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Take The Train To Disneyland?

Partnering with another company is no big thing in today’s competitive travel market. But back in the Fifties? That’s another story, and Roger Colton has a look at how Disneyland was just the right destination at the right time



Seems like every time we turn around today, another company is offering a deal on travel. Even supermarket chains offer shoppers discounts on vacation packages or airline fares. And even Disneyland multiple day passports can be purchased at the same time as the family’s weekly groceries.

It hasn’t always been the case. Looking back before the days of jet airliners and automobiles on the Interstate highway system, the chance to grab the disposable income of consumers was just as important. And the competition for that dollar was every bit as fierce as then it is now.

The period after the Second World War is often referred to as the “Golden Age” of rail travel. In efforts to lure the traveling public back aboard their trains, the railroads began programs to modernize their railroad operations. Some had taken steps to start this process before the war. As the nation was coming out of the Depression, people were looking to enjoy themselves and had the cash to do so again. Bright colors and modern design attracted travelers in those short years before the war. New trains such as the Southern Pacific’s “Daylight” (in orange, red and black), the Union Pacific’s “City of Los Angeles” (in armour yellow and harbor mist grey) and the Santa Fe’s “Super Chief” (in gleaming stainless steel) all brought passengers to sunny Southern California in record numbers.

But in the mid-Fifties, some of that allure had worn off. With the rise of faster airline service across the state and the nation, accompanied by an all-time high in ownership of automobiles and improving highways nation wide, people were not riding those long distance passenger trains at the rate they had in those first years after the War. It was only natural that the railroads look for ways to attract travelers that went beyond simply transporting passengers. Most of them had experience in offering vacation packages. For examples, the Union Pacific took travelers to National Parks across the states it served in the West. The Santa Fe owned hotels at the Grand Canyon that were, of course, served daily by passenger trains from both the East and the West Coasts.

Disneyland was the answer to the problem faced by the railroads. A destination that families all across the nation would want to visit was the perfect solution for them. The Santa Fe (that’s short for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe) may have had the best jump on the competition. As a Disneyland sponsor, they took the lead and promoted the Park to passengers, shippers and employees even before Opening Day. One very early example was a pocket-sized folded brochure complete with a map of what potential travelers might expect.

A map of Disneyland tempts potential passengers.

This little black and white brochure offered a very early glimpse into what they might expect. It also has views of Santa Fe passenger and freight trains along with a map showing all of the possible routes available to reach Disneyland.

Another larger brochure produced by the Santa Fe right before Disneyland’s Opening Day has more to tempt those undecided travelers. The cover offers views of the brand new “Santa Fe & Disneyland Railroad, while the interior has the scoop on what awaited them at the Park.

How could we resist? Steam trains and Disneyland!

LOCATED: 1313 Harbor Boulevard, bordering Santa Ana Freeway, in Anaheim, California
OPENING: Monday, July 18, 1955 at 10 a.m.
HOURS: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week during the summer. Open six days a week – closed Mondays – starting in the Fall.
Size: Total area 160 acres. 60 acres in park.
PARKING: 12, 175 car capacity in 100-acre parking lot. An “elephant train” transports guest from the parking lot to Main Gate.
FOOD: Twenty restaurants in the different lands, including snack bars and stands, will serve approximately 8,000 persons hourly.
LANDS: Disneyland consists of four “lands” plus Main Street. The lands are Frontierland, Tomorrowland, Adventureland and Fantasyland.
DISTANCE: A minimum walking distance of 1.4 miles to visit every land.
RIDES: Peter Pan, Snow White, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, King Arthur Carousel, Mad Tea Party, Dumbo, Casey Jr., Canal Boats of the World, Disneyland Street Railway, Santa Fe & Disneyland Railroad; Disneyland Fire Dept., Disneyland Autopia,; TWA Rocket to the Moon; Space Station X-1; Conestoga wagons; surreys, buggies, buckboards; explorer’s boat ride through tropical rivers of the world, Speed boats, the “Mark Twain,” a 105-foot river boat; mule pack rides; and the Disneyland Stage line.
VISITORS: 5,000,000 visitors expected the first year. Disneyland is designed to handle a maximum of 60,000 daily.
ADMISSION: $1.00, including tax, for adults and 50c, including tax, for children under 12.

