For the second entry of 'Countdown to Walt Disney World 2011' the year is 1991, neon color schemes are all the rage, George H. W. Bush is president and Michael Eisner's fingerprints are ALL over Disney.
This was my second trip to WDW, and a lot had changed since 1978. Like the fact that there were two more parks to visit now; Epcot and Disney-MGM Studios! We were in the parks only four days, which kind of limited the number of things we did since we were staying off-proprty, trying to squeeze in one park a day, go to Pleasure Island and Typhoon Lagoon.
On the list of things I wish I had done differently would have been taking more pictures. I LOVED the Living Seas pavilion at Epcot, especially all of the '20,000 Leagues under the Sea' artifacts and the whole 'Sealab 2020' meets Jacque Cousteau vide they had going on. Sadly all of this has gone the way of the Dodo.
On our fourth day the party split up and we got to choose whichever park we wanted to go back to. I of course chose Disney-MGM Studios. What an awesome experience that park was. Opened in 1989 the park still had that new car smell to it. So alive with the spirit of Hollywood's Golden Age, no ridiculous Sorcerer's Hat blocking that beautiful view down Hollywood Blvd right to the Chinese Theater. Like Michael Eisner said:
The World you have entered was created by The Walt Disney Company and is dedicated to Hollywood—not a place on a map, but a state of mind that exists wherever people dream and wonder and imagine, a place where illusion and reality are fused by technological magic. We welcome you to a Hollywood that never was—and always will be. •Michael Eisner, May 1, 1989
You can read more of its history here: Disney's Hollywood Studios
In '91 it was the summer of "The Rocketeer," so that film was still very much in evidence (again, more photos!), and the backlot tour was still a tour of a working backlot. The Animation Studio was still open and operating and the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater had just opened.
Yes, I still love DHS, and yes it is still a treat for me to just stroll around and explore. Unfortunately a lot of the magic is gone and a lot of the charm of this park is gone as well.
Okay, so here are some photos and scans of brochures, tickets, etc. that I still have from that trip. Enjoy the show and don't forget to click on an image to see the full-size version.