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Entries in Magic Kingdom (23)

Tuesday
Apr172012

Florida Orange Bird [Part 2]

Just under a month ago we posted some never-before-shared images of the fan-favorite Florida Orange Bird. It was said that we doubled the number of Orange Bird photos on the web. Even if that were true, today all of that changed. Not only has Disney been generous enough to share lots of un-seen history... they returned the original Orange Bird figure to its home in Magic Kingdom's Sunshine Tree Terrace!

Photo courtesy of Chief and Fresh Roasted Corn.

A D23 mini-event was held this morning and fans were not disappointed. Disney could have released a plastic Orange Bird button and we fans would have been pleased. But they went much further. SADLY none of us here were able to attend. We invited friend of the blog Chief to go in our place. Great images and details from Chief are found over at Fresh Roasted Corn. Something to note: The word "Florida" doesn't seem to be used anymore as part of the "Orange Bird" title.

To add to the killer merchandise and beautiful new Sunshine Tree Terrace decor, a great video was released about how the return of all this orange goodness came about. From this "D23 Presents Armchair Archivists: The Orange Bird" video (watch below), we bring you the following images.

Video of the costumed Orange Bird interacting with guest... EATING CITRUS SWIRL.

Look in the background!! A shot of the animatronic bird. Until hours ago only one other photo existed online. 

How wonderful is this old photo of a Sunshine Tree Terrace cast member. Check out the Orange Bird cups and those great old cash registers. Is that a Florida Orange Juice logo on his shirt?? The same one seen on the sticker above? Fun.

Oh those wonderful yellow and orange umbrellas, tables, and chairs. Hey Baloo. Who's that on the far left? King Louie? Check out the "Traders of Timbuktu" sign on the right.

The animatronic Orange Bird!!! In speaking with my pal Hoot Gibson a number of times in the last couple of days I learned a many things about this. Apparently the original 1971 figure was static but stood on a moving swing. This is the same figure restored and reinstalled as part of today's event. Shortly after, a robotic version on a "perch" (below) replaced the swinging bird. This version moved his little leaf wings and his head. Soooo... could there be another Orange Bird out there collecting dust?? Let's hope Hoot shares more on the subject. (Did you know Hoot is largely responsible for increased Orange Bird awareness in recent years? Along with Mike Lee of Widen Your World).

Our Twitter pal Jason Grandt played a huge part in the whole project. Here he shares a little about the restoration of that cute little 1971 original Orange Bird figure which was discovered in a drawer at WDI Glendale!

I believe Kevin Kidney found these shots of the original sculpt. How great is this??

And some behind-the-scenes scenic work. Looks like the scenic shop at the Hollywood Studios backlot.

Even legend Richard Sherman joined in on the action, helping the "MeloD23 Singers" sing a couple of Orange Bird songs that he and his late brother wrote. He also shares some history.

Thanks Melody Dale for hosting. Thanks Steven Vagnini for the history lessons.

Hooray for Becky Cline (Walt Disney Archives Director).

Special contributors the the video include: Richard Sherman, Kevin Kidney, Walt Disney Imagineering, Diego Parras, Jason Grant, Dave Hoffman, the MeloD23 Singers, Jim Wilber, Marshall Bowen, and others. Thanks gang.

Sticker image from Sam Howzit. 

Video footage of today's event by Lou Mongello can be found here.


Images ©Disney.

 

Related posts:

Florida Orange Bir [Part 1]
THEN AND NOW: MK Adventureland [Part 1]
Frito Kid and Deeee-licious Fritos!
Frito Kid Mysteries Continue
Swiss Family Treehouse Model
Magic Kingdom at Night
Magic Kingdom Map Found in a Main Street Wall

 

Tuesday
Feb282012

Magic Kingdom at Night

Will you be pulling an all-nighter at Disneyland or Magic Kingdom as part of Disney's "One More Disney Day"? I will be at home and in bed by ten. After watching "Disneyland After Dark" on dvd of course. Here we present some old nighttime photos of Magic Kingdom.

Where was this photo taken? The top of the train station tower? We get a nice view of backstage parking and even Tinker Bell's landing spot atop one of the Tomorrowland buildings (in green lights).

Many of the following photos were sent to us by Ryan Rewasiewicz as part of our Photo Hunt. They were taken in either 1975 or 1976.

Tomorrowland. STUNNING. What great nighttime views old Tomorrowland offered.

Liberty Square.

Frontierland. And the still-in-operation Diamond Horseshoe.

Adventureland. So nice at night. Look at those old signs. "Tropical Serenade" and "The Enchanted Tiki Birds". The Sunshine Pavilion, unique to Florida, was such a delight. This photo is from an old souvenir picture book.

Ahh the soothing water fountain. Excellent photo, Ryan.

Back to Main Street.

For those of you who make it through the night, this may be your view as you turn around on your way back to your car (minus the Skyway poles, of course). Also from a souvenir book.

Why will I not be there for the Leap Year all-night thing? It does sound fun but I'm going to stick with the memories of the many many all-night adventures I had over the years. Grad Nites, Y2K preparation, Hurricane ride-out crews, other work assignments, sneaking around after hours, sleeping on some old couch in the break room under Main Street.

 

Related posts:

THEN AND NOW: MK Tomorrowland [Part 1]
If This Doesn't Scare You.....
Magic Kingdom Map Found in a Main Street Wall
THEN AND NOW: MK Fantasyland [Part 1]
Atop Cinderella Castle
EYE CANDY: National Geographic Aug '63
EYE CANDY: Not Having Fun at Disneyland


Monday
Jan232012

EYE CANDY: Balloons!

We bring you photos of those good old iconic Mickey Mouse balloons.

I don't know the history of the Mickey-shaped balloons. I do know I loved picking one out as a little kid every time we went to Disneyland.

Spiffy old balloon vendor costumes...

This next photo is wonderful. It was sent to us by a fan of the blog, Jeffrey Lipack, as part of our Photo Hunt. Look at the grass hill!

These next two were sent in by Daniel Zuccarelli (@PerpetualGeek, PGMShow.net). I love Main Street morning shots like this. If you look closely you'll see a few kids have already gotten their balloon for the day.

Speaking of kids.... This kid is selling the balloons. Lucky guy. Look behind the balloons on the left. The artwork on the bag is fun. It features a very early Mickey and Minnie with that old Walt Disney World logo we all love. Click here for a clearer image.

On a date with a sailor. Great balloon and a fantastic pennant. Pennants were one of my favorite souvenirs after growing out of balloons. Where are all my pennants now?? Sadly I have no clue.

Lone balloons.

Characters with balloons.

Chip and Dale in Rescue Rangers garb.

Chip and Dale in the nude.

Roger Rabbit.

The "new school" version of the Mickey balloon. I actually love these balloons-in-balloons. It's a rare thing to take a classic product and improve on it without ruining any of its original qualities.

 

Related posts:

EYE CANDY: National Geographic Aug '63 [Part 1]
EYE CANDY: Not Having Fun at Disneyland
Vintage Disneyland Home Movies- Meeting Walt Disney Himself
Disneyland 1955 Model Close-ups
Magic Kingdom Map Found in a Main Street Wall
THEN AND NOW: Disneyland [Part 1]
THEN AND NOW: MK Fantasyland [Part 1]
EYE CANDY: Behind the Scenes Muppeteering