The Disney franchise resides all over the world, most having heard of Disneyworld in Florida but the truth is that it all started and traced back to the original, Disneyland in California. The only park to have been overseen by Walt Disney himself in the 1950’s, the doors were opened in 1955 and has since become the most visited attraction park in the world, second only Disneyworld in Orlando.
Some interesting and occasionally lesser known facts about the park include…
Visitors cannot purchase alcohol in the resort unless they are members of Club 33, a private club in resort. However, before you start thinking about membership, I must tell you there is 4 year waiting list and don’t forget the $10,000 membership fee and annual fees on top.
The Matterhorn bobsled ride was the first ever tubular steel continuous tract roller coaster in the world. More interestingly, there is a basketball court located inside the top of the mountain for cast members to use on their break!
The park receives over 2 million phone calls a year and the most popular request? You’ve guessed it, can I speak to Mickey Mouse please!
Visiting a theme park is hungry business and this is proven with the 4 million hamburgers guests consume in an average year!
The park is open 365 days a year, the happiness never ends! There have only ever been 4 unscheduled closures reported since 1955 including the day after the September 11 attacks in 2001.
Originally, the entry ticket to the park was for the park only, you then purchased tickets for each ride individually. It wasn’t until 1982 that an ‘inclusive’ option was given and the individual ride ticket was dropped. The cost in 1982 for an all-inclusive ticket? $12.00. Compared to the average price of $96.00 in May 2014, it still represents very good value for money.
Walt Disney originated many concepts that have become theme park standard worldwide. It was Disney that started to liken employees as Cast Members, their uniform as costumes, the employee area backstage, public area onstage and the visiting public are referred to as guests. This all adds to the experience of a guest likened to that of being entertained, the experience being overseen by ‘Stage Managers’.
If the experience of the press on the opening day of the park was to take precedent, the park may never have survived! The temperatures were high, the abundance of celebrities all turned up at once, a plumbers strike meant the water fountains had run dry and numerous ride breakdown’s all added to a day Walt would probably want to forget! All was forgiven though when he invited them back for a second private day to see the park in its full glory.
The first ticket was sold to Walt’s brother, Roy Disney and was purchased from the then manager of admissions at the park, Curtis Lineberry. No visit is complete without an original Disneyland California holidays.