Thursday, June 04, 2020

Flower Market, Decemberr 1977

Here's a pair of photos of a familiar subject... the Flower Market. But these photos are unusual, because (as you can see), by 1977 the Flower Market had moved across Main Street to East Center Street! Up is down, cats are marrying dogs, 2 + 2 = 5... the world has gone mad! 

The Carnation Ice Cream Parlor expanded out into West Center Street, adding more tables, shaded with (what else?) red and white-striped umbrellas. The Upjohn Pharmacy was now the home of the "New Century Clock and Watch Shop", with a giant pocket watch taking the place of Upjohn's stained glass mortar and pestle sign. The Hallmark Communication Center is to our right, it would be there until early 1985, a full quarter century. 

To our left is the former home of the Market House, sponsored by Swift. Other lessees were C&H Sugar, Sunsweet Growers, Spice Island, Burry's Cookies, and Del Monte/Sun Giant. From what I can glean, there was no sponsor in 1977 when this picture was taken.


Nanook said...


Yes, the world has gone plum loco-! But we still have bouquets of flowers to calm our nerves - even if they're not real.

Thanks, Major.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Well, if this is December, then those folks are getting ready to watch a Christmas parade, right? But just a few years too soon for watching TokyoMagic in it. (Were any of our other readers in any other Disney parades??)

I always LOVE the Flower Market pictures . . . so colorful, and great memories of the past. Thank you, Major!


Nanook said...

@ Sue-
That parade should be the Very Merry Christmas Parade, premiering that year.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Nanook, good morning! I like your comment . . . and I do see yellow roses in both pictures. Yellow roses represent a celebration of friendship; they're a meaningful gift to give a friend. How 'apropos' for GDB!

Anonymous said...

For those keeping score at home, the two sweepers doubling up Center Street (owing to the parade) in the first photo are, from left to right, Andy Baker and Albert Clarke.

Now you know. ;)


"Lou and Sue" said...

Nanook, those lucky folks are seeing that parade for the first time (premier year) - how cool! Thank you for that info!

Huck - HOW COOL(!) that you know those folks! I do recognize your name from reading some of the older GDB posts. I believe you gave the Major pictures of CM outfits to post, right? I hope you don't mind me asking, but were you a CM at Disneyland? Please fill me in, as I've only been with GDB for a year and am still learning who's who.


TokyoMagic! said...

Sue, yes this was four years before I was in "Fantasy On Parade." As Nanook stated, 1977 was the year that "The Very Merry Christmas Parade" debuted. It only ran for three years and then in 1980, they brought back "Fantasy On Parade" for the Christmas season. FOP had originally run from 1965 to 1976.

Steve DeGaetano said...

And the gas lamps have mantles! An authentic detail.

The mantles were removed many years ago. I contend that they were removed for cost-saving benefits, but Imagineer Eddie Sotto tells me the flickering gas flames that are seen without mantles provided a more romantic effect.

stu29573 said...

The side streets gave Main Street depth, which makes it seem very real. The first photo really shows the effect off well. I can attest that now WDWs Main Street seems like what it is...a couple of industrial buildings with interesting facades. Losing the side streets and opening up all the shops to each other destroyed the illusion of a small town. Sometimes I wonder about modern imagineers....

Melissa said...

The color scheme of OG Main Street was perfection.

DrGoat said...

Huck, I'm with Lou & Sue. Any more details would be great.
Noticed a lot of heavy jackets and coats, so it must have been a relatively chilly day, except for Andy who must have been a cold weather guy.
Major, I had totally forgotten when the flower market flipped sides.
I always picture it on the west side, even in later times.
Missed the Upjohn place right away but I guess there's more money in selling watches then nothing.
I can't remember, did the New Century eventually become the Disney Time Works? Or was it further north on that side. The last thing my Mom bought me from Disneyland was a Mickey chronograph from the Timeworks store. Our last trip together, in '96 maybe. Still wear it occasionally.
Thanks Major, love the flowers.

