The article “Disneyland, 1955” by Ana Karal Marling looks into the history of Disneyland, its meaning and value for the American citizens, and the part Walt Disney played in its creation and promotion. The story covers the early stages of Walt Disney’s life and career, his ideas and hobbies that made an impressive contribution into the advent of the family recreation and entertainment park, an American Dream, as many Americans take it.

The Disneyland commercial opening was a great success, despite numerous unfinished processes and pre-party failure. Many journalists were unfavorable to the project and its founders, seeing the place as money-driven, vulgar and bogus. The Disneyland’s transcendental profits and chronic traffic tie-ups were the things that impeded the pressmen sleep well at nights. But the business pay-off was something Walt Disney really deserved. As the author penetrates deeper into the background and the fundamentals of Disney’s dream park, we see, that Disneyland was not just a commercial project; it was a place that combined Walt Disney’s reveries, ideas, interests and his old dream to create a place for the family entertainment. Being a father himself, Disney felt an urge to create a truly wonderful place that would make the dream of “togetherness” come true for each American family.

The conception of the Disneyland dream was years away from achievement. And Walt Disney had truly nurtured the project in his heart.

All his works and pleasant memories, as well as practical experience have mixed into the place now known as Disneyland. Walt Disney’s railroading hobby made great impact on the park’s scheme and the further development of the idea. His attendance of the Pacific Railroad Fair generated the future vision of the entertainment park. Disney borrowed numerous ideas the Fair presented and employed them in his own project. Disney’s participation in one of the shows – “Wheels a-Rolling” during the fair and the joy he felt from the participation – has probably been one of the cornerstones of his future confidence in the Disneyland’s success. He further had to overcome numerous barriers and obstacles but in the end, the Disney Park as his ideologist and ‘father’ saw it, came into being in 1955.

Luckily, despite all the difficulties and criticism, Disneyland was a real miracle, although Walt Disney played an important part in his project’s success. The set of TV programs announcing and advertising the new family entertainment zone made thousands of Americans plan their vacation trip to Southern California to enjoy the Disneyland’s diverse leisure lands.

The secret of Disneyland’s success is the opportunity for every visitor to become at least for one day a part of a movie, and the visitor is free to choose his own favorite fairy-tale to come back to childhood and enjoy the world of fantasy.

Critics and journalists may accuse Disney of all the sins of the world, but I am sure most people would appreciate the opportunity he provided us with – a chance to have a good time with beloved ones in the park of our dreams.


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