Friday, June 10, 2011

Walt & The Tencennial

Walt is shown with the concept art for two of the improvements at Disneyland that were to be rolled out for the Tencennial. Since Disneyland was laughed at by the press when it was unveiled, Walt's 10 Year Anniversary was a sweet slice of humble pie for the naysayers. Or should I say cake instead? In celebration, the larger-than-life Tencennial cake was wheeled out in front of the castle for guests to see:

Here is the accompanying publicity text for the photo of Walt:

WALT DISNEY ANNOUNCES DISNEYLAND "TENCENNIAL" — A year-long celebration will mark Disneyland's tenth anniversary in 1965. Top new attraction for the year will be "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln" to be installed in what is now Disneyland's Opera House. Here Walt Disney points to artists' conception of the Lincoln setting and the lobby of the new Plaza Inn Restaurant to be added for the decade year. Many special events are planned throughout the year.

Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln debuted on July 18, 1965, which is the actual 10 year anniversary of when Disneyland was open to the public, as opposed to the invitation only event on July 17, 1955. Here's a closeup of the art that Walt is pointing to:

A beautiful night shot of the Opera House about one month after Mr. Lincoln debuted there:

The other piece of art that Walt is showing is of the Plaza Inn, a restaurant located in Central Plaza. Previously titled the Red Wagon Inn, it was sponsored by Swift Premium Meats.

Here's what the menu looked like during the first month it opened:

The Plaza Inn is still in business, serving delicious crispy Fried Chicken and other guest favorites. Here's to may more years of celebration for Walt's Disneyland! See more vintage & current Disneyland photos at my regular website.


Jason Schultz said...

With the title of the post, I thought maybe you had uncovered the Wally Boag-Walt Disney exchange from the Tencennial Banquet speech! That really is a nice shot of the Opera House at dusk. The dark shadows help to hide the strollers. ;)

TokyoMagic! said...

Was the compass in front of the Castle (the old one) installed during the Tencennial Year? I've always wondered when it first made it's appearance and if you look at the ground in those two cake appears to be there in the second shot but not in the first.

Also, it looks like that first pic might have been taken during the filming of the "Disneyland's 10th Anniversary" that aired on the Wonderful World of Disney. When they show the dancing cake sequence, there is a dark circle painted on the ground around the cake just like in that first pic.

Excellent post today, Dave!

Connie Moreno said...

This was great!