The Disneyland Resort has announced that Disney Legend and Chief Archivist Emeritus, Walt Disney Archives, Dave Smith will offer two special sessions for annual passholders at the the Disneyland theme park on March 22, 2013, titled ‘Disneyland: The Way We Were.”
The event promises to take guests on a ‘photographic journey through the attractions, shops, restaurants and other pieces of Disneyland history.’
The events will take place at 5 and 7 pm at the Main Street USA Opera House. Wristband distribution will begin at 11:30 am on March 22 at the Opera House.
For more information, visit the official event page.
Disney Legend Dave Smith, founder of the Disney Archives and Chief Archivist Emeritus, will be making a special appearance at the Disneyland Resort on July 14, 2012 to sign his new book, Disney Trivia from the Vault.
Beginning with the July 1983 issue of Disney Channel Magazine, Dave Smith began answering Disney trivia questions from viewers of the Disney Channel. In the ensuing thirty years, his column has continued through multiple publications, including Disney Magazine, the on-line Disney Insider, and most recently the Disney D23 website. ‘Ask Dave’ questions have come from Disney enthusiasts the world over, and have covered topics ranging from Cinderella’s last name (Tremaine) to the number of triangles covering the surface of Epcot’s Spaceship Earth (11,324 facets comprising 954 triangles.)
Over 1,100 questions have been fielded by Dave Smith, the now-retired Chief Archivist of The Walt Disney Company, and this book is a compendium of the most interesting and revealing of those queries. The book is divided into chapters that each cover an aspect of Disney history, including Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Disney films, Disney television, and Disney characters. Many of the questions bring up interesting information that has not been published elsewhere, and readers will delight in discovering some of the secrets behind their favorite movies and theme parks. ‘Did the same actress provide the voice of Maleficent, as well as the voice of Madame Leota, the head in the crystal ball in The Haunted Mansion?’ ‘Who was the first athelete to say “I’m going to Disneyland!”?’ Only Dave knows the answers!
The event will take place from 9 am – 11 am PT at the Disneyana Shop on Main Street, U.S.A. in the Disneyland® park. Disney Trivia from the Vault will be available for $9.99, plus tax beginning at shop opening on the day of release. Park admission is not included and is required.
Disney Trivia from the Vault is also available for pre-order on Amazon.com with a release date of June 26, 2012.
Last evening saw the commencement of the 2010 Sip & Stroll event from Disney D23. The bulk of the event to take place Saturday, Friday night was a relatively short (but incredibly sweet) time for most of the attending D23 members and their guests. After checking in for the event, guests were invited into the rotunda of the American Adventure pavilion for a wine and cheese reception.
A wide assortment of cheeses, fruits, vegetables and bread were available to sample along with an open bar offering wines, beers and soft drinks. Although I tried to fend off the temptation, I eventually had to cave and found a new love in the form of a combination of five English cheddars coupled with the cheese fondue.
Somewhere along the middle, D23 head Steven Clark took to the center of the room to address the group, offering a toast to retiring Walt Disney Studios Archives founder Dave Smith as well as pointing out and showing appreciation to other members of the D23 team in attendance. Clark also mentioned that Dave Smith had once noted that the panels (?) of the dome of the American Adventure building were installed backwards, crippling its intent to faithfully mimic the dome of the United States Capitol Building.
For a subset of the attendees, those who were willing to spend about $100 more and got in on the limited number of tickets available, the event continued over at the VIP lounge at The Seas with Nemo and Friends Pavilion where a formal retirement/birthday dinner was held in Dave Smith’s honor.
After being led into the space (which is more commonly used as a rentable venue for affairs such as wedding receptions), guests claimed their spots at one of several tables. Each table setting included an autographed caricature of Smith along with a button commemorating the event (Clark would later explain that the pins that were ordered for the event are to come and the button was an immediate resolve). After finding their seats, guests were invited to explore the dining options which were served buffet style with multiple stations offering varying flavors of cuisine and desserts consumed multiple rooms within the space. As a nice surprise, Smith took to the floor after he had eaten himself, visiting each of the tables to meet with the guests and pose for photos.
After dining, Clark took to the podium to speak a few words about Smith as well as formally present Smith with a departing gift. Explaining that it was customary for the departing to make a wish list and that Smith was an autograph collector (mostly of the political and historical kind), Clark said that one of the things Smith requested was a Walt Disney autograph, which Clark found funny as Smith — as the chief archivist — would pride himself on not collecting Disneyana as a matter of preventing a ‘conflict of interest.’ Although it wasn’t available at the dinner itself, Clark announced that Smith would be gifted a copy of a Lady and the Tramp book signed by Walt. Clark then went on to explain another one of Smith’s ‘wishes’ was to be granted a lifetime membership of D23 and presented him with an oversized D23 membership certificate, which Clark further joked would have to be presented each year for renewal.
Clark then presented Smith with a Disney trading pin designed exclusively for the event, which is along the lines of the button that was presented to guests. According to Clark, the pins were meant for everyone attending but manufacturing difficulties prevented their timely delivery so they will be mailed to attendees as they become available.
Lastly, Clark noted that it was not only a retirement party for Smith but also a birthday party as well as Smith had just recently turned 70 years old and brought out a small cake in honor of the secondary event.
