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Orange Bird Photo Hunt

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« Mechanizing a Miniature Main Street Electrical Parade | Main | Disney's "The Story Of Menstruation" »
Tuesday
Mar202012

Florida Orange Bird

 

Take a look some never-before-posted photos of the Florida Orange Bird. Join us in our hunt for additional photos. We know they’re out there!

We’ve had a blast looking at all the great photos people have sent in as part of our Photo Hunt. We were thrilled to receive the following three photos of the Orange Bird costumed character in Adventureland. Notice the two different costumes. One with a smooth head and one with a fur-covered head.

An air vent?

Jennifer Jones submitted this wonderful shot from 1979. And look at that old “Exit Only” Tropical Serenade sign in the background.

When was the costume changed? Or were there always two? Or more? I am led to believe the first lasted until some point between 1974 and 1977, based on the few photographs that exist on the web. It was probably replaced at that point with the second costume– the one with the fur-covered head and the shiny yellow feat. This second version very well could have been a modified version of the original costume.

Meanwhile, the Florida Orange Bird spread his wings in places other than Magic Kingdom’s Adventureland. An additional Orange Bird costume, which most-likely never set foot in Walt Disney World, attended special citrus-related events.

Miss Florida Citrus 1984, Lori Schirard Grubb, was kind enough to send us the following two fantastic photos of herself with the Orange Bird.

Here Lori poses with an inflatable Orange Bird.

Miss Florida Citrus 1986, Rosemarie Payne, sent us this great photo of herself with the same Orange Bird costumed character. Was this taken at a county fair perhaps? Maybe some sort of citrus fair?

Back in Adventureland the Orange Bird and Florida Citrus Queen 1977, Lisa Maile, enjoy the Sunshine Pavilion. Look at that cool Orange Bird lapel pin. "Disney World Plans Citrus Celebration". Do we know anything about that??

Lisa poses with... wait, is that the same inflatable Orange Bird? 7 years earlier?

A big thanks to LuAnn Mims, College Archivist, Florida Souther College and Brenda Eubanks Burnette, Executive Director, Florida Citrus Hall of Fame and everyone who shared photos.

For a comprehensive history of the Florida Orange Bird at Walt Disney World read the Sunshine Tree Terrace page over at the unparalleled Widen Your World.

As indicated above, go find your old Orange Bird photos and send them our way. We promise to make great use of them and share them with lots of fans like yourself. If you find photos of the animatronic version of the Orange Bird you get extra special props. Only one photo of the little robotic bird has ever surfaced on the internet. Read about it on the Widen Your World link above. It's from Ed Barlow who happens to be a fan of this blog too. Hi Ed! 

And remember to stop by the Sunshine Tree Terrace and enjoy the recent return of the delicious Citus Swirl.

[Part 2] now available.

 

Related posts:

Florida Orange Bird [Part 2]
Frito
 Kid and Deeee-licious Fritos!
Frito Kid Mysteries Continue
WDW Before Opening Day 1971
THEN AND NOW: MK Adventureland [Part 1]
What Disney Characters Love
Swiss Family Treehouse Model
Photo Hunt Update


Reader Comments (19)

Wonderful stuff!!

I think you pretty much doubled the number of Orange Bird photographs on the internet with this one post.

March 20, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjumpingelephant

I never saw the Orange Bird in person. But reading about it on Widen Your World a few years back made me a fan. Today something like this could so easily be taken way too far by the company. Too many appearances in too many places. Too many ridiculous "themed" costumes. Too much tacky merchandise. (I'm looking at you Duffy). But the simplicity of this corporate mascot, if you will, made everything about him charming and tasteful. Tokyo may have run out of control a little with the Orange Bird merch maybe but a few little fanboy-directed pieces here and there 25 years after the fact keeps all of this respectable. Great pics by the way.

March 20, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbbe1934

Awesome. Thanks for feeding my other hard to find obsession at WDW. You DEFINITELY doubled the number of photos of the Orange Bird on the internet.

I do often wonder why there were two costumes. The shiny head definitely seems out of place with the rest of the fur body, so the second costume makes much more sense!

March 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeff Heimbuch

What an odd yet appealing thing. It would be like having the Trix Rabbit or Count Chocula walking around pitching their cereals being sold at a nearby counter. Sort of. At the same time a tropical fruit/bird fits the Adventureland theme on a few levels.

March 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohnathan Rimler

I personally don't spend time with the meet and greet characters. But this one and a few others would be worth my time. Sadly other forms of live entertainment have also left this area of the park. The Adventureland Steel Drum Band was great. Leave it up to me we'd have more of that and less of Ariel at the Veranda and far less Timon on Main Street.

You mention the Citrus Swirl. Wow it's good to have that back. But let's return the seating area with the yellow and orange umbrellas and tables. This would require the removal of the Carpets, which would be a plus.

March 21, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbacksideofwater

This is wonderful. I can't believe how many pictures you were able to come up with. None of which I have ever seen before. And believe me, I have looked!

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTahitianTimmy

I used this to teach my son some Disney history. Great photos

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStevie

Fantastic post! That inflatable OB is quite the catch... would love to find one of those on eBay, one day...

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEPCOT Explorer

Excellent!! Loved seeing all the old pictures of Orange Bird Thanks!!

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBugdozer

Really cool! The photos really made me warm inside ! :)

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDante Sellitto

Thanks everyone. Let us all take a lesson from Stevie and teach our children the finer points of Magic Kingdom history.

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFritz

I like the orange bird way better than duffy the bear!

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMax S

this is adorable. i want him as a bobblehead!

March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

Great post... Love the old pics!! Check this out: http://disneycental.blogspot.com/

March 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKeith Mahne

I picked up a WDI IOrange Bird tee at the NFFC last January. He's just as adorable, and I'd like to see a bit more of him.

April 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShelly Valladolid

I love Orange Bird. I'm digging through old photos as we speak. I must have one of Orange Bird somewhere in my vast collection of photos!

May 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDina

I have a vintage inflatable OB in my collection. When you squeeze him he squeaks. Kind of like a dog toy.

July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterOrangebirdfan

Orange Bird i can imagine some of his little items are now collectibles They need to bring him back

September 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpurwing Plover

Orange Bird Rules

February 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSpurwing Plover

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