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Dumbo the Flying Elephant (Disneyland Park)

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Dumbo the Flying Elephant
DumboFlyingElephantDisneylandPoster
Disneyland
Land Fantasyland
Theme Dumbo
Opening date August 16, 1955
Dumbo the Flying Elephant is an aerial carousel-style ride located at Disneyland Park at the Disneyland Resort in California. It opened on August 16, 1955.

Attraction

Based on the character from the 1941 animated feature, the sixteen ride vehicles each resemble Dumbo and are mounted on articulated armatures connected to a rotating hub. The passengers ride in the "Dumbos" and can maneuver them up and down with a joystick that operates a hydraulic ram. The ride itself rotates counterclockwise at a constant rate.

History

The original design of the attraction had ten ride vehicles which were intended to represent not the "one and only" Dumbo, but the alcohol-induced "pink elephants" scene from the film. In fact, the working title of the attraction was "10 Pink Elephants On Parade" and the elephants were painted pink on installation. However, Walt Disney objected, not wishing Disneyland's guests to ride vehicles themed to a hallucination and thereby ordered them painted gray.

The ride was scheduled to be one of Disneyland's opening day attractions, but instead opened a month after the park's grand opening, due to the fiberglass prototypes weighed 700 pounds. For the first two years, the hub of the original Dumbo ride lacked the disco ball with the Timothy Mouse figure. Also, the original Dumbos has hinged ears that were supposed to flap, but failed, due to a number of mechanical problems. So, the ears remained stationary until the mid-1960s, when new Dumbos were given casts with no hinges for movement. Starting around 1977-1978, the Dumbos' blankets and hats now match with the same color.

During his 1957 visit to Disneyland, former United States President Harry S. Truman politely declined a ride on Dumbo the Flying Elephant, due to the elephant being a Republican symbol.

During the 1970s, the attraction was planned to be expanded and renamed "Dumbo's Circusland" and was displayed in "Disneyland Presents a Preview of Coming Attractions", but was cancelled.

In 1983, as part of Fantasyland's major remodeling, the ride was moved to where Skull Rock used to be, allowing Dumbo's original location to be a shortcut to Frontierland. It was completely rebuilt with a kinetic toymaker-like design, although there were still ten elephants and Timothy still held the whip. In a featurette of the ride, as shown on the DVD release of the film's 70th anniversary, the head Disney Imagineer, Tony Baxter even noted that the new ride looked like one of Geppetto's inventions.

In 1990, the attraction was updated with the sixteen rainbow-colored vehicles (and Timothy's magic feather) originally intended for installation at Disneyland Paris, after an incident during which a bracket support broke.

During the 1992 Disneyana convention, one of the original ride vehicles sold for US$16,000. Like other remaining 1955 attractions, one of Disneyland's Dumbos was painted gold in honor of the park's 50th anniversary in 2005. During that same time, Timothy's magic feather was replaced by the whip.

DisneyWiki wordmark This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from the The Disney Wiki. The list of authors can be seen in the page revision history (view authors). As with the Disney Parks Wiki, the text of The Disney Wiki is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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