Denise's Corner

Looking Back at Walt Disney World’s Tencennial (Vintage Series #5)

Hi everyone!

As Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary approaches, we have been posting articles with Jeff’s vintage photos from his personal archives each Monday. Jeff has been visiting Walt Disney World every year since 1971 (my first year was 1977). Today we are sharing some photos of Walt Disney World’s Tencennial. Back in 1981, there was just one Walt Disney World park – The Magic Kingdom.

The Tencennial celebration lasted one year, from October 1981 – October 1982. Disney had a sign letting guests know that in front of the train station.

Disney called the Tencennial Parade the “centerpiece” of the celebration. I took this photo. I have very few photos from my Walt Disney World trips prior to 2007 still left.

Mickey and Minnie in front of the “10” were really the face of the event in all the promotional materials I have seen. There was a new song, “Disney World Is Your World.”

Jeff has a photo of this float on Main Street U.S.A.

On one piece of promotional material, it says, “Each afternoon, the glorious Tencennial Parade steps off. This extravaganza features stunning floats representing the six Magic Kingdom ‘lands’…an array of energetic performers – like the Kids of the Kingdom, the Dapper Dans and the Walt Disney World Marching Band…”.

The Frontierland section included a float for The Diamond Horseshoe.

There were dancers representing The Diamond Horseshoe on foot.

Cinderella’s carriage was pulled by small horses.

The finale float was a train that looked like the Casey Jr., along with a slew of Disney characters. In this photo you can see Pinocchio and Stromboli, one of the Tweedles, and part of the Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs grouping.

Twice daily there was a Main Street Birthday Party with Disney characters and the “spit-and-polished World Band”.

Mickey, Goofy and Donald join the performers.

“Disney World is Your World” was a “Broadway-style salute” to the Magic Kingdom with a variety of Disney characters and Kids of the Kingdom on the Tomorrowland Stage.

We are just about a month away from Walt Disney World’s Anniversary, “The World’s Most Magical Celebration”.  I am not sure how long we will continue the articles, but I’m thinking through much of 2021.

Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary books I’m looking forward to:

A Portrait of Walt Disney World: 50 Years of The Most Magical Place on Earth (Disney Editions Deluxe)

Disney World at 50: The Stories of How Walt’s Kingdom Became Magic in Orlando

Birnbaum’s 2022 Walt Disney World: The Official Vacation Guide (Birnbaum Guides)


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