cronkite, a new finale song titled "Tomorrow's Child," and a new sponsor - AT&T. It is the attraction's second version.
1990: Mickey's Starland opens in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World. (Originally known as Mickey's Birthdayland in 1988, it will later be renamed Mickey's Toontown Fair.)
27-05-2009, 09:13 AM
Today, 27th May....
1984: Roy E. Disney's son, Roy P. Disney marries Linda Ross.
1985: U.S. President Ronald Reagan and his wife visit Epcot for the President's Second Inaugural Parade. (The original parade in January had been cancelled due to bad weather in Washington, D.C.) Some 2,500 bandsmen from sixteen states participate and the event makes television news and newspaper headlines around the world.
1995: The Coca-Cola Refreshment Corner, located on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom (at Disney World), is renamed Casey's Corner.
28-05-2009, 09:10 AM
Today, 28th May....
1941:Disney animator Eric Larson arrives at work to discover his wing of the Disney Studio empty! Some 300-plus employees are outside on a picket line participating in a labor strike against the studio. The strikers are mostly assistant animators, inkers, and painters who want union
representation, higher wages, and job security. None of the animators who are Walt's Nine Old Men - which include Larson - join the strikers. (The strike will last till mid-September.)
1988:Gulf Coast Room (one of the select Walt Disney World restaurants that required jackets for men) closes in the Contemporary Resort Hotel.
1993: Groundbreaking begins for the Tower of Terror attraction at Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park in Florida.
1994: Disney's Wilderness Lodge (located at 901 Timberline Drive)
opens at Walt Disney World. The 728-room lakeside deluxe resort (inspired by the beautiful early American National Parks) features an 80-foot tall fireplace in its lobby.
29-05-2009, 09:00 AM
Today, 29th May....
1903: Legendary comedian-actor and entertainer Bob Hope is born in England. Hope's connection to Disney began in 1939 when he presented the Short Subject Award and personally gave Walt the Oscar for Ferdinand the Bull. In 1965, Hope appeared on the television special Jack Benny Visits Walt Disney, and in 1971 took part in NBC-TV's Grand Opening of Walt Disney World. Hope later was a guest on NBC Salutes the 25th Anniversary of WDW. In 1999 he participated in the very first Disneyland official Christmas lighting ceremony. Bwana Bob's a small, freestanding store in Walt Disney World's Adventureland (originally called the Adventureland Kiosk) is actually a tribute to Bob Hope!
"This is the biggest vacation-entertainment complex in the world. And to think it all started with a gentle mouse, a bad-tempered duck and seven mixed-up dwarfs. It's a fantastic achievement. They took a swamp and turned it into a Magic Kingdom. It wasn't easy. Have you ever tried to relocate 8,000 angry alligators?" -Bob Hope
1928: A gag meeting for the second Mickey Mouse short is held at Walt Disney's house. Walt tells Wilfred Jackson and other members of his staff the idea of producing a sound cartoon.
30-05-2009, 09:23 AM
Today, 30th May....
1967: Site preparation begins in Florida on the Walt Disney World project, requiring swamp drainage, clearing of land, and removal of trees.
(It will take 1,584 days and $400 million to Opening Day.)
31-05-2009, 10:52 AM
Today, 31st May....
1991: Disney Press publishes "Walt Disney's 101 Dalmatians: A Counting Book."
1993: Senior executive and Disney Legend Donn Tatum passes away in Los Angeles, California. Walt Disney first recruited Tatum in 1956, as production business manager. He later served on the Company's Board of Directors and as vice president and administrative assistant to Roy O. Disney. As the first president of Walt Disney World Co., Tatum helped build Walt Disney World and develop EPCOT Center.
2009: wDisneySecrets.com celebrates it's first birthday.
01-06-2009, 07:11 AM
Today, 1st June....
1933: The first Mickey Mouse watch is sold by Ingersoll-Waterbury, a Connecticut clock maker on the verge of bankruptcy. The sale of the watches will save the company!
1933: Eric Larson - from Cleveland, Utah - is hired by the Disney Studios at fifteen dollars per week. He will go on to become one of Walt's "Nine Old Men".
1935: The Ingersoll-Waterbury Company reports that it has produced 2.5 million Mickey Mouse watches during its 2-year association with Disney.
1981: At Disney World, the EPCOT Preview Center, located in the Magic Kingdom, debuts the film A Dream Called EPCOT. (EPCOT will open in October 1982.)
1982: Disney World's monorail line is extended from the Ticket and Transportation Center to the yet-to-be-open EPCOT Center.
1989: Walt Disney World's Typhoon Lagoon - featuring one of the world's largest wave pools in the U.S. - opens. The centerpiece of the park is Miss Tilly, a shrimp boat impaled upon a mountain named Mount Mayday that erupts a 50-foot geyser of water every half hour! The park's mascot is named Lagoona Gator.
1993: The Splashdown Photos shop opens at the Splash Mountain exit at Disney World's Magic Kingdom
1994: Mickey Mania Parade debuts at Walt Disney World
02-06-2009, 07:22 AM
Today, 2nd June....
