Wednesday, March 11, 2015

OMG Disneyland Turns 60

Boomers hold your breath -- Disneyland turns 60 this year!

Disneyland Forever lights and diamonds will decorate Main Street during the Diamond Celebration.

On July 17, 1955, Walt inaugurated the amusement park that would forever change the way parents look at family vacations. Since then, dignitaries, heads of state, celebrities and more than 700 million guests have passed through the gates of a place that Walt imagined as "a source of joy and inspiration to the world."

To commemorate this milestone, and encourage grandparents who remember the park as toddlers to introduce it to their own toddling grandchildren, there is planning underfoot for a Diamond Celebration.

Three new nighttime spectaculars will begin Friday, May 22, 2015 in time for the Memorial Day Weekend. Imagineers are working full speed ahead to apply the latest technology and immersive special effects to two new extravaganzas in the Disneyland park: the “Paint the Night” parade using all LEDs and the “Disneyland Forever” fireworks show using projections. A brand new “World of Color” water and lights show set to music will recount the the story of Walt Disney at the California Adventure park.

Additionally, notes a park spokesperson, the Sleeping Beauty Castle and Carthay Circle Theatre will "glisten and gleam for the celebration" with diamond medallions, and blue diamond banners and signage will decorate walkways, shops and new commemorative merchandise.

"Sixty years ago, Walt Disney welcomed the first guests to Disneyland. Nearly 3 billion guest visits later, it’s amazing to contemplate all that Disney Parks and Resorts represents to so many people around the world," said Tom Staggs, who just became Chief Operating Officer of The Walt Disney Company, in a statement. "Disneyland was envisioned as a place that encourages all of us to be 'forever young,' in part by being forever young itself... so we’re celebrating not just the last 60 years, but all that is yet to come."

Technical Detail Preview for MouseHeads

Paint the Night Parade – New technology and unleashed imagination permeate this after-dark parade, flooding Main Street, U.S.A., in Disneyland with vibrant color and more than 1.5 million, brilliant LED lights that flash and glow as they bring Disney stories to life. The Disney Dreams theme includes special appearances by Mickey’s pals and beloved characters from tales such as “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Toy Story” and “Frozen.”

Disneyland Forever Fireworks Spectacular – Thanks to the largest installation of projection mapping technology in a Disney park and surprising special effects, guests will find themselves transported into the worlds of beloved Disney and Disney-Pixar films, including a dance with King Louie from the “The Jungle Book” and a flight over London with characters from “Peter Pan.” Showing just how magical the Magic Kingdom can be, the fireworks “stage” will extend to Main Street, U.S.A., “it’s a small world,” Rivers of America and the Matterhorn as projections transform familiar park icons into stunning story scenes. Two original songs also will be featured, the theme “Live the Magic,” and the inspiring closing song “Kiss Goodnight,” written by Disney Legend Richard Sherman. “Disneyland Forever” will be visible from Main Street, U.S.A., and several Disneyland locations.

World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney – Illuminating the night in a contemporary and moving celebration of Walt Disney and his dream of Disneyland, Mickey Mouse will take guests on an inspirational journey through the unparalleled imagination of Walt Disney, exploring his decades-long legacy of memorable animated moments and the dream of Disneyland Park. Expect animated imagery, live-action film, fountains, lasers, special effects and a stirring musical score, all on the magical water canvas of “World of Color.”

The Virtues of Being 60

To conclude, as much as any of us might hate turning 60, it's not a bad number for the late Mr. Disney. From the original Disneyland Park in 1955, his original entertainment concept has expanded worldwide to include the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, Tokyo Disney Resort in Japan, Disneyland Paris in France, Hong Kong Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, Disney Vacation Club, Adventures by Disney and Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Hawaii. A Shanghai Disney Resort is now under construction in China.

Stay tuned for more information about the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration at and

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