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Entries in Epcot (28)

Monday
Oct112010

Disneyland Meets EPCOT Center

I love when a the worlds of Disneyland and Epcot come together in one form or another.  I once collected issues of the Disneyland Line and this one is extra special for that reason.

Check out the date on that.  September 30, 1982.  What were Disneylanders thinking about the first non-Magic Kingdom Disney park ever created... just one day before its grand opening?  I don't really know, but this is what they were reading.

Did any of you go on this trip??

If so, write to us about your experience. There might be a little souvenir coming your way.  What did Disneyland cast members think about EPCOT Center? Was there criticism, jealousy, both?  Were any of you working at Disneyland when EPCOT opened?  Stories?

How cool is that... They showed opening day ceremonies at Disneyland's "Lincoln Theater" starting at 7:00 a.m. California time.  Something like that today would draw a crowd of AT LEAST 12 or 13 cast members.  Back then it must have been a full house.

And "videotape monitors throughout the park" for the first 21 days of October showed pavilion dedications?  Whoa.  Are we talking about monitors on-stage for guests to view as well?  Or just back-stage? And where were these "videotape" monitors?  Either way, that is swell!

Little did Disneyland employees know at the time, their lovely parking lot would one day house not only a controversial Disney theme park but a piece of EPCOT Center.  This guy from World of Motion can now be found at California Adventure in the Hollywood Backlot area.  (photo credit dfan09).

Other pieces of EPCOT Center (also from World of Motion) have found their way to Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean.  In the 1997 rehab, a number of WOM animatronic figures became pirates.  Like the guy with the fruit basket with the horse stealing the apple... Is that guy still ever around?  He hasn't been there the last few times I've ridden.

Any other original pieces from one park now living in the other (Epcot to Disneyland or in reverse)?

 

Related posts:

EPCOT Construction from the Air

HORIZONS MURAL, "The Prologue and the Promise" [ High Res ]

HORIZONS the way you wish you knew it

 Daredevil Circus Spectaculars at Epcot Are Just Not What They Used To Be

 

Wednesday
Sep152010

Surviving Pieces of Journey Into Imagination

...and Fresh Roasted Corn!

The original Journey Into Imagination ride was a quality, imaginative, creative, original, spectacular ride if I ever did see one. You wouldn't know it by looking at it's current state. The company killed of the main characters and eventually brought back Figment but Dreamfinder is still six feet under.

But pieces of the original ride still exist. Some of them in my home office. A few years back my ol' pal Hoot Gibson asked if I'd like pieces of the famous blimp!  His wife, a lot like mine, valued space over dusty old iconic treasures. I was thrilled.

Good old Dreamfinder flew his blimp with a red and gold control panel in front of his pilot seat and a glass-like dome above with binoculars attached.

 
At one time I had the original blue suit with original shoes, goggles, hat, and gloves and bow tie. Of course I would wear them around the house while playing with the control panel and fake binoculars. I wore them around my office at Disney a couple of times at the risk of being unprofessional. Now why can't I find the photos of this?? I don't know. Over the years these items sadly slipped through my fingers.  



Ok.  Possibly to coolest thing about this is what you see in the above.  That decorative cap is a jello mold.  Not just any jello mold.  Underneath there's a price tag from Disneyland! (Photo to come)  Who thought of this??  How did this come about?  I mean it does fit the style of the vehicle but did they say "I bet the west coast gift shops have a perfect jello molt that would look GREAT on this"?  A mystery.  Any early 80s W.E.D. people out there who helped build this thing? If so, drop me a line.  Hoot showed me this.  How rad is that?  By the way these pieces were originally given to Hoot by those determining the fate of the blimp.

Fresh Roasted Corn you ask?  This story is ten times cooler as told by Hoot himself on a new blog brought to us by none other than our favorite Horizons adventurers Hoot and Chief of Mesa Verde Times.  Their new blog tell the prequel to what you've just read, and the blog is called "Fresh Roasted Corn".  Check out photos of Chief popping out of the blimp as Figment once did.  Click here.

 

And if you can gag your way through what is Epcot's Mouse Gear store to look up on one of the west walls you'll see more of the blimp vehicle.

 

Related posts:

Walt's Wife Talks About EPCOT Center

EPCOT Construction from the Air

Love, Hate, and John Lasseter

HORIZONS the way you wish you knew it


 

Sunday
Aug012010

Walt's Wife Talks About EPCOT Center

A group of W.E.D. Imagineers interviewed Lillian, their daughter Diane, and granddaughter Jenny at the United Kingdom pavilion at EPCOT Center in 1982.

I found this rare interview in my collection last night. It was on an old VHS tape. I have never found any part of this online though it could be out there. I don't know the name of the guy talking or the other guys present but he does mention two Steves and a Tom (Tom Fitzgerald?)

 All three ladies are as sweet as can be. Lillian doesn't so much care for overseas parks or for the idea of parks being built after EPCOT Center. She does love WDW's Empress Lilly. Jenny doesn't mind the idea of Tokyo Disneyland:

"It had to be done. If you walk around here and walk around Disneyland, most the people are Japanese!”

I love the story Diane told of Lillian and the girls around the dinner table not being as interested in Walt's conversations as he wanted them to be. I know the feelin', Walt!

 

 

It's cool that the company took the gals on a helicopter ride two years prior to this interview to see construction of the park. It would have looked like this but far less developed.