If I could go back in time I would visit Disney theme parks during the 90s

Joined
Nov 19, 2020
As something who grew up in suburban American during the 2000s but was just a small child during the 90s I tend to view the decade through rose colored goggles.

I wouldn't get a chance to visit Disney World until the Summer before my first year of college during the early 2010s.

I tend to dream of 90s Disney theme parks as some sort of wondrous utopia.
 
No Fastpasses until 1998, and even VIP tours would not get you onto rides any faster. You had to rope drop at the crack of dawn and dash around all of the good rides like a mad creature if you wanted to avoid long lines. We did have a very nice surprise in July 1992 when to our surprise, Splash Mountain (which was not scheduled to open until the fall of that year) did a test or soft opening, as we noticed people lining up for it, and we were able to ride it. Oh, and when Tower of Terror first opened there was a grand total of... wait for it.... ONE drop! After about a year or so, and with much fanfare, they doubled it to TWO drops!
 
I went a couple of times in the 90s (plus DL once). I remember being there for rope drop and the first run, but after that it wasn't mad rushing about. The quality was better (more a match to the price); people were less competitive and stressed; the theming was a higher priority to Disney contributing to the atmosphere and you could move around the parks in more spontaneous way, enjoying the atmosphere rather than your phone screen! Plus, there was River Country. :D
 
my best memories go back to earlier decades at disneyland. a slower pace, more relaxed, yes there were lines you waited in but in many ways that built up the excitement esp. with a newer ride (allot of chatting with other visitors, friendly talk of where people were from, what they were excited to do and see). i remember learning about new rides by watching 'the wonderful world of disney' every week and walt giving updates on the progress of new additions. i miss the characters roaming freely and interacting with people (no need for a character meet and greet or a spendy character meal b/c they were interacting with us as we enjoyed the park). i also actualy miss the old ticket system b/c i remember plotting out what rides to go on based on how many of a certain category of tickets i had for our trip (early budgeting skills :rotfl2: ), was i going to go on an old favorite with shorter lines multiple times or was that pirate ride (and a couple of years later the haunted mansion) as cool as it looked on tv?
 
I started going in the mid 70’s, with paper ride tickets. I did go in1989, again in the early 90’s, and then in 2000. Last visit was 2008. I think it was the most magical in the 70’s for me.
 
I was able to go in the 90's and I am with you, if I could go back to any Disney era it would absolutely be in the 90's because it was a time when we, as a country, were encouraged to be optimistic and hopeful... I miss that.
 
disney played up the bicentennial big time in the parks (i still have the mickey/donald/goofy pin from it). has anyone heard if they will be doing anything for the upcoming 250th? i've kind of wondered if the disneyland animatronics that orginated in 'america sings' (which tied into the bicentennial attractions) and then were relocated in splash mountain but have now been removed are forever gone or if we will see them reappear in another form come 2026.
 
Yea I'm with you. I got to Land as a kid in 88 but didn't get to World until I took myself as an adult in '03. I had always wanted to go to World for MGM to try to see a show of Mickey Mouse Club.
 
i think one of the things that made the parks so appealing during the 90's was the rebound in the content and quality of disney movies. there were so many great movies that came out in the 90's and it's always been appealing to see those characters come to life in the parks. seeing belle, aladdin and the toy soldiers from toy story in real life was INCREDIBLE. likewise in 1990 when the disney channels transitioned from premium to basic cable channels in many markets allot more little kiddos (and their parents and older sibs) were learning about or being reminded of the classic disney characters. disney channel also ushered in new characters the kids (and allot of us moms :teeth: ) were eager to see (in '99 i think i spent the majority of our stay at the world at 'bear in the big blue house' cuz my youngest was hooked on it).
 
I would say the first 10 years of Disneyland were best. When there was a chance you might see Walt in the park.
 
i think one of the things that made the parks so appealing during the 90's was the rebound in the content and quality of disney movies. there were so many great movies that came out in the 90's and it's always been appealing to see those characters come to life in the parks. seeing belle, aladdin and the toy soldiers from toy story in real life was INCREDIBLE. likewise in 1990 when the disney channels transitioned from premium to basic cable channels in many markets allot more little kiddos (and their parents and older sibs) were learning about or being reminded of the classic disney characters. disney channel also ushered in new characters the kids (and allot of us moms :teeth: ) were eager to see (in '99 i think i spent the majority of our stay at the world at 'bear in the big blue house' cuz my youngest was hooked on it).
For us the transition from premium to basic cable was kind of the end of us watching Disney Channel. The commercials just ruin the experience.
 
I don't think I ever visited in the 90s. It was kind of a strange time for me. I visited Disneyland in 1989 taking out of town guests to Southern California. But that was kind of the heydey for Disneyland where Splash Mountain just opened, Star Tours opened in 1987, and the Walt Disney Company bought out Jack Wrather's estate.

The one thing I remember was the smell of unburned fuel coming from the parking lot trams, as well as Autopia. That I could do without. But a lot of the iconic attractions were still in Disneyland like Country Bear Jamboree, PeopleMover and Skyway.
 
Yea I'm with you. I got to Land as a kid in 88 but didn't get to World until I took myself as an adult in '03. I had always wanted to go to World for MGM to try to see a show of Mickey Mouse Club.
Finally, someone else who watched Mickey Mouse Club! I grew up in the area, and I used to go tapings at least once a month. It was so cool, all the regulars formed our own little club LOL. Funny story: Parents were required to go, and they'd wait in the commissary during tapings. One day Fred went in to visit the parents and got a huge cheer. Then my dad asked him to send in some of the kids. On the next break, the entire cast went to visit the parents...and stayed awhile chatting with them. Usually they'd hang out with us on the breaks, but this time, nope! They were all hanging with our parents LOL
 
I'm not sure if I'd ever want to revisit preFastPass. Waiting in line for 3hours for Splash Mountain was far from fun. Early 00s (post 9-ll) was nice as crowds and pricing was lower.
 
















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