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Weekend Update

Weekend Update: Great Moments with Lincoln, Tokyo Disneyland, New Zealand, Germany

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by , 02-13-2009 at 10:28 PM

Happy Valentine's Day everyone. I hope you all got some chocolate!

We have some terrific photos for you this week. TDLFAN gives us a look at Tokyo Disneyland from his last trip. He's there again today and is meeting up with some other MiceChatters at our first ever Tokyo MiceChat Meet.

Ian Parkinson is back with more New Zealand photos and MickeyMaxx files the fourth and final installment of his German Holiday trip. We wind up the Update this week with more vintage postcard images from darkfairycthulu.

In honor of Abraham Lincoln's 200th birthday, I dug up some fun stuff on "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" for you:

Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln is the name of an attraction that was originally showcased as the prime feature of the State of Illinois Pavilion at the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair. It was created by both Walt Disney and the Imagineers of WED Enterprises.

World's Fair

This original version of the attraction opened with the rest of the New York World's Fair on April 22, 1964. It and the rest of the Fair closed with the first season on October 18, 1964, then reopened for the second and final season on April 21, 1965 and closed on October 17, 1965. The State of Illinois Pavilion, both its exterior and interiors, were demolished and removed. The same can be said for the other exhibits within the Pavilion, including "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln". Only valuable artifacts, collections, and exhibits made their way back to the State of Illinois or elsewhere around the world. For many years, all that remained of the original version of "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" are the memories of those who saw it, and the photos, audio and film recordings.

Disneyland show

This second version of the show and attraction "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" opened on July 18, 1966 at the new and specially constructed Opera House on Main Street USA at Disneyland Park, at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, CA, USA.

The exterior and interiors were new in both construction and theme. This was also reflected in the entrance, preshow, postshow, and exit. These areas reflected generalized Abraham Lincoln and Walt Disney exhibits, displays, and films. This was due to the fact that the second version of "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" was no longer sponsored or influenced by the state of Illinois. The second version of "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" was presented by "Lincoln Savings" and was free of charge, requiring no ticket of the "A" through "E" ticket system that Disneyland used from 1955 until 1980. Both the sponsorship from "Lincoln Savings" and "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" ended and closed on January 1, 1973.

The following brochure comes from one of my favorite bloggers, Kevin Kidney. You can check out his blog HERE. He also has a great vintage newspaper ad for Lincoln's Birthday at Disneyland at the link.

I couldn't find any additional information on the Abraham Lincoln Historical Center mentioned in the brochure. Maybe it had something to do with this:

The Lincoln Savings collapse led to the Keating five political scandal, in which five U.S. senators were implicated in an influence-peddling scheme. It was named for Charles Keating, who headed Lincoln Savings and made $300,000 as political contributions to them in the 1980s. Three of those senators – Alan Cranston (D-CA), Don Riegle (D-MI), and Dennis DeConcini (D-AZ) – found their political careers cut short as a result. Two others – John Glenn (D-OH) and John McCain (R-AZ) – were rebuked by the Senate Ethics Committee for exercising "poor judgment" for intervening with the federal regulators on behalf of Keating.

Another blog that I follow, Vintage Disneyland Tickets, has some images of Disneyland tickets that featured this attraction:

There is a great article on the history of this attraction at the Walt Disney Family Museum.

Walt Disney once remarked, "If you could see close in my eyes, the American flag is waving in both of them and up my spine is growing this red, white, and blue stripe." He was an impassioned patriot with a steadfast faith and conviction in the American way of life. Moreover, he felt that a great deal could be learned from history.

