Any time there’s a big change that involves , there’s “buzz” about that change. It becomes breaking Disney Parks news, and both lovers and haters of the Mouse take to social media to make their case in favor of, or against, the proposed change or the changes on the horizon.
But even if the name of the were to be changed today, this writer has a hard time believing it should be regarded as news at all.
Twitter user Parkscope Joe tweeted his opinion after listening to a podcast called the Disney Dish that offered to its listeners the idea that a name change may be in the Central Florida Resort’s future.
Parkscope Joe mentions the Resort’s name change, but he focuses on the brazenness with which “Josh and Bob” (Disney’s Josh D’Amaro and CEO Bob Chapek) would be operating, should they choose to make such a change, omitting Walt’s name from the Resort’s official name–leaving Walt out altogether.
But in the mind of this writer, the resounding questions are these: “What’s the news? What’s the big deal? Hasn’t the company been leaving Walt out of for a few years now?”
When first spoke to his Imagineers about his plans for a fantastical new family in Central Florida, he referred to those plans as “The Florida Project.” Whether it was because he hadn’t yet named his new or because he wanted to preserve his anonymity outside his trusted circle, Walt didn’t refer to the new Central Florida plans as “ ” for a long time.
But his untimely death in 1966 rocked the Disney company and left Imagineers and all those who worked alongside Walt stricken with grief, saddened, and downcast. But they were also more determined than ever to see Walt’s dream of a family in Florida realized.
” so that all who visited the magical place would know that Walt, not Roy, was responsible for the ideas, the dreams, and the imagination that paved the way for the realization of the new . began welcoming Guests through its gates on October 1, 1971, but because of the fiasco of Disneyland’s opening day, the decision was made to delay the official Opening Ceremony and dedication of the until October 25. During the ceremony, Walt’s brother named the “
is the only member of the Disney Parks family to bear the name “Walt” in its title. Disney Parks Resorts like Disneyland Resort, , Shanghai Disneyland, , and Aulani Resort don’t feature the visionary’s first name.
According to CinemaBlend, however, there is the very first spark of a rumor about The ‘s possible plans to change the name of Walt’s beloved from “” to simply “ ” or even “Disneyworld,” removing “Walt” altogether. And at this time, it’s not clear whether the rumors are true.
But whether true or not, should a change in the Resort’s name that would leave “Walt” out completely really be “buzz” at all?
Many Disney fans–especially those who’ve been fans for years–feel like current Disney C-level execs have been leaving Walt out of things for a while now–that they’ve been forgetting the company’s roots and chasing the almighty dollar, even if it means bringing dishonor and disrespect to the name of and going against everything he stood for when he decided to build his parks.
Walt was clear that he created Disneyland because he wanted families to have a place where they could enjoy the day together–parents with their children, not simply parents taking their children to a and sitting on a bench away from their children.
That had been Walt’s experience every Saturday with his two daughters, Diane and Sharon.
“Disneyland really began when my two daughters were very young,” Walt once explained. “Saturday was always Daddy’s Day, and I would take them to the merry-go-round and sit on a bench eating peanuts while they rode. And sitting there alone, I felt there should be something built, some kind of family where parents and children could have fun together.”
Family-UNfriendly elements added to Disney’s theme parks
But in recent years, there have been elements added to the Disney Parks that aren’t so family-friendly. Only a few years ago, alcohol wasn’t sold at . Today, it’s readily available at each : , , , and EPCOT.
At the Edison Restaurant is strictly for Guests 21 and up in the evenings, regardless of whether those under 21 are accompanied by an adult. Evening entertainment includes a contortionist, burlesque dancers, and other offerings. Not only are those conditions and offerings not family-friendly, but they also serve to divide the family unit or exclude families with children altogether–quite the deviation from Walt’s initial inspiration.,
execs using their positions to further political agendas
While had a good rapport with a few U. S. Presidents and other public and political figures, he wasn’t into loud, polarizing activism and stance-taking when it came to Disneyland.
But The has spent a noticeable amount of time and effort “dabbling” in politics of late. Earlier this year, CEO Bob Chapek used his position to stand against legislation in the State of Florida that pertained to classroom curriculum for elementary school children in Kindergarten through third grade.
Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis fired back, and the bickering continued between the two entities.
Pricing out Guests, creating a vacation destination for the elite
When Walt first built Disneyland, it was for families, which makes sense. Even today, because of work responsibilities, school, etc., families often spend the bulk of their time together on the weekends and during family vacations.
But Walt never intended his parks to be exclusive when it comes to Guests who are welcomed through the gates, and many Disney fans (and haters) feel like Disney is pricing out many families by continually increasing prices of tickets, experiences, dining, Resort stays, and more.
Some feel that this is intentional–that Disney is raising prices so that only the most elite of Guests can visit. Others feel like Disney’s continual price hikes are an intentional attempt to exclude some Guests.
Only time will tell if the , leaving “Walt” out altogether. execs truly plan to change the name of
But it’s already extremely obvious that the company left Walt out altogether long ago. And that’s hardly news at all.