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Good Morning! This day in Disney history, June 26th, 1957: The Viewliner debuts in Disneyland.
Designed by Imagineeer Bob Gurr, & based on General Motors' futuristic "Las Vegas Aerotrain." The Viewliner was a narrow gauge, miniature train that operated alongside parts of the Disneyland Railroad main line. Billed as "the fastest miniature train in the world," it was the park's first attempt @ mass-transit. The tracks made a figure-eight trip around the northeast section of of DL. Mr. Gurr built the engines using Oldsmobile “Rocket” V8 gasoline engines & the parts from two 1954 Oldsmobiles. Oldsmobile also furnished the windscreen, doors, instrument console for each of the two 5,000-pound locomotives.
Mr. Gurr was still putting out fires (literally) the morning of the Viewliner premiere. For the inaugural trip, the band played while Walt jumped in the engine & drove off, w/ Gurr in a new uniform sewn together the night before.
The attraction operated until construction began on the Matterhorn & Submarine Voyage; the Disneyland Monorail System ultimately took the place of the Viewliner in June of 1959, making it one of the shortest-lived attractions in Disneyland history.
Does anyone remember this attraction?
Also on this day in 2006: Pirates of the Caribbean attraction officially re-opens to guests after it's remodel.
-Pirates being chased by a women w/ a broom, rolling pin, & a pitchfork. -The “Pooped Pirate” character now holds a treasure map & vault key while Capt. Jack Sparrow observes from the barrel -Audio Animatronic figures of Capt. Jack & one of Hector Barbossa (who replaces Blackbeard on the Wicked Wench) -New special effects -Improved lighting & audio -A ghostly appearance by Davy Jones, (all voiced by the original actors) -The skeleton beach & hurricane scenes are now accompanied by an instrumental version of "Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)” written by George Bruns and Xavier Atencio. -Captain Jack in his treasure room.
Another interesting tidbit: the final Jack Sparrow in the Treasure Room was supposed to roll a coin on the back of his hand, but the Imagineers were unable to get the effect to work properly, thus causing this Sparrow’s hand to be dubbed “The Million Dollar Hand.”