Chuck said...

Stu, I wonder if it's less about modern Imagineers than modern Imagineers being forced to do their best to meet ever-increasing demands from modern Merchandising and Management for more sales floor space. We tend to be focused on the Show because that's the part that means something to us. The Company as a whole is more focused on providing a show as a means to maximize profits.

Andrew said...

Both of these would make great Viewmaster slides!

zach said...

Thank you to all the knowledgeable GDBers who help make this blog what I think the Major wanted it to be.

Me? I get to see the photos which trigger memories and then I get to learn more about what I am seeing!

I have to admit I never spent much time in the flower market but those yellow roses are very pretty.

And now my butt hurts just looking at those people waiting for the parade.

As JG has said, come for the photos, stay for the comments.


Nanook said...

@ Chuck-

I think you hit the nail right on the head: The Disney parks are fast-becoming just an excuse to ‘maximize profits’. Who needs side streets, etc.-?

JG said...

I want some red roses for a blue lady, and maybe later a white orchid.

But these yellow roses will do fine as a stand-in.

Mom loved the Flower Mart, and so did I, at least partly because she loved it. It was a never-fail stop on the way out of the Park.

Like Dr. Goat, I forgot for a while that they moved it. The pressure of the Carnation patio was too much to overcome. I did see this configuration at least once, since I remember remarking on it, but then I moved away for 20 years and when I came back, the Flower Mart, and so much else, was gone.

On my last visit, 3 years ago now, I noticed that there was a vendor cart with drinks, fruit, and "healthy snacks" in East Center Street. A few baskets of artificial flowers (not for sale) were added as props. So someone is at least nodding in the direction of the old Flower Mart. It was a welcome sight to me.

I suppose plastic flowers just are not the sales draw that they were in the 60's-70's. I remember for a while after that they were considered tacky and not fit for stylish homes. A natural swing in styles, I guess. Nice ones are coming back in style now, so there you go.

The side street designs are very subtle. It's hard to notice when you are there, but very evident in aerial view that the streets angle away back toward the train station end of Main Street. I think this gives an added effect of depth and discovery, making them and the whole Main Street seem larger and more complicated than they really are. The OG color scheme looks like a real town, not today's circus or Potemkin village.

Thank you, Huck, for the names of the CM's! What a great piece of information, it really brings the photos back to life. How nice it must be to see your friends in these pictures. I would love to do that.

And Thank you, Zach for the shout-out, much appreciated. Having a cup of tea with my friends in Disneyland is a great start to the day.

Thanks Major, for making it possible.


Chuck said...

JG, I wasn't aware that the Naavi were partial to roses, particularly with so much gorgeous flora on Pandora. Or...were you talking about Nebula? It's hard to keep up with the ever expanding universe of acquired IPs.

Melissa said...

chutes and ladders
Toast Rack
urban viii
spinning wheel

Steve DeGaetano said...

Nice, Melissa!

That may be the first spam I've seen on this site!

"Lou and Sue" said...

Melissa! LOL!

Steve, I think we get spam more often than we realize, as I think our Major works hard to stay on top of it (and delete it), if I recall correctly from past comments. Now, hopefully, he doesn’t erase today’s spam, or Melissa’s comment-spam won’t make sense. :)

Major Pepperidge said...

Blog comments responses, part 1:

Nanook, how am I supposed to enjoy plastic and cloth flowers on EAST Center Street? It has clouded my aura.

Lou and Sue, I didn’t really think about a Christmas parade, but you’re probably right. (By the way, I only just noticed my typo in the title, “Decemberr”. Two “r’s”. D’oh.

Nanook, I will take your word for it, because I sure don’t know.

Lou and Sue, I was always partial to yellow roses with a tinge of pink on the edges. Not sure what you call those. The Huntington Gardens has a rose garden with hundreds of varieties, it’s kind of fascinating.

