Friday, September 30, 2011

This Day in History October 1, 1971

Isn't it nice to have something good that happened today in history?  On this day in history, Walt Disney World Resort officially opened!  In fact, if you go here to their blog, you can find out more Disney events that  happened on this day.

I graduated from college in Lakeland, Florida which is right in between Tampa and Orlando, so I have experienced Disney World and Disneyland both.  I prefer Magic Kingdom in Disneyland, but you can't beat all the other things that that Disney World offers in Florida.

Shortly after Disneyland opened in 1955, Walt Disney realized he had made a mistake.  He had only bought as much property as he needed--no room to expand.  As early as 1959, they began scouting for other areas to open another Disney park.  Sleepy central Florida (sounds funny now) was the place that was chosen.  There was a lot of open space and cattle lands.  So that word would not leak out, he gradually bought up the area under various dummy names. Eventually, they owned 43 acres for a price of about a million.  "The Florida Project" was announced in 1965, and the price of land skyrocketed.

Walt Disney died of cancer in 1966, and his brother, Roy, continued the project. Phase 1 of the Florida Project (Magic Kingdom, 2 hotels, golf courses, a shopping village, and a monorail for transportation) opened on this day in 1971.  

If you would like to learn more, check out this site:


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