Disneyland receives the coveted Award of Excellence star, adjacent to
the Hollywood Walk of Fame, in recognition of its 50th anniversary.
The dedication takes place on Hollywood Blvd. in front of the El Capitan Theatre in California.
Disney's 1949 live-action film So Dear To My Heart is released on video.
Today is Spirit of Mickey Day in Marceline, Missouri (Walt Disney's boyhood hometown). Hosted by the Walt Disney Company, it features personal appearances by Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto and Goofy.
A 21-year-old Englishman and illustrator named Edward Whymper, along with a
group of climbers, become the very first to reach the summit of the Matterhorn, the
most famous peak in the Swiss Alps. A mountain in the western part of the Alps on the border
between Switzerland and Italy, the Matterhorn's summit is 14,690 feet high. (Walt Disney and his family will visit
the neighboring village of Zermatt during the 1950s. His love of the area will later inspire the 1959 live-action film
Third Man on the Mountain and the classic Disneyland Matterhorn bobsled ride.)
Actress Nancy Olson is born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her Disney credits
include Pollyanna as Nancy Furman, The Absent-Minded Professor as Betsy Carlisle, Son of
Flubber as Elizabeth 'Betsy' Brainard, and Snowball Express as Sue Baxter. Olson also
makes a brief, uncredited cameo appearance in the 1997 re-make of The Absent-Minded
Professor titled Flubber (starring Robin Williams).
Disney's Silly Symphony cartoon The Flying Mouse is released. Directed by David Hand, it is considered a significant cartoon for the Disney Studios, as it marks a big step forward in creating a real personality for an animated character.
Original Mouseketeer - and the youngest male to audition to be
a Mouseketeer - Carl "Cubby" O'Brien is born in Burbank, California.
The youngest of three sons of Haskell "Hack" O'Brien, a well-known professional drummer, young Carl got his
nickname "Cubby" from his mom. At age five, he began playing drums while attending the Carl Babcock Music
School in Sherman Oaks, California. At the age of 8, O'Brien was playing in a Dixieland band at a Screen Actors
Guild benefit, when Disney producers spotted him and invited him to audition for Mickey Mouse Club. After 3
seasons of Mickey Mouse Club, Cubby became a full-time working drummer performing with acts like The
Carpenters, Debbie Reynolds, and Andy Williams and on the hit TV variety series The Carol Burnett Show. Years
later he performed on Broadway for such productions as The Producers, Gypsy, and Chicago and even a touring
version of Beauty and the Beast.
Disney's live-action feature film The Monkey's Uncle, starring Tommy Kirk (his last Disney film) and Annette Funicello, is generally released. College whiz-kid Merlin Jones (Kirk) concocts a method for teaching advanced information to a chimpanzee, then creates a flying machine of his own design, ultimately raising havoc on the campus. The film features the motion picture debut of the Beach Boys, who back Funicello on the title song - written by the Sherman Brothers. (The Monkey's Uncle is a sequel to the 1964 feature The Misadventures of Merlin Jones.)
The Dapper Dans and Disneyland performers & characters appear at the
Hollywood Bowl (in California) during a sold-out "Family Night" concert hosted by
comedic actor Morey Amsterdam. It is also at this event that the first Winnie the Pooh for President
convention is held. Pooh kicks off his campaign in style, joined onstage by friends from the Hundred Acre
Wood for a campaign musical number and the release of thousands of red, white, and blue balloons.
The Disney company announces plans to build an Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow (or EPCOT) in Florida.
The American Egg House opens on Main Street in Disneyland. Howard Helmer (a
demonstrating cook with the American Egg Board) breaks the world record for omelet preparation. Easily passing
the old record of 188 omelets, Howard produces 217 two-egg omelets in only 30 minutes, assuring himself a spot in
Guinness's next edition of its famous record book!
Tokyo Disneyland welcomes its 250-millionth visitor, Mrs. Hisae Do.
The Disney Channel Original Movie Ready to Run, about a 14-year-old energetic girl who dreams of becoming a jockey in a predominantly male sport, debuts.
In celebration of Bastille Day, the Disneyland Resort Paris holds a Holiday Pin Event.
Cadet Kelly - starring Hillary Duff & Christy Carlson Romano - airs on Wonderful
World of Disney. It is the first Disney Channel Movie ever to be repeated on the
Walt Disney World introduces new lightweight language translation headsets. The headsets incorporate wireless technology that provides synchronized narration in five languages.
A new daytime harbor show called "The Legend of Mythica" debuts as part of Tokyo DisneySea Park’s 5th Anniversary celebration.
The Disney Wonder departs from Venice, Italy (where she was built) enroute to Port Canaveral, Florida.
Gerald Rudolph Ford, the 38th president and 40th vice president of the United States, is born in Omaha, Nebraska. Raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he visited Disney World in 1979. Visit Mr. Ford and all the presidents at Disney World's classic attraction The Hall of Presidents.
