29 June 2010

Tomorrow's horizons are here, today

Growing up, as is still the case, I was much more intrigued by the photographs I could obtain with my 110 than I was with the assortment of postcards available in the Walt Disney World gift shops. It wasn’t that I could take better photographs, I couldn’t, and it wasn’t the fact that I lived right around the corner from the Vacation Kingdom, which I did, and could see these vistas just about any time I wanted to. Postcards just never produced the ‘must have’ response in me that I felt for other items, such as telescoping cups, pennants, and plastic figures. There were, however, a single set of postcards that I collected because I though they incredibly cool.

The postcards in question rarely included an exterior shot of the EPCOT Center attractions, save for the Horizons entry, but instead focused on various elements found within each pavilion. The ‘word cards,’ as I referred to them then, not only featured a series of photographs from inside attractions, but they also featured a single word or phrase in the middle of the postcard that embodied what that particular pavilion was all about.

Looking back now, the postcards were as connected as they were unique. Every pavilion in Future World had a postcard, save for The Living Seas and Wonders of Life which did not arrive until 1986 and 1989, respectively. In World Showcase, on The American Adventure had a postcard in this format, which never seemed as intriguing to me as the Future World set and was the only card I did not collect. The wording on the cards varied from listing an attraction, like World of Motion, to capturing the idea, such as Energy. The lettering and word capsules themselves fell into two categories, those which used rounded edges and the EPCOT Center font and those which used angular edges and a more traditional type font. Horizons was the only postcard to use a picture of the pavilion. Half of the Future World collection used three photographs and the other half used four, of the four photograph set, only Imagination chose to not give each photograph equal face space. So, while in my youth I saw these cards as a set, each card was just as specific to its pavilion as the individual pavilions were to their theme.

So, what did these postcards actually look like? What were the clever enticing blurbs on the back? You’ve waited long enough, here is what the Future World postcards I adored said and looked like.
Changing communications in Spaceship Earth, a “time machine” traces the path of civilization. The spoken word becomes printed, then is transmitted, as many constantly improves his communications. Presented by AT&T.

Bridge to the future The creation of fossil fuels is part of Universe of Energy in Future World. The story of the search for new energy sources even extends into the reaches of outer space. Presented by Exxon.

Welcome to the future Designed to reflect all aspects of Future World, Horizons combines the many facets of tomorrow – energy, communications, transportation in a fascinating portrait of the family of the future.

It’s fun the be free It’s also exciting! As man’s mobility grew, so did the complications. The World of Motion in Future World shows the advances in transportation throughout the ages. Presented by General Motors.

Technology and innovation The latest information systems provide “hands-on” displays in CommuniCore, the hub of Future World. Advances for today and tomorrow allow better understanding of our changing world.

Listen to the land in the country-fair setting of The Land, review age-old agriculture techniques. Then sail through the environments of the world and glimpse Tomorrow’s Harvest. Presented by Kraft.

Seasoned performers Enjoy some spicy numbers on good nutrition at the Kitchen Kabaret, in The Land. Acts include Fiesta Fruit, Dairy Goods, and the hit of the Breakfast Circuit, Ham & Eggz. Presented by Kraft.

One Little Spark in Journey Into Imagination, Dreamfinder and Figment introduce the Dream Machine, 3-D Magic Journeys and the Image Works, where light and sound spur creativity. Presented by Kodak.


Anonymous said...

Those are some great postcards, Ryan! They remind me how much I miss the EPCOT Center that existed during my first visit to Walt Disney World in 1988.

Looking at these postcards I really miss World of Motion, CommuniCore, The Land and Imagination.

I enjoy Test Track and Innoventions is decent, but WoM and CC were personal favorites. And sure, Soarin' is amazing and Sunshine Seasons is good, but I loved Kitchen Kabaret and the old food court.

As for Imagination... well, I don't think I need to explain how I feel about its current state.

Melissa said...

Those are great! Thanks for posting :). Those all remind me so much of my childhood! I agree with Tim in that there are rides and attractions I do enjoy that they currently have at EPCOT, but I really miss a lot of these attractions.

I actually just recently found a ringtone for Kitchen Kabaret and now love when people call me so I can hear "veggie veggie fruit fruit".

DizWiz said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting these! They are awesome!

Jason G. said...

Even though we went every two years when i was growing up in the '80s, and my Dad had a good camera, I was still at the mercy of immaturity and the total lack of a crane to take good aerial shots with (heh). That's what the post cards i took home with me provided. Those beautiful distant night shots of the Future World pavilions, capturing all the subtle and overt lighting effects that a camera flash would probably ruin. I may still have those post cards somewhere. Have to go hunt them down!

Shane said...

Fantastic stuff. I had a few of these as a kid, but have since misplaced them.