Smith then took to the podium and reflected on the past forty years as a member of the Disney family and as founder and chief archivist of the Walt Disney Studios Archives. He recalled some of his favorite memories over the past four decades and space and memory would preclude me from listing them all, but included: Meeting with Walt (and Roy’s) estranged brother Ray when he visited the Studios for the first time years after his brothers’ deaths; Going to a pizzeria with Walt’s sister Ruth; Going to the Studios when it was closed in response to the death of Roy O. Disney to meet someone who had found an old school textbook of Ruth’s complete with two drawings by Walt; mentoring a countless number of Disney cast members including Tony Anselmo, Steven Clark, Stacia Martin, Jason Surrell and plenty more; and many more memories, ending with meeting Walt at Disneyland as a teenager.
Egged on by Clark, Smith concluded by expanding on his first encounter with Walt Disney: In 1956 or so, he was at Disneyland and had seen Walt Disney walking through the park. Noting that even though everyone knew Walt’s name, his face really hadn’t entered the American consciousnesses until the television programs started airing, so he shyly shadowed Walt as he walked down the street to see who would notice Walt in the park. Being an autograph collector, he decided he would attempt to get Walt’s autograph so he ran ahead of Walt as Walt was heading towards Fantasyland and, not having a pen on him, ducked into the first shop that he saw which was Merlin’s Magic Shop. Unfortunately for Smith, the only writing implement the shop had was a two foot long gag jumbo pencil that wrote in multiple colors, but he bought it anyway just to have something. Getting the nerve up to ask Walt for his autograph, Walt ‘politely declined,’ explaining that once he started signing autographs, he would then get mobbed and be unable to perform his work. Instead, Walt suggested Smith write the Studios and request the autograph and he would fulfill the request that way. Smith did just that and received the autograph which he still has today.
After the dinner, Smith took to the lounge’s far room which has a large window overlooking Spaceship Earth (and some backstage elements) to formally meet & greet with attendees.
Photos below are not finalized and do not appear in final order in the interest of time. They should be corrected later as time allows. All photos © Stitch Kingdom. All Rights Reserved.
On the eve of a special event at the Walt Disney Studios in which Disney President and CEO Robert Iger will recognize Disney Legend Dave Smith for his forty years of service to The Walt Disney Company, particularly presiding over the Walt Disney Studio Archives which has been preserving Disney memories for decades, the LA Times reports that Smith will be formally announcing his retirement in October at the age of 70.
According to the article which explores Smith’s illustrious career with the company as well as takes a photographic tour inside the Archives, current manager Becky Cline is poised to fill the void left behind by Smith.
For four decades, The Walt Disney Archives has been home to the most treasured items from Disney’s fabled history, and on Friday, June 25, the Archives will mark its 40th anniversary with a special celebration at the Walt Disney Studios.
During the event, Disney President and CEO Bob Iger, noted film historian Leonard Maltin and other surprise guests will honor Dave Smith, the founder of The Walt Disney Archives and Disney’s chief archivist, for his achievements in preserving the Disney legacy.
The special celebration is open exclusively to members of D23, Disney’s official fan club, and tickets to the once-in-a-lifetime Walt Disney Archives 40th Anniversary Celebration are currently on sale exclusively at http://www.disney.com/D23.
“The Walt Disney Archives is an incredible collection, and that’s due to the dedication and passion Dave has brought to the development of the Archives since Roy O. Disney hired him 40 years ago,” said Steven Clark, head of D23, who also oversees The Walt Disney Archives. “We’re excited to honor Dave and the Archives, and to give our members a close-up look at some rarely seen ‘jewels in the crown’ of Disney history.”
As part of the Archives’ 40th Anniversary celebration, a number of new pieces from recent Disney projects will be officially added to the Archives’ collection; their identities will be revealed during the event.
The Walt Disney Archives 40th Anniversary Celebration will also feature a champagne-and-dessert reception on the Walt Disney Studios lot, and the premiere of Archiving the Archives: Forty Years of Preserving the Disney Magic, an all-new film created for this special anniversary, which will be screened in the Studio Theatre. Additionally, D23 Members who attend will receive a special gift created for the occasion.
Only a limited number of tickets, at $50 per person, will be available to this once-in-a-lifetime event, which pays tribute to the past, present and future of The Walt Disney Archives.
On March 10, D23 members will have the opportunity to attend a private one year anniversary event in the park after hours. D23 has already revealed some of the exciting opportunities guests will have, but we have recently learned of some of the other surprises D23 has in store including a lengthy guest list which includes:
- Imagineers Bob Gurr and Tony Baxter
- Actor Kevin Corcoran, from “Old Yeller,” “The Shaggy Dog” and “Swiss Family Robinson” (among others)
- Bill Farmer, Disney Legend and the voice of Goofy
- Margaret Kerry, the live-action model for Tinker Bell
- Dave Smith, Disney Legend and chief of the Walt Disney Archives
- “LOST” actor Dan Roebuck, who portrays Dr. Leslie Arzt on the hit TV series
- Actor David Stollery — best known as Marty in “The Adventures of Spin and Marty”
- Denny Newell, senior show director for Disneyland
That isn’t all either. In addition to some of the party’s events and exclusives mentioned here, we’re told there are additional D23 surprises just waiting to be revealed during the party. We’re also told that only a few tickets remain, so those interested in attending so purchase their tickets as soon as they can. To purchase tickets to the event or for more information, click here.