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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

1964 New York World's Fair Guidebook Signed by Disney Legends

As we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of The 1964 New York World's Fair on April 22, 2014, I wanted to show part of my 1964 World's Fair Collection. While I wasn't born yet, this is one of my favorite things in Disney history. Walt not only got to showcase what his team could do to those who lived on the East coast but got to bring back additions to Disneyland that still exist in some shape or form to this day. The work done for this fair changed the way Disney did things and brought several new innovations that would forever change Disneyland and the parks that came after it.

The four Disney produced shows were as follows:

Pepsi Pavilion for UNICEF (it's a small world)

Illinois Pavilion (Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln)

General Electric's Progressland (the most famous part being the Carousel of Progress)

Ford's Magic Skyway (created an innovative ride system that would one day help create the Peoplemover and similar ride systems)

The Disney Legends that signed this book are as follows, starting at the top:

Robert Henry (Bob) Gurr - designer who worked on all four Disney produced World's Fair shows including working on the ride systems for both Small World and Ford's Magic Skyway as well as the internal mechanisms for the Lincoln figure

Richard Sherman - songwriter who along with his brother Robert wrote the iconic song "it's a small world" but also my personal favorite, "It's A Great Big, Beautiful Tomorrow" for the Carousel of Progress which was part of Progressland

Rolly Crump - best known for creating the stunning Tower of The Four Winds in front of the "it's a small world" at the World's Fair but was the designer for Ford's Magic Skyway and also the art director for it's a small world

Alice Davis - costume designer who created all the costumes for the figures for "it's a small world."

Blaine Gibson - sculpted all four shows including his most famous creation, Abraham Lincoln for the Illinois Pavilion.

Marty Sklar - writer of concepts, narrations and publications for the Ford, G.E. and Small World shows

At a Legend of Walt Disney Imagineering event at The Walt Disney Studios, I decided to bring this and a 1964 World's Fair map to have them sign it if they would be so kind. Not only did all of the above Imagineers sign it but Marty Sklar picked this guide book up and the map and showed it to all of his friends and fellow Disney Legends and asked them when was the last time they saw something like this? They all replied probably not since the world's fair.

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