Saturday, July 05, 2008

Two from Tomorrowland

Here's a neat view of the blue Monorail a-waitin' at the station, circa 1963. The crowds look light, and the line for the Submarine Voyage is suprisingly short. Oh man! If only I could hop into the photo and ride the old classic Subs over and over.

Now we step back to 1960 for a familiar - but still great! - view of Tomorrowland. I never really thought about it before, but it is obvious that the famous berm, visible in so many other Disney "lands", sort of peters out in this corner of the park. I think that backstage Tomorrowland was a major entrance for trucks and other service vehicles.

UPDATE: For reader Coxpilot, here is a closeup of the Flight Circle area. Unfortunately it is not as clear as I (or you!) would like, but maybe there will be some clue to help you see if you are in the photo.


CoxPilot said...

Your right about the backside of Tomorrowland being the service area for the park. Almost all employees (the use of "cast member" didn't seem to gain popularity in those days) entered thru the gate and drive that went under the RR tracks. The offices, wardrobe, locker rooms and showers, were all in that building behind the moon ride. Also; there was a truck entrance and gate that was to the left (just out of photo) that came from the monorail/horse barn area. This was later closed off. To the right, and behind the Red Wagon/Plaza Inn, was the main staging area for most of the parades then, and would enter Main Street thru the gate next to the Opera House. Some of the parades were staged near the horse barn and entered the gate where Small World was later placed (and the gate closed).

I wish I could see closer into the Flight Circle. It looks like there is a show going on, and I can just make out three people in there. Maybe me?

Great shots. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Neat Monorail pic. Wonder if that antenna (top left) was used for two-way Monorail communications?

Matt said...

Man, I love these! Thanks again for the pix, especially Tomorrowland.

CoxPilot said...

Yup! That's me standing with the mic. George Molitor kneeling down, and Bart Klapinski bending over. They are leaning over the orange fiberglass matt we used as a starting point for the planes (it kept the oil from making such a mess). You can really see the gold thimble around the red lettering (Thimble Drome). I can identify the people because of the body language and the hair style. (Keith Palmer must have been off that day.) Thanks for the extra effort. We were paid $1.25/hour for all the fun.

Unknown said...

That second shot is great!

Tomorrowland is the one land that could get away with outside intrusions..

CoxPilot, it is awesome that the vintage photo guys have been able to find you in the flight circle!

CoxPilot said...

It's a unique situation because there were the same group of people (about 7 in all) that worked the Circle for most of the years it was open. Don Hatcher, Keith Palmer, George Molitor, Bart Klapinski and myself, were there almost the entire time (except for the early days of the hobby club operation).

Don was the boss until he moved into the main plant, and then Keith took over until he did the same. I ran things for a few months before the final shutdown in 1965. Three or four other guys worked temporarily for one or two summers each. I'm afraid I don't remember there names.

We all were employed by L. M. Cox Mfg. Co. of Santa Ana, CA, and worked a 10 hour day, 4 days a week in the summers. The crews were rotated 3 days on, 1 off, 1 on, and this allowed the days to fall differently every other week. We did a half hour show every hour (on the half hour), and used the rest of the time to clean up, repair planes, and cruise all over the park. Keith, George, Bart and myself did short days during the winter (12 to 5) on Friday, Saturday and Sunday only.

And you can thank Dave D. at for finding me through a model airplane discussion group.

Unknown said...

Hi, I'm John Young and I worked in the Flight Circle with Bart, and Keith in 1962 summer season. It was truly a fantastic experience which I'll never forget. I met Keith, but didn't know him, in his folks hobby shop. His mo had me helping some kids build models on the summer of 59 I believe. Didn't get to know Keith though until I went to work there. Bart is the one who heed me land the gig. He taught me to fly two P-40's, one in each hand. I never got the third one. Only he and Keith did that. Maybe other season, eh Bart?

Get in touch man, would love to hear from you. Been a while.