Thursday, September 29, 2016

Building WDW's Magic Kingdom

Oh my! This is quite a find!

A grand daughter recently discovered a treasure trove of pictures belonging to her grandparents who helped build and worked at the Magic Kingdom till their retirements. The pictures being shown here are all the various construction scenes during the building of the Magic Kingdom.

Her grandfather, Chester "Chet" Wise, helped build the Disney park starting in 1969 and continued to work there until he retired in the late 1980s. Her grandmother, Elizabeth Wise, also worked at the park. They lived right by it until Chet Wise died in 2002, so Valdes visited often. 
After her grandmother died in 2012, Valdes was given a box of pictures that she didn't examine until she was packing to move last March. 
What she found was a treasure trove: her grandfather had taken dozens of pictures of the Magic Kingdom under construction, often from high above.

I found it rather fun to play the game "Where In the Magic Kingdom Is This?" when I was looking through the various photos.

But not only that, but her grandparents also got to live full time on a Disney property!

My grandparents were one of 10 families that actually lived on Disney property, because Disney needed a handful of residents in order to incorporate Lake Buena Vista as an actual city back in the early 1970s. 
These employees were handpicked, and my grandparents lived on Disney property until my grandfather passed away. It was so close to the Magic Kingdom that I could see fireworks from their front yard when I was a kid.
Wow. That must have been quite magical! 

I'm hoping that she will do something to have these pictures exhibited. I'm sure the Disney archive people would love to get their hands on these.


Live-Action "Lion King" In The Works

Disney will be making another live-action movie of a beloved animated film - The Lion King.

Jon Favreau, who brilliantly did the live-action version of "The Jungle Book" will be at the helm directing this new version.

The new take won’t be live-action per se but will definitely look it. Favreau will build on what he accomplished with Jungle Book — using a real child actor and bringing to life the jungle and its animals via cutting edge technology and a green-screen set in a Los Angeles studio.

If this is anywhere near The Jungle Book, it should be a good one!


Thursday, September 22, 2016

iOS10 Has A Feature That Disney Pin Traders Might Like

This might be of interest to you if you have an iPhone or iPad that can be upgraded to the new iOS 10.

A new feature that has appeared in iOS 10 is something called the Magnifier. It is basically a magnifying glass! This is handy for pin traders because we often need to read the print on the back of pins, and these things appear to be getting smaller and more difficult to read, or maybe I'm just getting older and my eyesight is getting poorer.

In any case, it is easy to activate this feature.

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Tap on General
  3. Choose Magnifier
  4. Click on the Magnifier slider and voila! You have it on. You may also want to activate Auto-Brightness if you wish.
To pull up the Magnifier, press the Home button three times quickly. The Magnifier will come up. Use the sliding scale to increase or decrease the magnification. There are also other features available in the Magnifier, such as turning on the light if you need to illuminate what you are magnifying.

It is a very handy feature, and definitely handy to a pin collector/trader.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

No "Healty Gumbo"

Disney now learns that there is no such thing as a "healthy gumbo".

While the intention is noble, the execution is left to be desired. In an attempt to make gumbo more healthy, Disney foolishly make a video recipe for this iconic dish but changed it so much that it caused a brouhaha among fans of this Cajun staple.

The family-entertainment juggernaut posted a video recipe for "Tiana's Healthy Gumbo" to the official Facebook page for "The Princess and the Frog," the 2009 animated movie that featured a New Orleanian culinary princess. The nearly two-minute-long video, which has since been taken off the Facebook page and Disney's other social media accounts, was charming enough with a jazzy tune playing in the background. However, it quickly drew the ire of Louisiana foodies for its use of kale, quinoa and its lack of a roux.

Starting without a roux and not adding file as part of the recipe disqualifies it from being called a gumbo to many people. Disney would have been fine if they simply called it a New Orleans-inspired stew, or something like that, rather than a gumbo.

Moral of the story: Just don't mess around with something so iconic.


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Goodbye, Sum of all Thrills

Sum of All Thrills and StormStruck have closed at Epcot's Innoventions.

The Sum of All Thrills and StormStruck, two exhibits within the Innoventions area of Epcot, closed for good on Tuesday, a Walt Disney World spokeswoman confirmed.

Their exit leaves Innoventions East with Colortopia as its one remaining occupant.

The exhibits of Innoventions West closed this spring, although some character meet-and-greets are still inside the structure. Walt Disney World has not announced future plans for the space.

Disney, of course, will remain mum on the future plans for Innoventions. Rumors swirling around the 'net indicates everything from remodeling of the interiors of both Innoventions, to outright bulldozing the area to build new attractions. Who knows. But they must be up to something, because Sum of All Thrills have been they most popular attraction in Innoventions. In fact, it was the only reason (other than to use the bathroom or to cool down from the outside heat) that I go into Innoventions East.

I'll miss Sum of all Thrills. As a physicist and a physics instructor, I thought it was a neat way to illustrates mechanics, especially the conservation of energy principles. Of course, the whole thing is done way too fast for one to pay attention to these principles, especially when one is at the design stage in front of the large touch screen.

I don't know if Disney is going to mothball the ride, or dismantle it, or worse, discard it. But wouldn't it be nice if they donate them to a science museum? Being in the Chicago area, this will be perfect for the Museum of Science and Industry here where exhibits on basic physics are still not as prominent as they should be. They don't even have to do that much modification other than extending the time it takes to design the ride and to explain a bit more of the physics involved.

I can only hope this right will resurface elsewhere.