"I only hope that we don't lose sight of one thing - that it was all started by a mouse," said Walt Disney. The iconic symbol of Mickey Mouse is one of the most recognizable figures that has launched countless movies, merchandise, and of course, Disneyland. The famous mouse is one of the most beloved animated characters, started by a man with a dream. For 60 years, Disneyland has been the source of endless inspiration and wonder, attracting millions of visitors each year. Disneyland is paved with layered history and subtle details that rest in tiny nooks and crevices throughout the park. New discoveries can be found around every corner, each detail possessing a story or unsolved mystery.
From Main Street to Fantasyland, New Orleans Square to Tomorrowland, Frontierland to Toontown, Disneyland is filled with features dreamed up by Walt Disney himself or others involved in the creation of the park. Walt Disney’s lasting legacy is enjoyed by countless individuals of all ages. Even well-known celebrities got their start in show business by working at the park in the early years of their careers. No matter how many times you have visited the park and took in the magical sights, there are some little known facts and history that many over look.
Here are some surprising facts you didn’t know about the “Happiest Place on Earth.”
12 Steve Martin Worked In The Magic Shop
At the age of 10, Steve Martin started working at Disneyland selling guidebooks. In his autobiography, Born Standing Up: A Comic’s Life, Martin describes his boyhood years roaming the grounds of the park, recalling that Disneyland “seemed so glorious that I believed it should be in some faraway, impossible to visit Shangri-la, not two miles from where I grew up.”
11 Club 33
10 Disneyland’s Address
9 Only Three Unscheduled Closed Days
8 Smellitzers Along Main Street
7 George Lucas Among First Visitors
6 The Golden Apple
5 Gold Marks the Spot
4 Peering Evil Queen
3 Michelle Pfeiffer as Alice
2 The Dictionary of the Haunted Mansion
1 The Famous Bench
On a park bench in the heart of Los Angeles, Walt Disney sat watching his daughters on a merry-go-round at Griffith Park. In the frenzy-whizzing sight of the attraction, the first spark of inspiration emerged, and the rest is Disney history. Walt Disney was first inspired to build a theme park sitting on that park bench. The humble pale blue bench has been installed and put on display in the Opera House lobby. Directly above the display is the famous black and white picture of Walt Disney walking through Sleeping Beauty's Castle, taken the day before Disneyland first open its gates to the public.
Sources: www.disneyparkhistory.com; disneylandinsideout.com; www.laweekly.com; www.ocregister.com
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