2008: Space shuttle Discovery docks at the International Space Station on this day, delivering a mammoth lab and two new occupants: a NASA astronaut and Buzz Lightyear. A 12-inch action figure of Buzz will move in for a half-year as part of NASA’s toys-in-space educational program.
03-06-2009, 07:15 AM
Today, 3rd June....
1984: The Bistro de Paris restaurant in the France Pavilion at Epcot's World Showcase opens.
04-06-2009, 07:26 AM
Today, 4th June....
1938: Walt Disney's Snow White wrap party - also known as Walt's Field Day - is held at the Norconian Hotel in Norco, California
1990: The Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel (a Starwood-operated hotel) opens at 1800 Epcot Resorts Blvd. between the Disney MGM Studios & the Epcot resort area. Designed by Michael Graves, the hotel features two 56-foot tall dolphins
1999: Walt Disney World's newest attraction The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh opens in the Magic Kingdom
05-06-2009, 07:27 AM
Today, 5th June....
1972: Walt Disney World's If You Had Wings attraction, sponsored by Eastern Airlines (the official airline of Walt Disney World) opens. It is located in Tomorrowland across from the Mission to Mars attraction. The ride takes guests on a journey through some of Eastern's tourist destinations, such as Mexico City, New Orleans and the Bahamas. If You Had Wings will entertain millions of visitors for the next 15 years
1995:Walt Disney World formally announces its newest project ... Animal Kingdom. Construction will begin in August
06-06-2009, 09:12 AM
Today, 6th June....
1985: Disney World's Bearly Asleep shop opens in Frontierland
2002: After a complete mechanical and exterior restoration, the Roy O. Disney steam locomotive is rededicated in a ceremony at the Main Street USA Train Station at Walt Disney World. His son, Roy E. Disney, who is vice chairman of The Walt Disney Company, participates in the ceremony along with Michael Campbell and Darrell Holmquist, members of the Board of Governors of the Carolwood Pacific Historical Society. (Named in honor of the co-founder of The Walt Disney Company, the engine represents the only object in any Disney theme park to carry Roy O. Disney's name.)
07-06-2009, 09:50 AM
Today, 7th June....
1999: Bear in the Big Blue House - Live on Stage opens at Disney-MGM Studios in Florida
2006: Disney World announces that the Cinderella Castle apartment will be completely decorated and upholstered as a 'royal bedchamber', which can sleep up to four people. It will become available as a once-in-a-lifetime experience during the Year of a Million Dreams celebration taking place at all eleven Disney theme parks. An overnight stay in the apartment will be a prize randomly awarded to a guest at the Magic Kingdom, or any park at the Walt Disney World Resort.
08-06-2009, 09:25 AM
Today, 8th June....
1902: In Chicago, Elias and Flora Disney baptize their son Walter at the St. Paul Congregational Church. The Disneys are loyal members of the congregation - Flora plays the organ and Elias, a carpenter by trade, has helped build the church.
1917: Walt Disney graduates from Benton Grammar School in Kansas City, Missouri. (The Disneys moved to Kansas City after their Marceline farm failed.) Walt graduates this day from seventh grade, and surprises his parents by delivering a patriotic speech to his fellow graduates. (Walt will enroll in Chicago's McKinley High School in the fall of 1917. But he will attend high school for only a year before volunteering as a Red Cross ambulance driver and being sent to France.)
2003: Disney-MGM Studios' Great Movie Ride reopens after a lengthy refurbishment.
09-06-2009, 08:10 AM
Today, 9th June....
1934: Donald Duck makes his very first film appearance in The Wise Little Hen, a Silly Symphony short by Walt Disney. Donald's appearance in this cartoon, as created by animator Dick Lundy, is similar to his modern
look except his features are more elongated, his body plumper, and his feet bigger. Directed by Bert Gillet, the short features the voice of Clarence Nash as Donald Duck.
1984: Laserphonic Fantasy, a show at Disney's EPCOT, begins. (The show is essentially a less sophisticated version of Illuminations, without the spotlighting of individual countries.)
2002: Starting on this day, a credit card is required to secure priority seating for Walt Disney World's very popular Cinderella's Royal Table Once Upon a Time character breakfast.
2006: A brush fire flares up near Walt Disney World, causing parts of U.S. 192 to be closed.
10-06-2009, 07:00 AM
Today, 10th June....
1994: Thelma Howard, the Disney's live-in housekeeper and cook for 30 years (beginning in 1951 at the age of 38), passes away just shy of her 80th birthday. Nicknamed "Foo-Foo," Walt often referred to her as "the real-life Mary Poppins." As a housekeeper for the Disney family, she received a few shares of Disney stock as a Christmas gift as well as for birthdays and special events. She lived frugally throughout her life, apparently not knowing the rising value of the stock ... actually made her a multi-millionaire at the time of her death!
To mark the return of The Indiana Jones Spectacular to Disney-MGM Studios after a six-month hiatus for refurbishments, Disney invites 500 Floridians, mostly from the Orlando area, with the last name "Jones" to be in the audience for the grand reopening show!
