Saturday, June 5, 2010

June 05: "Eastern: We'll Be Your Wings"

On this day in 1972 the Disney World attraction If You Had Wings opened in Tomorrowland. A two-person Omnimover dark ride, it was sponsored by Eastern Airlines (at the time, the official airline of WDW).

Located across from Mission To The Moon, If You Had Wings was a 4 1/2 minute journey showcasing films of Eastern's travel destinations (such as Mexico, Bermuda, Puerto Rico, and the Bahamas). At a time when most WDW attractions required an admission ticket, If You Had Wings was free. Most of the ride consisted of dimensional sets combined with background projections delivered by numerous 16mm automatic projectors. After exiting the ride ... guests could actually book an Eastern Airlines trip (or just gather information) at a reservation center.

Music for the attraction was recorded by Norman "Buddy" Baker - who also composed the ride's title theme. An official dedication ceremony for If You Had Wings actually took place almost a month later, on July 02.

(By 1987, Eastern dropped sponsorship and the attraction became known as If You Could Fly - until 1989. Soon after, Delta Airlines took over and the attraction was once again renamed to Delta Dreamflight - with all new scenery and music. When Delta left in 1996, it was simply called Disney's Take Flight. Today Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin occupies the space.)

Fly on over HERE for more June 05 Disney history.