Monday, August 22, 2022

Melinda Goes To Disneyland, Pt. 4!

It’s the Grand Finale today for Melinda’s 1980 25th Anniversary Trip to Disneyland! Our first image shows the Skyway buckets, floating towards the Matterhorn on the Tomorrowland side. By this stage of the game, the buckets had already changed from the round shape to a square design. In case you wonder what the OTHER side of the Matterhorn looked like, here’s a December 1980 image from my collection: 

Zooming in for a detailed look…

…made me notice the trio of Farrah hairdos in bucket #49!

This detailed shot shows the Grand Hotel, which once stood at  7 West Freedman Way. Considered a first class, high-rise hotel just across the street from Disneyland, it contained  242 guest rooms. Each room had balconies and coffee makers. Now it’s a part of Anaheim history, having been torn down and replaced by the Pumbaa Parking Lot.

Melinda has these memories of where her family stayed during their trip:

My mom doesn’t remember where we stayed while in the area, it certainly wouldn't have been at the Disneyland Hotel as we didn't have a lot of money. I have a picture of us sitting outside a place with German timber and plaster styling and a barrel sign hanging from the roofline, but I can't make out what it says.

The next two images from Melinda show some wonderful views of Tomorrowland, including the Monorail and the Peoplemover. From Melinda:

The Monorail made a big impression on me, how smooth and quiet it was and I loved the view from up high of everything. I still love riding the monorail at Disney World — it’s not a trip to Disney without a ride on the Monorail! 

Melinda and her sister didn’t get to ride the Subs; they were still under refurbishment:

Three images from the Bill H. collection show the refurbishment:

Melinda also recalls Space Mountain:

I remember pretty vividly chickening out of riding Space Mountain. I literally turned around halfway through the line and walked back out to wait for my parents on a bench somewhere outside by myself. I had ridden other coasters with no problem, but the dark and spacey music and screams from riders were probably just too much at the end of the day. My sister would have been too small to ride it, but I don't remember if she was waiting outside somewhere and I sat with her or she was with my parents and they did some sort of kid exchange. If the latter had been the case, I imagine I would have stayed with them instead of leaving the line. My mom said my sister was trustworthy enough even at 5 to be told to sit on a bench and wait there. I know, it was definitely a different time back then than it is today! 

Here’s a vintage shot from Bill H. showing Space Mountain under construction in 1976:

The Main Street Electrical Parade is another favorite memory that I don't have any of my own photos of. We saw MSEP at Disney World too in 1985 and I would love to see it again now that it is back.

Here are two 1980 shots to go along with Melinda’s memories:

SOOOO many thanks to Melinda for sharing these photos AND her memories of this treasured family trip. 

See more Disneyland photos at my main website.


Fifthrider said...

What great shots. Thanks again for sharing, Melinda and Dave. That was probably a last chance to ride the sky buckets and see "old Fantasyland". Naturally I have to obsess over the most trivial of details but...

"German timber and plaster styling and a barrel sign hanging from the roofline"

You'd think that would narrow it down but there were so many niche motels and hotels around Disneyland that you could run into that description at at least 10% of them. It doesn't sound like any of Jack Stovall's places so I'd guess you stayed at the Heidi or the Alpine.

Melinda said...

Obsessing over the details is what all of the best Disney fans do, Fifthrider!
Here's the one picture I have of what could be the place we stayed - not really sure. It was the last picture in the slide carousel before the Disneyland photos started, so that is my best guess, but it could be a shopping area or a place we ate at maybe?

There is a a sign on the far left side of the slide under the window that says "Renaissance." There is something on the awning on the right, but the big lamp is blocking most of it.

It's been a pleasure sharing my trip with everyone and getting to hear more stories about all of these places I barely remember. I hope to get to go back to Disneyland again in the future. I've been to Disney World many times now over the years, but have never managed to get back to the most magical place in CA since this trip. One day soon, hopefully!

Melinda said...

And of course there is always the possibility that wherever that place was, it was just another stop along the way on our road trip. We stopped at Multnomah Falls in Oregon, along the Oregon coast where I played in the tide pools and kicked off a years-long fascination with marine biology, and at Mt. Shasta. This coastal pier is the slide before the one I posted above.

The one other touristy stop we made was the La Brea Tar Pits. I only have pictures of the front entrance of the building and one of the mammoth statues perched along the edge of Lake Pit. That exhibit made a big impression on me too.

Fifthrider said...

I've just spent an hour sifting through all known pics ( mostly postcards ) of Anaheim hotels of that era. My thanks to MiceChat for having a forum thread that listed dozens of them. After sifting through them all I can safely say that picture isn't Anaheim, but it's a dead ringer for a 1980's Solvang. I was only there once and that was 1982. The width of the street is a bit of a clue, even Anaheim didn't have streets that narrow unless you were on a residential street.

Melinda said...

You are right, Fifthrider! Most definitely Solvang - Tivoli Square to be even more exact. The top of the clock tower is peeking up behind the corner of the building we are sitting in front of. It must have been a stop on one of driving days before we got to Disney. My parents were not shy about planning 12-14 hour long drives on these big vacation road trips. When the speed limit was only 55 mph that is what it took to get the places they wanted to go LOL I have many memories of thinking every 100 miles we had to drive in a day was 2 hours in the car.

Daveland said...

I love it when mysteries get solved here! Thanks, Bryan!