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Good morning! This day in Disney history August 9th, 1969: forty five years ago, the Haunted Mansion opened to the public in New Orleans Square!
Photo credit: CobbPR
The mansions beginnings go all the way back to when Walt Disney had artist Ken Anderson work on a walk-through "ghost house".
Designers wanted the facade to look like the stereotypical haunted house, but Walt Disney said, “We’ll take care of the outside and let the ghosts take care of the inside.” Sadly Walt passed away two years before the opening, making this the first attraction to open without him. (Dec. 15th,1966) With the loss of their great visionary, the imagineers debated over the design, should it be scary? Funny?
combined their ideas to create what the mansion is today.
The Haunted Mansion was connected to several myths and urban legends. Since the facade had been up for nearly five years, rumors began making their way through schoolyards and across backyard fences. My favorite, a "test patron" had supposedly been literally "scared to death!" π»
Another fun story surrounding the mansion, quoted from my friend @BaseballMickey_CM: "A few months after the Mansion opened in 1969, it closed for a mysterious reason. People thought that it was so scary that someone actually was killed inside. Well actually, the floors of the stretching room where collecting mold and were damaged from a small leak from the water of the Rivers of America, thus, they had to replace the flooring."
BUT the biggest mystery of them all seems to be with the ACTUAL opening date…..every Disney website I've researched says it's the 9th. BUT I've found evidence to the contrary. You be the judge. For a fascinating read about this: http://tinyurl.com/lvq6kbl
Madame Leota, the medium in the séance room and the tiny talking figure at the end of the attraction as you exit, is modeled after longtime (WED—now Walt Disney Imagineering) employee, model builder, costumer, and Imagineer Leota Toombs (also known as Leota Thomas).
Photo credit: CobbPR
"Serpents, and spiders, tail of a rat...call in the spirits, wherever they're at! Rap on a table, it's time to respond...send us a message from somewhere beyond. Goblins and ghoulies, from last Halloween...awaken the spirits with your tambourines! Creepies, and crawlies, toads in a pond...let there be music, from regions beyond! Wizards and witches, wherever you dwell...give us a hint by ringing a bell!"
can be heard in nearly every section of the Mansion with various arrangements. "Grim Grinning Ghosts" is not performed by the Mellomen, but rather by a pickup group. The only member of the Mellomen heard is Thurl Ravenscroft, who sings as part of a quintet of singing busts in the graveyard scene (the one wth the mustache). His face is also used, projected onto the bust with a detached head. Can you name the other four? (pictured in the main collage below) First one who does gets a gold star for today….
To listen to the original recording of the story of the Mansion (I believe you can purchase this CD in the park): http://tinyurl.com/9z8xl3m
To listen to an interview with "The Black Widow Bride" Kat Cressida (also pictured in the collage below, added in 2006 for the 50th anniversary): http://tinyurl.com/kjkbzqm
What's YOUR favorite thing about Haunted Mansion? Do you prefer the original version or the NBC Holiday one?
Photo credit: CobbPR
Thanks so much for reading and watching! Hope you all have a super Saturday!
Happy 45th anniversary Haunted Mansion!
Photo Credit: CobbPR
Photo credits for the collage below go to our very own MW photographers: CobbPR- Haunted Mansion exterior, and Madame Leota Photography by Ken Leonard (Retired Kid Again): Singing busts in the graveyard MrMOMzers: Ballroom shooter, and Black Widow
Disneyland unFORECAST (BETA) is here! Top MouseWaiters giving you the rundown of what's happening at the Disneyland Resort. The unFORECAST now has its own page on the web www.unFORECAST.com
unFORECAST for the week of June 29, 2015
Last year, Independence Week was unusually slow. July 4 was one of the slowest days of the year, if you can believe that! Looking back at MouseWait's Historical Crowd Index (available in our new MagicPlan iOS Calendar), this week averaged in the 60s, which is not very crowded at all. It is supposed to cool down a little later in the week, which could bring large crowds this weekend. To get a real-time look at how crowded the Parks are, check the MouseWait app for real-time Crowd Index averages and wait times. - Admin Jun 29, 2015 12:52PM
TOP 5 THINGS to do this week at the Disneyland Resort:
1. Watch the new "Paint the Night" parade 8:50 and 11pm nightly.
2. Watch the new "Disneyland Forever" Fireworks show at 9:30pm nightly.
3. See the new "World of Color" 9pm and 10:15pm nightly.
4. Try to find a "Made with Magic" wand or paintbrush which allow you to interact with select Disney experiences and merchandise.
5. Look for the Word of the Day displayed outside of the theme park entrances (or in the MouseWait Lounge) and text the word between 7am and 10:59am Pacific to the shortcode listed on the sign. You must be at the Disneyland Resort to enter. If you win, you will be notified around 11am via text or phone. For more info go here.
And don't forget about Food! Check out our real-time Food blog to see what's new at the Resort. POST YOUR IDEAS BELOW and they could make the weekly top 5!
MouseWait COUNTDOWN for iOS is here! Countdown the days to your next Disneyland or Disney World trip with our images OR your pics! Your Countdown also displays on Apple Watch and is beautiful on iPhone 6 screens. Secure the discounted launch price for a limited time.
MONTHLY WAIT TIME LEADERS REAL-TIME: Thank you to everyone who enters accurate wait times--you earn MouseRank Points, Credits, worldwide fame, and wealth beyond your wildest dreams when you enter wait times at the Park (ok maybe not the last two things). Please remember to ONLY enter wait times that you have verified in person, this improves our algorithm substantially, thanks!
La Brea Bakery is the Official Restaurant of MouseWait! Thank you for supporting our partners. Join us Tuesdays 8pm at La Brea for Sticker Night. La Brea offers MouseWaiters a 15% discount during official MouseWait Meetups (Sticker Nights every Tuesday night, and other meetups that we announce in the Lounge).
DISCOUNTED DISNEYLAND TICKETS THROUGH MOUSEWAIT! You get 2% off select tickets if you purchase on this page and use the code MOUSEWAIT at checkout. A percentage of your total purchase comes back to MouseWait, which helps cover our monthly maintenance and development expenses! You will also get 100 Credits if you email us your receipt along with your username!
Get 100 Credits for staying at the Hojo Anaheim! Just fill out this form and we'll get the Credits added to your account. When you stay at the Hojo, you help us continue to improve MouseWait. Call their in house reservation number and remember to mention MouseWait--you will love everything about the Hojo!
Credits Hall of Fame. This real-time list honors the top Credits purchasers by showing the total number of Credits purchased. These MouseWaiters play an integral part in helping us maintain and innovate. Thank you to everyone who buys Credits in the MW iOS app, TRIVILATOR, and Goat Effect!
Easily manage the social side of MouseWait for Disneyland and Disney World with our new mousetopia app for iOS. Post to the DL or WDW side, use your Stickers, and utilize our new MouseWait Messenger. Optimized for iOS 8 and the iPhone 6! See what's new here.