The tri-fold brochure further describes the rides and amusements by land including more details on the rides. It also describes how to reach Disneyland including the passenger trains and connections from downtown Los Angeles including Tanner Gray Line Motor Tours (that’s tour busses to us), Metro-Lines (public transit busses) and Rent-A-Car Service from Tanner Tours including limousine service with liveried chauffeurs. It also mentions the Disneyland Hotel scheduled to open “about” August 15.

Finally, the Santa Fe’s marketing, er… passenger sales staff, really lays it on thick:

“Every child should see Disneyland – Santa Fe has special Family Fares to make it cost less for your family trips.”

Not to be outdone, the other railroads serving Southern California added Disneyland as a favored destination later that year. The Southern Pacific offered packages including hotels and transportation (including from your hotel to Disneyland and back again). A friend of mine took one of these for his first Park visit along with his mother and still has all of the documents from the railroad (including the Greyhound bus ride from home to San Francisco for the trip on the train to Los Angeles).
The Union Pacific also offered passengers the opportunity to visit the Park with it’s own dramatic flair. It used some wonderful images of Disneyland on various items including calendars, post cards and dining car menus.

An early view of Disneyland’s Town Square.
Dining Car Menu from the Domeliner City of St. Louis, June 1965.

Not far by Freeway from Los Angeles, at Anaheim, is never to be forgotten Disneyland, where you’ll find a new experience in wonderful entertainment. Each segment of this sixty-five acre wonderland is an adventure in itself… on MAIN STREET take an omnibus rise past early-century stores and shops… in ADVENTURELAND explore the mysterious world of the tropics… visit FRONTIERLAND and transport yourself back into pioneer times… relive childhood’s happy hours of Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan in FANTASYLAND and last but not least, in TOMORROWLAND view the future in a rocket ship, travel aboard the streamlined trains of the Disneyland-Alweg monorail System, sail beneath the seven seas in an Atomic-Submarine or race in a bobsled down the “snow-capped” slopes of the Matterhorn Mountain replica.
All this, and much more, is DISNEYLAND… hours or days of wonderful family entertainment.
From East Los Angeles station, Union Pacific bus, for cities on the Anaheim branch, will deliver patrons direct to Disneyland Hotel, a regular stop. Other nearby resort motels can be reached by taxi from the Disneyland Hotel. Likewise on the return trip the bus for East Los Angeles will pick up at the Disneyland Hotel. Patrons using the Domeliners “City of Los Angeles” or the “City of St. Louis” may avail themselves of this service.

A view from the menu shows the Union Pacific Bus
and Monrail Blue both serving the Travelport
at the Disneyland Hotel

The bus connection and the use of the Disneyland images continued right up until the end of passenger service by the railroad in 1971. And one of the busses survives today as part of the collection of the California State Railroad Museum. It even makes occasional trips to special events around the state. Now that would be interesting to see back to Disneyland for a visit! Don’t know about that long ride from Sacramento…

Although Amtrak did not continue to provide service on all of the routes that had brought passengers to Los Angeles and Disneyland, it did continue the use of Disneyland in it’s own promotional literature. Somewhere buried in storage, I have Amtrak postcards for both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Today, Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner trains stop at Fullerton and Anaheim with transportation available to and from Disneyland.

Fantasy in the Sky fireworks blossom over Disneyland’s
“Sleeping Beauty Castle” — as seen on the cover of
a Dinner menu aboard the Union Pacific’s
“City of Los Angeles” in January 1971.

Hope that you enjoyed seeing these items as much as I enjoyed sharing them with you. I’m always on the look out for more of this kind of thing, so feel free to drop me a note if you find some.

Thanks to everyone who has supported the victims of Katrina and Rita. It does make a difference. The American Red Cross does good work every time they are called upon. Every bit helps, all the time. Any donation is greatly appreciated.

Roger Colton

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The Evolution and History of Mickey’s ToonTown



Disneyland in Anaheim, California, holds a special place in the hearts of Disney fans worldwide, I mean heck, it’s where the magic began after all.  Over the years it’s become a place that people visit in search of memorable experiences. One fan favorite area of the park is Mickey’s Toontown, a unique land that lets guests step right into the colorful, “Toony” world of Disney animation. With the recent reimagining of the land and the introduction of Micky and Minnies Runaway Railway, have you ever wondered how this land came to be?

