Monday, August 10, 2020

Rainbow Ridge & Cascade Peak, May 1961

Here are some random Frontierland pix for you, circa 1961. The park hadn't even reached it's 6th birthday yet! 

By now many of the buildings of Rainbow Ridge are so familiar; the El Dorado Hotel shows up in a bazillion photos. So does Pat Casey's "Last Chance" Saloon, painted a rather shocking pink. Ol' Pat knew how to attract attention for his business. To our right is Casa de Fritos, founded by Mañuel Carlos Hidalgo Herrera de Fritos in the early 19th century. I do my research.

One of the more impressive sights along the banks of the Rivers of America was old Cacade Peak. Strange to think that erosion has worn this rocky mountain completely away, but that's nature for you.  It's not unusual to see the Pack Mules or a Mine Train in photos like this, but... no such luck.

However, I always look for the bighorn sheep in earlier photos, and even though it's a dark image, you can see two of them if you look closely. One is silhouetted against the sky on the right face, while another is harder to see, only his rear flank catches the sun toward the top center of the peak.

Sunday, August 09, 2020

Sleeping Beauty Castle

Sleeping Beauty Castle. How many photos have been taken of that thing? A billion? A lot more than that I'll bet. Here's two of them!

First up, from 1960, the castle looks like the kind of place one might expect to see in a fairytale, without cartoony colors or an overload of gold trim. I guess they've doubled down on the idea that a castle from an animated film needs to be more dazzling than it used to be.

This next one might appear to be from the same day, but it is from 1962. As I (and many others) have pointed out, the soft colors also aid with aerial perspective - a kind of forced perspective that implies that the castle is bigger and farther away. Those old-timers knew what they were doing!

Saturday, August 08, 2020

Airplane Stuff

I sure wish I had lots and lots of old slides featuring airplanes and airports. But alas! I don't have that many. We must treasure the few, as if they were blue diamonds. (Did you know that the Hope Diamond - a large blue diamond - will phosphoresce red when exposed to ultraviolet light?).

This first one is just a cool picture, presumably taken as a traveler walked across the tarmac toward their airplane. I love those planes, whatever they may be - I'd look them up, but know that A) I will probably get it wrong, and B) you guys will know for sure and inform all of us, leaving me with more time to watch cartoons.

The slide was unlabeled and undated, but I think it's safe to say that this is from the 1950's. Strange to see no jets out there! Anyway, the presence of that what appears to be several bridges in the distance made me surmise that this could be LaGuardia airport in New York. 

I found this neat photo from LaGuardia online, it has a very similar feel to the first photo.

Next we'll jump ahead all the way to 1978, where we see a wonderful Aloha Airlines plane (the "King Lunalilo") as passengers board fore and aft. I've always loved the playful, colorful graphics on Aloha Airlines' jets. I need an orange "aloha shirt" to match!

Aloha Airlines ceased operations on March 31, 2008.

I hope you have enjoyed today's airplanes and airports.

Friday, August 07, 2020

Slides, 9-1-1!

You all know how much I love restoring old slides that have seen better days. Each slide has its own peculiarities, but that's part of the challenge. And when the results are good, why, it's very satisfying! All of today's images are from June, 1974.

First up... yuck! Pink is a perfectly fine color, but not when it overpowers everything else. This first image shows us how it looked after the scanner software did what it could to correct things - it got us about 25% there.

For some reasons greens seem to be especially hard to recover, so it's always nice when those colors come back. Looking at this jpeg, I would probably increase the contrast a little, but I could fiddle with these things forever, often. It's nice to see the balloons returned to their original bright hues. And oh yeah, there's an Omnibus! I love those things.

Next is this unusual view taken from the Peoplemover! It looks like we're headed in the direction of the Plaza, at which point the Peoplemover will make a hairpin turn as it heads back toward the load platform.

As I've noted before, one of the neat things about the Anaheim Peoplemover is the way it went up and downhill, rather than staying as flat as possible. We're about to descend to the level of the Mark III Monorail as it sits at the station with its zig-zag roof. This isn't a great photo, but I don't have anything else quite like it!

