Joel Magee is known as “America’s Toy Scout,” and for good reason. He loves toys and Disney memorabilia and has spent a large part of his life appraising toys and collectibles, but he also has a massive Disney theme parks collection of his own.
But we’re not talking trinkets and knick-knacks.
Instead, the West Palm Beach native collects Disney theme park relics, such as attractions posters, signage, figures, ride models, costumes, and other items from Disney theme parks over the years.
Magee’s personal Disney collection has been growing for 30 years. His first purchase was in Orlando at a collectors’ event.
“There was a gentleman there that had a whole bunch of cool Disney items. They were from the park, and I didn’t even know that you could get items from the parks,” Magee said. “I bought some of the pieces, and I caught the bug.”
Van Eaton’s company has had the experience of hosting a collection belonging to a single individual once before. The auction was held in a space that once housed a Sports Authority store. When the exhibition opened up to the public, the crowd they hoped for ended up being much smaller than the crowd that showed up.
“We were hoping to get a few thousand people, and we ended up getting about 50,000 people, and people were waiting three hours to see this exhibit,” Van Eaton said. “This is in a town where Disneyland is right around the corner.”
Van Eaton thinks Magee’s Dumbo ride vehicle will fetch a lot of cash.
“I can tell you that Dumbo ride vehicle–which the only other one I have seen offered for sale was in 2018–that one went for half a million dollars,” he said.
The auction will host very expensive items, such as the trio of Hitchhiking Ghosts, for which Magee says he was once offered $750,000.
“That was three years ago,” Magee explained. “We turned it down.”
But according to Van Eaton, there are many affordable pieces in the collection as well–some that will run for between $20 and $50 each.
Have you ever been to a Disney collectibles auction or exhibition? Are you a collector yourself? Let us know what you collect in the comments!