What Do Disneyland Devotees Know that you Don’t Know

Old Fire Department in Town Square

Photo Courtesy justdisney.com “Fire Department in Town Square”

Finding your way around Disneyland is easy. Signs direct you to all of the attractions and points of interest. You can pick-up a printed map of the park or use an interactive map app on your iPhone. You can zero in on the exact location of the Pirates of Caribbean ride or locate the Pacific Wharf Cafe for a nice lunch. Most casual visitors have no trouble navigating their way around the park, but, they don’t know some of the less obvious facts about Disneyland that Disneyland regulars do.

Did you know that there was once a lingerie shop along Main Street that sold women’s unmentionables? It was certainly no Victoria’s Secret. The small shop opened way back in 1956 and lasted less than a year before closing in 1956.

Did you know that at one time you could go into the magic shop on Main Street and be entertained by comedian Steve Martin? No, he had not yet put an arrow through his head and he was an unknown waiting for his big break in Hollywood.

While you will never see it, cast members who work on Matterhorn Mountain, had a tiny basketball court where they could shoot a few hoops when they were on a break. The Matterhorn bobsled carried President Nixon and Walt Disney on its inaugural journey.

Even though you feel like you are breaking the sound barrier when you rocket to the stars on the Space Mountain ride, you actually never hit speeds exceeding 30 mph. Disney engineers created the ride to give the illusion of supersonic speed by using banked curves, the cover of complete darkness and periodic blasts of air from big fans.

Walt Disney had a private residence built above the Fire Department in Town Square. He used to stay there with his family when he visited the park. Today, there is a light in the window that always stays on as a tribute to the man who made so many people happy. Read more.

Hidden behind a nondescript door is an exclusive members-only club that costs $10,000 to join and has a waiting list of more than 1,000 well-to-do Disney-lovers. Club 33 is located next to the Blue Bayou in New Orleans Square. Members take an elevator up to the luxury club and can dine in style and partake of their favorite alcoholic beverages. It is the only place in Disneyland Park where you can get hard liquor.

The Sleeping Beauty drawbridge is a functioning bridge. It has only been raised and lowered twice. First on Opening Day and then when the castle was rededicated in rededicated in 1983.

Main Street was modeled after 1910 Marceline, Mo, Walt Disney’s boyhood home. Tomorrowland was Walt Disney’s idea of what life would be like in 1986. Both of those years were selected because they coincide with the rare years in which Halley’s comet makes an appearance.

Take a drink from the Goofy Water Station in Toon Town after the sun sets and the water will change colors as you quench your thirst.

If you happen to visit Disneyland on your birtHday, cast members will present you with a special sticker at City Hall. If you want the recognition, be sure to tell someone at the gate that it is your birthday.
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