Thursday, August 06, 2020

Disneyland 30th Birthday Parade - Part 2

Hear ye, hear ye! It's time for more photos from the Disneyland 30th Birthday Parade in 1985, courtesy of Lou Perry and Sue B! We're continuing with floats and characters from Frontierland that we saw in the last installment.

This parade has a lovably low-tech feel about it, with simple floats that are evocative of a small town parade. There were hundreds of participants and performers, some in costumes, others in their cast member duds, and some wearing regular clothing and perhaps a themed hat.

Even the sweeps get in on the action!

Pluto and Donald wear beaded headbands (Donald has a buckskin shirt - but still no pants) as they are perched on a giant tom-tom.

Looks like Donald can dance around (don't fall off, Donald!) while Pluto can bang out a rhythm.

Lou must have been especially pleased to see these two! Now we can see that "Adventureland" will be represented next.

Why, it's an entire band made up of jungle cruise skippers! Or so it seems at least. 

Gosh, was that one float the only thing for Adventureland? Seems kind of scanty. But Tomorrowland is coming up next, so I can't be too upset. If you look closely you can see TWO cast members wearing the old classic Tomorrowland Spaceman costumes!

Well, I guess we're not quite done with Adventureland. These ladies (maybe they worked in the various souvenir shops?) wear bright dresses and carry oversized tropical birds who may have escaped from the Enchanted Tiki Room. 

That might be Colonel Hathi bringing up the rear. Is that a giant peanut hanging from that woman's pole?! Nah, it's probably just a plush bird that looks weird from this angle. To the right a cast member appears to be handing something to a happy little girl.

I only just noticed that the sashes on some participants say "30th Year". Colonel Hathi has put on a wreath of greenery and tropical flowers for the occasion.

That's it for part 2, but don't worry, there are LOTS more photos to come from the 30th Birthday Parade! Thanks to Lou and Sue, that is.

Wednesday, August 05, 2020

Beautiful Town Square, February 1, 1959

Here are two lovely photos of Town Square as seen on February 1st, 1959. Whenever I have a specific date, I always enjoy looking at Jason's Disneyland Almanac to see what was going on. SO... it was a Sunday, and the park was open from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM. The high temperature of the day was 68 degrees (in February!). Attendance was 14,120 - pretty light, especially by today's standards.

This shot is so bright and clear. Let's go drop off our jackets in a locker in the Bekins building (in case it gets chilly when the sun sets an hour and a half before the park closes (it would get down to 45º eventually). 

These folks might have come directly from church. The little boy to the right is looking into the Firehouse with interest, perhaps the old Chemical Wagon was in there. Check out the posters for the Columbia, Jungle Cruise, and Grand Canyon Diorama!

Tuesday, August 04, 2020

Views From a Peoplemover, November 1975

We're getting down to the last few slides from a batch taken mostly aboard the Peoplemover in 1975! All good things must end, but it's been fun. 

First up, a view that is not that different from others that we've seen; Tomorrowland is leaking out into the Plaza, with Rolly Crump's swirling gold and purple flower beds to dazzle us. Look at how uncrowded it is!

Oy boy, this is one of my favorites, a real "you are there" shot as our train returns to the always-revolving load platform. We can see some of the wheels that were embedded in the track, such a simple idea that obviously worked (though it apparently went through tires like a mutha). It would have been exciting to get closer and closer to the Rocket Jets from this height! Hello, Mary Blair murals.

And another one of my favorites, as we pass an outgoing train. What a wonderful ride; I think that these days people just think of it as a slow attraction, but that was not a bad thing by any means!

I think there are only two more pictures from this series. Stay tuned.

Monday, August 03, 2020

More From the Box Full o' Fun

The response to my first "Box Full o' Fun" post was so well-received (I got a congratulatory call from Spielberg, for all you know) that it is time for a followup.

First up is this little item known as a "cello flip" - made of celluloid, and mounted on a simple pin that could be flipped over, ya see. This one features "Nipper", the mascot of RCA who was entranced by "His Master's Voice" coming from the horn of a phonograph. Who doesn't love Nipper? This is a sample version, though it would also be fun to have a specific old store's name stamped on the back. "Marty's Phonographs and Records". 

I have two very small pins - less than .75" wide - from the 1933/34 Chicago World's Fair. The first, from 1933, features the art deco logo, with swirls radiating from the planet Urf. The second pin (from 1934) shows the three fluted towers of the Federal Building. Fluted, I say!

