January 30, 2017

Gateway to the Magic Kingdom

On Walt Disney World's opening day, the real gateway to the Magic Kingdom in Florida was a boat ride or a monorail trip across or over the Seven Seas Lagoon. Back then in 1971, there were no over crowded busses - just dreams waiting to be built. Anything was possible.

For this California kid, being so used to the congested area around Disneyland in Anaheim, a visit to the World was eye opening from the moment we crossed onto the property. I just couldn't believe the Walt Disney Company had all this land!  

Hitting the parking lot was a bit of a tease. We could see the huge and beautiful Cinderella's castle above the treetops and across the water. But nothing could compare to walking down Main Street U.S.A. for that very first visit! Seeing it in real life was a treat that took four years from seeing it in magazines and on television to seeing it in person. The reality was actually better than what the hype machine built. And in many ways, it still is.

(Art copyright The Walt Disney Company.)


Prescott Ryker said...

I could not agree more! That approach to the Magic Kingdom is breathtaking. That is a fantastic image you have there...great linework with just a hint of color. I hope you don't mind my sharing but I wrote an ode to that arrival sequence on my own personal blog,


I also touched on Main Street West Vs. East as well


The Castle and Seven Seas Lagoon are my favorite things about Walt Disney World, the scale of it is just breathtaking...and yet if you squint...it's the old Disneyland parking lot! Love your blog...as a fellow former Californian who grew up going to Disneyland I find myself in so much agreement with your writings.

Mark Taft said...

Thank you for the kind words.
YOUR articles are so well written- and I love the photos.
Everyone should read these.