Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress was my favorite attraction at Walt Disney World during high school and college. For years it never made sense to my friends and family. They know me as a thrill seeker, a roller coaster nut. How can a ride with a slow moving theater satisfy an adrenaline junkie? The answer is simpler than you think.
Like It’s A Small World and Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln, Carousel of Progress debuted at the 1964 World’s Fair. When the fair was over, the ride was transported to Anaheim and installed at Disneyland. It was replaced in Disneyland by America Sings and then moved to Walt Disney World. It is one of the only attractions in Walt Disney World that Walt himself had a hand in creating directly. You can even see Walt Disney and the Sherman brothers in a pre-show video talking about the original attraction.
After a few years, I finally explained to my friends and family why the Carousel of Progress was my favorite and it’s quite simple: despite how much the world around you changes, your family is a constant. I think about how my life has changed due to technology and despite all the convenience and distractions at my fingertips, the relationships I have have only improved. After 50 years, the significance of family has not changed. I believe in a great big beautiful tomorrow, it’s just a dream away.
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