What’s Your Favorite Park Addition or Memory Between 1996 and 2000?

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What’s Your Favorite Park Addition or Memory Between 1996 and 2000?

This look back comes to us from the Disney Parks Blog:

This is the third installment in a series of posts counting down the weeks to the 55th anniversary on July 17. As you probably know, we’re counting backwards and have already covered two half decades (2006-2010 and 2001-2005). This week we’re looking at highlights from 1996 to 2000.

This week I’m featuring Autopia as the most memorable attraction to open in this five-year period. I have several pictures of myself “driving” in Disneyland park over the years, and while I wasn’t at the Park in 2000 for this re-opening, this attraction certainly evokes some strong memories for me.

Counting backwards, here’s a look at what happened from 2000 to 1996 to help you pick your favorite:

2000 – A brand new parade – 45 Years of Magic Parade – and a dazzling new fireworks spectacular – Believe…There’s Magic in the Stars – debuted this year. The only original Tomorrowland attraction left from park opening, Autopia, is reimagined. Combining the old Fantasyland and Tomorrowland attractions, young drivers now cruised along a modern highway through scenic forests and past shimmering waters.

1999 – Disney’s FastPass service makes its official debut with “it’s a small world” holiday in November. The Plaza Gardens undergoes a revitalization effort with a new canopy and stage. New faces can be seen throughout the park, such as Radio Disney DJs Just Plain Mark and Zippy, who begin broadcasting live from underneath the Observatron. Tarzan moves into a tree house in Adventureland.

1998 – Three new attractions transformed Tomorrowland this year, including the Astro Orbitor, “Honey I Shrunk the Audience” and Rocket Rods. Over in Fantasyland, Fantasyland Theatre received an entirely new look with a new roof and a whole new show – Anamazement – starring some of Disney’s famous animated characters.

1997 – The Hercules Victory Parade traveled through the park for the first time, celebrating Disney’s newest hero. Light Magic opened, and Main Street, U.S.A., got a lot more tasty with new locations for the Carnation Café, Blue Ribbon Bakery and Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor. On Refreshment Corner, a window was dedicated to honor Bob Penfield, the last original cast member to retire. Bob was a part of “Club 55,” which was the term for those who were on the job the day Disneyland park opened.

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My favorite moment would have to be the release of Fast Pass..What a lifesaver that Disney Idea has been. What is your favorite let us know in the comment section below.


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Chip is the owner, editor, and writer of Chip and Company. When he is not writing about Disney News or Planning Tips, you will find him counting down the days to his next Disney Vacation.
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