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Posts Tagged ‘Disneyland’

Remembering Walt Disney

50 years ago today, the world mourned the loss of one of its most beloved figures. Walter Elias Disney died of acute circulatory collapse brought on by lung cancer. He passed away at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank, California on Dec. 15, 1966. He was 65 years old.

Disney had undergone surgery for the removal of a lung tumor on Nov. 21. The tumor was discovered while he was being treated at the hospital for an old neck injury he had sustained during a polo match. He returned to St. Joseph’s Hospital for a “post-operative checkup” on Nov. 30. He remained in the hospital until his death.

Walt Disney Research Topic

Walt Disney Research Topic Screencap via ProQuest eLibrary

Walt Disney was born in Chicago, Illinois on Dec. 5, 1901. Walt Disney is regarded as one of the most influential figures in the entertainment industry during the 20th century. He created the beloved cartoon character Mickey Mouse and revolutionized the theme park industry by building Disneyland. Walt was an innovator and visionary leader who became a cultural icon.

He co-founded the media conglomerate that is now known as The Walt Disney Company with his brother Roy O. Disney in 1923. He was a pioneer in the animation industry, a film and television producer, an entrepreneur, and a dreamer. He was even the original voice of Mickey Mouse.

Although Walt Disney has been dead for 50 years, his legacy lives on. Generations of children have grown up watching his animated classics and live-action films, including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and Mary Poppins. Millions of people, including myself continue to enjoy his theme parks each year and The Walt Disney Company has become an entertainment empire.

On the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney’s death, I encourage you to explore more about his life and legendary career by checking out these resources available in ProQuest eLibrary and SIRS Issues Researcher:

Disneyland Research Topic

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Walt Disney

Walt Disney

Walt Disney Research Topic

Walt Disney Company Research Topic

Walt Disney World Research Topic

Walter Elias Disney

Happy 60th Birthday, Disneyland!

“To all who come to this happy place: Welcome! Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past, and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America…with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.”—Walt Disney, July 17, 1955

The Partners statue in Disneyland, California.

The Partners statue in Disneyland, California.
By James Ferrandini (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

If you’re a huge Disney fan like me, then you probably already know that Disneyland is celebrating its 60th anniversary. I visited Disneyland for the first time this year and was captivated by Walt Disney’s original theme park. Disneyland has a certain nostalgic charm that in my opinion makes it the most magical of all the Disney theme parks in the United States. In honor of Disneyland’s 60th anniversary, I want to share some fun facts about the beloved park’s history and changes over the years, as well as its anniversary celebration.

Walt Disney shows Disneyland plans to Orange County officials in December 1954.

Walt Disney shows Disneyland plans to Orange County officials in December 1954.
By Orange County Archives [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Walt Disney transformed 160 acres of orange groves into Disneyland. He opened the $17 million amusement park in Anaheim, California on Sunday, July 17, 1955, to the media and invitees only. The grand opening was broadcast live on ABC and hosted by Bob Cummings, Art Linkletter, and Ronald Reagan. 6,000 guests were invited to Disneyland’s “International Press Preview” event, but thousands of additional guests showed up with counterfeit tickets. Total attendance for the day was 28,000. Attractions were unfinished, rides broke down, lines were long, and food and beverages ran out. Walt Disney referred to Disneyland’s opening day as “Black Sunday.” The park opened to the public on Monday, July 18, 1955. Over 700 million guests have visited Disneyland since it opened its doors.

In 1955, Disneyland charged an entrance fee of $1.00. Tickets for rides and attractions were sold separately. Tickets for individual rides cost 10 to 35 cents. Ticket books containing eight “A” through “C” ride tickets were also sold. Attractions were designated “A,” “B,” or “C” based on their level of popularity and the lettered tickets corresponded to the attractions. “C” tickets were required for the best rides. Disneyland’s admission price is now $99.00 for one day and that entitles guests to unlimited use of all rides and attractions.

“The Happiest Place on Earth” has grown into a world-class tourist destination. The Disneyland Resort has expanded to approximately 500 acres. It now includes two theme parks, the iconic Disneyland Park and its sister park Disney California Adventure Park, three hotels, and the Downtown Disney District.

