Welcome to our weekly coverage of Disney History. This week we are highlighting important events that occurred August 22 – August 28, 1916 through 1989.
- August 22, 1987 – A milestone occurs for the construction of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa when the 10, 150 pound cupola is hoisted into place. The resort will open in February of 1988.
- August 23, 1986 – The U.S. Senate passes a bill, Public Law 99-391, designating December 5, 1986 as “Walt Disney Recognition Day.”
- August 24, 1916 – Actor Hal Smith, the second voice of Goofy, is born in Petoskey, Michigan. Hal’s voice credits also include Philippe (Beauty and the Beast), Owl (Winnie the Pooh), and Saint Peter (Darkwing Duck). Hal Smith passed away on January 28, 1994.
- August 25, 1958 – Filmmaker, Writer and Producer, Tim Burton is born in Burbank, California. Tim Burton won a Disney scholarship to attend the California Institute of the Arts where he was later hired by the Walt Disney Studios as an animator apprentice. Burton worked as an animator on films such as The Fox and the Hound, The Black Cauldron and Tron. He also worked on joint Disney projects including James and the Giant Peach, Alice in Wonderland, and perhaps his most famous, The Nightmare Before Christmas.
- August 26, 1918 – Walt Disney forges his parents’ signatures to enlist in the American Ambulance Corps. Walt changed his birth year from 1901 to 1900 so that he could join his older brother Roy in the Great War (World War I). The war ends one week before Walt reaches France.
- August 27, 1955 – The Mickey Mouse Club Theatre opens in Disneyland’s Fantasyland. The theatre will be renamed Fantasyland Theatre in 1964 (which closes in 1981). The location is now home to Pinocchio’s Daring Journey.
- August 28, 1989 – Jim Henson and Kermit the Frog leave their imprints and signatures on the courtyard of The Great Movie Ride at Disney/MGM Studios (Hollywood Studios) announcing their pending partnership with the Walt Disney Company. Sadly, Henson died in May of 1990 which left a legal battle over the rights to the Muppets. The case ended in a settlement allowing only limited use of the Muppet characters by Disney.
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