Monday, April 10, 2017
Hey folks, here is PART DEUX of Ken Martinez's article featuring a 1979 WDW guide!
Walt Disney World Guide – The Vacation Kingdom 1979 (Part 2)
Here’s the second half of the guide from my second trip to Walt Disney World. As I mentioned before, my first visit was in 1978. I visited again in 1979, 1983 and 1984. My experience outside the gates of the Magic Kingdom was somewhat limited, but I did see a few things during those visits to the Florida property during its early years.
This is the map I remember during my visits to Walt Disney World. As you can see, the property was pretty manageable as far as being able to see much of what there was to offer. Later during the Eisner era there was so much added that it would be pretty impossible to see everything in a single vacation.
Of course since the guide booklet was by Polaroid, there would be pages on how to take pictures and movies of Walt Disney World. I’m trying to remember if they had picture spots like Disneyland did. Does anyone know?
On the complimentary attractions I do remember going on “If You Had Wings” several times, but only went on Carousel of Progress once. I didn’t go on Monsanto’s America the Beautiful which I now think is strange because it was also free. Back in the early days they still utilized ticket system and I spent most of my energy buying extra ‘E’ tickets and riding those attractions.
I saw both the Main Street Electrical Parade and the Electrical Water Pageant. I remember upon my first visit, I took the monorail from the TTC to the Magic Kingdom in the early morning, but in the evening after watching the Electrical Parade and Fantasy in the Sky, I returned to the TTC via ferryboat. That is when I saw the Electrical Water Pageant. It was definitely a magical experience for me.
I never stayed at any Disney Hotel, but instead off-property. It was just too expensive for my budget. I was only 18 years old when I first visited Magic Kingdom and I was on my own. I did walk through the lobbies of both the Contemporary and Polynesian Resort hotels and investigated the grounds a little bit, but that was it.
As for the Gold Resort Hotel and Fort Wilderness Campground, I didn’t see either of those on any of the trips I took to Walt Disney World except in the distance. Love the image of the Fort Wilderness Railroad train (Wilderness Line).
In Lake Buena Vista Village I visited The Walt DIsney World Shopping Village. The place was very much removed from the core of Walt Disney World at the time.
Don’t know what I can say about the Villas as I never saw them. Funny thing about the ad for their films here is that around this time (1979) I lost interest in Disney Studio output. The only films I remember watching in the theater during that time were “The Black Hole” and ‘Tron”. I wouldn’t bother with Disney movies again until Eisner came on board and brought the studio to current times.
And of course there’s a Polaroid ad on the back cover because the guide is sponsored by Polaroid. At least that’s how I think it works.
That concludes “The Complete Guide to Walt Disney World Vacation Kingdom” (1979). I hope you enjoyed the images and recollections of my early visits to the Florida property. As I said before, I haven’t been back in over 30 years and I know it’s not the same as those early years. Next stop… EPCOT Center!
THANK YOU to Ken Martinez for all of his time and effort ( I know these take a lot of time ) in putting these posts together, I am very appreciative of all of his hard work.