On June 23, 1963 Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room opened – which is the only attraction at the park that contains Walt’s name. The location was originally planned as a restaurant but that never came to be… the kitchen entrance is immediately to the left as soon as you enter the building.
Many sites publish ‘little known facts’ about Club 33, Royal Street. Here are some comments and responses to some of those lists. (These are opinions, just as the articles I’m referencing are opinions, and this is not intended to be a debate about “who’s more correct” or not – this just just for fun.)
- Club 33, Royal Street is often called a “5 star restaurant”, but it can’t technically be classified as such, since it’s a private club. It isn’t listed in Zagat and doesn’t have Michelin stars. It might better be called “an equivalent to a 5 star restaurant.”
- The (original) entrance to Club 33, Royal Street is between 31 and 35 Royal Street, ‘hidden’ in plain sight to those who don’t know about the Club. While stories abound that there were 33 original investors of Disneyland or the 33 on it’s side looks like MM for Mickey Mouse, the club got its name from the address. Yes, it was a private dining space for Walt and executives to bring investors and a place for those investors to bring their own clients. Prior to the club opening, Walt would bring high-level visitors to the Red Wagon Inn at the end of Main Street (now called the Plaza Inn) for food and refreshments.
- The Club opened on June 15, 1967.
- The cost of membership has changed over the years. There are different membership levels, but they generally work the same way – a member can call to make reservations for themselves and their guests. However, the member does not always need to be present for their guests to enter the Club.
- Membership does not include the cost of the meal. Members and guests must still pay for their lunch or dinner and drinks on top of the member’s initiation fee and annual membership fee. In 2013, Lunch was approximately $100 per person and dinner was approximately $175 per person – that also included admission ticket to the park. Around 2014/15, when the organization changed, members got a limited number of admission tickets to give to their guests.
- The Club 33 in Tokyo Disneyland is not a private club, but a regular dining location.
by Pepper Santos-Bozung
The current hoop was introduced back in 1985 by a young gentleman named Keith Wing. He was a free spirited guy who thought Disneyland would make a great summer job and happily accepted a position as one of the Matterhorn Mountain climbers.
All was well and it was shaping up to be a great summer for Keith, however one thing could have been better. After each climb was completed, Keith and his fellow climbers would be allowed a short break before making their decent. Unfortunately after several days of twiddling their thumbs inside the dark walls of the mountain, they became restless. Luckily they soon came up with a great idea to pass the time.
Inside the mountain was an old back board that had been installed back in the 70’s in which Keith had decided to add a proper hoop. So one day he took the hoop that hung over his mothers garage and managed to sneak it past security (ironically, which I’ll get to later). He then enlisted the help of the Matterhorn’s machinist to do the installation as long as he was able to use it as well.
The hoop was taken down for a short period of time after they accidentally put a foot through the rotted wood floor. As soon as the damage was repaired, the hoop went back up in it’s rightful spot and the climbers continued to enjoy their breaks shooting hoops. Little did Keith know, that his hoop would become a legend for many cast members and guests alike.
As for what became of Keith, his summer job turned into much more than he would have ever hoped for. He ended up meeting his wife Teri who was the Tinkerbell that flew down the mountain each night. 30 years later, both still work for Disney. Keith is one of the heads of Security at the resort and Teri moved on to The Walt Disney Studio. They have two beautiful children and they have lived happily ever after.
On Monday and Tuesday, September 14th and 15th, 2015 (at 9p ET) on PBS, “American Experience : Walt Disney” will air, giving an unprecedented look at the life and legacy of Walt. It will feature rare footage from the Disney vault, scenes from some of his greatest films and interviews with those who worked his films and on Disneyland.