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Flashback: Walt Disney World Announced In Florida

posted on September 28th, 2011 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

As we close in on the 40th anniversary of Walt Disney World, look what we found in the archives to share with you. It’s video from 1965 of Walt Disney officially announcing the big plans during a conference in downtown Orlando.

I can’t imagine the excitement in the room. Walt Disney told the world in front of what former Gov. Haydon Burns called the largest gathering of press he’s ever seen in the state of Florida.

See what Walt had to say when asked if another Disneyland would be built in Florida.

For more Walt Disney World history, check out the posts below:

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Filed: Disney History, Walt Disney World Resort



Kelly on September 28th, 2011 at 10:30 am

Wow! I love actually getting to hear that man talk! Great video!


Thomas Smith on September 28th, 2011 at 10:35 am

We do too! Thanks, Kelly.


Kevin on September 28th, 2011 at 10:33 am

Incredible. Though, as it turned out, Magic Kingdom didn’t exactly change the template much apart from the name.


Elizabeth from FL on September 28th, 2011 at 10:43 am

Great video! Amazing that Florida’s population was only six and half million at that time. It’s nice to be reminded how excited Walt was about the new project in Florida.


Chris on September 28th, 2011 at 10:43 am

I have to be a bit of a geek here. :) The hotel that conference was held at in downtown Orlando is on Lake Eola and has been converted to apartments. I lived there for a couple years and have to admit – it was pretty neat living somewhere where Walt Disney had not only walked, but chose to make this historical announcement. :)


Fred from CA on September 28th, 2011 at 10:50 am

Cool video!

This is why I love Disneyland so much, it was Walt’s original, and he did NOT want to make another Disneyland in Florida. His big idea was initially Epcot.

I’ve been to Walt Disney World and I enjoyed it, but I still have great respect and love Walt’s original park, Disneyland! :)


Jeff from OH on September 28th, 2011 at 11:29 am

Thanks for sharing this with us. As a Disney freek, I enjoyed it very much.


Fred from CA on September 28th, 2011 at 11:38 am

Well, Walt initially had no interest in creating a Magic Kingdom park in Florida, his big idea for Florida was Epcot, but apparently the board of directors wanted to make sure that the project was a success, so he ended up including a Magic Kingdom park in the the plans, in addition to Epcot.


Jason from NC on September 28th, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Thank you for posting this video! It’s one of the surely thousands in the Archives that we always hear about but never get to see. That’s really quite a treat, thanks.


Travis from NH on September 28th, 2011 at 1:24 pm

A fantastic video to start off the weekend! Thanks so much for sharing. :)

Discussion Kingdom/Retro Day WDW


Heidi on September 28th, 2011 at 1:32 pm

I thought it was interesting how at the very end he said he didin’t like to make sequels to his pictures, he likes to come up with NEW ideas. Makes me wonder what Walt would think of the way things have changed with Disney. They do sequels to almost everything now if not trilogies and there there are the constant re-releases. Just thought that was interesting.


Christine from ON on September 28th, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Thank you for posting this video.
I have been to Disneyland as a child and I take my children to Disney World. I am a big fan of Walt Disney and one thing that stciks out to me everytime I go to WDW is that the spirit of Walt is still very much alive:)


Paula on September 28th, 2011 at 2:21 pm

I recently bought the book “Project:Future” and it gives all the details about how the land was aquired etc. I haven’t gotten very far into it yet, but it is very interesting to read how all of this came to be.


Ruth from FL on September 28th, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Oh how I love DisneyWorld….we started coming in 1973 from Pennsylvania….now we reside in Florida and we are passholders and go to the parks alot…..that is one of the reasons we moved to Florida…I love listening to Walt speak and how much he has done. I still have the E tickets and some of the sovenirs from the Magic Kingdom. That was the only park opened at the time, then came Epcot, then Hollywood Studios, and the Animal Kingdom…plus the water parks, Downtown Disney, etc. So much to enjoy. The Disney family has made millions of adults and children happy and let them be children once again. God Bless You Mr. Disney.


Ruth from FL on September 28th, 2011 at 2:39 pm

P.S. I almost forgot…when we started coming to DisneyWorld back in 1973, we always got the package deal from Eastern Airlines, which included the Contemporary Hotel, tickets to the park and air-fare….we always stayed at the Contempory Hotel every year that we came down….we just loved it. We always ate upstairs at the restaurants….played games at the game room in the lobby….just wonderful memories. That’s how Disney leaves you…with a lot of treasured memories.


Samantha on September 28th, 2011 at 2:44 pm

WOW! This video is amazing! I love to see videos of Uncle Walt.


Melissa on September 28th, 2011 at 2:55 pm

Fantastic video! And I loved hearing Walt describe his relationship with Roy so affectionately.


Melanie on September 29th, 2011 at 9:28 am

What a fantastic video! Thank you for sharing it. :)


Kristi on October 1st, 2011 at 12:39 pm

When speaking to my elementary school class about editing stories to make them their best, I mentioned how Walt Disney would throw out scenes from his movies that were completely done and redo them if they weren’t right. I was then asked who Walt Disney was? Now I can show them the man behind the parks and his vision. Thank you.