Huck, amazing! I love it that you can ID some of your old coworkers in these photos. On the small chance that you are still in contact with them, you should tell them that they are now BIG internet stars! ;-)

Lou and Sue, I am a little surprised that people were already finding their good spots for watching the parade, I didn’t think that happened until the 90s or later, but… there it is. And yes, it was Huck who so generously shared those great cast member costume photos.

TokyoMagic!, I always wonder why the decision was made to do away with “Fantasy On Parade”, only to bring it back after a mere three years? Was “The Very Merry Christmas Parade” considered lacking by the public?

Steve DeGaetano, wow, that’s a great detail, thanks for pointing it out! I always liked the way mantles glowed in our old Coleman lanterns, it seemed like magic.

stu29573, I agree with you, it would have felt like a weird alleyway if there were no side streets. Though… probably most people wouldn’t notice, you know how that goes. The side streets also gave good locations for things like pay phones (remember those?) and bathrooms. A lot of the design details that were put in the park for very good reasons have been changed or removed, probably due to the much larger daily crowds during normal times.

Melissa, I find the brickwork to be charming, I guess I am weird!

DrGoat, as I’m sure you know it can actually get chilly during SoCal winters. Not “midwest blizzard” cold, but you still probably want to wear a warm jacket. I can only assume that Upjohn made the decision that sponsoring the pharmacy on Main Street was no longer cost-effective, maybe they figured TV reached more people (which would certainly be true). But I would argue that even today some people have the “warm fuzzies” for Upjohn in a way that they would never have for any other pharmaceutical company. Same with Monsanto, which became the symbol of corporate evil for so many, but to me, they’re Disneyland sponsors! A document that was shared with me says that the Upjohn Pharmacy became the New Century Clock Shop in January of 1972.

Chuck, I have no doubt that the “suits” often tell the Imagineers to make changes that are less about creating an immersive, stimulating, pleasant experience and more about maximizing profits (as you said). That’s not to say that the two are mutually exclusive, but it seems that something is always missing these days.

Andrew, just that sentence made me think of the feeling of the Viewmaster viewer pressed against the bridge of my nose, the click of the lever, and the warmth of the nearby lightbulb!

Major Pepperidge said...

Blog comment responses, part 2:

zach, you are so right, in fact I never dreamed that I would have the benefit of a friendly and knowledgeable group of readers - certainly not to this level. It’s awesome. Like you, I probably never even looked at the Flower Market (though I would think my grandma would insist on taking a look, so maybe I’ve just forgotten). And yes, those people are going to suffer from “curb butt” for hours!

Nanook, I can’t help thinking about all of the stuff that was planned for “Galaxy’s Edge” that was eliminated due to budgetary reasons. The characters that would interact with guests and such. Such a shame.

JG, I think I have mentioned this before, but someone gave my mom an orchid last year, and it actually took us a while to figure out that it wasn’t real! My mom loves it because it always looks good and needs almost no care (though it does get dusty sometimes). I can’t be too upset about the addition of seating for Carnation, since they could just move the Flower Market across the street, so… no big harm ultimately. And yes, the ODV carts are there now - I can’t say I love them, but people want a $5 bottle of water, so I guess they serve a purpose. I like your comparison to a Potemkin Village, ha hs. It’s always fun when commenters shout-out each other!

Chuck, roses on Pandora are probably lethal. Not only poisonous, but they bite!

Melissa, I deleted that spam comment, but I felt bad about it because now yours doesn’t seem to make sense (even though I loved it)! I’m not gonna let those guys make money on GDB if I don’t! ;-) 30 additional points for the word “knockwurst”.

Steve DeGaetano, aaaaugggh, now I’m actually feeling guilty about deleting spam! FYI, I delete spam comments fairly regularly, but sometimes they sneak through before I have a chance to deal with them.

Lou and Sue, ha ha, see my comment to Steve! There have been times when some ‘bot will be really bad - I remember when I was getting 60 to 80 spam comments PER DAY. It was maddening. Going back to reread old blog posts, I see that some spam is still there, but I’m too lazy to deal with it.

