Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Walt Disney World "Vacationland" Magazine - Part 2

Here is part deux of Ken Martinez's issue No. 1 of "Walt Disney World Vacationland" magazine! Of course you've already read, enjoyed, and memorized part one, right? RIGHT?? Here's Ken:

Walt Disney World Vacationland Magazine Inaugural Edition Fall 1971 – Part 2 Cinderella Castle and Liberty Square

As noted in the last post, like its sibling park in Anaheim, Walt Disney World had its own Vacationland Magazine published quarterly.  The articles shown here are from the inaugural edition of the magazine focused on Walt Disney World and other area attractions.  This is part two.

This two page article titled “A Castle for Cinderella” mentions the Dorothea Redmond title murals inside the castle walkway and the original second story restaurant, King Stefan’s Banquet Hall.

Featured in this article is the “land” unique to Walt Disney World, Liberty Square and “The Hall of Presidents”.

Here is also mentioned the “Diamond Horseshoe Revue” which I do remember as being listed under Liberty Square instead of Frontierland.  But, so were the “Admiral Joe Fowler” and “Mike Fink Keelboats”.  In some ways, Frontierland and Liberty Square blended in together.

There’s more to come from this inaugural Vacationland magazine including articles on the Disney World resorts.  Hope you enjoyed today’s post.

Thank you, Ken!


Nanook said...


I almost forgot about the five, 70mm projectors, prior to the change to digital projection. Progress, progress...

Thanks again, Ken, for more images from WDW Vacationland, Fall 1971.

MonkeyMensch said...

Thanks so much Ken. It's starting to look more and more like I'm going to have to make a trip down to Florida. It'll be fun...

TokyoMagic! said...

I think it's pretty neat that Walt's idea for a "Liberty Street" and a "Hall of Presidents" were eventually realized....even if they didn't get built at Disneyland where they were originally intended.

Can guests still "stroll on an outside terrace" after dining at the restaurant inside Cinderella's Castle?

Thanks for sharing, Ken!

Chuck said...

I've never quite figured out why King Stefan, Princess Aurora's 14th-Century father, had a banquet hall in the castle that Cinderella lived in in the 19th Century. Maybe Stefan was Cindy's hubby's multi-great grandfather?

I recall that circular staircase referenced in the Vacationland article well. On my first visit at age 10, I remember walking up the steps behind my little sister, completely absorbed in the theming and that eager anticipation of "what will I see next." I was totally unprepared for the full suit of armor at the top of the steps and jumped back, startled.

Unfortunately, my mother was right behind me, wearing open-toed shoes, and I ended up bending back the nail on her big toe. This would be the same toe I had stepped on and bruised the previous day while she was wearing the same shoes. Needless to say, although I remember this well, there is no way I would ever be allowed to forget it.

Last time I was there in '04, that suit of armor was still there. Fortunately, I had steeled myself before our inevitable confrontation, and my entire party managed to make it past the metal menace unscathed.

Thanks again, Ken!

K. Martinez said...

Nanook, It's amazing that we forget what was new and state-of-the-art back then and part of the future of technology, but now is in the long past. Glad you enjoyed today's post.

MonkeyMensch, I'm sure you'd have a blast if you went to Florida. Just remember that summer is hot and sticky and crowded.

When I first went to WDW in 1978, Liberty Square and the Hall of Presidents were really high on my list of things to visit when at the Magic Kingdom. I was not disappointed. I have no idea if you can still stroll on an outside terrace in the Cinderella Castle restaurant.

Chuck, perhaps they were trying to incorporate Sleeping Beauty into their version of Fantasyland in some way. It never bothered me. In fact I like the name "King Stefan's Banquet Hall" a lot better than "Cinderella's Royal Table".

I love your story of the the suit of armor at the top of the steps and stepping on your mother's toe. I bet she never wore open toed shoes to a Disney park again. As always, your theme park stories are great to read.

Melissa said...

Yay! More Vacationland!

Hey, any typeface nerds out there want to weigh in on what font they're using for the word “Vacationland” on the cover? It looks to me like something from the Franklin Gothic family, which was my default choice when I was doing layouts and desktop publishing at work.

IMO the glittering Cinderella murals are as fine as anything in a real palace. It's harder to take in the full effect these days because the corridor through the castle is usually pretty crowded, and the front door is often obstructed during shows.

Liberty Square is one of my favorite lands; aside from recent changes to the Haunted Mansion and its new gift shop, it may be the most unchanged from opening day (if you don't count the attractions that really belong in Frontierland). Also, there are some tree-lined walkways around the Liberty Bell replica that are perfect when you need a quiet moment.

There's a really awesome article about Liberty squares architecture on Passport to Dreams Old and New.

I still remember being awed the first time I saw the Hall of Presidents show; it was so cool how they all fidgeted like real people. And no trip is complete without lunch at the Liberty tree tavern and funnel cakes at Sleepy Hollow. The arched glass tankards from the LTT are my favorite souvenirs; they're only $5 and so sturdy I've used them everyday for years.