2008: Severe weather in Central Florida, including a radar-indicated tornado, force Disney World officials to temporarily close several rides at some theme parks.
11-06-2009, 07:13 AM
Today, 11th June....
2005: The National Kidney Foundation of Florida hosts the Gift of Life
5K Race for Organ & Tissue Donation Awareness at Epcot. The race is designed to raise financial donations as well as awareness for organ donations.
12-06-2009, 07:00 AM
Today, 12th June....
1616: The real Pocahontas (along with her husband John Rolfe & son Thomas) arrive in London, England. Englishman Sir Thomas Dale has voyaged from the New World (along with Pocahontas & other Algonquian Indians) to seek further financial support for the Virginia Company. The arrival of Pocahontas in London has been well publicized, and she is presented to King James I, the royal family, and the rest of the best of London society.
2006: Although Tropical Storm Alberto (the first of the season) strikes Florida, Walt Disney World in Central Florida receives only rain.
2006: Kris Draper, center for the Detroit Red Wings, and his family spend the day at Disney World's Magic Kingdom.
13-06-2009, 10:38 AM
Today, 13th June....
2002: President Bush assembles corporate America heavyweights (including Disney Chairman Michael Eisner) at the White House to encourage businesses that foster volunteerism among their workers. Eisner tells Bush: "We're all committed to showing what corporate America can do to lead and show by example that not only it is good business, it's good for the community, it's fun, it's rewarding and it is unbelievably helpful to the country."
2005: Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex in Florida welcomes
its one-millionth athlete Desirre Wilkerson, a 13-year-old girls' volleyball player from the Kentucky Indiana Volleyball Academy.
14-06-2009, 09:52 AM
Today, 14th June....
1895: Cliff Edwards, the voices of Jiminy Cricket in Pinocchio and Jim Crow in Dumbo, is born in Hannibal, Missouri. He will be named a Disney Legend in 2000. (When Edwards dies in 1971, nearly broke and alone, Walt Disney Productions, remembering his many contributions to their films, will pay for his funeral.)
1996: Epcot's Universe of Energy (closed since January 21) reopens with newly repainted dinosaurs and flat screens for the pre-show
2001: Lightning strikes a wire box controlling power to a monorail at Walt Disney World in Florida, forcing the train to shut down temporarily. The monorail, which is filled with scores of tourists, is towed back to its
15-06-2009, 06:41 AM
Today, 15th June....
1978: Millard Jones, 86, of Lakeland, Florida makes his 500th visit to Walt Disney World!
1991: The Studio Pizzeria restaurant opens at the Disney-MGM Studios.
16-06-2009, 06:39 AM
Today, 16th June.....
1961: Walt Disney purchases the film rights to the Winnie-the-Pooh stories from Mrs. Daphne Milne, wife of the late author A.A. Milne. (The first film, Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree, will appear in 1966 as a twenty-six minute short.)
1999: A DisneyQuest opens in Chicago, Illinois. (Due to poor profits it will close in September 2001.)
17-06-2009, 08:10 AM
Today, 17th June....
1930: William Banks Levy becomes Disney's representative in England. He is authorized to license Mickey and Minnie Mouse character merchandising.
18-06-2009, 08:10 AM
Today, 18th June....
1988: Mickey's Birthdayland opens in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World. Located between Fantasyland and Tomorrowland (past the Tomorrowland Speedway), guests can also arrive via the Walt Disney World Railroad.
1995: The first wedding performed at Walt Disney World's Wedding Pavilion, a Victorian-style structure located next to the Grand Floridian Resort, previews on the Lifetime cable network show, Weddings of a Lifetime.
1996: The Haber family become the first to move into Disney's newest Florida community, Celebration.
19-06-2009, 07:51 AM
Today, 19th June....
1957: Disney's animated The Story of Anyburg, U.S.A. is released along with the live-action adventure film Johnny Tremain. The film, about a young silversmith's apprentice who is drawn into the American Revolutionary War, stars Hal Stalmaster and Luana Patten, and features a cameo by Walt's daughter Sharon.
1995: A bronze statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse, called the Partners Statue, is installed at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney Word. It is identical to the statue created by Blaine Gibson first installed at Disneyland in November 1993.
1998: In Florida, DisneyQuest opens in the West End area of Downtown Disney. Packed with 4 floors of high-tech, interactive virtual adventures, it is the first in a national chain of interactive entertainment centers.
20-06-2009, 08:37 AM
Today, 20th June....
1938: Walt Disney and his wife Lillian arrive in Manhattan, New York by train on this Monday morning. They are on their way to New Haven, Connecticut and Cambridge, Massachusetts where Walt will receive honorary degrees from the universities of Yale (on June 22) and Harvard (on June 23).
1976: Walt Disney World's River Country (a water park adjacent to Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground) opens. It is Disney's first attempt at a themed water park. U.S. President Gerald Ford's daughter Susan helps with the official opening.
1995: The Walt Disney Company announces plans for a fourth theme park in Florida, called Disney's Wild Animal Kingdom. The park is expected to cost $760 million to create.
