Looking Back


Disney Legend Marty Sklar Dies at 83

The death of Legendary Disney Imagineer Martin A. "Marty" Sklar at age 83 has left the Disney community heartbroken. We here at Walt Disney World for Grown-ups mourn with out friends and colleagues as we honor one of the most beloved Imagineers. If you love the Disney Parks, you have been touched in some way by the indomitable spirit and Imagineering of Marty Sklar. He was a mentor to generations of Cast Members and Imagineers, and a icon to Disney fans around the globe.

While the kids don't care too much yet about Walt, Roy, and their hope and dreams, those of us who grew up watching their rise to fame and playing in their theme parks always want to know more about how it happened and how we got from the "Florida Project" to what we have today. The column will be dedicated to history, Disney-style.


Looking Back (and to the Future): Dumbo The Flying Elephant

The Dumbo Ride is one of the most iconic attractions at Disney World. Chances are you may not wait in the long lines anymore (unless you have kids) but you still have a soft spot for the flying elephant ride.


Looking Back: It's a Small World

Some people love it and for others it is the bane of their Disney existence. We are talking It's a Small World today, exploring the origins and history of this Disney hallmark.

For those of you who have never ridden It's a Small World, the attraction is an interior boat cruise that features over 300 brightly costumed audio-animatronic dolls in the style of children of the world. There is an It's a Small World attraction at each of the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts worldwide, and Walt ever only referred to it as "the happiest cruise that ever sailed."

Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover [Looking Back]

Who doesn't love the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover? It's become a must-do for me during every trip to the Magic Kingdom.

Country Bear Jamboree [Looking Back]

"Howdy folks! Welcome to the one and only, original Country Bear Jamboree, featuring a bit of Americana"our musical heritage of the past."

'Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue' history [Looking Back]

Considered to be one of the longest, continuously running musicals in American theatre history, with more than 35,000 performances and 10 million happy audience members -- my, that's a lot of fried chicken! -- the Hoop-De-Doo Musical Revue has been going strong since June 1974 at Pioneer Hall at Fort Wilderness.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea [Looking Back]

What historic Disney World attraction required 11.5 million gallons of water and almost a quarter of the space in the largest land in the Magic Kingdom? 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, of course.

Profile of an Imagineer: Xavier Atencio

How did a shy animator come to write some of the most recognizable lyrics in all of Disney World? According to Xavier "X" Atencio, "Walt had an uncanny ability of finding talent in these people that we didn't know we had ourselves."

Pleasure Island [Looking Back]

What's your take on Pleasure Island? Are you looking forward to the new Hyperion Wharf? Do you miss the closed nightclubs?

River Country Water Park (Looking Back)

We're talking about Disney World's forgotten water park. We all love Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach, but did you know about Walt Disney World's first water park? River Country opened on June 20, 1976 and ceased operations on November 2, 2001.