We all know Walt Disney imagined a future full of innovative ideas and technology, so it’s no wonder that Tomorrowland was constructed with a futuristic theme. Needless to say, it is one of the most loved lands in all of the Magic Kingdom. Here are 6 secrets you may not know about Tomorrowland!
6. View of the Contemporary
The Contemporary Resort was built to resemble a very futuristic structure. It is located just outside of the Magic Kingdom Park on the east side. When the Magic Kingdom was built, imagineers wanted to make sure that the Contemporary wasn’t visible from Main Street USA, or any other land, because it didn’t fit in with any other conept. Since Tomorrowland has a futuristic theme, they decided to make the bridge from Main Street U.S.A. to Tomorrowland twice as big as any other bridge in the park and did not block the view of the Contemporary because it fit in so well with Tomorrowland. You cannot see the Contemporary Resort from any other land in the Magic Kingdom, because the developers wanted to make sure that the atmosphere for each land was as authentic as possible. A view to the Contemporary resort would make a guest lose the feel of the area they were in if they could see it in other lands.
5. Tomorrowland Transit Authority
The Tomorrowland Transit Authority (mostly referred to as the People Mover) is a great ride to relax, kick your feet up, and just soak up the attractions in Tomorrowland. The People Mover takes you through Space Mountain, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, and other dark areas with art. One of the coolest parts of the ride is when guests can see a scale model for what Walt Disney envisioned for his original EPCOT (Experimental Prototype Community of Tmorrow) idea. This was never put into action and actually made because imagineers found it impossible to do, so the Epcot you know today is not what Walt really dreamed of. In addition to the scale model, pay attention to the audio played throughout the ride. You will hear an announcement being made that pages Mr. Tom Morrow to call Mrs. Johnson in the control room to confirm his flight to the moon. Mr. Morrow and Mr. Johnson were characters that were in an original attraction names Flight to the Moon, which opened in 1971.
4. The Famous Kugel Ball
If you have wandered around Tomorrowland, chances are you have crossed paths with a giant black ball. The Kugel Ball is made out of granite and is literally, a perfect sphere. It is placed in a base that has the exact same curvature of the ball and is covered with a thin layer of water. Since the base and ball have a perfect match, the water actually allows this 6-ton ball to be moved by anyone, even a child! Thanks to the laws of physics, you can explain to your little one that moving the ball is as if they were moving an elephant!
3. Space Mountain
To ensure that Space Mountain did not take away from the magnificence of the Cinderella Castle, it was actually constructed 15 feet below the rest of Tomorrowland. The exterior of the coaster may not seem so large when looking at it from the outside, but when you take this into consideration, it makes more sense as to how it is so big inside. This way, the attention of the guests is solely on the castle when they walk in to the park, and not anywhere else in the park.
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2. Carousel of Progress
Walt Disney created the Carousel of Progress and it made its debt at the 1964 New York World’s Fair. It was a huge hit, and since it was such a classic representation of what Walt envisioned for the future, luckily, guests can now experience it in Tomorrowland. Next time you plan to enjoy this attraction, pay attention to the details in the various scenes. To give you an example, there is a tribute to Herb Ryman, one of the imagineers, in the 1940’s scene, and Marty Sklar, one of the heads of Imagineering, in the Christmas scene. Many of the cast members that work here also write on the dry-erase boards that is in one of the scenes also using clever numbers and words that represent the attraction. There are also hidden Mickey’s in each scene, and if you look closely, there are logos of General Electric on the appliances in the 1940s scene, which is kind of like a tribute to the company because without them, the Carousel of Progress wouldn’t have been possible.
1. Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin
Toy Story is one of the most beloved films of Disney and Pixar history, so it’s no surprise that guests of all ages love Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. It can be so fun to compete with your family and friends in a friendly game of laser tag. It can be very challenging to score big points on this ride considering that you are constantly moving in your vehicle. There are, however, a few secrets to scoring big on your next ride! When entering the first room on this ride, your car will automatically turn away from the orange robot. Using the joystick, move your car back towards him and shoot the target on the inside of his left hand with your laser gun. Then, be sure to hit the claw before you go into the next room. These two shots will give you 100,000 points alone! If you hit them several times, you can leave the first room with several hundred thousand points. The second room has a target on the volcano and a monster in a box that are each worth 50,000 points, and in the third room, there is a target at the bottom of Emperor Zurg’s ship that is worth 100,000 points. Another thing to keep in mind is that you don’t actually have to keep pressing and releasing your finger on the trigger of your laser gun for each target. If you keep your finger pressed down at all times, you’ll have steady ammunition.
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Photo courtesy of Disney Photo Snapper