1995: The Walt Disney World attraction ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter officially begins operation in Tomorrowland (replacing Flight to the Moon).
21-06-2009, 10:12 AM
Today, 21st June....
1989: Comedian Harvey Korman greets Walt Disney World's 300 millionth guest Matt Gleason at the gates of Disney-MGM Studios!
2000: DisneyQuest unveils two new attractions at the Indoor Interactive Theme Park at Disney World: "Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for Buccaneer Gold" (which allows guests to fulfill their fantasy of becoming a pirate and interacting in a pirate world) and "Songmaker" (which allows guests to become a record producer and create their own song).
22-06-2009, 08:06 AM
Today, 22nd June....
1917: Walt Disney's older brother Roy O. Disney enlists in the U.S. Navy along with his friend Mitch Francis. Roy will first be assigned to the Great Lakes Naval Training Station outside of Chicago, and eventually be transferred to Charleston, South Carolina - where he will be responsible for transporting material between New York and France. (Roy wil later marry Mitch's sister Edna!)
2006:The first of two special on-line Disney auction charity events (to raise funds for the Make-A-Wish Foundation) begin. Packages to bid on include a private boat ride with a Walt Disney Imagineer on Pirates of the Caribbean in Disneyland and two tickets to the July 6, 2006 sold out Pirates of the Caribbean: A Moonlit Voyage event. (The second auction begins July 6.)
2007:Epcot's newly-updated American Adventure debuts. It now includes moments from 9-11-2001, current military operations, and other
23-06-2009, 07:29 AM
Today, 23rd June....
2004: A set of four 37-cent postage stamps, 23-cent postal cards and printed stationary that comes with 37 cents of postage featuring Disney characters are issued by the United States Postal Service. (They will go on sale nationwide the following day.)
24-06-2009, 09:32 AM
Today, 24th June....
1893: Roy Oliver Disney (older brother of Walt) is born in Chicago, Illinois. He will be the middle of 5 children. Roy will go on to serve as president of Walt Disney Productions from 1945 to 1968 and chairman of the board from 1964 until his death in 1971.
1913: Alan Alexander Milne (future creator of Winnie-the-Pooh) marries Daphne de Selincourt. In 1920, they will have a son and name him Christopher Robin.
1956: Walt Disney appears on Ed Sullivan's 8th Anniversary Show. Walt along with Ronald Reagan, Natalie Wood, Robert Walker, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz sing "Happy Anniversary" in a tribute to Sullivan.
1994: At Epcot, the Electric Umbrella fast-food facility opens in Communicore East.
1998: Jacqueline D'Ambrosi, a 9-year-old from Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, becomes the 600-millionth person to walk through the turnstiles of the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World! With a click of the turnstile at 7:37 a.m., Jacqueline is immediately mobbed by Mickey Mouse and a cast of other Disney characters. She is awarded lifetime passes to the Florida park, and to Disney's 3 other theme parks, for her and her family.
25-06-2009, 08:08 AM
Today, 25th June....
1985: At about 9 p.m., a Walt Disney World monorail catches fire while enroute from Epcot to the Magic Kingdom. Over two hundred passengers are safely evacuated from the elevated tracks by ladders and cherry-picker cranes.
26-06-2009, 08:36 AM
Today, 26th June....
2002: Walt Disney World (and other Orlando, Florida attractions) are featured on Family Vacations in Orlando - broadcast on the Travel Channel.
27-06-2009, 09:25 AM
Today, 27th June....
1991: Mickey's Mart - a Walt Disney World souvenir shop in Tomorrowland - closes. It will later be known as Mickey's Star Traders.
28-06-2009, 08:56 AM
Today, 28th June....
1955: Walt Disney writes a letter to his employees from the Disney Studios and others who assisted on the creation of his new Anaheim park, inviting them to attend the grand debut on July 17. (He is concerned that there won’t be enough people scattered throughout the park for the television cameras.)
As we come down the homestretch in the building of Disneyland, I knew you are as happy as I am with the way in which this dream of ours is coming to full life. Your contribution to the construction, the development and the details of the park has made it possible for us to foresee that we will open Disneyland, virtually completed.
The few days remaining before our television preview on Sunday, July 17th, will be all important to us, but I know that we can count on you and every one of your fellow employees to do your utmost to meet our schedule.
I would like to cordially invite you and your family to participate with us in the thrill of the Disneyland premiere. Within the next few days, we will have your preview tickets available. They will be distributed to you at Disneyland and will assure you and your family of a wonderful afternoon, as our guests, on all the rides and amusements in Disneyland.
I am sure your family will be as proud of your effort as all of us are.
Sincerely, Walt Disney
1988: The opening of Disney's Grand Floridian Resort ushers in an era of accelerated hotel building at Disney World, during which 10 new resort hotels have been added to date. The Grand Floridian, located at 4401 Floridian Way, is the third Magic Kingdom monorail resort located on the beaches of the Seven Seas Lagoon between the Polynesian Resort and the Magic Kingdom. The luxurious hotel - the crown jewel of the Walt Disney World resorts - is themed to be reminiscent of turn-of-the-century Victorian Florida. Also opening in the hotel is Flagler's restaurant, 1900 Park Fare restaurant, M. Mouse Mercantile shop, Narcoossee's restaurant, Victoria and Albert's restaurant, and the Grand Floridian Cafe restaurant. (In 1997 the hotel's name will be changed to The Grand Floridian Resort & Spa when a top-of-the-line facility spa and health club is added.)