Major Pepperidge said...

I feel like the least I can do is place the non-linked text of the spam here, so people can see what Melissa was responding to! From a "games" company:

knock ball
aim game
shooting game
jigsaw puzzle
Ghost Block
urban game
wrecking ball

Melissa said...

Of course there are two R's in "Decemberr," because Brr, it's cold out!

I really debated with myself about writing that comment, because I knew the Major would have to delete the original. But in the end I just couldn't help it. I figured I could delete my response after it no longer made sense.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's because I never noticed, but do they still do these in Disney Parks? Set up booths during the spring to sell flowers? Perhaps I never noticed, and I've been a passholder since 2015.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Sue! :)

I started at the park in early 1976 and quit at the end of 1980. During my five years there, no one (and I mean no one), including the most pixie dust-intoxicated/Disney Kool-Aid drinking employee, EVER referred to him or herself as a cast member. The term makes my skin crawl.

It was a different time. The park was still closed on Mondays and Tuesday during the winter and there were only slightly more than a thousand (total) full time and permanent part time year-round employees (including folks in administration, at the Mill, landscaping, night crew, etc. that most of us seldom saw). We sweepers were AFL-CIO members and ride operators were Teamsters. We were paid well and received night differential, foreman bonus and other rate increases. All full-time and PPT had complete medical coverage, paid vacation days, stock options and a pension after five years of employment.

As we all know… those days are long gone at Disneyland and the other company parks.

Albert was one of the first black sweepers, mostly because the employment people were concerned about placing black individuals in janitorial. People *did* periodically throw cigarette butts, popcorn boxes, flash cubes, etc. at us with the admonition that we should “Sweep it up! It’s your job!” so those employment folks did have cause for concern. If a security person was handy, we’d advise them about trash being thrown at us (I had many a *lit* cigarette bounce off my chest—great, huh?) and they’d march those folks down to the Main Gate and throw them out. But, most of the time, we’d just shake our heads and walk away. Albert was a tall, strong-looking fellow so I don’t think anybody tried that nonsense on him. He was brand new in 1977 and quit around 1979, as I recall. A great guy with a quiet smile… everybody loved Albert!

Andy is still friends with a friend of mine and goes by the name Drew now. I haven’t seen him in forty years. I think he lasted at the park until 1983 or so.

That’s all I know!


JG said...

@Huck. Thank you. I'm sorry I said CM, didn't know it wasn't a good memory for you.

@MagicEarsEtc. The flower mart was a year-round feature and it sold only artificial flowers (as far as I recall). It was eliminated at some point in the 80's. I don't know if the Disneyland mart had a WDW counterpart or not.


TokyoMagic! said...

Major, I'm not sure why they got rid of the "Very Merry Christmas Parade" after such a short time. Many of the floats from the parade were incorporated into the new version of "Fantasy On Parade."

FYI, The New Century Clock & Watch Shop became the "Fortuosity Shop" some years back. Unfortunately, the shop does not sell any merchandise related to The Happiest Millionaire nor do they play the film's soundtrack on an endless loop.

Anonymous said...

JG! :)

Heck, please don’t worry about bandying about that term as the current crop of employees seem to *love* it even as they sleep in their cars, earn a pittance, launder their own costumes (how did THAT ever come to pass?) and dream of the day they’ll be able to sell the “magic” again. Yikes.

I loved working at the park in the ‘70s… but, as I said, that was a different time.

I had a Main Street shift that particular 1977 Christmas season (sweeping the hub) so perhaps I’ll show up in another photo (if there are, indeed, any more from this batch)!


Anonymous said...

Thank goodness Major explained Melissa's post. I probably would have gone crazy trying to figure it out.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, speaking of favorite roses, have you ever seen Hocus Pocus roses? (Seriously.) They are my favorite - a deep, deep red - almost chocolate-brown color, with splashes of yellow. Google them and you'll see.