As early as 1956, Walt was discussing different concepts with his Imagineers for an American history show at Disneyland. One of the ideas involved a new land called Liberty Street, which was to be located to the east side of Main Street. The key attraction of this new area was to be a show titled "The Hall of Presidents" which at that point was barely more than a wishful idea in Walt's head. With the arrival of Audio-Animatronics, which became the new storytelling device that would dominate Disneyland attractions for the next decade, the show evolved into an Audio-Animatronics portrayal of the Presidents of the United States. Problem was, however, there was very little, if any, money for research. Early Audio-Animatronics centered on the simple robotic birds for the Enchanted Tiki Room. It was a long, long way from a wise-cracking parrot to a respectful and believable American President. Walt needed something to prove his concept before he could get corporate cash to help him realize the full dream. He settled on his favorite president, Abraham Lincoln as the star.

Walt and his team worked diligently, but the technology and time needed to build and finish Mr. Lincoln didn’t seem to exist. Then, in April of 1962 the president of the Fair, Robert Moses, just happened to come through the Disney Studio for an update on the Ford and General Electric exhibits. "I had the first model of Mr. Lincoln out there," recalled Walt. "I took him [Moses] to ... see Lincoln and he shook hands with him–Mr. Lincoln’s got a terrific grip. Well, this really thrilled Mr. Moses, and before I knew it he had all the forces working to get Mr. Lincoln in the Fair." Considering that Walt’s Imagineers felt that another ten years of research and development was needed to complete Walt’s vision, it’s a small miracle that the Fair did, indeed, open with Mr. Lincoln.

Tokyo Disney Resort
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo Disney Resort's final season of the 25th Anniversary Celebration, the "Grand Finale" event, is underway at both Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySeas. TDLFAN offers a quick view of the Grand Finale events.

The TDR Line Monorail station.

The lovely Tokyo Disneyland Hotel.

Arriving at TDL park.

"The Dream goes on!"

New banners adorn the main entrance pillars.

Lovely World Bazaar, always busy with guests.

"Monsters Inc: Ride and go Seek!" attraction.. all finished and awaiting it's long anticipated debut.

Special event Castle show "Dreams Within" gets underway.

"Dreams Within" many characters and performers come out for the finale.

YES! That^^^^ is pixie dust on the stage...

Meanwhile, over at Tokyo DisneySEA...

The "Grand Finale" banners are up.

The "Dream Goes On" here as well...

At the other side of the Miracosta.. Mount Prometheus appears.

Tulips everywhere by the roman ruins leading to Mysterious Island.

White chocolate Mousse in souvenir cup, anyone?

This is one of the many banners directing guests to see the new "Mickey's Dream Co." show at Waterfront Park.

Mickey is dressed up for this colorful segment of "Mickey's Dream Co." show, where one young girl who wants to be a performer.. gets her chance in the end.

The Golden finale to "Mickey's Dream Co." Notice: the girls' headdress is modeled after the Chrysler Building in NYC.

Don't forget to get you "Grand Finale: the Dream goes on" merchandise and souvenirs...before they run out for good!

We bid goodbye to TDS!!

This week Ian Parkinson takes us to Kaikoura, New Zealand.

Kaikoura is a town on the east coast of the South Island of New Zealand. It is located on State Highway 1 180 km north of Christchurch.

The Kaikoura Peninsula extends into the sea south of the town, and the resulting upwelling currents bring an abundance of marine life from the depths of the nearby Hikurangi Trench. The town owes its origin to this effect, since it developed as a centre for the whaling industry. The name 'Kaikoura' translates to 'meal of crayfish' ('kai'- food/meal, 'koura' - crayfish) and the crayfish industry still plays a role in the economy of the region. However Kaikoura has now become a popular tourist destination, mainly for whale watching (the Sperm Whale watching is perhaps the best and most developed in the world) and swimming with or near dolphins.

There is also a large and readily observed colony of Southern Fur Seals at the eastern edge of the town. At low tide, better viewing of the seals can be had as the ocean gives way to a rocky base which is easily navigable by foot for quite some distance.

It is also one of the best reasonably accessible places in the world to see open ocean seabirds such as albatrosses.

MickeyMaxx is back with the fourth and last installment of German Holiday. This week we travel by train to Munich.

While we were staying in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, we took an afternoon to rail over to the city of Munich to see their city center.