Final construction and preparation take place in Anaheim on Walt's new theme park (just 3 days before Disneyland's grand debut). During a test ride, Disneyland's Casey Jr. Circus Train almost tips backward while traveling uphill! Lead weights will be added to the front, allowing it to temporarily run on the park's grand opening day. (On July 18 the attraction will close allowing the steep uphill grade to be reduced.) Over in Tomorrowland, final details are added to the Disneyland Moonliner Rocket. A worker suspended from a crane 76 feet above the ground places the pointed silver top of the rocket in place.
Disney's 1953 Peter Pan is re-released in theaters for the fifth and final time.
Napster, the pioneer in digital music, announces a partnership with Walt Disney Records that includes an exclusive commercial-free "Best of Disney" radio station featuring music from Disney’s catalog.
A 31-year-old actress named
Joann Killingsworth was Disneyland's very first Snow White. She was a part-time sales clerk at the Neiman-Marcus department store in Newport Beach, California when she was found through a Disney nationwide search!
In Memory of Dal McKennon (1919-2009)
"We believed in our idea - a family park where parents and children could have fun - together." -Walt Disney
Animator and teacher Walt Stanchfield is born in Los Angeles, California. He began
his career in animation in 1937 at the Charles Mintz Studio and then later at the Walter Lantz Studio prior to his
lengthy tenure at The Walt Disney Studios. In the 1970s, Stanchfield focused his efforts on establishing a training
program for new animators along with veteran animator and director Eric Larson. Stanchfield worked on every
full-length animated feature from the 1948 The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad through the 1986 The Great
Mouse Detective. In the mid-1980s, he also taught weekly gesture drawing classes for the entire studio. His
weekly lecture notes and drawings are now gathered and published in a two-volume collection entitled Drawn to
Life: 20 Golden Years of Disney Master Classes by animator/producer Don Hahn.
Actor Dallas R. McKennon (often credited as Dal McKennon) passes away just 5 days short of his 90th birthday in Washington. Known primarily as a voice actor, his Disney credits include Lady and the Tramp, Sleeping Beauty, One Hundred and One Dalmatians, Mary Poppins, and Bedknobs and Broomsticks. McKennon also provided the voices for many Disney attractions such as the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad safety announcement, Ben Franklin's voice in Epcot's American Adventure, and the voice of Zeke in the Country Bear Jamboree. (McKennon was also the original voice of Gumby for Art Clokey's 1950s stop motion clay animation. Although not a Disney production, his best-known live action role was that of the innkeeper, Cincinnatus, in the Daniel Boone TV series starring Fess Parker.)
"Hold on to your hats and glasses... this here's the wildest ride in the wilderness!" -McKennon
The 13th Walt Disney World Wine Festival, featuring wines of 75 winemakers and
food prepared by Disney chefs, kicks off for 3 days at Yacht and Beach Club
Walt Disney Pictures releases the fantasy adventure film The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, the story (although very different) is loosely based on the "Sorcerer's Apprentice" segment in Disney's Fantasia. Balthazar Blake (played by Nicolas Cage) is a master sorcerer in modern-day Manhattan trying to defend the city from his arch-nemesis, Maxim Horvath (Alfred Molina). Unable to do it alone, Blake recruits Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel), a seemingly average guy who demonstrates hidden potential, as his reluctant apprentice.
The first edition of Walt Disney's World of Ice premieres. A joint effort between Disney and Feld Entertainment® (the largest provider of live family entertainment in the world), the show features Olympic skaters.
"I’ve traveled all over the world since the Mickey Mouse Club and have had the
opportunity to meet many notable celebrities and entertainers. It’s funny because they always seemed to introduce
me as Mouseketeer Cubby. There wasn’t a show that went by that someone didn’t come backstage and would tell me
how much of an impact we had on them, since they grew up watching the show." -Cubby O'Brien (2010)
Meet Me at Disneyland (a limited TV series broadcast live on KTTV directly from the
Anaheim park) airs episode 6 "Tahitian Terrace Show." The blowing of a ceremonial conch
shell opens this look at Polynesian dancers, beginning with the Royal Tahitians at Disneyland. Guests include
Annette Funicello, Bill Skiles, Chief Tui Temakore and Dolores Domasin. Meet Me at Disneyland is designed to
boost park attendance during the summer weeknights.
Today is Bastille Day in France
Disneyland Paris celebrates Bastille Day with colorful parades and spectacular air displays. Known in France as Fête Nationale, Bastille Day officially commemorates the 1790 Fête de la Fédération, which was held on the one-year anniversary of the storming of the Bastille, a Parisian prison that at the time housed only a handful of inmates but which had come to symbolize the tyranny of the Bourbon monarchs.
From 11:00am to 5:30pm, the France Pavillion at Epcot hosts a variety of activities to celebrate Bastille Day (a national holiday in France).