Here's a tiny plastic child's ring featuring "Madam Mim", the mischievous witch from "The Sword In The Stone". I don't know if this was a prize kids would have received from a gumball machine, or if they were cereal prizes, or what

Yes, that cigar box has a lot of World's Fair stuff in it, including these two little gummed stickers. The one on the left advertised the General Electric "House of Magic" (cool name!) which featured such wonders as lightbulbs that worked without power cords, and popcorn popped with microwaves. Goodness gracious!  

The Oppenheim Collins sticker advertised a women's specialty clothing store based in NYC. And by "specialty clothing" I mean superhero costumes.

Here's a little tin litho badge featuring Aunt Jemima. I see these passed off as Disneyland collectibles, and while it is certainly possible that they were handed out at the park, there were many Aunt Jemima restaurants throughout the country.

And finally (for today), here's a glow-in-the-dark plastic clip/pin from the 1964 New York World's Fair. There are many different variations of this pin, with the most common saying "New York", "Pennsylvania", and so on. "California" is pretty rare. There are also versions with the names of foreign lands such as "Ireland" or "France" (maybe you've heard of them!) that are even scarcer. I have no doubt that there are collectors who are trying to get as many different examples as possible. I am not one of those people.

I hope you enjoyed today's Box Full o' Fun!

Sunday, August 02, 2020

Sub Lagoon, July 1969

The old Skyway presented a kind of visual overload. So much to see, and it was all going by so fast! What should I take a picture of? Well, maybe that beautiful peacock-blue Submarine lagoon would be good. Especially if there's a sub gliding by. Plus you get the Autopia for only an additional $29.99. Order NOW.

Seeing photos of it today, I can really appreciate the care that went into creating the naturalistic shapes and patterns, especially on the shallower areas to our right (where mermaids used to rest), with the dark and light shapes, presumably based on aerial photos of real tropical atolls.

Saturday, August 01, 2020

Knott's Berry Farm Ghost Town, October 1975

It's time for even MORE Knott's Berry Farm photos from Lou Perry and Sue B! So far we haven't really strayed outside of The Roaring 20's area, but this time we're going to be exploring the Ghost Town... the oldest (and best) part of Knott's.

The Bottle House is an interesting piece of folk art; I wonder if Walter Knott saw something like this in his younger days? There wouldn't be many trees in a desert mining area, so it only makes sense to use a plentiful resource like glass bottles! The real magic is discovered once a person has stepped inside, to find that sunlight has been transmitted through the glass; clear, green, amber, and sometimes blue. It can be surprisingly beautiful!

Next we're looking past the "Settler's Grub-Stake" restaurant toward the arched entrance (in the style of the California Missions) of Fiesta Village.

Here's a rather incredible fire engine, probably pulled by horses, but with that crazy steam apparatus for spraying water great distances. If it was green it wouldn't look out of place in the Emerald City of Oz.

There was no shortage of eateries in Knott's, I can only imagine that they pulled in a lot of money. So many hungry visitors to feed! Just thinking about it is making me hungry. Notice Whiskey Bill and Handsome Brady sitting in front of the building to our left; they are always happy to pose for a photo.

The Jersey Lilly was a replica of the Judge Roy Bean's infamous saloon. The Judge was a rascal to put it mildly. With lawmen like him, who needs bad men?

Next is the Old Knife Shop, where you could buy old knives. That tinkertoy contraption to the left is what I assume is a winch used to haul rich ore out of the Lucky Cuss Mine. To the right, three people are looking into that building, which might have contained one of the famous "peek-ins". 

And lastly, this shot is very similar to image #4, only we can see "Old Betsy", a rusted out mine locomotive that, as far as I know, is still sitting at Knott's today!

MANY THANKS to Lou and Sue for sharing these great photos!!
Extra! Extra! GDB friend JG was digging through some boxes, and found a treasure from the past - a small vial filled with genuine gold dust! As I've mentioned before, these bottles evoke some sense-memories for me, especially the pleasantly chilly water (which was almost certainly snow melt from the High Sierras!). It's a wonderful souvenir. Thank you, JG!