March 15, 2009

Go back to the drawing board

The New Fantasyland was well off the drawing board when I received this 1983 Cast Member booklet during orientation. It was just about twenty-six years ago this month that the drawbridge would lower for the second time, revealing "the world of imagination, hopes and dreams" that money prevented Walt from making the first time around.

In 1983, the message was that Disneyland had “both the land and the creative spirit” for expansion. As a new Cast Member, you would “fast become a part of an exciting new era as we open the doors to the future."

In my view, it’s a significant understatement to say that something important somehow got left behind. The Magic Kingdom that appeared when the doors to Disneyland's future opened looked and felt more like today's Tomorrowland than yesterday’s New Fantasyland. Should an “exciting new era” really include gutted old attractions left to collect a decade’s dust, painfully clear reminders of all that went wrong?

I think that the booklet above had the right idea:

Now that we have been recognized as a world institution, we must find new ways of developing our guest relations. It is both a challenge and an increased responsibility for us.

We will continue to make a job at Disneyland a professional and respected career.

If the world becomes more troubled, or merely remains as troubled as it now is, we must be dedicated to keeping our national treasure - our Disneyland - the friendly and happy place it is.

Disneyland will never be completed, as we all know. But neither should it ever be compromised.


Mike said...

Yellows! Greetings from the Jungle!

As I've posted before, you and I share the same values when it comes to the Park. Apparently, some guy named Walt had similar sympathies. Go figure. I am happy to say that I'm back at the Park and doing my best to keep up the "old Disney" values. Actually, I think there is a general mood around the Park that hints to a return to those values across the board. I hope many current Cast Members stop by your blog for a visit or two!

Jungle Is "101"

Yellows said...

Thanks, Mike. I hope so, too! We should do a "guest post" thing sometime.

Glad to hear that some of my "fond memories of the past" are still around at 1313 Harbor Blvd.

Mike said...


Come on over and do a guest post at Jungle is 101! I'd love to have you share some thoughts from "our" era!

I just did a spot for "Babes in Disneyland". I think it would be great to have you stop by and drop off an article of your own at Jungle!