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Tag Archives: Ceremony

March 31

March 31, 1958 – Grand Canyon Diorama is Added in Disneyland

On March 31, 1958, the grand opening ceremony of the Grand Canyon Diorama, the “largest diorama in the world,” was held in Disneyland Park. The diorama was placed along the route of the Disneyland Railroad, and Walt Disney himself was the conductor of the train that passed by the scenes of the Grand Canyon. The soundtrack for the scenery is Ferde Grofé’s “Grand Canyon Suite,” which accompanies lush scenes of the landscape by scenic artist Delmer Yoakum. The diorama is 306 feet in length, and was restored in 2017 to how it would have appeared in 1958, with some subtle updates to add some “magic.”

March 27

March 27, 1957 – The 25-Millionth Mickey Mouse Watch is Presented in Disneyland

“Walt Disney receives the 25-millionth Mickey Mouse Watch to celebrate its success.”

On March 27, 1957, the Ingersoll-Waterbury Company celebrated a milestone with the 25millionth watch featuring Mickey Mouse having been made. This watch was presented to Walt Disney in a special ceremony in Disneyland. The first Mickey Mouse watch created by the company started with a patent on May 22, 1933, with the first watches being built soon after.

January 26

January 26, 1993 – Mickey’s Toontown Holds Opening Dedication Ceremony

“Now we’re happy that you found your way to Mickey’s Toontown, today!”

On January 26, 1993, the opening dedication for Mickey’s Toontown was held at Disneyland. Many celebrities were on hand to help celebrate the new section of the park, including Robin Williams, Danny DeVito, and George Lucas. Actor Harry Anderson served as Toontown’s honorary mayor, standing alongside Michael Eisner as they dedicated the new area.

January 22

January 22, 2006 – A Blue Carpet Premiere is Held for Monster’s Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue!

“This delightful new adventure continues our tradition of creating memorable, immersive storytelling attractions.” – Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Jay Rasulo

On January 22, 2006, a special ceremony was held to celebrate the grand opening of the new Disneyland attraction Monster’s Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue!. Called a “blue carpet” premiere (in honor of Sulley’s blue fur), several celebrities were on hand to experience the new attraction, including Disney Channel star Ashley Tisdale, actress Lisa Kudrow, and actor Patrick Warburton. Located in Disney’s California Adventure, the attraction was meant to provide more family-friendly entertainment, alongside other Pixar-themed attractions and entertainment.

January 13

January 13, 1990 – The Official Dedication of the Attraction Star Tours is Held at Disney-MGM Studios Park

On January 13, 1990, though the attraction had been open since December 15, 1989, an official dedication ceremony was held for the Star Tours attraction in Disney-MGM Studios Park. This was the second version of the attraction to open in a Disney park (with Disneyland receiving the first version on January 9, 1987), but this was the first version to receive a Hollywood treatment, complete with the recreation of the Ewok Village from Return of the Jedi for the queueing area, along with a 35-foot Imperial All-Terrain Armored Transport Walker. On hand for the ceremony were Star Wars creator George Lucas, film actors Mark Hammil and Carrie Fisher, and then-CEO Michael Eisner.

September 23

September 23, 2011 – The Grand Opening Celebration of Aulani is Held

“We would like to thank the Imagineers, cast members, construction teams, local artists, and everyone who had a hand in bringing Aulani to life.” – Chief Operating Officer Tom Staggs

On September 23, 2011, a special grand opening ceremony was held to celebrate the official opening of Disney’s new Aulani resort in Oahu, Hawaii. CEO Bob Iger and COO Tom Staggs were on hand with Mickey and Minnnie Mouse to lead the ceremony, which was filled with many aspects of Hawaiian culture and traditions. A special chant was written and performed for the resort’s opening by Keali’I Reichel, a noted artist in Hawaii, along with special performances by drummers and dancers. The ceremony also included an official dedication, complete with placing sand in a ceremonial wooden bowl called an ‘umeke.

June 2

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June 2, 2011 – A Special Ceremony is Held to Celebrate the Opening of The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure

“…because at our heart, great storytelling is what we are all about.” – Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Tom Staggs

On June 2, 2011, a special ceremony was held in Disney’s California Adventure park to celebrate the opening of the newest attraction The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure. On hand to kick off the celebrations was the voice of Ariel, Jodi Benson, who performed the song “Part of Your World,” along with The Little Mermaid musical performer Sherie Rene Scott, who performed “Poor Unfortunate Souls.” The attraction was opened to the public the following day.

December 7

December 7, 2015 – Chairman and CEO Bob Iger Holds Ceremony to Dedicate Walt Disney’s Restored Office

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“We put this permanent exhibit together to serve as a source of inspiration to us, a reminder to have greater ambition, to take bold creative risks, to constantly innovate and push the limits of possibility, to relentlessly pursue perfection and to tell fantastic stories that touch people’s hearts. That was Walt Disney.” – Chairman and CEO Bob Iger

On December 7, 2015, Chairman and CEO of the Walt Disney Company Bob Iger held a special ceremony to dedicate the newly restored office of Walt Disney. The office was a painstaking project of the Disney Archivists, restoring it down to the tiniest details. Part of the office was originally seen at the One Man’s Dream attraction in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, while another part was shown at the Main Street Opera House in Disneyland; archivists were able to bring back the original furnishings, awards, and collection of miniatures that were featured decades ago. Also featured at the ceremony were Disney chief archivist emeritus Dave Smith, Disney Legend Richard Sherman, and Walt Disney’s granddaughters Joanna Miller, Jennifer Goff, and Michelle Lund.

July 4

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July 4, 2007 – Walt Disney World Hosts Naturalization Ceremony

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“Okay, so your seats are a little wet. Get over it! It’s still a beautiful day in America!”

On July 4, 2007, in honor of the American holiday of the 4th of July, Walt Disney World hosted a naturalization ceremony for 1,000 immigrants. Though the weather was less than pleasant, the ceremony was filled with excitement thanks to USCIC director Emilio Gonzalez, Senator Mel Martinez, and singer-songwriter Gloria Estefan, who sang the national anthem. After the official swearing-in, the new citizens on the United States and their families were led down Main Street by the Walt Disney World marching band while F-15 jets flew overhead. This is one of many times that a naturalization ceremony has been held at the Magic Kingdom.

March 2

March 2, 2009 – Construction Begins on the Disney Dream

Disney Dream Construction

“With these new ships, we are continuing to build upon that vision of providing more families with an unforgettable cruise vacation and the chance to explore new destinations with Disney.” – Karl L. Holz, President of Disney Cruise Line

On March 2, 2009, a special steel-cutting ceremony was held at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, for the new Disney Dream cruise ship. The first piece of steel that was cut for the ship was for the intricate scrollwork that is now found on the ship’s hull. The ship was given its name later that month, and the design was released on October 29, 2009. The ship is similar to its predecesors The Disney Magic and Disney Wonder in having a design reminiscent of the ocean liners of old, with an art deco elegance and a hint of Disney whimsicality in its overall design. The ship was completed in October of 2010, and went on its maiden voyage on January 26, 2011.