There is a fascinating backstory of how Mickey’s Toontown came into existence. It’s a tale of strategic vision, the influence of Disney executives, and a commitment to meeting the needs of Disney’s valued guests.

The Beginning: Mickey’s Birthdayland

The story of Mickey’s Toontown starts with Mickey’s Birthdayland at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Opened in 1988 to celebrate Mickey Mouse’s 60th birthday, this temporary attraction was met with such overwhelming popularity that it inspired Disney executives to think bigger. The idea was to create a permanent, immersive land where guests could step into the animated world of Mickey Mouse and his friends.

In the early ’90s, Disneyland was in need of a refresh. Michael Eisner, the visionary leader of The Walt Disney Company at the time, had an audacious idea: create a brand-new land in Disneyland that would celebrate Disney characters in a whole new way. This was the birth of Mickey’s Toontown.

Initially, Disney’s creative minds toyed with various concepts, including the idea of crafting a 100-Acre Woods or a land inspired by the Muppets. However, the turning point came when they considered the success of “Who Framed Roger Rabbit.” This film’s popularity and the desire to capitalize on contemporary trends set the stage for Toontown’s creation.

From Concept to Reality: The Birth of Toontown

In 1993, Mickey’s Toontown opened its gates at Disneyland, marking the first time in Disney Park history where guests could experience a fully realized, three-dimensional world of animation. This new land was not just a collection of attractions but a living, breathing community where Disney characters “lived,” worked, and played.

Building Challenges: Innovative Solutions

The design of Mickey’s Toontown broke new ground in theme park aesthetics. Imagineers were tasked with bringing the two-dimensional world of cartoons into a three-dimensional space. This led to the creation of over 2000 custom-built props and structures that embodied the ‘squash and stretch’ principle of animation, giving Toontown its distinctiveness.

And then there was also the challenge of hiding the Team Disney Anaheim building, which bore a striking resemblance to a giant hotdog. The Imagineers had to think creatively, using balloon tests and imaginative landscaping to seamlessly integrate Toontown into the larger park.

Key Attractions: Bringing Animation to Life

Mickey’s Toontown featured several groundbreaking attractions. “Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin,” inspired by the movie “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” became a staple of Toontown, offering an innovative ride experience. Gadget’s Go-Coaster, though initially conceived as a Rescue Rangers-themed ride, became a hit with younger visitors, proving that innovative design could create memorable experiences for all ages.

Another crown jewel of Toontown is Mickey’s House, a walkthrough attraction that allowed guests to explore the home of Mickey Mouse himself. This attraction was more than just a house; it was a carefully crafted piece of Disney lore. The house was designed in the American Craftsman style, reflecting the era when Mickey would have theoretically purchased his first home in Hollywood. The attention to detail was meticulous, with over 2000 hand-crafted, custom-built props, ensuring that every corner of the house was brimming with character and charm. Interestingly, the design of Mickey’s House was inspired by a real home in Wichita Falls, making it a unique blend of real-world inspiration and Disney magic.

Mickey’s House also showcased Disney’s commitment to creating interactive and engaging experiences. Guests could make themselves at home, sitting in Mickey’s chair, listening to the radio, and exploring the many mementos and references to Mickey’s animated adventures throughout the years. This approach to attraction design – where storytelling and interactivity merged seamlessly – was a defining characteristic of ToonTown’s success.

Executive Decisions: Shaping ToonTown’s Unique Attractions

The development of Mickey’s Toontown wasn’t just about creative imagination; it was significantly influenced by strategic decisions from Disney executives. One notable input came from Jeffrey Katzenberg, who suggested incorporating a Rescue Rangers-themed ride. This idea was a reflection of the broader Disney strategy to integrate popular contemporary characters and themes into the park, ensuring that the attractions remained relevant and engaging for visitors.

In addition to Katzenberg’s influence, Frank Wells, the then-President of The Walt Disney Company, played a key role in the strategic launch of Toontown’s attractions. His decision to delay the opening of “Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin” until a year after Toontown’s debut was a calculated move. It was designed to maintain public interest in the park by offering new experiences over time, thereby giving guests more reasons to return to Disneyland.

These executive decisions highlight the careful planning and foresight that went into making Toontown a dynamic and continuously appealing part of Disneyland. By integrating current trends and strategically planning the rollout of attractions, Disney executives ensured that Toontown would not only capture the hearts of visitors upon its opening but would continue to draw them back for new experiences in the years to follow.

