We all lived that wonderful period of life when nothing and nobody seemed to make us sad, when the only worry was to sleep at night and especially to resist until our grandparents or parents finished reading the stories. But now, we do not have that age anymore and there are moments when we try to find it again but we lose ourselves in daily things and let the innocence's world somewhere at the bottom of priority list.
I have chosen this theme because I think there is still a place in this world in which all the childhood's dreams seem to be born again and where we feel very happy. That place is certainly DISNEYLAND. In addition, I found it interesting because I think Disneyland is a charming land where you got into a special world, a world of stories that never stop to surprise you, a world where imagination surpasses any limits, a world of childhood. No matter what your age is, you simply became a child again. Although many may say that the place is still an element from the invented tradition of American people, I think it draws your attention from the first moment you hear about it and that is why I see Disneyland a place that you can hardly describe. From my point of view, nothing compares to the feeling of going to a very different world, each of us becoming one Alice in Wonderland.
I hope I will find out interesting things about Disneyland such as: who was the man who came out with this idea and, why not, some historical things. Moreover, my mainly purpose is to discover what activities are to be done in a day in this park or if there is any limit of age for the visitors.
"To all who come to this happy place: -Welcome- Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams, and the hard facts that have created America with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to the entire world."
--Walter E. Disney, July 17, 1955 4:43pm
2.1 Concept and construction
The concept for Disneyland began one Sunday, when Walt Disney was visiting Griffith Park with his daughters Diane and Sharon. While watching his daughters ride the Merry-Go-Round he came up with the idea of a place where adults and their children could go and have fun together. His dream would lie dormant for many years. Walt Disney also may have been influenced by his memories of the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago. His father had worked at the Exposition. The Midway Pleasance there included a cheaply constructed set of individual "country" areas from around the world and others representing various time periods of man; it also included many "rides" including the first Ferris wheel, a "sky" ride, a passenger train that circled the perimeter, and a Wild West Show. Although the 1893 World's Fair was meant only to last one summer in Chicago, the Disneyland of 60 years later, located in the mild Southern California climate, bears some striking resemblances to it.
While many people had written letters to Walt Disney about visiting the Disney Studio, he realized that a functional movie studio had little to offer to the visiting fans. This began to foster ideas of building a site near his Burbank studios for tourists to visit. His ideas then evolved to a small play park with a boat ride and other themed areas. Walt's initial concept, his "Mickey Mouse Park", started with an 8 acres (0.012 sq mi; 0.032 km2) plot across Riverside Drive. Walt started to visit other parks for inspiration and ideas, including Tivoli Gardens, Greenfield Village, The Efteling, Tilburg, Playland, and Children's Fairyland. He started his designers working on concepts, but these would grow into a project much larger than could be contained in 3,24 hectares (32,000 m2). Walt hired a consultant, Harrison Price from Stanford Research Institute, to gauge the proper area to locate the theme park based on the area's potential growth. With the report from Price, Disney acquired 64,75 hectares (0.250 sq mi; 0.647 km2) of orange groves and walnut trees in Anaheim, southeast of Los Angeles in neighboring Orange County.
Difficulties in obtaining funding prompted Disney to investigate new methods of fundraising. He decided to use television to get the ideas into people's homes, and so he created a show named Disneyland, which was broadcast on the then-fledgling ABC television network. In return, the network agreed to help finance the new park. For the first five years of its operation, Disneyland was owned by Disneyland, Inc., which was jointly owned by Walt Disney Productions, Walt Disney, Western Publishing and. In 1960 Walt Disney Productions purchased ABC's share (it had earlier bought out Western Publishing and Walt Disney). In addition, many of the shops on Main Street, U.S.A. were owned and operated by other companies who rented space from Disney.
Construction began on July 16, 1954 and would cost USD$ 17 million to complete, and was opened exactly one year later. U.S. Route 101 (later Interstate 5) was under construction at the same time just to the north of the site; in preparation for the traffic which Disneyland was expected to bring, two more lanes were added to the freeway even before the park was finished.
2.2 1955: Opening day
An aerial view of Disneyland in 1956. The entire route of the Disneyland Railroad is clearly visible as it encircles the park.
Disneyland Park was opened to the public on Monday, July 18, 1955. However, a special "International Press Preview" event was held on Sunday, July 17, 1955, which was only open to invited guests and the media. The Special Sunday events, including the dedication, were televised nationwide and anchored by three of Walt Disney's friends from Hollywood: Art Linkletter, Bob Cummings, and Ronald Reagan. ABC broadcast the event live on its network; at the time, it was one of the largest and most complex live broadcasts ever.
- Doris, David T., It's the Truth, It's Actual , Kodak Photo Spots At Walt Disney World, Visual Resources Vol XIV pp. 321-338, 1999
- Keating, Gina 2009, Disney to expand Fantasyland at Walt Disney World, Retrieved 2009-09-12.
- Minnick, Nathaniel, Disney's Lands in the History of Colonial Displays of the Exotic, University of Michigan, 2006
- Stewart, James B., 2005, Disney War, Simon & Schuster.
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