If I had to *guess* the motivation for naming the restaurant “King Stefan's Banquet,” it would probably be that there were banquet hall scenes in Sleeping Beauty but not in Cinderella. Idunno.

Stuart Powley said...

I agree that no trip is complete without lunch at the Columbia Harbor House. I usually get the clam chowder. Many people don't realize that on the second floor, in the room that overlooks the Haunted Mansion, the pictures on the walls turn a bit ghostly. There is a map of the "Ghost Fleet of the Grand Banks" and an illustration of the Flying Dutchman, among other things. Subtle, but cool!


I love Liberty Square at Walt Disney World. One thing that has recently annoyed me is when Imagineers make a design change from something historically mentioned about a WED research detail . In this case how " window shutters used to hang crooked because of the leather hinges used"

This was true of ONLY with the earliest Dutch -colonial structures - the first few buildings guests encounter because during this time metal was hard to come by and leather hungers were used rather than metal ( likeSleepy Hallow Refreshments and the structures adjacent) and WED Imagineers depicted this architectural "foible" correctly up until about a decade ago. Now ALL the shutters in Liberty Square have crooked - droopy shutters . By the mid 1700's colonial America had some of the finest metal workers and craftsmen in the world - and the structures that are represented in LIBERTY SQUARE would have been pristine architectural examples in their hey-day.

Some over zealous imagineer decided to do their research from a 1980's Walt Disney World souvenir book sentence rather than do some real research.
Other correct details Liberty Square has lost over the years are simple details like barrels . I remember John Hench saying how even the barrels and kegs in Liberty Square would be correct to the period with the round wood bands that were tipical of the 1700's. For many years these atmospheric details were correct - I remember in the late 1990's seeing a mix - Liberty Square type barrels and kegs would be seen in Frontierland also - eventually the colonial style barrels disappeared all together and now 1800's style barrels are used in both Frontierland and Liberty Square.

I know such small details seem highly unimportant and just a case of nit-picking , but they were once highly important details to WED Imagineers because they did things Walt's way - being authentic as possible - even though guests may not know these things - they will appreciate the over all effect and that These details would reflect an organization concerned with quality and authentic.
"Any job big or small , do it right or not at all"

Nanook said...

@ MC-
The devil is always in the details. And that was one thing Disney used to get right. Even if most guests rarely picked up on such accuracies consciously, on a sub conscious level their point was being made.

Melissa said...

Also, they should have Pocahontas greeting in Liberty Square instead of, or along with, Tiana. You got a movie set in Colonial America and a land based on Colonial America - ??? I guess Tiana kind of makes sense with the riverboat dock being in LAS, but still.

Chuck said...

I remember a re-enactor at Greenfield Village in the late '80s who would portray Benjamin Franklin. Something like that in Liberty Square would be really cool. For those who just have to have a "Disney touch" on everything they see in a Disney Park, they could put a small, animatronic mouse on his hat.

Chuck said...

Typing without my glasses again. For the sake of accuracy, make that "Greenfield Village the late '70s."

The Disney Dudebro said...

Both Liberty Square and the Hall of Presidents fill me with patriotic fervor every time I visit, but, eh, well let's just say with their most recent addition to the hall, that fervor has somewhat dimmed.

Sorry to get political (then again, we're talking about an attraction and land about politics), but regardless of your political affiliation, there's no denying that the Hall of Presidents has been surrounded with a lot of controversy lately, especially since the most recent addition has proven quite controversial himself in real life.

I managed to visit the show last week, and I'll be honest, I was half expecting some people to start booing. Fortunately, no one did. Though I'm sure people were less persuaded to do so following that one incident of some nutcase screaming "lock him up!"

I can only imagine how people reacted when Dubya was the main star of the attraction. I heard people were really riled up over him, and considering the controversies surrounding him, I don't blame it.

I don't know. As much as I appreciate the Hall of Presidents, there's no denying that the attraction has become more divisive the more the country as a whole becomes divided.

Well, at least there's always the American Adventure.

Melissa said...

Yeah, with the state of politics today, it would probably be a good idea to go back to the version of the show where only Mr. Lincoln gives a speech.


The Hall of Presidents attraction should have never had ANY current president speak. The Clinton version being one of the biggest disgraces ever. - sadly his crime had to tarnish the nice narration Mya Angelou recorded. A brand new attraction poster had been developed for the Clinton version of Hall of Presidents - but when all the crap began to surface the new attraction poster was not put into production and the 1978 variation of the original 1971 Hall of Presidents poster was re-installed . The newest poster shows no Presidents at all. One day I'll show the Clinton version attraction poster on my attraction poster blog.