Global Influence: Toontown’s Worldwide Appeal

The concept of Mickey’s Toontown resonated so strongly that it was replicated at Tokyo Disneyland and influenced elements in Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland. Each park’s version of Toontown maintained the core essence of the original while adapting to its cultural and logistical environment.

Evolution and Reimagining: Toontown Today

As we approach the present day, Mickey’s Toontown has recently undergone a significant reimagining to welcome “Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway” in 2023. This refurbishment aimed to enhance the land’s interactivity and appeal to a new generation of Disney fans, all while retaining the charm that has made ToonTown a beloved destination for nearly three decades.

Dive Deeper into ToonTown’s Story

Want to know more about Mickey’s Toontown and hear some fascinating behind-the-scenes stories, then check out the latest episode of Disney Unpacked on Patreon @JimHillMedia. In this episode, the main Imagineer who worked on the Toontown project shares lots of interesting stories and details that you can’t find anywhere else. It’s full of great information and fun facts, so be sure to give it a listen!

Jim Hill

Jim Hill is an entertainment writer who has specialized in covering The Walt Disney Company for nearly 40 years now. Over that time, he has interviewed hundreds of animators, actors, and Imagineers -- many of whom have shared behind-the-scenes stories with Mr. Hill about how the Mouse House really works. In addition to the 4000+ articles Jim has written for the Web, he also co-hosts a trio of popular podcasts: “Disney Dish with Len Testa,” “Fine Tooning with Drew Taylor” and “Marvel US Disney with Aaron Adams.” Mr. Hill makes his home in Southern New Hampshire with his lovely wife Nancy and two obnoxious cats, Ginger & Betty.

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Unpacking the History of the Pixar Place Hotel



Pixar Place Hotel, the newly unveiled 15-story tower at the Disneyland Resort, has been making waves in the Disney community. With its unique Pixar-themed design, it promises to be a favorite among visitors.

However, before we delve into this exciting addition to the Disneyland Resort, let’s take a look at the fascinating history of this remarkable hotel.

The Emergence of the Disneyland Hotel

To truly appreciate the story of the Pixar Place Hotel, we must turn back the clock to the early days of Disneyland. While Walt Disney had the visionary ideas and funding to create the iconic theme park, he faced a challenge when it came to providing accommodations for the park’s visitors. This is where his friend Jack Wrather enters the picture.

Jack Wrather, a fellow pioneer in the television industry, stepped in to assist Walt Disney in realizing his dream. Thanks to the success of the “Lassie” TV show produced by Wrather’s company, he had the financial means to build a hotel right across from Disneyland.

The result was the Disneyland Hotel, which opened its doors in October 1955. Interestingly, the early incarnation of this hotel had more of a motel feel than a hotel, with two-story buildings reminiscent of the roadside motels popular during the 1950s. The initial Disneyland Hotel consisted of modest structures that catered to visitors looking for affordable lodging close to the park. While the rooms were basic, it marked the beginning of something extraordinary.

The Evolution: From Emerald of Anaheim to Paradise Pier

As Disneyland’s popularity continued to soar, so did the demand for expansion and improved accommodations. In 1962, the addition of an 11-story tower transformed the Disneyland Hotel, marking a significant transition from a motel to a full-fledged hotel.

The addition of the 11-story tower elevated the Disneyland Hotel into a more prominent presence on the Anaheim skyline. At the time, it was the tallest structure in all of Orange County. The hotel’s prime location across from Disneyland made it an ideal choice for visitors. With the introduction of the monorail linking the park and the hotel, accessibility became even more convenient. Unique features like the Japanese-themed reflecting pools added to the hotel’s charm, reflecting a cultural influence that extended beyond Disney’s borders.

Japanese Tourism and Its Impact

During the 1960s and 1970s, Disneyland was attracting visitors from all corners of the world, including Japan. A significant number of Japanese tourists flocked to Anaheim to experience Walt Disney’s creation. To cater to this growing market, it wasn’t just the Disneyland Hotel that aimed to capture the attention of Japanese tourists. The Japanese Village in Buena Park, inspired by a similar attraction in Nara, Japan, was another significant spot.

These attractions sought to provide a taste of Japanese culture and hospitality, showcasing elements like tea ceremonies and beautiful ponds with rare carp and black swans. However, the Japanese Village closed its doors in 1975, likely due to the highly competitive nature of the Southern California tourist market.

