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  1. #1

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    February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    I was snapping photos at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom Park earlier this month. I noticed numerous reminders of defunct attractions.


    Please discuss it here.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  2. #2

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    With as much money as Disney RAKES in, they should either bring back reworked classic attractions or demolish the remnants of the old buildings to make way for new ones.

    I live on the West Coast and have never been to Disney World, but Disneyland is not beyond doing this stuff too.

    We had to look at an empty Submarine Lagoon for far too long before Finding Nemo came along.

    The Carousel Theater sat abandoned for decades only to reopen as Innoventions - with the whole lower level becoming a giant ad for Taylor Morrison Homes, featuring the House of a Million Photo-Frames and frozen PCs.

    Mission to Mars was shuttered for a decade then converted to an eatery.

    The People Mover / Rocket Rods track still sits unused and decaying.

    I’ll let others post the many, many other reminders of attractions past.

    Great article.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    It makes me said when I visit WDW and see these old remnants of attractions past.

    You put the Diamond Horseshoe as in Liberty Square... it's in Frontierland.

    And the theatre in the back of the Expo Hall that shows cartoons is one of the original Walt Disney Story theatres. There are 2 theatres... the other is part of a CM only area now. The big mural that has almost every Disney character from Mickey to the Great Mouse Detective is in that hidden area now too. I'd give almost anything to be able to see that mural again.

  4. #4

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    Pfft. Yes, Disneyland's Tomorrowland has its "haunted" corners. But compared to the Magic Kingdom, it's one well-preserved park.

    It amazes and saddens me what's become of this park. Where's the love.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    Quote Originally Posted by aimster View Post
    You put the Diamond Horseshoe as in Liberty Square... it's in Frontierland.
    Disney listed the Diamond Horseshoe Revue under Liberty Square, at least back in the 1970s.

    For a 1973 map of Liberty Square and Frontierland, with attraction listings, see Yesterland: The Magic Kingdom in 1973

    Quote Originally Posted by aimster View Post
    And the theatre in the back of the Expo Hall that shows cartoons is one of the original Walt Disney Story theatres. There are 2 theatres... the other is part of a CM only area now.
    The current cartoon theater in the back of the Exposition Center is tiny. It seats around 30 people. The original theaters of the Walt Disney Story were larger.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  6. #6

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    I never knew there were so many haunted corners at WDW, I've never been there but somehow I guess I figured they just didn't exist. Their SkyWay stations are just beautiful, it's a shame I'll never be able to see them operating in real life. To me these places have no emotional value or connection, but I can certainly project how I feel about Disneyland's haunted corners onto this park and realize how it must feel to the WDW goers.

    When I eventually get out to WDW I probably would've walked by these places without even realizing something was once there. That is a horrible thought and I couldn't imagine ignoring Disneyland's SkyWay stations, its MotorBoat Cruise lagoon or Cascade Peak, even though all this stuff is relatively well concealed. I am glad that Werner brought these sites to our attention, they deserve to be recognized even by those who never got the chance to experience them personally.

    After all, Disneyland's past (and by association the Magic Kingdom's) is just as important as it's future and present. If we ignore its past like Disney® does, we lose so much of what makes the park special.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    Quote Originally Posted by Werner Weiss View Post
    Disney listed the Diamond Horseshoe Revue under Liberty Square, at least back in the 1970s.

    For a 1973 map of Liberty Square and Frontierland, with attraction listings, see Yesterland: The Magic Kingdom in 1973


    The current cartoon theater in the back of the Exposition Center is tiny. It seats around 30 people. The original theaters of the Walt Disney Story were larger.
    Really? I didn't know that about Diamond Horseshoe. Odd that they did that.

    And I believe they ripped out a lot of the seats in the theatre that shows the cartoons now. If you look up when you enter/exit the area you see the old automatic door warning signs and the curtains that used to be around them. I should take some photos next time I'm there. I always stop in there for awhile to get out of the heat.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    That was a cool look back in time! I've never had the pleasure of visit D.W. but from the sounds of things from your article it would be a bit of a depressing experience for me. I remember how sad it was cruising through D.L.'s Tomorrow land in the late 80's and remebering all the fun experiences I had in what were at the time dead attractions. I still get that feeling anytime I see the Fantasy Land bucket station or the People Mover. I feel bad for the Florida folks that theres no Penny arcade, cinema or Horseshoe review! Being an ap holder you really begin to appreciate those simplier offerings. Some times standing in an hour line just doesn't seem like a vacation at all. That's where the little things over looked by most come in to save your day.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    At least we still have our PeopleMover.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    I remember having a very distinct "ghostly" experience when the Rocket Rods opened in Disneyland. They ran the queue through the previous CircleVision attraction, and didn't bother to make the room not look like CircleVision; the screens were still up (one with a huge tear in it; some were used for a modest new film clip)...and the CircleVision lean rails were still in there, now being used as the queue. Were we all supposed to pretend we didn't remember that this had recently been CircleVision? Was I supposed to forget the times I had been there with friends, the jokes we'd made about the film, the times we were glad to chill out in the back row after running around on a hot summer day? When they started showing Wonders of China in the mornings? The theme song in the animated preshow? America the Beautiful?

    Nostagia drives a lot of the parks' economies, and memories people have from previous visits is a large part of that. I think Disney should tread carefully in how they show respect for this, and the answers are not always easy. When I saw the picture of the Swan Boats loading area, my gut reaction was being happy to see a little memorial to the attraction, I think that's nice. But on the other hand, it seems more Walt-like to avoid having unused or shuttered areas, I remember when the parks avoided that with a passion.
    Last edited by Asterix; 02-19-2009 at 09:47 AM. Reason: Don't want to hurt anyone's feelings.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    I think a bunch of micechaters should all assemble in a line in one of those dead ques as a protest!
    Throw some attention on this stuff in an interesting way. I wouldn't suggest this for anyone that's not an AP. It would be a shame to shell out all that money to wait in a line to nowhere. But it would be a fun kind of social experiment.

  12. #12

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    also one of the quiet corners on main street was blocked off...by a bulding! Ick!

  13. #13

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    Quote Originally Posted by richboi117 View Post
    also one of the quiet corners on main street was blocked off...by a bulding! Ick!
    Yep. West Center Street was filled by an addition to the Main Street Emporium. I didn't put it in the article because it doesn't involve a defunct attraction. It might be good business, but it makes Main Street seem less like a real street.

    Also, even the Fire Station is a merchandise attraction!
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    I really miss the Skyway to Tomorrowland and rode it every single time I visited the MK starting in 1972.

    However, it is really expensive to run and a slow-loader. Each station requires at least three workers at all times, plus more need to be available for breaks. They also need one-two supervisors at all times. There are also some special liability problems because the buckets are open and people can drop things or even attempt to get out of the bucket.

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    Re: February 19, 2009: Defunct Magic Kingdom

    And Disney can't afford to use so many cast members because it is such a poor, cash-strapped mega-corporation and has been for years (note sarcasm).

    The top manangement have lost all respect for their customers and do the minimum possible to keep us coming back. Of course, this represents short-term thinking and the criminal squandering of an incalculably valuable legacy. They'll pay dearly for it in the long-term.

    If I sound bitter and disappointed it is because I am.

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