Walt Disney on the Walls of Studio 1 at NBC

We usually associate Walt Disney with the ABC network due to the fact that they sponsored Disneyland in return for a program called Disneyland (1954-1959). But ABC was not set up to broadcast in color, so although the basic format remained the same, the series moved to NBC on September 24, 1961.

We all know and love Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color (1961–1969).

All of this was brought to my mind while I was watching bonus content on a Johnny Carson DVD. And this is what I saw:

Notice a familiar face? I’ll highlight it for you:

As you walk into the Artists Entrance of NBC Studio 1 you see these renderings of famous personalities that were associated with the network. After Walt Disney (circled), there is Jimmy Durante, Jack Benny, Groucho Marx, Don Rickles, Chico and the Man, and Steve Allen (the first host of The Tonight Show, and the man who was instrumental in innovating the concept of the television talk show), among others.

I just love it when I catch a Disney reference in unexpected places!

Magical Blogorail: Best Burgers at Disney – Splitsville

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Red Loop. Today we are sharing where you can find the best burgers at Disney.

OK, no one ever said: “Hey guys, I just found the best burger in the world at the local bowling alley!” But the thing to remember here is that Splitsville Luxury Lanes isn’t your average run of the mill bowling alley!

They use terms like ‘Not your typical bowling alley menu. Hope you don’t mind.’ and ‘At Splitsville, we have taken great care to develop a unique menu that combines traditional and upscale offerings that extend well beyond your expectation of alley food.’ This, may I assure you, describes their hamburgers!

So without further ado, I submit the monster below for the Best Burger at Disney:

What I had, or should I say, it had me!

With a name like The Mad King, you know it’s going to own you! All the portions are huge with every hamburger coming with a nice portion of fries, and drinks are bottomless. Here are some more offerings if eating something considered ‘mad’ is too much for you:

Prices are premium, but worth it!

They also have a great selection of gluten-free foods, with the gluten-free hamburger served on a bun that you can actually enjoy eating, like my wife Karen is doing below:

    

Smile approved!

So the next time you visit Walt Disney World, be sure to visit Disney Springs at lunch or dinner time. You don’t have to pay park admission to get near the place, and no reservations are usually needed.

As they don’t say in France: “Bon Pig Out!”

For more great burgers at the Disney Parks, check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Red | Best Burgers at Disney Loop:

A Comparison of Younger and Older Walt Disney

We’ve all heard the never-ending argument over which is better: Young Elvis or Fat Elvis. I’m in the Young Elvis camp myself, but it’s a discussion that will never end with a clear winner.

I propose to start the same discussion here, but with Walt Disney substituted for The King of Rock and Roll. Let’s start with an establishing shot:

So when I say ‘younger Walt’ I’m not going back quite this far! However, much has been said about Walt’s childhood with most of it becoming almost apocryphal. We do know that much of what he went through, dealing with a harsh father, working at a very young age, and his years in Marceline, all combined to set Walt Disney on a road of ambition, failure, and ultimately, triumph.

But when was Walt at his best? Was it during his struggling years with Laugh-O-Grams and the Disney Brothers Studios? Or was it later when he was everyone’s Uncle Walt, and the undisputed King of Disneyland?

Let’s look at both periods of his life.

Younger     Walt

It’s during his earlier years in the entertainment industry that we see Walt at his most aggressive. With not much experience or resources, he pioneered many new techniques in animation, just because he didn’t know enough to know that it couldn’t be done!

So Walt pushed from the Alice Comedies to a talking Mickey Mouse to the first full-color animated short (Flowers and Trees) and on up to the ground-breaking full-length animated feature film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. He then built a studio that endures today and an empire that is followed and loved by millions!

All of this was in the past for a man who was only in his mid-30’s. The genius of Walt Disney hadn’t peaked yet, and many more successes were in store. But it would be an older Walt that would bring them about.

Older     Walt

With so many successes in the past, most men might start to slow down, or ‘rest on their laurels’, as it were. But not an older and more experienced Walt! With many beloved characters in his animation stable and much more imagination yet to be exploited, he branched out into television (The Mickey Mouse Club, Davy Crockett, Zorro, Wonderful World of Color) and then into live-action feature films.

By this time he had become Uncle Walt to an entire generation of children and one of the most awarded creative talents in history. But Walt wanted to have something to play with that would never be finished and that would continue to challenge both himself and his team, and so Disneyland was born.

Unfortunately, Walt passed away before Walt Disney World and all of the other worldwide theme parks were built, but Walt is definitely alive and well in each and every one of them! We can only speculate what Epcot would be today if Walt had lived to bring his last child into the world himself!

Now millions of guests visit Disney parks each year and Disney films regularly rake in grosses in the high millions, and even billions, of box office receipts. Walt’s spirit of creativity is front and center decades after his person has left us.

Summation

So when was Walt at his best? This is understandably a hard choice to make. What we know as The Walt Disney Company today would not exist if not for the failures and successes of younger Walt’s earlier companies, and the lessons he learned from them. But The Walt Disney Company of today would also not exist if not for the guidance of the older and wiser Walt.

Most of us remember Walt from the Wonderful World of Color television programs. I first started seeing these in the mid-70’s, long after Walt had passed away. I didn’t know this as I watched my favorite Uncle tell me about the latest world of wonder I was about to visit. So it’s hard for someone of my generation not to pick the older Walt based on this nostalgia alone.

But so much has been published about the younger Walt (thanks to organizations like D23) that we also know a lot about him and his contributions to our favorite entertainment company. We see film clips of an energetic and fun-loving man who personified the spirit of Peter Pan, the boy who would never grow up.

Yes, I say again, this is a hard choice to make. Please weigh in with your opinion in the comments section below, and just maybe, we can come to a definitive conclusion. Yes, and maybe Elvis is still alive and living in a small town near you!