The Emergence of the Emerald of Anaheim

With the surge in Japanese tourism, an opportunity arose—the construction of the Emerald of Anaheim, later known as the Disneyland Pacific Hotel. In May 1984, this 15-story hotel opened its doors.

What made the Emerald unique was its ownership. It was built not by The Walt Disney Company or the Oriental Land Company (which operated Tokyo Disneyland) but by the Tokyu Group. This group of Japanese businessmen already had a pair of hotels in Hawaii and saw potential in Anaheim’s proximity to Disneyland. Thus, they decided to embark on this new venture, specifically designed to cater to Japanese tourists looking to experience Southern California.

Financial Challenges and a Changing Landscape

The late 1980s brought about two significant financial crises in Japan—the crash of the NIKKEI stock market and the collapse of the Japanese real estate market. These crises had far-reaching effects, causing Japanese tourists to postpone or cancel their trips to the United States. As a result, reservations at the Emerald of Anaheim dwindled.

To adapt to these challenging times, the Tokyu Group merged the Emerald brand with its Pacific hotel chain, attempting to weather the storm. However, the financial turmoil took its toll on the Emerald, and changes were imminent.

The Transition to the Disneyland Pacific Hotel

In 1995, The Walt Disney Company took a significant step by purchasing the hotel formerly known as the Emerald of Anaheim for $35 million. This acquisition marked a change in the hotel’s fortunes. With Disney now in control, the hotel underwent a name change, becoming the Disneyland Pacific Hotel.

Transformation to Paradise Pier

The next phase of transformation occurred when Disney decided to rebrand the hotel as Paradise Pier Hotel. This decision aligned with Disney’s broader vision for the Disneyland Resort.

While the structural changes were limited, the hotel underwent a significant cosmetic makeover. Its exterior was painted to complement the color scheme of Paradise Pier, and wave-shaped crenellations adorned the rooftop, creating an illusion of seaside charm. This transformation was Disney’s attempt to seamlessly integrate the hotel into the Paradise Pier theme of Disney’s California Adventure Park.

Looking Beyond Paradise Pier: The Shift to Pixar Place

In 2018, Disneyland Resort rebranded Paradise Pier as Pixar Pier, a thematic area dedicated to celebrating the beloved characters and stories from Pixar Animation Studios. As a part of this transition, it became evident that the hotel formally known as the Disneyland Pacific Hotel could no longer maintain its Paradise Pier theme.

With Pixar Pier in full swing and two successful Pixar-themed hotels (Toy Story Hotels in Shanghai Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland), Disney decided to embark on a new venture—a hotel that would celebrate the vast world of Pixar. The result is Pixar Place Hotel, a 15-story tower that embraces the characters and stories from multiple Pixar movies and shorts. This fully Pixar-themed hotel is a first of its kind in the United States.

The Future of Pixar Place and Disneyland Resort

As we look ahead to the future, the Disneyland Resort continues to evolve. The recent news of a proposed $1.9 billion expansion as part of the Disneyland Forward project indicates that the area surrounding Pixar Place is expected to see further changes. Disneyland’s rich history and innovative spirit continue to shape its destiny.

In conclusion, the history of the Pixar Place Hotel is a testament to the ever-changing landscape of Disneyland Resort. From its humble beginnings as the Disneyland Hotel to its transformation into the fully Pixar-themed Pixar Place Hotel, this establishment has undergone several iterations. As Disneyland Resort continues to grow and adapt, we can only imagine what exciting developments lie ahead for this iconic destination.

If you want to hear more stories about the History of the Pixar Place hotel, check our special edition of Disney Unpacked over on YouTube.

Stay tuned for more updates and developments as we continue to explore the fascinating world of Disney, one story at a time.

Jim Hill

Jim Hill is an entertainment writer who has specialized in covering The Walt Disney Company for nearly 40 years now. Over that time, he has interviewed hundreds of animators, actors, and Imagineers -- many of whom have shared behind-the-scenes stories with Mr. Hill about how the Mouse House really works. In addition to the 4000+ articles Jim has written for the Web, he also co-hosts a trio of popular podcasts: “Disney Dish with Len Testa,” “Fine Tooning with Drew Taylor” and “Marvel US Disney with Aaron Adams.” Mr. Hill makes his home in Southern New Hampshire with his lovely wife Nancy and two obnoxious cats, Ginger & Betty.