Disneyland Research Topic

Disneyland Research Topic Screencap via ProQuest eLibrary

The year-long Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration began on May 22, 2015 and features three new nighttime spectaculars. Disneyland Park unveiled the new “Paint the Night” electrical parade and the new “Disneyland Forever” fireworks show. A new version of the popular and elaborate “World of Color” water and light show called “World of Color—Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” debuted at Disney California Adventure Park. Disneyland is also marking the 60th anniversary with decorations, special snacks, and new souvenirs. Walt Disney said, “Disneyland will never be complete as long as there is imagination left in the world.” 60 years later, his words still ring true.

To learn more about Disneyland, explore these resources available in ProQuest eLibrary.

Anaheim Research Topic

Disneyland Research Topic

Walt Disney Research Topic

Walt Disney Company Research Topic

Disneyland Measles Outbreak Renews Vaccination Debate

I had the pleasure of visiting the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, shortly after a highly-publicized measles outbreak originated at the “the happiest place on Earth” in December 2014. I honestly didn’t worry about contracting measles while I was at Disneyland for two reasons. First, I was too busy enjoying all the rides. Secondly–because I had been vaccinated.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle at Disneyland

Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at Disneyland
By SolarSurfer (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the multi-state outbreak of measles tied to Disneyland has infected at least 140 people. Health officials say the measles cases linked to the Disneyland outbreak represent a continuation of a troubling increase in measles cases in Orange County, California and other communities where parents have refused to inoculate their children. 644 measles cases from 27 states were reported to the CDC in 2014, the largest number since the United States declared the disease eliminated in 2000. The Disneyland outbreak has increased concerns that the anti-vaccination movement is fueling the resurgence of a preventable disease and reignited the debate over whether parents should be allowed to opt out of vaccinating their children.

Every state requires children to get certain vaccinations before enrolling in school. However, parents can avoid mandatory vaccinations for their children by getting exemption waivers. All 50 states allow vaccine exemptions for medical reasons—48 states allow religious exemptions—and approximately 20 states allow “personal belief” exemptions. Parents who are skeptical of vaccines claim they should be able to make vaccination decisions based on what they believe is best for their children. They express concerns about vaccine safety and worry about possible health risks linked to vaccines.

Advocates of public health say parents who don’t vaccinate their children are putting vulnerable populations at risk by engaging in selfish and irresponsible behavior. They argue that parents who choose not to vaccinate their children are influenced by irrational fears, including a discredited study claiming a possible association between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism. The Lancet, the British medical journal that published the study later retracted it and its author, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, was stripped of his medical license.

What do your students think about the controversial debate over childhood vaccinations? They can learn more about both sides of the debate in our Vaccines for Kids Leading Issue.

SIRS Leading Issue: Vaccines for Kids

SIRS Leading Issue: Vaccines for Kids by ProQuest LLC via ProQuest SIRS Issues Researcher

Students can find more information about the vaccination debate through resources available in ProQuest eLibrary and SIRS WebSelect:

Vaccination of Children Research Topic

Vaccines Research Topic

The Vaccine War

Vaccines & Immunizations

Happy Birthday, Walt Disney!

“I only hope that we never lose sight of one thing–that it was all started by a mouse.”—Walt Disney

“Walt Disney shows Disneyland plans to Orange County officials, Dec. 1954.”
Photo credit: Orange County Archives / Foter / CC BY

On Dec. 5, 1901, Walter Elias Disney was born in Chicago, Illinois. Walt Disney is regarded as one of the most influential figures in the entertainment industry during the 20th century. He created the beloved cartoon character Mickey Mouse and revolutionized the theme park industry by building Disneyland. Walt was an innovator and visionary leader who became a cultural icon.

He co-founded the media conglomerate that is now known as The Walt Disney Company with his brother Roy O. Disney in 1923. He was a pioneer in the animation industry, a film and television producer, an entrepreneur, and a dreamer. He was even the original voice of Mickey Mouse.

Walt Disney died of acute circulatory collapse brought on by lung cancer on Dec. 15, 1966. He was 65. Although Walt Disney has been dead for almost 50 years, his legacy lives on. Generations of children have grown up watching his animated classics and live-action films, including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and Mary Poppins. Millions of people continue to enjoy his theme parks each year and The Walt Disney Company has become an entertainment empire.

In honor of Walt Disney’s birthday, explore his life and legendary career through resources available in ProQuest eLibrary and SIRS WebSelect:

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Walt Disney

Walt Disney Research Topic

Walt Disney Company Research Topic

Walter Elias Disney

Walt Disney Timeline