Saturday, December 23, 2023

Christmas in the Park

I decided to start really ramping up to the "big day" with a selection of Christmas-themed Disneyland images from various years. Starting with this 1959 view of a marching band heading up Main Street. I have the feeling this photo might be related to that year's Rose Bowl football game, but it's just a hunch. The game that year had the California Golden Bears (of UC Berkeley) versus the Hawkeyes (of the University of Iowa). Iowa won, 38-12. 

Next is this 1977 view as our photographer stood in Town Square looking toward the big Christmas Tree. The sun might be shining for now, but those clouds look potentially threatening. 

And finally, here's a 1961 photo looking up from the base of the Matterhorn toward the peak, which was adorned with that giant star. I'm guessing that the photographer was more interested in the climbers - one who has reached the summit, and the other nearly there. But lucky for us, we also get a pretty nice look at the star itself!

As of this writing, it looks like I might be out of town for a few days, but as always, there will be new posts for you each morning. I'll talk to you all soon!



Nanook said...

I can never get enough of the Christmas Star - all 24-feet of it.

Thanks, Major.

JB said...

On the left, it looks like a security guard (or is he a cop?) and a maintenance worker of some sort (in white coveralls) are enjoying the parade. Or maybe they are there in some professional capacity? Seems strange to see an unflocked Christmas tree in Town Square. Not very many ornaments either.

Now THIS is how a Town Square Christmas tree usually looks! Grand and fully loaded. The family next to the trashcan appears to be making a Christmas fashion statement with their red and green and white ensemble.

Perhaps Hans and Fritz mistook that star for a blossom of edelweiss. Seems unlikely, it IS clean and bright but not so much small and white... well okay, it is mostly white, but still. Those few wisps of clouds really 'plus' this photo; I'm keepin' it!

Thanks for the early Christmas present, Major.

JG said...

In pic 1, the guy to the right in the street looks to have fake hair… guess we could say “there’s h*ll toupee”…

Pic 2, 1977, peak Disneyland. I Have Spoken.

Pic 3, I remember when I thought the Matterhorn Star was only a dream. We only went to Disneyland in the summer, except 1968, we went for Grandads birthday and everything was decorated. I must have seen the Star then without really remembering it. For years I wasn’t sure it had ever been. Then I found pictures of it online, and the debate changed to “did it turn”? And Major found a home movie GIF showing it turning. My childhood memories are complete.

Thank you Major, have a good trip!


Anonymous said...

The first two shots, even with an 18 year interval, shows that the Christmas decor was not all that different. Compare the bows going over Main Street (1959 vs 1977) being very similar. The decor was complimentary and subdued from today. JB and JG beat me to it...trees from that era seemed to be the peak of perfection. KS

Stefano said...

The Matterhorn picture is delicious, like a big holiday confection on the order of Pfeffernuse.

Follow a diagonal line to the right of the lower climber, and see quite a scowling face in the rockwork. Anticipates the Abominable Snowman, and balances the rocky monkey face on the other side of the mountain.

Thanks Major, and Happy Holidays!

Sunday Night said...

That’s a great detailed picture of the Matterhorn star. And of course, we now know it turned. Or was it the earth turning and the star remaining static?

Thanks Major!

Melissa said...

There's no Christmas like a Disney Christmas!


You can see some concept renderings in the shop windows of Disneyland Showcase ( I guess lobby windows) since its Christmas 1977 Space Mountain is already opened … and the displays for Discovery Bay and Dumbo Circus and Big Thunder would be there as well as fantasyland “pinocchios village” extension. I kinda recall that the Space mountain preview video ( actually a continuous loop film bin) continued to play after it had already opened … then eventually replaced with the one showing scenes from the big Thunder model with narration and music. I remembered a scene of a wed imagineer in his workshop lab coat staining carved foam big thunder model rockwork …. Decades later I found out that guy was an imagineer but wasn’t a model
Maker and was asked to stand in as one for the photograph … lol. That still happens today .

"Lou and Sue" said...

My jaw dropped yesterday when I saw that Mark Twain shot, and now it dropped again when I saw today's Matterhorn star. Major, you sure shared a lot of fun Disneyland Christmas images with us, over the last several weeks - thank you.

Stefano, I see the scowling face - sort of with a tiki "look," plus I see a couple others, too. It's like looking at the clouds and seeing fun shapes.

'Safe travels' to Major and all, these coming holidays.