Friday, June 29, 2012

The Disneyland Skyway (video)

The recent post about Norway's lost ship has made me nostalgic, so I'm going to dwell for a couple of posts on things I miss (and have ready video access to).

In 1994, Disneyland removed its Skyway attraction that connected Fantasyland and Tomorrowland.

I happened to be working at Disneyland at that time, and was working that morning. So when I heard that day was the last day, I bolted home, grabbed the 1994-era video camera (let's just say it was shoulder-mounted and contained a VHS tape), and came back to document the very last day of operation (and probably not too many hours of daylight left, either). The result was this video you see here:

The audio, needless to say, was dubbed in later.

People would get up to mischief on the Skyway (it had a minor Mile High Club cachet, among other things), and it was labor intensive. People would get hurt on the thing, others would sue, and kids would spit on people below. But what did the Skyway in finally was the ADA law, which required wheelchair access, and none of the platforms, stations, or cars were equipped for wheelchairs, so the ride could not be renovated without hefty costs (with any refurbishment, the ride has to come up to ADA requirements).

Kevin Yee is the author of numerous independent Disney books, including the popular Walt Disney World Earbook series and Walt Disney World Hidden History.