2004: It is announced that after years of research and testing, Walt Disney Imagineering has perfected a new innovation in fireworks launch
technology. The new technology uses compressed air to lift fireworks, virtually eliminating the need for smoke-producing black powder and other materials at launch. This significantly reduces ground-level smoke and noise while continuing to provide an entertaining show.
2008: It is reported that Walt Disney World is shutting down the six nightclubs at Pleasure Island to make its party district at Downtown Disney more family friendly. Such clubs as BET SoundStage Club, Mannequins Dance Palace, and 8Trax will close after September 27. During the next few years, Disney will reopen the Pleasure Island venues with a broader mix of restaurants and shops.
2008: A baby elephant is born at Disney's Animal Kingdom. Twenty-six-year-old Moyo gives birth to a 327-pound male elephant after 21 months gestation. This newest addition is the heaviest elephant calf ever born at the theme park. (The baby will be named Tsavo - pronounced sah-vo - a few weeks later.)
2009: Annual Passholders get a sneak preview of Disney World's updated attraction The Hall of Presidents (which has been closed since late 2008). Now featuring 44th U.S. President Barack Obama, it is scheduled for a July 4th weekend grand reopening.
29-06-2009, 09:15 AM
Today, 29th June....
2002:Mickey's Star Spangled Pin Event takes place at Disney World's Contemporary Resort.
30-06-2009, 08:28 AM
Today, 30th June....
2005: The United States Postal Service releases the second set of The Art of Disney stamps entitled "Celebration." They feature Mickey & Pluto, Alice & The Mad Hatter, Ariel & Flounder and Snow White & Dopey.
01-07-2009, 09:19 AM
Today, 1st July....
1911: Entertainer Charles David Thomas is born in Lewistown, Montana. Better known as "Bub," he will go on to become one of the original singing Dapper Dans of Walt Disney World.
1935: As of this date, any employee who has been with the Disney Studio a full year is granted a two-week vacation
1988: The Norway Pavilion opens at EPCOT.
1996: At Walt Disney World, the last of the Epcot resorts planned
around Crescent Lake, Disney's BoardWalk Inn opens at 2101 N. Epcot Resorts Blvd. The resort re-creates the vacation charm of the Mid-Atlantic coastal cottages of the 1930s. It is located on a small lake on the Epcot-Studio waterway, visible to and just across from the Yacht and Beach Club Resorts. The resort's Atlantic Dance Nightclub, ESPN Club, BoardWalk Bakery, and Spoodles Restaurant all debut as well. The BoardWalk Villas (a Disney Vacation Club property) opens on this day too.
2003: The Florida Indoor Clean Air Act takes effect at Walt Disney World. It requires all enclosed indoor workplaces (including resort lobbies, convention spaces, common areas, dining locations and enclosed backstage areas) to be designated as non-smoking.
2003:At Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, Goofy's New Country Dance Party premiers at The Diamond Horseshoe.
02-07-2009, 10:47 AM
Today, 2nd July....
1935: Artist John Lounsbery, from Ohio, is hired by the Disney Studio. As his starting salary is only twelve dollars a week, he must take a second job at night in store decorations at Sears. He will go on to become one of Walt's famous "Nine Old Men" and work at Walt Disney Productions until 1976.
1997: AMC Theatres Pleasure Island 24 has a grand opening in Florida. Newly expanded from 10 screens to two dozen, the theatres also host a fund-raiser for Give Kids the World.
2005: Disney announces that they have given 20,000 free tickets to poor families and the disabled to visit Hong Kong Disneyland on the last 2 days of August (before the new park officially opens to the public September 12).
03-07-2009, 09:44 AM
Today, 3rd July....
1910: Marcellite Garner, the voice of Minnie Mouse beginning in 1928, is born in Redlands, California. She will begin her career in the ink and paint department at the Disney Studios.
1957: Tamara Scheer, Walt Disney's granddaughter, is born to Ron Miller and Diane Disney in Los Angeles County, California.
2008: A surprise preview for Walt Disney World park guests of the Fourth of July fireworks show entitled, “Disney’s Celebrate America - A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky” takes place at the Magic Kingdom.
04-07-2009, 10:41 AM
Today, 4th July....
1862: A mathematics professor named Charles Lutwidge Dodgson goes rowing with Alice Liddell (the young daughter of a friend) and her sisters Lorina and Edith. He creates a story on the spot to amuse Alice and her sisters. Much of the story he invents is based on a picnic a couple of weeks earlier in which they had been caught in the rain. He will eventually write this story down and Alice's Adventures in Wonderland will be published 3 years later on July 4 under Dodgson's pen name - Lewis Carroll.