I LOVE how our group can get laughs out of 'spam' and make the best of everything! Great group we have! (It reminds me of my favorite GDB post that the Major put together years ago, but darned if I can find it now . . . the entire opening post description was written in 'spam-language' by Major.)

Huck, thank you for sharing more information! I love the fact that you were at Disneyland when I was last there in the 20th century . . . summer of 1976. Our paths must've crossed. After that, I wasn't back for *gulp* 25 years (I'm almost ashamed to admit).

Huck, if I owned Disney, I would triple the salaries of everyone who works at the parks. They are the 'face' of Disney and help to make the guests happy! The suits behind the scenes do NOT deserve the huge amounts they make (sorry, "suits"!). My girlfriend's daughter works at WDW and is always getting compliments from the guests for how wonderful she is and how much fun she makes their trips - and what does she make? Yep, about minimum.

Huck, you need to get a hold of Drew, through your mutual friend and ask him to join our group!

Super fun post today, thanks Major and all!

Major Pepperidge said...

Melissa, it’s totally OK and I’m glad you didn’t delete the comment!

The Magic Ears Dudebro, as far as I know there are no more flower markets, but I could be wrong.

Huck, if they didn’t call themselves “cast members”, did they use the word “employees” instead? I mean instead of the more specific terms such as “sweeper” or “ride operator”, etc. It sure sounds like employees had it good back in those days, I don’t know how anybody could consider that a bad thing. Happy employees do better work, and then they have money to spend on goods and services. Win/win! Medical coverage, paid vacation, stock options, pension… wow. I guess I appreciate that they at least tried to be sensitive to Albert; it seems like in the early years, people of color (Asian and black, at least) were often stuck in Adventureland, which is a little problematic. Latinos seemed to be in Frontierland a lot. I was going to say that it’s hard to believe that people would throw garbage at sweeps and treat sweeps like some lower form of life, but then I think about how awful some people can be. See: today. Thank you for the interesting insider info!

JG, I’m sure Huck understands that we all hear “cast member” today! There definitely was a Flower Market in the Magic Kingdom, though I can’t say how long it was there.

TokyoMagic!, maybe it was just a case of attracting locals by having a “new” parade, or by bringing back a beloved “old” parade anyway. They did that over and over with the Electric Parade. Strange that the “Fortuosity Shop” has no ties to “The Happiest Millionaire” other than the name.

Huck, oh man, I feel so bad for the current-day employees. It would be nice to think that when a company is wildly profitable, they might pass that along to the hard-working folks who help to make it all happen. But we know that’s not how things work. There are more photos on Main Street from this batch, but they are so overtly Christmasy that I was planning on saving them for the holiday season.

Anon, then I’m glad I resposted it!

Lou and Sue, I had never seen “Hocus Pocus” roses before, they are neat. If you go to the Huntington Gardens at the right time of year, the aroma of roses is all around you. It’s one of my favorite places. And I think you are referring to a post that I am kind of embarrassed about now, but… there it is. In my last few trips to the park (a while ago, now), there were always CMs who impressed me so much with how well they did their jobs, I hope somebody noticed besides me - somebody who could give them a bonus or a promotion. BTW, I never know which posts will get a response, I certainly didn’t expect the Flower Market to get this much interest.

Nanook said...

@ JG & Major-
WDW lost their Flower Mart back in 2001, when the Emporium's expansion essentially eliminated all but the very-slightest hint of a former West Center Street.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Speaking of roses, did you know there's a 'Disneyland' rose you can purchase and plant in your yard?? Check this out, if you like roses:


Dean Finder said...

WDW did have a flower market on West Center Street. It too was lost (along with the street) in a poorly-considered expansion of the Emporium at the turn of the century

Melissa said...

Moses supposes Hocus Pocus are roses

"Lou and Sue" said...

Moses knows his roses!