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Tag Archives: 1950s

September 17

September 17, 1954 – The Special Short Film Once Upon a Wintertime is Released to Theaters

“On the frozen pond folks are swaying, sweetheart, who cares? We’ll have more fun sleighing behind two chestnut mares.”

On September 17, 1954, the special short film Once Upon a Wintertime was released to theaters. The short was originally a segment of the 1948 package film Melody Time; like many of the package film segments, it was shown later as a stand-alone segment to be shown before Disney feature films. The short is narrated in song by singer Frances Langford, with the song written by Bobby Worth and Ray Gilbert.

Set in the 1800s, the short begins with the picture of two lovebirds, transitioning into them sitting in a carriage and traveling through a winter wonderland, with many a pair of animals following their journey, including a pair of rabbits. The pair stop at the nearby pond for skating, and things go well for both the human and rabbit couples. Both males then decide to show off to their mates, but have unintended bad consequences that drive the women away. As the women leave, they wander onto thin ice, and the men race to rescue them from falling down a waterfall on patches of the ice. With help from the carriage horses, some squirrels, and some birds, the women are saved and placed in the arms of their mates. The pairs drive off together, and the short ends back on the portraits of the human couple, with the frame closing as they share a kiss.

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August 22

August 22, 1956 – The Carefree Corner Opens in Disneyland

On August 22, 1956, the Carefree Corner guest registration area opened on Disneyland’s Main Street. As guests traveled from all over the world to visit the park, the area contained special guest books for each state in the United States, along with several other countries, in which guests could sign. The area also acted as the main information hub on Main Street, offering guests guidebooks when they were first made available in 1965. The area closed in 1985, and was replaced with Card Corner until 1988, when it picked up the Carefree Corner moniker again until 1994.

August 11

August 11, 1955 – Casa de Fritos Opens in Disneyland

“Enjoy delicious Mexican foods at Casa de Fritos”

On August 11, 1955, the restaurant Casa de Fritos opened in Disneyland’s Frontierland. Serving Mexican food, the restaurant was famed for its specialty vending machine where kids could get a bag of Fritos chips by the Frito Kid. Guests could order dishes such as Frito Chili Pie for 55 cents, three tamales for 35 cents, and a Mexican combination plate for only $1.00; Fritos were provided for free with every dish. The restaurant was given an upgrade and a new name – Casa Mexicana – on October 1, 1982, and would go on to become Rancho del Zocalo on February 6, 2001.

August 1

August 1, 1955 – Disneyland Appears in Popular Science

“Disneyland – a steel-and-concrete Never-Never Land for youngsters – has come to life at Anaheim, Calif.”

On August 1, 1955, the magazine Popular Science featured a brief article about the newest theme park: Disneyland. The article mostly covers the trains of the Disneyland Railroad, along with a picture of a model of the front of the park.

July 30

July 30, 1955 – The Tomorrowland Boats Attraction Opens in Disneyland

On July 30, 1955, the Tomorrowland Boats attraction opened in Disneyland. The boats were located between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland in the Tomorrowland Lagoon, which would go on to house the Submarine Voyage attraction. The Tomorrowland Boats have since been given the unfortunate distinction of being one of the first attractions to close, as it didn’t even last six months, closing on January 15, 1956. It was replaced by the Phantom Boats attraction.

July 26

July 26, 1955 – Walt Disney and Fess Parker Appear on the Cover of Look Magazine

“In thirty years, Walt Disney has made more than 600 films, watched by a billion pairs of eyes.”

On July 26, 1955, the newest issue of Look Magazine was released, featuring Walt Disney and Fess Parker on the cover. This issue featured an eight-page spread about Walt Disney, the characters he brought to life through animation and television, and plans once Disneyland opened. Also featured was a snippet of Fess Parker as Davy Crockett, and his travels around the country promoting the show.

July 16

July 16, 1955 – The Golden Horseshoe Opens for a Private Party

On July 16, 1955, the Golden Horseshoe Saloon opened for a private party for corporate sponsors of Disneyland, which was to open the next day. Though the Golden Horseshoe Revue wasn’t to begin its run until the park’s official opening day, the saloon’s private party did feature eventual show mainstay Wally Boag in his first official appearance as Pecos Bill and the Traveling Salesman.