1956: Walt Disney and his brother Roy visit Marceline, Missouri - their boyhood home and inspiration for Main Street USA.
That evening, approximately 6,000 persons from Marceline and surrounding communities gather at the new Walt Disney Municipal Park (located just south of the Marceline Country Club) to witness the dedication of a $78,500 swimming pool.
“It is particularly thrilling to see this fine swimming pool here because when I was a kid here in Marceline we swam in a cow pasture pond – after we chased the cows out.” -Walt Disney
1979: The first baby is born at Disneyland, California. Six-pound, 10-ounce Teresa Salcedo is born to Rosa and Elias Salcedo on a bench behind Plaza Inn. Mickey Mouse will later honor the Los Angeles family with a "Disneyland Birth Certificate No.1"!
1988: "Walt Disney World 4th of July Spectacular" is broadcast on television.
1998: Many towns across Florida including Walt Disney World cancel firework celebrations due to risk of setting additional forest fires in that state's worst fire disaster in fifty years.
1999: Fantasy in the Sky, the nightly fireworks spectacle at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, gives way to Red, White & Blue, an 18-minute show boasting patriotic music and more than 900 pyrotechnic devices. "Stereo" fireworks surround guests viewing from the shadows of Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom and points all around the Seven Seas lagoon. Plus the colorful Main Street Electrical Parade brightens the streets of the Magic Kingdom twice during the evening.
2000: At Walt Disney World, a giant 1 and a half-ton, 24 by 13 foot cherry cobbler - that resembles the Star-Spangled Banner -is dished out to guests.
2002: At Walt Disney World, 500 immigrants from 89 countries are sworn in as U.S. citizens.
2004: A special Fourth of July fireworks show is held at Disney-MGM Studios. (This Florida park normally doesn't host fireworks.)
05-07-2009, 10:31 AM
Today, 5th July....
1988: Epcot's Maelstrom at the Norway Pavilion opens to guests.
1996: The 500th Disney Store opens - in the Metro Center in Phoenix, Arizona.
2007: Epcot Vice President Jim MacPhee announces that the 257-foot-tall Mickey Mouse arm, glove and wand logo structure at Epcot is coming down. The structure (up since Disney World's 2000 millennium celebration) leans on Epcot's previous and future iconic figure, the Spaceship Earth Pavilion.
06-07-2009, 09:03 AM
Today, 6th July....
1925: Walt and Roy Disney put down a $400 deposit on a lot at 2719 Hyperion Ave., in the Silver Lake district of Los Angeles, California. They plan to build a new animation studio. (The single-story building will serve as the Disney's base for the next fifteen years.)
2004: A 230-pound female African elephant calf is born in Disney's Animal Kingdom.
07-07-2009, 08:10 AM
Today, 7th July....
1971:Animator and technical genius Ubbe Ert Iwwerks (also known as Ub Iwerks), who first met Walt Disney in 1919, passes away in Burbank,
California. He contributed to many of Disney's early Mickey Mouse classics like Plane Crazy, Steamboat Willie, and Gallopin' Gaucho. He also invented the first multiplane camera in 1933, a device that used four layers of flat artwork before a horizontal camera to give animation depth. Iwerks built the device out of parts from an old Chevrolet automobile!
2006: Disney's newest feature film Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest opens in theaters the same day the attraction Pirates of the Caribbean re-opens at Disney World's Magic Kingdom. Captain Jack Sparrow and Barbosa (characters from the Pirates of the Caribbean feature films) have been added to the popular attraction. Disney Imagineers have also enhanced the attraction experience with an all-new dynamic digital sound design.
08-07-2009, 10:15 AM
Today, 8th July....
1776: According to tradtion, the Liberty Bell, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is rung to summon citizens for the reading of the Declaration of Independence. Today a replica of the Liberty Bell sits on display in Disney World's Liberty Square. The replica was cast from the mold of the actual Liberty Bell!
1997: Michael Eisner attends the first preview of Disney's new musical
The Lion King at the Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
2002:Academy Award-winning Disney animator/director Ward Kimball passes away of natural causes at Arcadia Methodist Hospital in Arcadia,
California. He is 88. (A Disney Legend & one of Walt's "Nine Old Men," Kimball first joined the Disney Studios in 1934.)
09-07-2009, 09:05 AM
Today, 9th July....
1998: Walt Disney World auctions off a limousine, 2 costume sewing machines, a sofa from the Empress Lilly riverboat, and a 4-foot tall beer stein. Four times a year since 1985, Walt Disney World has been holding auctions to unload items it no longer wants.
1999: At Walt Disney World, Discovery Island (an 11-acre zoo whose attendance has been hurt by the 1998 opening of Disney's 500-acre Animal Kingdom) closes 25 years after it opened. The closure of Discovery Island means an end to Disney's second-oldest Central Florida attraction and marks the first time the company has closed one of its ticketed attractions.
2007: Deconstruction of the 50-ton Mickey Mouse arm and wand, leaning on Epcot's Spaceship Earth, begins. Also coming down are the 36-foot-high "Epcot" letters and colored stars splashing across the sphere.
