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Author Archives: Andrew Friedenthal

The Legendary Career of Imagineer Tony Baxter

If the Disney Parks had a Mount Rushmore, clearly Walt Disney and Roy Disney would make up half of it. But who would be the other two figures? Some of the early Imagineers who helped invent the Parks would certainly be in consideration, like John Hench, Marc Davis, or Mary Blair. Or perhaps Joe Rohde, the Imagineer whose singular vision ...

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The History of EPCOT’s Horizons

Like Cinderella’s Castle at the Magic Kingdom and the Tree of Life at Animal Kingdom, Spaceship Earth is the icon for Walt Disney World‘s EPCOT. But when we talk about it as an icon we usually just mean the immense geodesic dome that many a Guest has confused for a giant golf ball. The ride inside that dome, though, is ...

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Learn The Backstories Behind Every Walt Disney World Roller Coaster

Roller coasters might just be the most popular amusement park attraction in the entire world. Dating back to the days of the first parks in New York’s Coney Island, roller coasters have always been high-speed, high-thrill attractions that serve as preeminent draws to hard-working people just looking to let their hair down and have a good time. Traditionally, though, roller ...

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What Is The Reedy Creek Improvement District and Why Does It Matter?

If you’re a fan of Disney Parks (and especially of Walt Disney World), then you’ve doubtless heard a lot of talk lately about the Reedy Creek Improvement District. After Disney CEO Bob Chapek took a public stance against Florida’s notorious “Don’t Say Gay” bill, Governor Ron DeSantis and his Republican legislature sought revenge against the company by dissolving the Reedy ...

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These Comic Books Bring the Disney Parks To Your Bookshelf

Since the Mickey Mouse comic strip first appeared in 1930 (only two years after Steamboat Willie was released), the Walt Disney Company has been enmeshed in the world of comic strips and comic books. With its characters appearing in books released by various publishers over the decades, Disney has never stopped publishing and/or signing off on comics that feature its ...

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Who Are All Those Ghosts in the Haunted Mansion?

You’ve visited the Haunted Mansion more times than you’ve visited some family members’ homes. You know every word to “Grim Grinning Ghosts.” You automatically know to move to the dead center of the Stretching Room (though still closest to the wall panel that disguises the exit door). In short, you’re a Haunted Mansion master. RELATED: Spotlight On Walt Disney World‘s ...

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So You Want to Be An Imagineer… Read This First!

Walt Disney Imagineering consists of the dreamers behind the dream, the magic-makers behind the magic, the keepers of the keys to kingdoms – in short, the folks who make the wonderful world of the Disney Parks come to life. For some Guests, this behind-the-scenes work is best left unseen and unheard. They just want to experience that Disney magic and ...

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What Is EPCOT, Anyway?

EPCOT. Epcot. EPCOT Center. The Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. Walt Disney World‘s “second gate,” EPCOT, has been many things – and had many names – over the course of its 40-year existence, ranging from a plan for an actual city through to a theme park, a “permanent world’s fair,” a source of edutainment, and a place where Every Person ...

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