It's FLASHBACK FRIDAY!
Time to go back in time thanks to fun old family photos of days gone by. Growing up in Southern California, Disneyland was a popular destination for our family. Sometimes we were there just the four of us, other times with extended family members. Oftentimes my brother and I would get to go for school or church incentives, or as awards for a successful sports season with the teams we played on. Trips with friends, or friends' families were often the case as well, and as we became teenagers, the park was a popular destination to hang out.
Here's a look at Tomorrowland from April 1978. The shot itself is a bit blurry, but it's of Sam the Eagle, host of America Sings, an all-audio animatronics show celebrating America's music, which originally opened in 1974 in honor of America's upcoming Bicentennial in 1976. The show occupied the space originally designed and built for the Carousel of Progress which opened at Disneyland in 1967, and closed in 1973 to be shipped east to Walt Disney World. Just as COP did, the audience revolved around a series of stages, with each section celebrating a different era in American music, with the eagle and owl seen here popping up in each sequence to tell the story of the various musical styles. Never meant to be a long-term attraction, since the Bicentennial celebration was only meant to last from 1975 - 1977, the show closed permanently in 1988. (I was in the last performance as the carousel spun around for it's final performance). Prior to the closing in 1988, a few geese were stripped of their skin and found a new home in the all-new Disneyland classic Star Tours, when it opened in early 1987. When the show was dismantled, many of the audio animatronics found new life in the Disneyland classic, Splash Mountain over in the all-new Critter Country (replacing Bear Country) in 1988 as a cost-savings measure. Thanks the smashing success of both Star Tours and Splash Mountain at Disneyland, a whole slew of new animatronics in the same style had to be created when both Star Tours opened at Walt Disney World's Disney-MGM Studios in 1989 and Splash Mountain was added to Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland in 1992.