10-07-2009, 08:46 AM
Today, 10th July....
2007: Disney College Program Cast Member Paul Sherrer (a former U.S. soldier) is honored for saving the life of a 4-year-old guest who had fallen into the marina at the Port Orleans Riverside in Florida. Vice President of Resort Operations and Transportation Kevin Myers presents Paul with a letter from Meg Crofton, president of the Walt Disney World Resort, commending him for his bravery.
11-07-2009, 09:28 AM
Today, 11th July....
1998: Jodi Benson (the voice of Disney's Little Mermaid) appears at Walt Disney World for the first of a 2-day visit. She makes a special appearance in the morning at The Art of Disney (located in Downtown Disney Marketplace) to meet fans and sign "Mermaid" artwork purchased at the shop. In the evening she performs a concert backed by an orchestra at the open-air America Gardens Theater in Epcot's World Showcase. (The scheduled 2nd show of the evening is cancelled due to a thunderstorm.)
2001: Magic Masters, the nation's largest chain of retail magic emporiums, opens its largest store in Downtown Disney West Side in Florida.
12-07-2009, 09:40 AM
Today, 12th July....
1961: The first draft of a screenplay is completed for a new Disney film titled Mary Poppins.
2000: The Tonight Show features a skit in which host Jay Leno steals a Disneyland Autopia car, and drives it onto the show with Donald Duck chasing him!
13-07-2009, 07:32 AM
Today, 13th July....
1925: Walt Disney marries Lillian Bounds (one of his first employees) at her brother's home in Lewiston, Idaho.
1955: Walt and Lillian Disney celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary at the not-yet-open Disneyland. Lillian Disney invites guests to a "Tempus Fugit Celebration," at six o'clock in the evening. As the guests arrive, they are transported down Main Street and into Frontierland via horse-drawn surreys. From there, everyone takes a ride around the Rivers of America aboard the Mark Twain Riverboat while sipping mint juleps. Although they are already engaged, Roy E. Disney (Walt's
nephew) presents a ring to his fiance Patty. Afterwards guests head to the Golden Horseshoe Saloon for dinner and the very first (although unofficial) performance of a show called the Golden Horseshoe Revue, created by
Wally Boag, the original Pecos Bill. (The record-breaking stage show will play an amazing 47,250 performances through 1986!)
14-07-2009, 06:58 AM
Today, 14th July....
1955: Final construction and preparation take place in Anaheim on Walt's new theme park (just 3 days before the big grand debut). During a test ride, Disneyland's Casey Jr. Circus Train almost tips backward while traveling uphill! Lead weights will be added to the front, allowing it to temporarily run on the park's grand opening day. (On July 18 the attraction will close for the day allowing the steep uphill grade to be reduced.) Over in Tomorrowland, final details are added to the Disneyland Moonliner Rocket. A worker suspended from a crane 76 feet above the ground places the pointed silver top of the rocket in place.
1975: The Disney company announces plans to build an Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow (or EPCOT) in Florida.
15-07-2009, 07:13 AM
Today, 15th July....
1941: U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt sends federal labor conciliator Stanley White to Hollywood, California. White is to make an attempt to settle the Disney workers' strike
1995: In Florida, Disney's Wedding Pavilion - located south of the Grand Floridian Beach Resort - opens. Built on a private island surrounded by Seven Seas Lagoon, it is a glass-enclosed Victorian-style Non-Denominational chapel.
16-07-2009, 06:27 AM
Today, 16th July...
1954:More that 180 acres of south Anaheim orange groves officially belong to Disney as of this day. He will use the California property to build a theme park. To finance the project, Walt has sold avacation home and even borrowed against his life insurance.
17-07-2009, 07:22 AM
Today, 17th July....
1929: Actress Helene Stanley - the live-action model & singing voice for Disney's 1950 Cinderella, and the live-action model for the 1959 Sleeping Beauty - is born in Gary, Indiana. She also portrays Polly Crockett in the 1955Davy Crockett, King of the Wild Frontier.
1955: Television crews, Walt Disney, Art Linkletter, Ronald Reagan,
Bob Cummings, the Mouseketeers, Thurl Ravenscroft, California Governor
Goodwin J. Knight and over 28,000 guests witness the opening of Disneyland
in Anaheim, California. Broadcast on ABC, it is the biggest live telecast to date!
1971: Cliff Edwards, the voice of Jiminy Cricket, passes away at the Virgil Convalescent Hospital in Hollywood, California
2002: An electrcial fire at around 3:30 in the morning at Walt Disney World's Epcot forces the theme park to close for the day. The fire cuts electricity to several areas of the Florida resort.
18-07-2009, 08:16 AM
Today, 18th July....
1955: Disneyland in Anaheim, California first opens to the general public at 10 a.m. on this humid day with admission costing $1.
Dave MacPherson, a 22-year-old college student from Long Beach, is the first paying guest into the new park (he has waited on line all night to purchase the first ticket). MacPherson will win lifetime passes (good for any three persons and himself) to the Anaheim park (and eventually the Florida and France theme parks as well).
