Tag Archives: Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom

YouTube: Muppet Mobile Lab at Epcot

22 Aug

Orlando Attractions Magazine and Inside the Magic podcast have posted a video to YouTube, showing Bunsen and Beaker’s Muppet Mobile Lab in its latest test run, this time at Epcot. Based on the current video, it would seem they’ve made some real progress since the tests at Disney’s California Adventure earlier this year.

A higher-resolution version is available from OA’s own video page. The Orlando Sentinel has a brief article yesterday about the Muppet Mobile Lab as well.

Dave from MouseExtra is one of many who feel that the Muppets don’t belong at Epcot. I’ve got to agree that they’d make a lot more sense at MGM. But I assume this Epcot run is mostly just a technical test, and an opportunity to get a bit more feedback from guests who interact with the Lab, so I’ll cut a little slack here for Imagineering, and hope that they’re still making the rounds when I’m back at Walt Disney World next week!

Bittersweet US Naturalization Ceremony at Walt Disney World Resort

4 Jul

Once again, thank goodness for the interweb. Right now I’m watching the naturalization ceremony at Walt Disney World Resort, webcast live.

As I watch, it strikes me that there’s a certain irony to swearing in new citizens in front of Cinderella Castle, the architecture of which draws heavily on Germany’s Neuschwanstein Castle. And what sort of beautiful post-modernism is at work if our newest citizens hop on the monorail for Epcot’s World Showcase, and visit the pavilion of their country of origin?

I’ll confess, I’ve never been a big fan of the Fourth of July. I’ve seen some terrible things done in the name of our country, and I am not proud of how our forefathers obtained the land we now live on. And was it perhaps not a coincidence that the skies let loose with a brief, torrential rain after a recorded greeting was played by our current President George Bush? (Maybe the weather gods are as cranky as I am about ScooterGate.)

I almost reached my limit with Lee Greenwood came out to sing “God Bless the USA,” in jeans an a polo shirt no less. (Good Lord man, you couldn’t have put on a suit for such a solemn occasion? Jimmy Rogers would have.) But I’m glad I kept watching, because moments later Meg Crofton announced that our new citizens would participate in a special parade down the Magic Kingdom’s Main Street USA, a beloved icon perhaps because of its celebration of a place that has never truly existed. And much to my surprise, that’s when I welled up with tears.

Because, despite my anger with my country and its leaders, I still feel lucky to be a US citizen, with my dissent and freedom of expression protected by our First Amendment. And I do know how hard our new citizens have worked to come to our country, and the tremendous obstacles some of them have overcome. I have sat with friends and loved ones when they were afraid they wouldn’t be able to stay in our country, in the homes they had built and loved. I know there are many, many more who’d make great sacrifices to sit with them this morning, becoming new United States citizens. I know there are many who long even for safe haven within our borders, for political asylum. Our country is not perfect, but it is ours, it is my well-loved home, and I welcome our new citizens with my best wishes for a happy Independence Day.

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