Thoughts While Watching: Disneyland Goes To The World’s Fair, 1964

Walt Disney and his dinosaur friend

And we’re back with another entry in my Thoughts While Watching series! Marvel as I drop pithy comment after pithy comment about vintage Disney media in real time! I hope! (I hope it’s pithy, anyway; I’ve given up on time.)*

* More thorough explanation here.

Today we are diving into a most intriguing “World of Color” episode entitled “Disneyland Goes to the World’s Fair.” Given that it first hit television in 1964, I think it’s safe to say we’re heading to New York.

Disneyland Goes to the World's Fair

If you’re any kind of Disney fan – and if you’re here that seems likely – you already know that the 1964 New York World’s Fair was a massive event for Walt Disney. Our Uncle Walt did so love playing with other peoples’ money, and we got some legendary, nay, ICONIC attractions out of it.

In fact, I’d say let’s nip this exposition in the bud and jump right into the show, shall we? Unfortunately, all of the YouTube rips I was able to find have the embed feature disabled, so I’m going to have to ask you to click over here to watch. 🙁 This will still be fun, though, I promise!

17 Thoughts I had While Watching “Disneyland Goes To The World’s Fair”

1. Oh, yes, Uncle Walt, please send me my own dinosaur audio-animatronic.

2. I’m going to need someone to fact-check this fair cartoon. (Strong shades of Donald in Mathmagic Land here, by the way!)

3. Hmmm, we seemed to have taken a lefthand turn at Terry Gilliam.

4. More generic fair history? I kinda feel like Walt is stalling for time at this point.

5. Can anyone identify any Imagineers in the background in the studio? Maybe Claude Coats closest to the camera?

6. Call me crazy, but I’m jealous of old Frontierland. Mules AND Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland – I mean, Big Thunder who?

7. Are the cavemen in the diorama scenes in Disneyland’s train ride? I don’t remember them but I’ve only ridden it once.

8. I’m seeing the seeds of Spaceship Earth scenes, not to mention my much-missed Universe of Energy.

9. Because of their claws? No, because they’re macaws!

10. Ooh, Blaine Gibson! That’s one identified anyway.

11. On the wishlist: Walt Disney World reverts to the original, ’60s final Carousel of Progress scene as per the World’s Fair.

12. I KNEW that was a different dog.

13. No question here; I know Roland Crump when I see him! Is the Tower of the Four Winds still a thing?

14. Is that a Sherman brother in the it’s a small world boat?

15. The small world toy soldiers are supposed to be Danish? I always thought they were British!

16. Did Disney do the fireworks, or is that a coincidence?

17. Wait, it’s over? Do we not get to see the dinosaurs in their rightful place? Bummer.

So we got off to a bit of a slow start there, but I was very pleased with the second half. I figured we’d be doing a behind-the-scenes of development type thing; seeing the fair itself was a welcome surprise! And I could certainly never get tired of hearing Walt say dino-sahr.

I hope you enjoyed this trip through a seminal piece of Disney parks history. I’ve got another good one lined up for the next Thoughts While Watching – stay tuned!

Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall and on Instagram @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions or thoughts, leave a comment or email fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

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