19-07-2009, 09:38 AM
Today, 19th July....
1934: Disney signs a contract with the Lionel Corporation to produce a Mickey Mouse wind-up hand-car.
2005: A tragedy is averted when famed sports agent Drew Rosenhaus performs life-saving CPR on a 3-year-old at Walt Disney World. After being pulled from the kiddie pool at the Grand Floridian, the young child from Chicago is revived by Rosenhaus (who is in town for a function at ESPN Club).
20-07-2009, 07:04 AM
Today, 20th July....
1969: The historic Apollo 11 moon landing is televised on Disneyland's Tomorrowland Stage. Neil Armstrong (who in July 2005 will take part in the re-opening of Disneyland's Space Mountain) becomes the very first human to set foot on the moon. Also playing a key role in the lunar landing is Stephen Bales, a member of mission control at NASA's Johnson Space Center. He was inspired to become an aeronautical engineer by a 1950s Disney television show that predicted how men might travel to and explore the moon.
1985: Virgil Waytes, Jr. becomes the 200,000,000th guest at Walt Disney World
21-07-2009, 06:35 AM
Today, 21st July....
1986: At a press conference on the Empress Lilly at Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida, Disney CEO Michael Eisner announces plans for a new addition - to be called Pleasure Island. (Construction will begin in August.)
1999: Disney Wonder - the second of the Disney cruise ships - visits Southhampton, England on her delivery voyage from Italy (where she was built) to Florida. The vessel is 965 feet long and can hold a maximum of 3,325 passengers.
2003: An unfortunate accident occurs at Disney World's Animal Kingdom when a giraffe is struck and killed by lightning.
22-07-2009, 06:33 AM
Today, 22nd July....
1986: Floyd Gottfredson, the man who gave Mickey Mouse his comic strip personality, passes away at his Southern California home. He will be named a Disney Legend in 2003.
1994: The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction opens on Sunset Boulevard at Disney World's Disney-MGM Studios. A simulated freefall thrill ride, it is themed after the popular television series The Twilight Zone, hosted and created by Rod Serling.
23-07-2009, 06:33 AM
Today, 23rd July....
1931: Architect Arata Isozaki, the designer of the Team Disney Building in Orlando, Florida, is born in Ōita, Japan. The building's oddly looped gateway suggests a giant pair of Mickey ears! Team Disney Orlando in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, is the administrative headquarters of the Walt Disney World Resort. It sits across from Downtown Disney near the Walt Disney World Casting Center.
2003: It is reported that for the first time Walt Disney World will run national TV ads about a single ride. The company's new campaign will be centered around Epcot's thrilling attraction, Mission: Space (which begins operation August 15).
24-07-2009, 06:34 AM
Today, 24th July....
1989: The Town Square Café, opened since 1971 and located on Disney World's Main Street USA, re-opens as Tony's Town Square Café.
1991: The 100th Disney Store opens - in Daytona Beach, Florida.
25-07-2009, 07:34 AM
Today, 25th July....
2008: Disney Legend Harriet Burns, the first woman ever hired by Walt Disney Imagineering in a creative rather than an office capacity, passes away at age 79 in California.
Burns helped design and build prototypes for theme park attractions, as well as final products featured at Disneyland and the New York World's Fair of 1964. Retired since 1986, she stayed active in the Disney community and was a frequent guest at Disney and fan organized events. Burns is the only woman to have a window on Disneyland’s Main Street USA!
26-07-2009, 08:48 AM
Today, 26th July....
1951: Disney's animated Alice in Wonderland has its world premiere in England, at London's Leicester Square Theatre. It will be released in the U.S. two days later. Based on Lewis Carroll's books "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking-Glass," it is the thirteenth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon.The film will be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture.
27-07-2009, 09:32 AM
Today, 27th July....
1955: Future Disney Legend Bill "Sully" Sullivan officially starts working at Disneyland in Anaheim, California. (Three years later he will become a part of Disney management and work on the Winter Olympics in Squaw Valley and the New York World's Fair. Eventually Sullivan will be relocated to Florida to assist with the opening of Walt Disney World.)
"I watched the opening ceremonies for Disneyland. The following Saturday I went down and applied for a job. On Monday, I quit Northrop Aircraft and Tuesday, I reported to work as a ticket taker at the Jungle Cruise." -Bill "Sully"
27-07-2009, 09:37 AM
"Thank you" to those of you who have been following this Disney history thread. Today was the final day as we have a full year's dates now and I would just be repeating myself if I continued. I hope you enjoyed some of the fascinating facts that came up over the year.
27-07-2009, 03:46 PM
"Thank you" to those of you who have been following this Disney history thread. Today was the final day as we have a full year's dates now and I would just be repeating myself if I continued. I hope you enjoyed some of the fascinating facts that came up over the year.
No Diane it's us who should be thanking you for putting in so much hard work. Great job, brilliantly done :hug2::hug2:
27-07-2009, 09:59 PM
No Diane it's us who should be thanking you for putting in so much hard work. Great job, brilliantly done :hug2::hug2:
Why thank you for that kind remark! :hug2:
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