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Friday, January 2, 2015

The Story of DISNEYLAND: The Beginning of a Dream

2015 marks the 60th Anniversary of the opening of Walt Disney's greatest dream- DISNEYLAND. Throughout this special anniversary year, RetlawYensid.com will feature The Story of DISNEYLAND every Friday. Please join us as we tell the story of how Walt Disney's greatest dream came true- how he guided it through its first ten years and how it grew to become, as Julie Andrews called it, 'The Happiest Place on Earth to millions the world over; a place where anything is possible- where every dreamer may wish upon a star.'

The story of DISNEYLAND begins in Kansas City, Missouri. Fresh from the stinging failure of the Disney farm in Marceline, Elias Disney moved his family to Kansas City where he purchased a contract to deliver the Kansas City Star newspaper. He drafted his sons to deliver the newspaper for him, a miserable experience on cold Missouri mornings. Walt Disney would have nightmares about the experience many years later. Once the morning editions were delivered, it was time for school, then time to deliver the afternoon papers, then homework, then sleep. There was very little time for dreaming. Especially since little Walt's father put no stock in dreams or artistic endeavors.

Walt Disney's sister Ruth recalled the dreariness of their childhoods but noted that Walt always tried to make things fun or magical for her. She recalled a particularly magical place in Kansas City- Electric Park.

Walt and Ruth would try to go to the park as often as they could, despite their father's disapproval. Featuring magical lights, fantastic rides and immaculately landscaped grounds, this magic electric city was a fun getaway from the drudgery of home.

Due to Elias Disney's disapproval of any type of artistry or frivolity, Walt and Ruth's visits to Electric Park were few and far between. Sometimes they would only reach the front gates where Ruth recalled Walt staring into the park. Ms. Disney believed that her brother wasn't just pondering the fun they weren't having; he was plotting out his own park and his own dream.

Electric Park suffered a massive fire and eventually became just a memory. It closed completely in 1925. By that time Walt Disney was already out in California following his dreams. Dreams that would lead him to his destiny and DISNEYLAND.