The Munich station was like a modern version of the grand American train stations of the 20th century, with row upon row of trains, all pulled into the enclosed expansive terminal.

Once again, we took a cab to our destination, the Hofbrauhaus, famous for their beer, pretzels, and German food. The cab ride was frightful, very much like being in a car chase from an action movie with a delicate ballet between humans and a speeding vehicle nearly occupying the same space at the same time.

The Hofbrauhaus takes up an entire block, and has enormous room, after enormous room, surrounding open-air garden seating, and positioned so most of the vast building could hear a traditional oompah band playing Bavarian brass band music. With the ability to serve up to 5,000 guests at one time, this place is one giant party, all day long!

Rick's brother, Mike, demonstrates the two-fisted approach most folks adopt here. One liter glasses are the only size, so you better like beer. No, that's not a hidden Mickey in the pretzel. Maybe a hidden Flick, though.

Rick and I hoisting our glasses, which we didn't manage to finish! A fact that was very disheartening when we remembered that all the women who attended MiceChat's Invasion 1 managed to finish their beers at EPCOT's Biergarten restaurant.

We had lunch and continued with the "when in Germany" eating theme. Yup, sausage and potato salad.

After lunch, we decided to walk back to the train station so we could see a bit of the city up close. It was, as we had found in every city we traveled to, immaculate, well-maintained, and full of some of the best retail presentations we've ever seen.

This church was of interest to the Disney fan in us, in that they covered the front of it completely in a fabric scrim with a photograph of the building on it so the cityscape was preserved while the restoration was ongoing. Just like we've seen on our visits to Disney's Florida parks. Unlike Disney, the church was not beyond selling ad space to Apple to help defray costs.

Inside the church.

Continuing down the street, those are cabs, which were lined up everywhere, more like the way we do it at our airports. No need to flag one down, just go to the front one, and you're off!

Another take on an Advent calendar with building windows.

Beautiful hand-crafted holiday items.

What could be more closely related to Germany?

We don't know quite what this bit of art was, but it was covered with digital cameras and was tied to a promotion at an adjacent store.

Back at the train station, we had two desires. A restroom and perhaps a bite to eat. We found that in many public places, there are privately owned pay toilets. That description does not do them justice, though, as they are more like a cross between a restroom and a nice salon. For a small fee, one has access to a impeccably clean, tile-lined, tiny private room with a toilet. Sinks are along a wall outside your cubicle and are equally clean and well-stocked. While it might give Americans pause to pay to, well, you know, it's not a bad way to, uh, go.

Tell me if this looks like the food selection at your local airport or train station. In addition to quick serve places like these, there were many restaurants available.

Time to head home. Clearly, the kids have had enough for one day.

A couple of diversions before we declare our report on our trip to Bavaria over.

We enjoyed these businesses for completely childish reasons.

And these European cars just strike my fancy. The little ones, the funky ones, and the ones that look so well crafted for around 14,000 euros.

Practical and with styling that doesn't make it look like the entry level model it is.

Way functional and a little Googie! Kind of reminds me of those Chevron cars at Autopia. The ones that talk.

Beautifully crafted.

The Focus we never got stateside. They are on gen 3, 10 years later, we're on gen 1 with lipstick and mascara.

And this lonely little one on a side street, which, as the insert shows, is "Pink."

We had never been abroad before and being first-timers, we had a lot of considerations and trepidation. Our trip was a delight. Even the long flights were just more of an annoyance than anything more. We were so lucky to have the best of tour guides in Mike and Pam, who planned our days so well, offered up their home as our hotel, exchanged Euros for dollars, translated, and drove us hundreds of miles to make sure we had a good time.

The Bavarian countryside and cityscapes were nearly all picture perfect, the locals were very accommodating, and the things we saw were for the most part unique in our experience. We had an amazing time and perhaps the best thing about this trip is that we now know that with a bit of planning, we're not afraid to do set out on our own next time.

"MOONSHINE STILL. Beautiful ROCK CITY. Atop Lookout Mountain-Near Chatanooga, Tennesee."

