The following is one of my personal favorite quotes from Walt Disney. I try to remember it often during times of hardship. 1975 was a difficult year for the United States. Disneyland in 1975 was not immune. This quote rang true for many Americans.
All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me… You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.
– Walt Disney
60 Days to 60 Years 1975~ by Krystina Whitten
Disneyland in 1975
The Vietnam War, despite American troops having mostly vacated Vietnam in 1973, was still taking its toll on the country. As the year progressed, defendants in cases regarding the Watergate Scandal were being sentenced, the Cold War and 1970s energy crisis were still in full effect, and President Gerald Ford faced two assassination attempts.
Immune to the struggle of the United States, there was still one place where the pain and fear of the world melted away. Even if only for a few hours. Joy, amusement, celebration, and pixie dust reigned and dreams came true once again. Disneyland was, after all, The Happiest Place on Earth.
Disneyland’s 20th anniversary
1975 marked also Disneyland’s 20th anniversary. The amusement park spent the year celebrating not itself, but the upcoming bicentennial anniversary of the United States of America. On Thursday, June 12th, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln was re-opened after high demand from guests, who preferred the animatronic President to the Walt Disney Story that had taken its place. Instead, the exhibit portion of the Walt Disney Story was joined along with Mr. Lincoln, now called The Walt Disney Story featuring Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln.
Just a few days later, on Saturday, June 14th, the most elaborate parade in Disney Parks history premiered. America on Parade, which featured 50 floats and 150 performers all depicting some of the greatest moments in American history.
Disneyland also debuted a new red, white, and blue fireworks show called “Fantasy in the Sky.”
Despite the adversity the rest of the United States faced in 1975 and its preceding years, Disneyland effortlessly showcased how America always managed to fight back and stand tall. With the magic of Disneyland and the American spirit combined, it seemed anything was possible, even finding a bit of strength during difficult times.