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Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse!





The character most associated with The Walt Disney Company and its founder began his life due to desperation- Walt Disney had just lost his character Oswald the Lucky Rabbit to Universal Pictures and he needed a new cartoon personality to keep his company doors open. On a long and somber train ride from New York to California, he recalled a mouse he had as a pet in Kansas City. This burst of inspiration led him to draw the immortal- Mortimer Mouse. Luckily his wife was also on the train and convinced him to change the name to something else- Mickey Mouse.



Working with his loyal animator Ub Iwerks, Walt Disney introduced his newest creation to the world, not only providing him with life, but also his voice. Mickey Mouse was a sensation, quickly eclipsing Oswald to become the world’s most recognizable figure. Mickey’s peppy, optimistic nature came from Mr. Disney himself. Everyone who knew Walt personally said that Mickey Mouse was just like his creator and Walt carefully took care of Mickey and his image. 




Today, many years after his creation, Mickey is still an optimistic little person who still attracts the love of children around the world. They may not know where he came from or who created him, but they instantly love him all the same. Even newborn babies love him. Today he holds court in his father’s Magic Kingdom, welcoming guests from around the world to DISNEYLAND.

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Mickey Mouse Birthday Week! Theme Park Thursdays: Around DISNEYLAND

In 1954, Mickey Mouse’s presence in DISNEYLAND wasn’t a certainty. DISNEYLAND was originally setup as a separate corporate entity from Walt Disney Productions and while Walt Disney intended for Mickey to be associated with DISNEYLAND, he would have to convince his brother to support and approve of the use of Disney characters. Of course, approval was given. Eventually DISNEYLAND would become a wholly owned subsidiary of Walt Disney Productions and Mickey would be inextricably linked with Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom. This link would result in Mickey’s presence throughout the Resort.
His presence would be obvious:


Subtle…


And even hidden…




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Mickey Mouse Birthday Week! Walt Wednesdays: A Friend For Life




“Mickey Mouse is to me. a symbol of independence. He was a means to an end. He popped out of Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner. Born of necesity, the little fellow literally freed us of immediate worry. He provided the means for extending our organization to its present dimensions and for extending the medium of cartoon animation to new entertainment levels. He spelled production liberation for us.” 

-Walt Disney



“The life and ventures of Mickey Mouse have been closely bound up with my own personal and professional life.” 

-Walt Disney

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Mickey Mouse Birthday Week! Toontown Tuesdays: Mickey’s House

According to Disney Lore, Mickey’s Toontown was created in the 1940’s as a place for the Disney toons to escape to after long days of filming in Hollywood. When Walt Disney was dreaming up DISNEYLAND, Mickey Mouse suggested he build it adjacent to the mythical town in Anaheim so that Mickey and friends could easily meet and greet their fans at Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom. The town stayed hidden, though Mickey Mouse built a movie barn behind his house to allow him to comfortably work on projects in between his duties in DISNEYLAND. In 1993, the denizens of Toontown decided to open the gates to their mythical town so that DISNEYLAND guests could explore it for themselves.

The real world reason for the land’s construction was Mickey Mouse’s popularity. Guests often complained if their visit to the Magic Kingdom ended without a hug from the big cheese. Creating a location where Mickey would always be found resolved the issue while providing a colorful new world to explore.


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Mickey Mouse Birthday Week! Music Mondays: Mickey Mouse Club March

The Mickey Mouse Club March was written by head Mouseketeer Jimmie Dodd for the 1955 television show. Prior to The Mickey Mouse Club, children’s entertainment on television was locally based and cheaply produced. Walt Disney wanted to improve the quality of shows geared towards children, so he put his studio’s most talented resources to work on creating The Mickey Mouse Club, which doubled as an attempt to reintroduce Mickey Mouse to a younger audience. It worked beyond his wildest dreams.

                                                               Who’s the leader of the club
That’s made for you and me
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Hey! there, Hi! there, Ho! there
You’re as welcome as can be
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Mickey Mouse!
Mickey Mouse!
Forever let us hold our banner
High! High! High! High!
Come along and sing a song
And join the jamboree!
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Mickey Mouse club
We’ll have fun
We’ll be new faces
High! High! High! High!
We’ll do things and
We’ll go places
All around the world
We’ll go marching
Who’s the leader of the club
That’s made for you and me
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Hey! there, Hi! there, Ho! there
You’re as welcome as can be
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Mickey Mouse!
Mickey Mouse!
Forever let us hold our banner
High! High! High! High!
Come along and sing a song
And join the jamboree!
M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E

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