It may have all started with a mouse but when it came time to dream up a new kind of theme park, steam trains were top of mind for Walt Disney. Now, the trains are an anticipated Disney Parks experience — and one that sticks with you.
Just try it…close your eyes and picture the vintage steam trains. Hear the bell? Hear the whistle or maybe the lumbering cars? The steam-powered train grabs your attention before you’re through the entrance and it’s hard to forget after your visit.
Some of you know that I grew up in a house with a love for the railroad — and like Walt Disney, we had a model railway built in our Miami, Florida backyard. But for Walt Disney, the yard railroad was an apparent spark, according to Walt Disney Imagineering’s Jason Surrell. “It was one of the earliest glimmers of Disneyland,” he says. Here’s more on how it started:
Walt Disney’s uncle Mike was a train engineer. And at one point, Walt sold gum, cigars and soda to train passengers as it made daily stops at his boyhood home in Marceline, Mo.
If you’re still curious, there’s a three-hour tour at Magic Kingdom Park that offers some behind-the-scenes peeks at the Walt Disney World Railroad. For schedules and more information, you can call 407-WDW-TOUR.