Tomorrowland’s Magical “Disney Details”

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1. Magic Kingdom Entrance – Arrive at the entrance to the Magic Kingdom 50 minutes (Disney resort guests) to 70 minutes (non-Disney resort guests) before opening. Get guide maps and the daily entertainment schedule. During days of peak attendance, the Magic Kingdom may open at 8 am or earlier. If touring during a holiday, try our holiday plans.

2. Space Mountain – In Tomorrowland, ride Space Mountain.

2a. Sonny Eclipse – Listen to the delightful Yew Norkian play his amazing Astro Organ!

2b. Tomorrowland Palms – Gaze at these futuristic palms.

3. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin – Ride Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin.

3a. Metrophone – Place a call to Mr. Morrow on this futurist communications device.

3b. Tomorrowland Chamber of Commerce – Read greetings from the many fine organizations in Tomorrowland’s Chamber of Commerce that sponsor the land.

That’s the start of the Magic Kingdom Unofficial Guide Adult One-Day Touring Plan. Okay, before those subscribers out there who have committed the Plans to memory start scrambling, fearful that we’ve made crazy changes to the substance to one of our flagship Touring Plans, I must admit, I’ve taken some…uhh… “artistic liberties” with this Plan. No, I don’t really think you should spend 24 minutes of valuable early-morning time listening to Sonny Eclipse’s full show, I’m just trying to make a point: it’s important to stop every once in a while to catch your breath, and appreciate some of the amazing “Disney Details” (do yourself a favor and click those words to visit the best Disney blog concerning Disney Details–many of my explanations below are sourced from DisneyShawn) that are so prevalent at Walt Disney World and Disneyland. Here, I’ll highlight some of my favorite details in my favorite land that you should pencil into your favorite Touring Plan!

Planetary Boogie

Sonny Eclipse – As I write this right now, I have Sonny Eclipse’s full show playing on iTunes and a Sonny Eclipse Vinylmation sitting on my desk staring at me. I would love nothing more than for Disney to release a Sonny Eclipse t-shirt or plush. One of the biggest reasons I want to go to Tokyo is to see his cousin, Officer Zzzzyxxx. Yeah, you could say I’m a little obsessed with the lounge lizard from Yew Nork. His show has humor, catchy songs, and is just a general treat to watch. Eat an early or late lunch or dinner (Cosmic Ray’s is a zoo during normal lunch and dinner hours), and grab a seat near Sonny to catch his show!

Palm within the Mountains of Space

Tomorrowland Palm Trees – Those fans of alternative energy out there should love these palm trees, as it turns out Walt Disney Imagineering has found a way to harvest metal coconuts and convert them to energy! Why the government hasn’t invested billions of dollars in these palms, I don’t know. Seriously, even without the relatively-unknown backstory that these “Power Palms” are yet another effort by the Tomorrowland Light & Power Co. Arcade to capture energy, these palms are ridiculously cool to look at and photograph. They’re definitely one of my favorite Disney Details, and one of the details that really sets Disney apart from the competition, in my opinion. Most guests probably give them little more than a passing glance, yet they’re one of the details that really give Tomorrowland great energy (in more than one way, apparently!). Look for the one palm that differs from the rest and see if you can figure out why it differs!

Calling Mr. Morrow, Mr. Tom Morrow

Metrophone – When calling the citizens and businesses of Tomorrowland, your best option is to use this courtesy phone provided by the Galactic Communications Network in Rockettower Plaza.  No, it’s not just a themed pay phone, it really is a free phone that will put you in touch with all of the Tomorrowlandians who you most need to contact. You’ll be able to find out what movies are playing nearby, find out which criminals are on the loose in Tomorrowland, and you might even be able to order a pizza! It’s well worth taking a few minutes out of your day to head over to this phone and have a “conversation!”

