19 August 2021

Walt Disney World 50 for 50: Growing Knowledge and Growing Communication

This year we have all been aflutter over the installation in the courtyard between the front gates and Spaceship Earth at Epcot. The reimagining of the fountain brought back the Lucite pylons from the days of EPCOT Center. The fountain itself has remained in the same spot since the opening of the park, transitioning from a blue tiled base with the icon-clad spires, to a rocky dome, reflective of the Leave a Legacy monoliths, to now with an iteration that is somewhere in between.
 The prism-esque beauties from the original EPCOT Center fountain hadn’t been seen in more than 20 years. Though during their original lifespan, they had begun to become cloudy and yellowish in color, not exactly the shimmering beacon of the future they were when they were installed in the early 1980s. Seeing them restored to their original glory is something truly special.
We watched with glee as the top of the columns were installed, peaking just over the top of tall construction walls. They glinted and gleamed, catching the rising or setting sunlight just right, even without the water feature of the fountain to play with. We were treated to short videos of their installation, a video that was met with much jubilation. And that is the way we have always been when it comes to construction projects at Walt Disney World. We peer over the walls and in between cracks, smoosh our faces up against the windows of a monorail or Skyliner gondola to catch a glimpse behind the construction barricades, and we listen to every whispered rumor in the hopes of what might be.
Don’t believe me? This dates back to some of the earliest Walt Disney World projects, including the original EPCOT Center courtyard fountain. Why else would Disney public relations have thought to take a photo of the original Lucite pylons being affixed to the fountain base and send it along to media outlets? Because just that taste of what’s to come is enough to put a smile on our faces, cause our hearts skip a single beat, and allow us to dream about when we might see it in person.

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