On this week's show, share some on this day in Disney history and turn our attention to the Disneyland mountains.
Voices of Minnie Mouse
Today we remember Marcellite Garner (the original voice of Minnie Mouse), who passed away at the age of 83 on this day in Disney history.
Born on this day in 1921, this voice-over artist has been heard as the voice of the father in Walt Disney's Carousel of Progress from 1993.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
This is an easy first pick as it has a mountain in the actual title! It opened on 2nd September 1979, replacing Mine Train Through Nature's Wonderland. It snuggles into the theming of Frontierland really well; with a great backstory about Rainbow Ridge - a once-thriving mining town. The ride story is that these mine carts carried ore but the mountain was a sacred place for Native Americans so there was a curse!
Rainbow Ridge was abandoned following an earthquake but the mine carts kept chugging down the tracks - without any crew! Now, park guests are invited to take a ride on these possessed vehicles.
|Thor's Hammer Photo Credit Whit Richardson|
The ride Imagineer was Tony Baxter and the ride designer was Bill Watkins. Baxter's idea was built on a previous one from Marc Davies (The Western River Expedition, which was going to be a western-themed pavilion in the Magic Kingdom that would have had a mine coaster ride as part of it.)
Not travelled on this? Well, thanks to The Coaster Views, here is a front seat ride:
Again, this has a mountain in its title! The actual Matterhorn is a mountain of the Alps - being precise it is on the Swiss Italian border in the Monte Rosa area of the Pennine Alps and is 4,478 meters tall (the highest summit in Europe). This mountain is a square-based pyramid (having five faces). Over 500 people have died trying to climb this mountain!
|Photo Credit - Smithsonian Magazine|
Walt had recently been in Switzerland filming The Third Man on the Mountain (a film about a young man who wants to climb the mountain that his dad died on). The beauty of the Matterhorn led to it being the mountain selected for this attraction by Walt buying a postcard of the mountain, and he sent it to Vic Greene (an Imagineer) and said "Vic, build this. Walt."
The attraction has two tracks winding through the internal structure and every now and again, riders get glimpses to the world outside with large reveals. Over the years it has seen refurbishments - in the 1970s the addition of an Abominable Snowman (nicknamed Harold).
|Photo Credit - LaughingPlace.com|
|Can you think of any other mountain themed snack?|
There is no actual mountain here but the ride opened on 27th May 1977. There are five Space Mountains across the Disney theme parks and this was the second of those to open. Each Space Mountains have the same exterior facade and Disneyland's version differs from the Magic Kingdom version as there is only one track and the ride vehicles are different.
|Space Mountain Opens - Photo Credit D23|
Lights on the ride-Hyperspace MountainIn 1996, onboard music was added to the attraction and it has seen Ghost Galaxy overlay and Hyperspace Mountain.
Again, no mountain (but there is a hill) and this log flume attraction opened on 17th July 1989. This attraction will close and be re-themed to Princess and the Frog.
There are slight differences to the Walt Disney World version and interestingly this is the shortest of the three ride incarnations. In its current form, the attraction is based around the Uncle Remus stories and is linked to the Disney film - Song of the South.
Video credit LMG VidsAs we went into detail on the Walt Disney World show about Splash Mountain, we decided to keep this review short and simple.
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