Wednesday, July 14, 2010

In honor of the MLB All-Star game in Anaheim, here is a piece of forgotten Disneyland history:

"The 1989 Cowboy Boot 'n' Ears Revue"

What exactly was the Cowboy Boot 'n' Ears Revue? The revue was a special event held at Disneyland in 1989, in conjunction with the MLB All Star game held at Angels Stadium. From an LA Times article about the event:

"For tonight's "Boots" bash, hosted by Major League Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti, the Magic Kingdom's parking lot will be transformed into a rompin', stompin', sawdust-kickin' Western town. Even Giamatti is excited. "This is my first All-Star game as a commissioner," he said from his New York office last week. "So I'm really looking forward to the game and all of the fun attached to it. The gala at Disneyland will be especially exciting because it's a salute to Gene Autry."
For the tribute to Orange County's bat-and-ball-loving cowboy, 2,000 guests will be shuttled by bus from five area hotels to attend the "Boots 'n' Ears Revue," named for the symbols of Autry and Mickey Mouse. First on the agenda: Guests will be seated family-style (that means no reserved seats) at tables for 10 inside canvas walls set up next to buckboards, wagons and bales of hay. Party favors? Cowboy hats sprouting Mickey Mouse ears, of course.
Next, a "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" hoedown will be performed to put guests in a Western mood. After comments from gala emcee Johnny Grant--a.k.a. Mr. Hollywood--the crowd will hear from Giamatti, Autry (if he chooses to speak), Mickey Mouse and Jeffrey Katzenberg, president of Walt Disney Studios.
Then come the vittles--bucket after bucket of finger lickin' beef and pork ribs and crisp 'n' crunchy chicken and old-fashioned baked beans and potato salad--carried by 250 performing singers and dancers and the Disneyland characters. Disneyland promises that the food will be served to all the guests in 10 minutes.
After they've wolfed down the main course, guests will be served up an "Apple Pie Hoedown." High-kicking waiters and waitresses will bring on hundreds of warm pies gussied up with red, white and blue streamers and stuck with large kitchen knives. Guests will be invited to divvy up the pie themselves.
Next, a 25-minute performance by comedian Jay Leno.
And finally, in the "finale finish" as party organizers are calling it, all 40 of the Disneyland characters will join singers, dancers, riders and ropers as they wend their way through the tables and invite guests to enter the Magic Kingdom to enjoy the rides, view the Electrical Parade and get an eyeful of fireworks."

Quite a way to celebrate Orange County's connection to baseball. Of course, ten years later The Walt Disney Company would purchase the Anaheim Angels... but sold the franchise in 2003.

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