Thursday, October 25, 2007
October 25, 1971
Though Walt Disney World opened on October 1, 1971, 36 years ago today, October 25, 1971, Roy O. Disney officially dedicated the newly unveiled Vacation Kingdom of the World to his brother. Roy’s words of dedication can be read on this page from one of the first Walt Disney World souvenir programs, an oversized booklet shaped like a D with a die-cut window (the center of the D) through which the reader sees the beautiful photograph of Cinderella Castle pictured here. The next time you hear someone refer to Walt Disney World as “Disney World,” remember how Roy decreed after Walt’s death that the Florida Project was to be officially known as Walt Disney World. “Everybody knows the Ford car, but not everybody knows it was Henry Ford who started it all. It’s going to be WALT Disney World, so people will always know that this was Walt’s dream.” Roy reserved his severest Truman-esque glare for those who dared to call Walt Disney World “Disney World.” So read Roy’s stirring words of dedication (click on the image to enlarge) and recall the man for whom Walt Disney World was officially named.