Last Sunday night my family sat down to watch “The Wonderful World of Disney:Disneyland 60”. It started off with a wonderful ten minute tribute to Mr. Walt Disney and the creation of his park. Then the next two hours were filled with advertising for everything Disney.
Maybe my children didn’t notice or maybe I’m a bit cynical. But it was basically a two hour commercial for one of the biggest money making machines in the world. Nowadays, Disney can basically print its own money. The company owns Marvel and Star Wars! Why bother to advertise anyways?
Simple. The parks are always getting upgrades. No one would visit 1950’s Disneyland today if it had never changed. Disneyland had a tough time bringing in people during the early 90’s because it had become stagnant. Then Pixar happened. And the changes were inevitable. 20,000 Leauges Under the Sea became Finding Nemo. Astro Blasters with Buzz Lightyear was created. Woody showing up in It’s a Small World. The park began a new era. Plus California Adventure opened in 2001, thus expanding the park- although poorly attended at first.Sixty years in the making, Disneyland is a Theme Park that the world knows about. Many have visited. My family and I have made the 24 hour road trip there about once a year since 2009. I love the place. Every time we go, we experience something new and memorable. Simple things like eating at Ariel’s Grotto and meeting the Princesses, riding in the Lilly Belle around the park, or a ride in the front of the Monorail (and having the engineer more excited to find out I work for a railroad instead of me being excited that I was in the front of the Monorail!), enjoying a lunch near the water of the Pirates ride in the Blue Bayou Restaurant, finding new Hidden Mickeys, Jedi Academy, the first time our children were each tall enough to ride the bigger coasters, meeting all of our favorite characters, Trick or Treating in Disneyland, eating a fabled turkey leg, Dole Whip, and the list goes on.
This year we are going to Disneyland to see the Diamond Celebration before it ends. The Season of The Force is also going on. In a few years, we will attend in order to see Star Wars Land (ya, I’m a bit of a Star wars fan). Perhaps one day, we will stay in a Disneyland Resort Hotel and immerse ourselves in all things Disney. Or a night in The Dream Suite inside the park would be the ultimate experience. Hey, sometimes dreams really do come true.
Until then, I look forward to making memories with family and friends for many years to come.