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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap Mar. 23, 2014

Thomas Smith

by , Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

This week, we invited the world to join a first-of-its-kind, online global sing-along at SmallWorld50.com to celebrate the 50th anniversary of “it’s a small world,” – the classic Disney Parks attraction that opened as a tribute to UNICEF’s work for children around the world at the 1964 New York World’s Fair.


We’ll be celebrating the anniversary on April 10 but we’ve already kicked things off at Disney Parks. Visit our original post to learn how you can participate in the celebration and create virtual “it’s a small world” dolls to share with your friends. The Walt Disney Company will donate $150,000 to benefit UNICEF in honor of the 50th anniversary of “it’s a small world,” plus $1 for every sing-along video recorded on SmallWorld50.com and another $1 for every virtual doll created on the website, up to $100,000.

Disney Parks Blog readers were also among the first to see a new trailer for Walt Disney Studios’ latest cinematic vision, “Maleficent.” And starting April 18, a special extended sneak peek will be playing daily at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in the ABC Sound Studio and at Disney California Adventure park in the naturalistic “underground” setting of the Bug’s Life Theater.

“Maleficent” stars Angelina Jolie in the untold story of Disney’s most iconic villain from the classic “Sleeping Beauty” and the elements of her betrayal that ultimately turn her pure heart to stone. “Maleficent” opens in theaters on May 30, 2014.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week.

Vintage Disney Parks Video: Take a Trip Back to the Beginning of ‘it’s a small world’ – See some excellent historical footage from the debut of “it’s a small world” at the 1964 New York World’s Fair and the attraction’s opening at Disneyland park in 1966.

The History of the Disneyland Monorail: Mark V, 1986-2008 – Our regular series on the Disneyland Monorail continues with the Mark V!

Disneyland Resort Hotels Earn California’s Top Environmental Certification – This certification represents the state’s top rating for traveler’s seeking green lodging. Fewer than 1% of Orange County hotels share this level of certification!

Shanghai Disneyland’s Treasure Cove Unveiled – Get a first look at Shanghai Disneyland’s Pirates-themed land and a new Pirates of the Caribbean attraction!

Behind the Sounds: Inside Audio Central at Disney California Adventure Park – Stage Technician Brian White gives an inside look on how the audio engineers at Disney California Adventure bring magic to the park every day.

Exciting News from Aulani for Fans of our Hawaiian Mele: Music of the Makaʻala Available for Download March 18 – Take the Aulani Hawaiian experience with you anywhere by downloading five special songs, written by Kealiʻi Reichel and Mark Mancina

‘Saving Mr. Banks’ Available On Blu-ray Today – Get a sneak peek of one of the special features available on the new Blu-ray release!

A Mom’s Take: Magical Port Adventures in Venice – Marcy from the Disney Parks Moms Panel shows us a few of the adventures your family can embark on in “The Floating City.”

Learn to Draw Disney Characters at Animation Academy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Hone your illustration skills with instruction from one of our character artists. Take a look at the video after the jump!


  • The Smallworld20 site doesn’t work! I’ve been trying to get on on for about 5 days and its still not working!

  • I really enjoyed the vintage footage from It’s a Small World, especially hearing Mary Blair speak for a few seconds – I don’t think I have seen any footage of her speaking before.

    I knew when the attraction was moved to Disneyland in 1966 that there was children from around the world, but didn’t realize that the children brought water to pour into the flume from their home countries as well – that added detail is so very magical.

    Thank you so very much for posting this!

    P.S. Also enjoyed the pre-movie commercial with Richard Sherman at the piano which ran before “Muppets Most Wanted.”

  • Help! The link for it’s a small world is not working.

  • Hi Thomas,

    What a week! From the 50th Anniversary of “it’s a small world” to the excitement over at Shanghai Disneyland’s Treasure Cove, to Maleficent who I call Magnificent Maleficent, to the history of the Disneyland Monorail-which I’ve been following since Erin Glover published her first post, to ordering my copy of the Music of Maka’ala which will bring back memories of that fabulous open air lobby (have you been?) to the release of Frozen and Saving Mr. Banks….where do I end?

    Disney keeps going and going with all the excitement!

    Best of all for me was watching the video, “Take a Trip Back to the Beginning of it’s a small world” my favourite attraction followed by Disney Parks Moms Panelist and Disney Cruise Line Specialist, Marcy outlying port adventures in Venice which we’re visiting sailing on the Disney Magic this July.

    I can’t concentrate on daily life, I’m too excited….chores can wait.

    Have a great day!

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