In general ALL audio animatronics of current living figures are BAD and never look like the actually people - also the audience has a reference point to compare the AA figure to the actual living motions and inflections of the living person .
A problem imagining /garner Holt have with AA figures these days is the urge to OVER ANNIMATE the figure - and then it comes off OVER FAKE


In the early years of Liberty Square , besides the Fife and Drum Corp. , there were live actors that portrayed Ben Franklin and would share wisdom and quotes from his Poor Richards Almanac . There was also a Town Cryer that would ring his bell and share with guests news of Liberty Square. The Fife and Drum would several times a day gather around the Liberty Tree and select "new" member of the Sons (and daughters) of Liberty. The two would each receive a rolled copy of the Declaration of Independence and a Liberty Square medal/badge. The boy a felt tri-corner hat and the girl a cloth Lillian hat.

Dean Finder said...

MC - thanks for the details. I had known about the "leather hinges" (as well as the brown paving in Liberty Square to indicate the open sewer), but hadn't realized that they had been added to buildings that should not have had them.

Regarding the over-animated AAs, I think it's because many of the venues are large, especially HoP, and they want to be sure that even people in the back can see that they're moving, which makes them look odd to people sitting closer. They look OK to me, since I do sit in the back at this show (where, incidentally, I once got to hear some astoundingly racist comments while Obama's AA was speaking). On the other hand, I always sit in the front of the Carousel of Progress so I can lead the crowd in a rendition of "A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow"

Melissa said...

Yes, singing along with the chorus is half the fun of the Carousel of Progress!

The town crier was there in 2012 when my sister and I went for her birthday. I went to the Magic Kingdom at rope drop while my sister slept a little later, but I was wearing one of our matching t-shirts with “2012 MAGICAL BIRTHDAY TRIP” on the front. The town crier spotted me taking his picture, called me over, corralled another guest to take our picture together, and asked me if it was my birthday. When I said it was my sister's, he told me to bring her back when she got to the park. He remembered me immediately, asked my sister a couple questions, and then rang his bell and did a big “Hear ye, hear ye” all about her birthday. He was such a nice guy!

Chuck said...

Mike Cozart, I have never been comfortable about ANY current President speaking in the HoP. The original hook for the attraction (as well as Great Moments With Mr Lincoln) was to be able to see one of our great, long-dead Presidents, a man we have no film or audio recordings of, come to life, allowing us to be inspired by his actual words.

We see any current President in the news daily, and listening to a speech recorded by them while a mechanical representation flails about in front of us becomes both underwhelming and, in our political culture, inevitably divisive. There would have been negative reaction from some guests with any version of any sitting President speaking at any point in time since 1971.

Unfortunately, now that the precedent has been set for over 20 years (thanks, Mike Eisner), there's no easy way for the company to not extend an invitation to each successive occupant of the White House. It will take a sitting President with a little perspective and humility (which, unfortunately, are not traits that encourage people to run for office these days) to politely refuse the offer and suggest perhaps going back to the original Lincoln speech, which seems more timely every time I hear it:

"This government must be preserved in spite of the acts of any man or set of men. Nowhere in the world is presented a government of so much liberty and equality. To the humblest and poorest among us are held the highest privileges and positions. What constitutes the bulwark of our liberty and independence? It is not the frowning battlements, or bristling seacoast, our army and navy. These are not our reliance against tyranny. Our reliance is in the love of liberty which God has planted in us. Our defense is in the spirit which prizes liberty as the heritage of all men, in all lands everywhere. Destroy this spirit and you have planted the seeds of despotism at your own doors.

"At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic giant to step the ocean and crush us at a blow? Never. All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined could not, by force, take a drink from the Ohio or make a track on the Blue Ridge.

"At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up among us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we, ourselves, must be its author and its finisher. As a nation of free men, we must live through all time, or die by suicide. Surely God would not have created such a being as man, with an ability to grasp the infinite to exist only for a day. No. No. Man was made for immortality."

Melissa said...

There would have been negative reaction from some guests with any version of any sitting President speaking at any point in time since 1971.

Quoted for truth. I can understand the motivation; in most cases, linking history with present-day people and events can make it feel more meaningful. But that’s just not the case with this show, in this venue.

And yes, I have also been thinking about that Lincoln speech a lot during the past few years.

K. Martinez said...

Thank you all for chiming in. Great conversation going on here. I'm pretty sure when I saw "The Hall of Presidents" show in the 1970's it was only Lincoln who spoke and the rest of the presidents just nodded and fidgeted.

GRSshoes said...

Very nice blog...

The Disney Dudebro said...

There would have been negative reaction from some guests with any version of any sitting President speaking at any point in time since 1971.

Considering Richard Nixon was in office, that certainly would be true.

Anonymous said...

I've never seen the Hall of Presidents. Now I am not sure that I want to do so.

I remember seeing Mr. Lincoln with my Dad when it was new. Dad was amazed by the fidgeting and refused to believe "he" was a robot, not an actor.

And yes, even 10-year-old me understood the meaning of the passage that Chuck quoted. Lincoln was right and now we have a front row seat watching it come true.

Now that I know the Carousel of Progress is still running in MK, I am definitely going. I miss that show so much.

Ken and Major, thank you for the hard work assembling this post, it's really great to see these articles.