The official Rock City website doesn't seem to acknowledge the existence of the Moonshine Still.

There is an article about Rock City at Roadside America that has some photos of the elves, fairies, gnomes and storybook characters that live in Rock City.

Garnet Carter invented miniature golf. That would be enough for most people. But his mini-golf franchises foundered during the Great Depression, and by 1932 Garnet was looking for a new way to make money. He didn't have to look far.

Frieda, Garnet's wife, had turned part of their Lookout Mountain estate into an elaborate garden. She had marked a trail through its giant rock outcroppings, populating it with odd statues of gnomes and fairytale characters. Garnet guessed that people would pay to see such a thing. He advertised it with the slogan, "See Rock City," which he had painted on the roofs of barns and birdhouses from Michigan to Texas.

Eight decades later, over a half-million people a year still obey Garnet's command.

In honor of the reopening of It's a Small World at Disneyland, this vintage postcard from my collection: "European children are among the hundreds of singing and dancing international performers on the "happiest cruise that ever sailed".....It's A Small World

THE MICKEY MOUSE REVUE. A colorful forest of singing flowers joins Alice in Wonderland...part of the talented cast of 88 famous Walt Disney characters "come to life" to perform old favorites during the Mickey Mouse Revue.

In October 1, 1971, the Mickey Mouse Revue show opened as an 'E' ticket attraction in Fantasyland, in the Magic Kingdom, Florida. The show ran until it was closed on September 14, 1980. The building that housed it was renamed the Fantasyland Theater. Mickey Mouse Revue found a new home at Tokyo Disneyland park in Japan, where it plays to this day in Japanese.

"All seems peaceful from the outside but 999 grim, grinning ghosts await guests within. Disneyland's Haunted Mansion provides permanent haunts for retired spooks and spirits from around the world."

"NOTORIOUS BLAIR STREET. SILVERTON, COLORADO. Terminal for the historic narrow gauge train that has made the spectacular daily trip through the San Juan Mts. from Durango for 80 years."

I have personally been to this town, and ridden the train to Durango...very long and steep journey, and it doesn't quite look like this anymore...
OFTEN THE FIRST BUILDING IN A MINING CAMP was a saloon —if not, it was certainly the second! A strike was made, and faster than you could blink an eye, there were forces there to separate a miner from his money.

Silverton was no different. Like all mining boomtowns worth their salt, Silverton had its own red-light district — Notorious Blair Street. Here, along a mere three-block stretch, a carousing miner (or “respectable” businessman out for a bit of slumming) could choose from thirty-two saloons, gambling halls, and houses of ill-repute. Among their colorful names were the Mikado, the North Pole, and the Laundry…where they “cleaned you out!”


"Welcome to The Roy Rogers - Dale Evans Museum. We've had a lifetime of Happy Trails full of love, laughter, and sometimes sorrow. Everything we've ever done is right here for everyone to see. For nearly as long as I can remember, I thought about having a museum. I've always liked to save things. No matter what came my way, whether it was a letter from a boy or girl movie fan or from a President, or a nice shotgun or an old-time telephone, I stuck it in the basement, or the garage, or in drawers at home. Dale would say, "Honey, when are you going to empty those drawers?" I'd put everything in a box and call the van & storage company to come pick it up and keep it for me."

In 2003, we moved from our museum in Victorville CA., to our new location in Branson, MO. Our place isn't really a typical museum - it's personal - things that Roy & Dale have done, and the kids and the family and Trigger. All the stuff Roy had saved - tools his dad had when he was little, some of his mom's scrapbooks, pictures from the early days of the Sons of the Pioneers, all sorts of things that meant something to Roy and Dale. You know, Trigger is one of our most popular exhibits. He is mounted like so many people remember him - rearing up on his hind legs.

"Rutland's Finest. The Kong Chow Restaurant, located on Center St, Rutland, VT-Established in 1938-Noted for its quality Chinese-American food at popular prices-Quick service, comfort and friendly atmosphere. Manager: Thomas Ying."

