2010 Best Theme Park Attraction nominee: Hall of Presidents at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Published: January 5, 2010 at 2:26 PM
Disney's Hall of Presidents opened with the rest of the Magic Kingdom theme park in October 1971. But the original idea for the attraction came years earlier, when Walt Disney envisioned a similar attraction in a "Liberty Street" next to Main Street USA in Disneyland. Ultimately, Disney and his imagineers developed an Audio-Animatronic Abraham Lincoln for the 1964 World's Fair, which later came to Disneyland as Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln.
With a functioning human animatronic at last, Disney Imagineers recognized Walt's vision by designing the Hall of Presidents for the Magic Kingdom's Liberty Square. In the original show, only Lincoln spoke, reprising his "Great Moments" speech, following a roll call of presidents, who mostly just nodded in acknowledgment as their names were called by a recorded narrator.
Starting in 1993, the current president has recorded a speech for the show. Today's version features Barack Obama:
The show includes a filmed introduction that reviews major conflicts and accomplishments in American history, leading to the presidential roll call.
What do you think of Disney's Hall of Presidents? Please share your thoughts in the comments. Voting begins in the tournament this March.