Some interesting Fun Facts I found online about Walt Disney, DisneyWorld and DisneyLand. Some I have heard before others I had no clue…Be sure to share with us any others you may know in the comment section below.
* The Pirates of the Caribbean Ride at the Magic Kingdom for the Florida property was the last ride to be personally supervised by Walt Disney just prior to his death in 1966. It was his brother, Roy O. Disney, who personally continued overseeing the Florida project to completion and even did the official dedication on opening day Oct. 1, 1971, insisting the theme park resort’s name be changed to Walt Disney World rather than just Disney World, as originally intended.
* The Jungle Cruise Ride was originally supposed to feature real animals. However, when it was discovered that many of the desired tropical exotic animals were nocturnal and would not be able to be seen by riders, they were replaced with mechanical animals.
* The Hall of U.S. Presidents. Every figure in the Hall of Presidents has at least one change of clothing. And every night, make-up artists freshen each of the presidents’ faces for the next day.
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* The Haunted Mansion Ride is the only duplicated attraction featured at all of the Disney theme parks worldwide — Florida, California, Paris and Tokyo.
* The second theme park to open at Walt Disney World was Epcot Center, which stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. Even though it didn’t open until Oct. 1, 1982, Walt Disney was already planning it before his death in 1966, lamenting: “The only problem with anything ‘of tomorrow’ is that at the pace we’re going right now, tomorrow would catch up with us before we got it built.” The Showcase of Countries surrounding the lake were originally never intended to be so expansive. If fact, the original plans had all of the countries housed under an enclosure.
* Until 2008, the third theme park at Walt Disney World Resort was called Disney-MGM Studios. Now, it’s simply called Disney Hollywood Studios. The major attraction at this property is called The Great Movie Ride, which takes guests through some of the most famous scenes of legendary movies like “The Wizard of Oz,” “Casablanca” and “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.” Originally, this ride was to be part of Epcot, but instead, it inspired the creation of an entirely new theme park, which opened May 1, 1989.
* The most recent theme park to open is Disney’s The Animal Kingdom, which opened April 22, 1998. For the respect of the 1,000 animals who live there, which combined, eat three tons of food a day, the park closes each day promptly at 5 p.m.
These are courtesy of Disney historian Jody Revenson, and many of which have appeared in her book “Popping Up Around Walt Disney World” Be sure to check it out if you want to read up on more interesting Disney Fun Facts.
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