Eyes and Ears of Walt Disney World Resort Opening Publication (1971)

This informational supplement to the cast-member publication “eyes and ears of Walt Disney World,” issued in conjunction with the park’s opening, contains a detailed overview of the resort and its many facets as it stood in October 1971.

The front page includes a note from Roy, who five years earlier had promised his brother Walt on his deathbed that he would see the remarkably ambitious project through to completion:

To The Cast,

 

     On the eve of Walt Disney World’s opening day, may I thank all of you for your spirit—your cooperation and the fine job all of you have done in getting ready for our opening.

     Years of planning and long hours of work have brought about this historic moment. It will be an experience none of us will forget.

     At this time I think it is appropriate that we remember Walt’s comment:

     “You can dream, design and build the most wonderful place in the world but it requires people to make the dream a reality.”

     You, the cast, are responsible for making Walt’s dream come true….yesterday, today and tomorrow.

 

Roy O. Disney

Chairman of the Board

The following five panels of text and images comprise the section headed “Facts about Walt Disney World” and highlight basic general information, such as facts and figures related to the resort, accommodation and recreation information, contact numbers, and pricing and ticketing details related not only to the park, but its two opening-day resorts: the Contemporary Resort-Hotel, the Polynesian Village. Information and details can also be found for the Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground, which would open a month-and-a-half later.

This extremely rare cast-member publication provides a glimpse of the completed version of the last and greatest undertaking of the Brothers Disney, perched on the edge of its opening, and of course, its destiny to become the premier vacation destination in the world. Sadly, Walt never saw his dream realized and Roy would pass away less than three months after dedicating the park with these memorable words:

Walt Disney World is a tribute to the philosophy and life of Walter Elias Disney…and to the talents, the dedication, and the loyalty of the entire Disney organization that made Walt Disney’s dream come true. May Walt Disney World bring Joy and Inspiration and New Knowledge to all who come to this happy place…a Magic Kingdom where the young at heart of all ages can laugh and play and learn—together.

VALUE: $40

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