It was back on July 17, 1955, 53 years ago, that Disneyland first opened its gates.
Opening day was different than you might expect. Sure, there were crowds, camera crews, and celebrity anchors (Ronald Reagan, Art Linkletter, and Bob Cummings), but there were also constant ride malfunctions, tons of counterfeited tickets, 101-degree weather, wet asphalt, and shortages of food.
After that opening, and even previous to it, many doubted Walt and his dreams. They figured that the park would be closed and forgotten within a year. Well, even though it had a rocky start, Disneyland is still a wonderful, successful park 53 years later.
Today, in honor of Disneyland's 53rd Birthday, a renovation of Sleeping Beauty's Castle was announced, set to reopen during the holiday season. The opening will be in honor of Sleeping Beauty's 50th anniversary.
This renovation will include the "reawakening of the classic walkthrough.":
When the attraction is unveiled later this year, the “show” will differ from the dioramas of the 1980s and ‘90s, returning to the unique style of the original 1957 show and motion picture. Enhanced with new scenes and special effects magic, the re-Imagineered attraction will employ technology not available in the 1950s to represent scenes from the story of Sleeping Beauty, including the magic of good fairies Flora, Fauna and Merryweather, and the more sinister spells of the evil Maleficent.Also, in honor of its 50th anniversary, Sleeping Beauty will be released in a special 2-disc blu-ray set.