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  1. #1

    • MiceAge Columnist
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    July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    In honor of the 57th anniversary of Disneyland, here’s an updated version of a Yesterland article originally published in 2007. In addition to the 1956 press release and my commentary, please enjoy some 1956 photos that kind Yesterland readers sent to me.


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

  2. #2

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    I always assumed the term 'dark ride' came later.

  3. #3

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    Quote Originally Posted by stamphead View Post
    I always assumed the term 'dark ride' came later.
    When I reread the press release from July 18, 1956, I was surprised by the reference to "the Peter Pan dark ride" too.

    In the same paragraph, the Jungle Cruise is the "Jungle River Boat Ride" and the Autopia is the "Autopia Freeway's miniature autos," back when a "Freeway" was something relatively new and futuristic.

    Quote Originally Posted by press release from July 18, 1956
    Certain of the Park's rides have proved especially popular with the visitors. These have included the Peter Pan dark ride in Fantasyland, the Adventureland Jungle River Boat Ride, the Santa Fe and Disneyland trains, and the Autopia Freeway's miniature autos in Tomorrowland.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  4. #4

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    Cracks me up every year when this comes up. Used to be this was Darkbeer's crusade. At the end of the day, Disney uses July 17th...which is entirely accurate. It was the first official day of operation (paying guests doesn't matter), the day opening ceremonies was televised, and the day Walt Dedicated the park.

    Maybe there should be two different birthdays to make people happy. July 17th for those that wish to celebrate the first official day of operation and park dedication and July 18th to celebrate the first day paying guests were let into the park.

  5. #5

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    I agree that July 17 vs. July 18 is not a subject worth debating. Each date has a legitimate claim to being the opening of Disneyland.

    Some Yesterland articles mention July 17 and some mention July 18. However, I'm careful to qualify them.

    In the introduction to the 1956 press release article, I wrote that July 18 is correct. But that doesn't mean I think that July 17 in incorrect.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  6. #6

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    Well, not to start a debate or anything, but the fact that July 17th was a media preview was not the only reason it is not considered the official opening day. July 17th was a horrible day in Disney history. Just about everything that could go wrong did. If everything went smoothly, we may be calling July 17th opening day today. I think that is the main reason.
    It's easy enough to be pleasant
    when life hums along like a song.
    But the man worth while
    is the man who can smile
    when everything goes dead wrong.

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    Quote Originally Posted by RatherBeAtDLand View Post
    If everything went smoothly, we may be calling July 17th opening day today.
    But we generally do call July 17th Disneyland's opening day today. It's the day that Disneyland uses for the anniversaries of the park's opening. In fact, July 18 is the "forgotten" opening date.
    Werner Weiss
    Curator of Yesterland, featuring discontinued Disneyland attractions

  8. #8

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    One day, through the magic of virtual reality, we'll all be able to walk through Disneyland 1956, just like we were there.

  9. #9

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    I find it interesting that even the press release fuels the debate by mentioning both days. it marks the attendance for the year on the 17th, but says the July 18th opening.

    Some of you may be "birthers" I'm not, I understand the argument, but I'm a July 17th guy.

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    This is why I always curious about why the day of DCA's relaunch was considered to be June 15, when the opening for the press was the day before.
    Last edited by MarkTwain; 07-18-2012 at 01:23 PM.


  11. #11

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    Re: July 18, 2012: “Disneyland One Year Old”

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkTwain View Post
    This is why I always curious about why the day of DCA's relaunch was considered to be June 15, when the opening for the press was the day before.
    ...... weeks of previews and days of press proceeded that.

    Which is just why I went to see the new DCA on June 16, the day AFTER all the camera set-ups, extra stages and crowd-control ropes were finally removed; The first time the California park actually looked like its new-normal self was on that Saturday morning. Was lovely to see.
    July 17 will always be the date Walt Disney welcomed the world to step inside his imagination at Disneyland....regardless of accounting schedules.



    "Disneyland is a work of love. We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money."
    - - Walt Disney

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