Spending a day at Disneyland during the holiday season is the perfect antidote to stress and reality. My family made a beeline for It’s a Small World as soon as we got into the park. I felt my mood get lighter as our little boat glided past the international scenes and dolls singing familiar songs—“Jingle Bells” in addition to the omnipresent theme tune.
No matter how hard you might try to escape it—and I put up a fight for many years—the nostalgia and charm at Disneyland hooks you. A new Taschen book by Chris Nichols, “Walt Disney’s Disneyland,” examines Walt’s vision and how he perfectly captured the time and place. We’ve collected some of our favorite images from the book to awaken fond memories for you (Page 88). Look at the photo of the park’s original sign on Harbor Boulevard and the ticket book that was “your passport to many wonderful adventures.” Discover the tricks that make Main Street buildings look taller. We loved seeing sketches of the original rides and how much they have endured, even today. One of the most indelible memories I have of my grandfather is him spinning me and my sisters around on the Mad Tea Party ride and us screaming “Faster, faster!” Decades later, my daughter loves those teacups and makes sure to find the cup that spins fastest each time. She insists it’s the orange one with a diamond on it.
And damn if Disney fever isn’t contagious. When we photographed Puesto executive creative chef Katy Smith (Page 86) and the subject came up, she exclaimed, “I love Disneyland! We used to have annual passes and can’t wait to again.” Here’s to harnessing the Disney spirit and starting 2019 full of joy, optimism, and fondness for all of O.C.’s treasures.
—Alan Gibbons, Editor-in-Chief
MY FAVORITE THINGS IN THIS ISSUE
➜ Vancouver certainly has changed and grown since I visited more than a decade ago.
➜ I’m eager to see Broadway star Krysta Rodriguez perform when she returns to O.C. this month.
➜ The start of a new year is a great time to answer the big question the writer poses in this month’s My O.C.
➜ Every year, I’m overwhelmed by the courage on display in our health stories; this year is no exception.