“a step back in time”
Kong Chow Restaurant

3 Aug 2008

What I love about this restaurant is that it is like stepping back in time. The decor has not been updated in years which gives it a unique charm. Not your typical chinese food but then there are plenty of other restaurants for that... the chicken wings are the best in town.

"PIERCE'S RESTAURANT. Elmira Heights, New York. Established 1894, one mile north of Elmira. Air Conditioned-Open Every Day-Complete Cantonese and Chinese Menu-Salt Water Lobster Pound-Continental Cuisine-Nationally Famous"

Dine at Pierce's Restaurant in Elmira Heights, New York and you'll enjoy a culinary trip back in time. As you're savoring their signature Crab Rangoon appetizer and sipping a fine wine from their world-class wine cellar, you will be joining the thousands of people who have dined here for over a century.

Ever since 1884 when entrepreneur Joseph Pierce entered a lottery and won this land in downtown Elmira Heights, New York, and established: a bowling alley, a gas station, and a bar that grew into what is now a very pleasant restaurant, people have been enjoying Pierce hospitality.

Now, four generations later, his great-grandson, Joe Pierce owns and operates this local landmark and carries on the family's famous hospitality tradition. Elegant, yet comfortably relaxed, Pierce's offers you the chance to escape from the tensions of today; so, sit back and relax in a comfortable, yet stylish atmosphere.

Check out more great vintage postcards at!

Looking for up-to-date reports from Disneyland
including photos, gossip, park schedules and more?

Visit these MiceChat columns each week:

Andy Castro's Dateline Disneyland

David DarkBeer Michael's In the Parks

And that brings us to the end of another week. Our photographers have just enough time to reload their cameras before we see you all again next weekend. Thank you to all of our wonderful readers, and as always, a huge thank you to our amazing team of global photographers, spies, and gossips:

Jack Hollywood 1939 Wixom
Denise nbodyhome Preskitt
sir clinksalot
Abominable Snowman
A very special thank you to to our wonderful guest photographer Ian Parkinson for sharing his vision with us and darkfairycthulu for sharing the postcard images with us.
Your Editor - Rixter

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Updated 02-20-2009 at 07:01 PM by Weekend Update



  1. StrikeYerColors's Avatar
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    i looooove it! very nice, i love the vintage disney postcards especially
  2. TDLFAN's Avatar
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    Who knew rick had a "hubba hubba" brother in Germany...??
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    The Mickey Mouse Revue has been set to be replaced by Philhar Magic which is just a little bit sad. I enjoyed reading the update otherwise though!
  4. pratt55's Avatar
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    Great trip around the world. I need to go find a pretzel because now I'm hungry.
  5. WheresMickey's Avatar
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    Great update!
  6. Wendygirl's Avatar
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    This was a wonderful update. So many lovely pictures of delightful places. I would so love to visit Germany during the Christmas season. New Zealand is beautiful.

    I loved the tribute to Mr. Lincoln. Sigh. One can only hope that someday ...

    Postcards brought back some memories ... I've been to Lookout Mountain, Silverton and rode the narrow gage, and the Roy Rogers Museum.
  7. Kritter's Avatar
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    very awesome!

    Great update with Germany, New Zealand, Germany and Europe!

    I loves it!
  8. RegionsBeyond's Avatar
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    I want to go to Wormland! American store names = fail
  9. AliKzam's Avatar
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    Aw, I miss the Roy Rogers/Dale Evans Museum. In the late '90s they broke ground around the museum for a themepark that would have been called "Rogers Dale." It was supposed to have been something along the lines of Dollywood. Unfortunately, it never came to be. There is now a Kia dealership where the museum used to be.
  10. Disneykin Kid's Avatar
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    TDLFAN, you graciously answered my question about caucasian Disney princesses in TDR and HKDL. I'd appreciate seeing pictures of them, the caption could read something like "Cinderella in Japan is not Japanese!"