'World of Color' at Disney California Adventure Park

First Kid to Run Through Sleeping Beauty Castle Now Guards the Resort

posted on March 16th, 2010 by Heather Hust Rivera, Senior Manager, Corporate Communications, The Walt Disney Company


Robb Fischle Runs Through Sleeping Beauty Castle
See that tow-headed little boy in the checkered shirt in the center of the photo, behind the boy in the glasses? That is Robb Fischle, and he was one of the lucky kids to run through Sleeping Beauty Castle for the very first time. It was July 17, 1955, and it was opening day for Disneyland park.

Fast forward 55 years and you can still see Robb Fischle at the Happiest Place on Earth (and one of his favorite places in the world), but it’s not just a place for him and his family to play. Robb now works at the Resort as a Security Officer (and has been working here since 1972).

We found this video of Robb that we taped during the 50th anniversary celebration. In the interview, Robb talks about how he would spend Sunday nights watching “Disneyland” on television to get the latest construction updates and how he and his family would try and peek at the construction as they drove down Harbor Boulevard. I especially like hearing his memories from opening day.

Take a look back.

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

25 Comments 3 Replies

1

Fred from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Very cool! :)

2

David from TN on March 16th, 2010 at 4:54 pm

That’s just awesome

3

Dave on March 16th, 2010 at 5:11 pm

If i thought for one minute that i could make the same kind of living at Disneyland that i do at my present job, i would quit and apply immediately! Disneyland has become my favorite place away from home. How lucky would i be to be able to work and spend my days there!

4

Lori on March 16th, 2010 at 5:16 pm

This is awesome! Is it possible to see more video of the Disneyland construction? I have always been interested in seeing what it was like as they built it from the ground up. I love Disney history! Thank you so much for sharing :o)

5

Ashley on March 16th, 2010 at 5:17 pm

Love it!

6

Sally on March 16th, 2010 at 5:19 pm

When I was there on the 50th, I remember there was a photographer who seemed to be recreating this famous scene with adults. He had a large copy of the original picture up on an easel for reference, and my friend and I guessed that these were probably some of the original kids now grown up. Do you know about that picture?

 

Heather Hust Rivera on March 16th, 2010 at 6:17 pm

Yes, Sally, you’re right. They did recreate this scene during the 50th anniversary when these kids were adults. I’ve been trying to find the photo but haven’t found it yet.

7

Nicole on March 16th, 2010 at 5:20 pm

You should highlight the gentleman who works on Alice in Wonderland – I forgot his name but he has dedicated 50 years to Disneyland. He has an awesome gold 30 year ring (or is it 20?) that the company used to give out, and he wears it with pride.

8

Krista on March 16th, 2010 at 5:35 pm

That’s wonderful! Thanks for sharing.

9

Tim from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 5:36 pm

That is a great video. Would like to see more video from that era.

10

Karen on March 16th, 2010 at 6:33 pm

This just proves the Disney legacy! Everyone who has visited any Disney park can truly say that it is one of their best memories. I second Dave who commented saying “If i thought for one minute that i could make the same kind of living at Disneyland that i do at my present job, i would quit and apply immediately!” It is a magical company.

I had the pleasure of meeting the Head Chef at Carnation cafe who has worked there since 1957, I believe. Such a wonderful and inspirational story. I would love to see him featured here too!

Thanks Disney for all of the wonderful memories you gave to me and my family!

11

Kevin from MA on March 16th, 2010 at 7:51 pm

When I retire – there will be no WalMart greeting for me – I plan on working PT at WDW in FL… I can think of no better place in the world to spend the rest of my life. Making other people happy…

12

Susan from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 8:12 pm

Oh, if only Disney had built the park in Burbank instead of Anaheim. I would have my 30 year ring too! Oh to dream!
Another long timer is Silvie at the silhouette studio. She has 30+ years as well. Oscar at the Carnation Cafe is a sweetie. His baked potato soup is to die for!

13

Gianna from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 9:38 pm

I love that Disneyland and I share a birthday!

It must have been incredible to have been there when it first opened.

I love to read these stories!

14

Angela from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 9:52 pm

I love this video! It’s so interesting to see Disney in its early years!

15

Susan from CA on March 16th, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Great video. I loved seeing the building of Disneyland. My family were avid viewers of Disneyland and Wonderful World of Disney every Sunday. Thanks for the memories.

16

Lynn on March 17th, 2010 at 1:12 am

Would love a job at Disney too! There is also a lady who always drives the raft over to Tom Sawyer Island that has been there forever and this past fall when I was there we were talking to a fellow at Paradise Pier and he too had been with Disney that long

17

douglas on March 17th, 2010 at 1:25 am

What a great story and I love the comments about the 50th celebration. I wasn’t as lucky. I was born May 4, 1955, two months prior to the Park’s opening, and grew up as a regular visitor thanks to my parents. When I turned 40 I resolved to spend my 50th birthday in the park, even though I now live 500 miles away. The day approached, travel plans were made and… Disneyland CLOSED on my 50th to set up for the Happiest Homecoming Celebration beginning May 5th! Aargh! I wrote letters volunteering to pick up trash or anything that would get me into the park that day but no luck.

Ah well, we have been able to raise our daughters on 3-4 multi-day trips a year and my oldest, after dozens of visits all her life, chose to spend a week at the Park for her honeymoon! My youngest will probably do the same. Thanks to each and every one of the Disneyland staff and family for touching our family in so many ways.

18

Pamela on March 17th, 2010 at 9:46 am

That is interesting, Douglas. Disneyland is open 365 days a year and I only recall it closed the day President Kennedy passed and on 9-11(2001). I have never known them to close completely for a change in the theme of the park.

Can anyone verify this closure?

 

Heather Hust Rivera on March 17th, 2010 at 5:37 pm

Yes, Disneyland park was closed that day to the public.

19

Grant on March 17th, 2010 at 9:51 am

Wow, great story! Robb is a great speaker, very interesting to listen to.

20

Carole on March 17th, 2010 at 9:59 am

In the scene showing construction along Harbor Boulevard, it shows the Monorail under construction. Isn’t that from ’59, rather than the ’55 opening?

 

Heather Hust Rivera on March 17th, 2010 at 5:34 pm

Very perceptive, Carole. The short clip showing Harbor Blvd. was intended to give a sense of what the street might have looked like in the general timeframe when Robb and his family drove down the street.

21

Terri on March 17th, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Love to hear about stories like this one! Please keep them coming!!! I live & breathe DISNEY and hope to work there again some day (College Program WDW ’91 alum). :0)

22

Alex on March 17th, 2010 at 7:37 pm

I would love for the old Disneyland specials that aired during the park’s construction to be released on DVD sometime. I would also love for a lot of the old specials, like the specials that aired for the 15th anniversary of Walt Disney World, and similar shows, to be released on DVD, perhaps in a D23 or Vault Disney collection. This video makes me want that all the more.

23

Luis on March 17th, 2010 at 10:35 pm

Alex,
There are two DVDs on the Walt Disney Treasures Series that could be of interest for you: “Disneyland USA”, which has a lot of archival footage of the inauguration of the park, and some programs recorded between 1955 and 1970 and “Disneyland – Secrets, Stories & Magic”, also with a lot of documentaries regarding the creation of Disneyland. They do overlap a bit, but to a fan, I believe they are worth it!!

24

Connie from CA on March 18th, 2010 at 3:29 pm

Oh wow, what a fantastic article! And I haven’t even watched the video yet!!!

25

Anelise on March 21st, 2010 at 11:28 pm

Wow, the Opening Day footage is amazing!! I hope you have some more to share with us in the future!!

25 Comments