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From Birthday Wishes to Toontown Dreams: How Toontown Came to Be



Mickey's Birthday Land

In the latest release of Episode 4 of Disney Unpacked, Len and I return, joined as always by Disney Imagineering legend, Jim Shull. This two-part episode covers all things Mickey’s Birthday Land and how it ultimately led to the inspiration behind Disneyland’s fan-favorite land, “Toontown”. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. It all starts in the early days at Disneyland.

Early Challenges in Meeting Mickey

Picture this: it’s the late 1970s and early 1980s, and you’re at Disneyland. You want to meet the one and only Mickey Mouse, but there’s no clear way to make it happen. You rely on Character Guides, those daily printed sheets that point you in Mickey’s general direction. But let’s be honest, it was like finding a needle in a haystack. Sometimes, you got lucky; other times, not so much.

Mickey’s Birthdayland: A Birthday Wish that Came True

Fast forward to the late 1980s. Disney World faced a big challenge. The Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park was under construction, with the company’s marketing machine in full swing, hyping up the opening of Walt Disney World’s third theme park, MGM Studios, in the Spring of 1989. This extensive marketing meant that many people were opting to postpone their family’s next trip to Walt Disney World until the following year. Walt Disney World needed something compelling to motivate guests to visit Florida in 1988, the year before Disney MGM Studios opened.

Enter stage left, Mickey’s Birthdayland. For the first time ever, an entire land was dedicated to a single character – and not just any character, but the mouse who started it all. Meeting Mickey was no longer a game of chance; it was practically guaranteed.

The Birth of Birthdayland: Creative Brilliance Meets Practicality

In this episode, we dissect the birth of Mickey’s Birthdayland, an initiative that went beyond celebrating a birthday. It was a calculated move, driven by guest feedback and a need to address issues dating back to 1971. Imagineers faced the monumental task of designing an experience that honored Mickey while efficiently managing the crowds. This required the perfect blend of creative flair and logistical prowess – a hallmark of Disney’s approach to theme park design.

Evolution: From Birthdayland to Toontown

The success of Mickey’s Birthdayland was a real game-changer, setting the stage for the birth of Toontown – an entire land that elevated character-centric areas to monumental new heights. Toontown wasn’t merely a spot to meet characters; it was an immersive experience that brought Disney animation to life. In the episode, we explore its innovative designs, playful architecture, and how every nook and cranny tells a story.

Impact on Disney Parks and Guests

Mickey’s Birthdayland and Toontown didn’t just reshape the physical landscape of Disney parks; they transformed the very essence of the guest experience. These lands introduced groundbreaking ways for visitors to connect with their beloved characters, making their Disney vacations even more unforgettable.

Beyond Attractions: A Cultural Influence

But the influence of these lands goes beyond mere attractions. Our episode delves into how Mickey’s Birthdayland and Toontown left an indelible mark on Disney’s culture, reflecting the company’s relentless dedication to innovation and guest satisfaction. It’s a journey into how a single idea can grow into a cherished cornerstone of the Disney Park experience.

Interested in learning about Jim Shull’s original idea for a Winnie the Pooh ride? Here’s concept art of the attraction proposed for the original Toontown in Disneyland. More on [Disney Unpacked].

Unwrapping the Full Story of Mickey’s Birthdayland

Our two-part episode of Disney Unpacked is available for your viewing pleasure on our Patreon page. And for those seeking a quicker Disney fix, we’ve got a condensed version waiting for you on our YouTube channel. Thank you for being a part of our Disney Unpacked community. Stay tuned for more episodes as we continue to “Unpack” the fascinating world of Disney, one story at a time.

Jim Hill

Jim Hill is an entertainment writer who has specialized in covering The Walt Disney Company for nearly 40 years now. Over that time, he has interviewed hundreds of animators, actors, and Imagineers -- many of whom have shared behind-the-scenes stories with Mr. Hill about how the Mouse House really works. In addition to the 4000+ articles Jim has written for the Web, he also co-hosts a trio of popular podcasts: “Disney Dish with Len Testa,” “Fine Tooning with Drew Taylor” and “Marvel US Disney with Aaron Adams.” Mr. Hill makes his home in Southern New Hampshire with his lovely wife Nancy and two obnoxious cats, Ginger & Betty.

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