Magic Kingdom - The Fish of Tomorrow

Tomorrowland Chamber of Commerce – At home, your family members might belong to various clubs, like the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, or Stonecutters. Likewise, the citizens of Tomorrowland belong to clubs of their own, and after you step through the Gateway of Tomorrow and onto the Avenue of the Planets, the Chamber of Commerce and all of the organizations within the Chamber welcome you to Tomorrowland. It’s good to see that Tomorrowland has so many sponsors*, but if these clubs are anything like those on earth, their kind welcome is just a clever ruse to recruit you to join their ranks, so be careful!

Tomorrowland 1994, Where Art Thou?

Gateway of Tomorrow – This is the named I’ve coined for this entrance to Tomorrowland, which I think is one of the coolest Disney Details on property. It’s not quite really all that hidden, as it’s the defining feature of the main entrance to Tomorrowland, so I’m assuming most of your have seen it, but have you ever really stared at it? I have. (That’s what happens when you take 30 second-long night shots of it!) It seems to continue the motif of electricity, as the flashing lights that illuminate this entrance seem to have a real kinetic energy about them. Beyond that, this entrance-way is just downright cool. At the very least, on your next trip, make sure you snap a photo of it all lit up at night!

These are just a few of the many details that establish the wonderful backstory for Tomorrowland. Did you know Tomorrowland also has its own newspaper? That it holds space collectible conventions? That Leonard Burnedstar performs concerts in Tomorrowland? If you didn’t know these things, surely you at least know about Disney’s most prestigious hotel, the in-park Tomorrowland Towers Hover Hotel. No? Well, then I think you have some futuristic exploring to do on your next trip to Tomorrowland!

What do you think: is stopping to appreciate all of these details a waste of valuable attraction-time, or do you love to “stop and smell the roses” (or in this case, palm trees!) as much as me? If you love details like these, share some of your favorite Disney Details in the comments!

*This post has been brought to you by X-S Tech. If something can’t be done with X-S then it shouldn’t be done at all. Seize the future with X-S!

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Posted on September 2, 2011

5 Responses to “Tomorrowland’s Magical “Disney Details””

  • Nice post, Tom, and thanks for shout out to the blog. Much appreciated!

  • Tom – Great pics and stories. Like you, I am a Sonny Eclipse fan and enjoy the music/show when dining at Cosmic Ray’s.

  • Let’s face it, I didn’t mind dropping $5k on a Disney vacation when my kids were the absolute perfect age but with a family of 4, it’s $800 minimum for flights, so when the kids aren’t quite the right age that $5k is going to get tough. At a certain expense level Commando Touring kicks in because of the cost. No doubt that the effects of the palm trees and similar make Disney World light years ahead better than any other theme park. I took the time to check out IOA for Dr. Seuss and Harry Potter and the experience was a solid B, but nothing like the A+ of Tomorrowland. I mean history geeks get the 1964 Worlds Fair Carousel of Progress AND the midcentury PeopleMover, really, steps away from Space Mountain, the ultimate 1970s roller coaster, and then half a dozen modern rides. But with the expense of a Disney World vacation it makes financial sense to go commando. In 2 1/2 days my family went on every MK ride at least once and ate dinner in front of Sonny. I couldn’t have done that without Touringplans.com (and Mickey’s Toon Town rides closed). But also, through commando touring we felt energized, like conquering a marathon and we left feeling like we saw EVERYTHING. My take on this is that I may never have a chance to stop and look at everything if I have 3 days at MK each year- what you’re selling is for people who can do 5+ MK days per year.

  • This is great. I didn’t know about most of these things! Can I find more info about them? Where to find them? for example, where is that phone?

    I think that if you are only able to visit WDW once or twice in your life, it will be hard to take the time, to really appreicate the details. There is just SO MUCH to see and do, so sadly, the details fall to the wayside. I think if you are LUCKY enough to go more than that, the details are what make the trip.

  • Love those palm trees! Wish I could get some for my backyard!