All posts by Administrator

Theme Park Thursdays: A Shopping Wonderland

When DISNEYLAND first opened, it was surrounded by orange groves. It would take time for the business world to see that there was a lot of money to be made in Anaheim. In order to fill the void in shopping options around the Magic Kingdom, the DISNEYLAND Hotel built its own shopping plaza, which originally featured a wide array of merchandise.

Guests could buy California fashions, the latest cameras and electronics and yes, even Disney merchandise. A barber shop, salon, car rental shop and airline ticketing station rounded out the options at the hotel’s travel port.


The hotel would further expand its offerings, adding the DISNEYLAND Hotel Plaza, an additional complex filled with shops and a spa. By this time the area surrounding the park had finally filled in. The additional facilities were designed more as a way to keep guests on the property versus providing services that the area lacked.


In the 1980’s after the Hotel was officially taken over by DISNEYLAND, the shops and restaurants became more Disney oriented. Shops that used to sell a variety of items only sold Disney merchandise. The Disney characters  began making more frequent appearances on the property and the restaurants were renamed after Disney characters.


In 1999, the various amenities and plazas were removed to make room for Downtown Disney. The memories, however, remained.




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Theme Park Thursdays: Babes in DISNEYLAND.

The Main Street Opera House in DISNEYLAND was originally supposed to host a weekly television show that would feature Wally Boag as its host. The show would be a variety show of sorts, filmed at DISNEYLAND and broadcast coast to coast. Budgetary restrictions prevented the studio from being built and a facade was constructed to hide the woodshop that was built behind Main Street to assist with the park’s construction.


By 1961, however, the woodshop was no longer needed and guests were always clamoring for more things to see and do. Walt Disney decided to open up the woodshop, which was little more than a warehouse type building, and move the sets from his film Babes in Toyland to Anaheim, which would add another attraction to the park and promote his latest film. The sets remained until 1963, when the real Opera House began construction. It would provide a permanent home for Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln.


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Theme Park Thursdays: Babes in DISNEYLAND.

The Main Street Opera House in DISNEYLAND was originally supposed to host a weekly television show that would feature Wally Boag as its host. The show would be a variety show of sorts, filmed at DISNEYLAND and broadcast coast to coast. Budgetary restrictions prevented the studio from being built and a facade was constructed to hide the woodshop that was built behind Main Street to assist with the park’s construction.


By 1961, however, the woodshop was no longer needed and guests were always clamoring for more things to see and do. Walt Disney decided to open up the woodshop, which was little more than a warehouse type building, and move the sets from his film Babes in Toyland to Anaheim, which would add another attraction to the park and promote his latest film. The sets remained until 1963, when the real Opera House began construction. It would provide a permanent home for Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln.


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