I finally made it to DisneyLand in California back in 1992, when Texas A&M played Stanford in the Pigskin Classic. I met the legendary Charlie McClendon and drank some beers with him at a party the night before the game, and got to witness the surreal sight of Mickey Mouse leading a Yell Practice. And, jaded 21-year-old that I was, the lavish detail and overall sensory overload of DisneyLand blew my mind. I vowed that when I had kids, "next year" wouldn't be an empty promise made year after year. The point of this over-long reminisce is that The Wife and I are packing up Monkey Girl, Fairy Girl and the Bug, loading them onto a big ol' jet airliner (which they are just as excited about, if not moreso) for a trip to Florida and a week of concentrated Disney over-indulgence. I hope I survive. At any rate, here are some videos to help set the mood, starting off with the classic Mickey Mouse Club opening, which I watched many, many afternoons while growing up when it was in syndication.
On our to-do list of DisneyWorld attractions is the enchanted Tiki Room, which I didn't have a chance to see during my brief 6 hours or so at DisneyLand.
I did manage to get into the Haunted Mansion, though, the final ride I went on before the park closed that night. It was as brilliant an experience as reputation had it. I only hope the current ride isn't wall-to-wall Eddie Murphy schtick.
Tomorrowland was always the area of the park that appealed to me most as a kid. It's been totally revamped since this promo film was made, which makes me a little sad, since the naive gee-whiz of the late 50s and early 60s is fun in its own right. Still, I imagine this area will still be my favorite. I wonder if the lines for Star Tours are as long as I remember?
Here's a documentary on the planned opening of DisneyWorld and, eventually, EPCOT in Florida. It's amazing to think that at the time this was made, these were daring, risky projects that seemed just as likely to fail miserably as succeed. Now Orlando is probably the single biggest tourist destination in the country, and Disney's opened several additional theme parks in the area as well.
Finally, here's an interview with the late Thurl Ravenscroft for some Disney program or other. It's not entirely relevant to the trip at hand, but goodness, how can I pass on the awesomeness that is Thurl Ravenscroft?
Previously on Friday Night Videos... Starland Vocal Band.