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America!!

It’s the 4th of July in Progress City, and that means pageantry!

So here’s some pageantry.

It’s the thrilling dedication of the American Adventure at Epcot, which took place on October 11th, 1982. Thrill to the oratory of Card Walker! And the pavilion’s two sponsors, American Express CEO/Chairman Jim Robinson and Coca-Cola President Don Keough. All introduced by the 1982 Walt Disney World Ambassador Jeanne Thiele.

Each of the World Showcase pavilions had a dedication much like this, with some sort of musical performance and choreographed dance number. They usually also featured an appearance by the pavilion’s major sponsor. The entire month of October was filled with these events; everything in Epcot got one, with VIP cocktail parties and other hobnobbing opportunities.

So strike up the band and celebrate America 1980s-style!

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3 comments to America!!

  • Andrew Horberry

    Well! Hardly camp at all!

    Does it seem to anyone else as if this might have been cut together from several performances? As well as the seated crowd being prominent in some shots and apparently absent in others, the fountain appears to be alternately absent and present towards the end.

  • F.Monferran

    The dedication was a one time thing so there was only one performance; what makes it visually confusing are the different angles and perspectives used.
    There’s a small seating area with chairs for the officials and we also see the benches of the open air Theater where some guests stand on the seats, plus the trees complicate the layout.

    Such videos of the different Pavilions Openings were available as video cassettes (Remember them?) to the WDW Cast Members at the different Disney Universities, and I remember watching all of them during my time there!

    The entertainment was always top-notch and the singing just plain terrific; I guess they used the Kids of the Kingdom here, along with the Voices of Liberty, or it might have already been the World Dancers, which were terrific too! Ah, memories!

  • Gary K.

    Michael, a very close friend forwarded me this dedication footage a few weeks ago, and what a thrill to see this for the first time. I was the male vocalist for the ‘Golden Dream’ segment with Andy Taylor as the female vocalist. We were precarioulsy perched as that lift went up, and I remember how scared we were as the lift had a slight tilt forward practically over the fountain. It was a magical time for sure, with a live 50 piece orchestra and the VOL singing and the spectacular KOK dancing, and we all felt honored to be a part of the dedication event. You know I have tried to locate the footage over the years through Cast Activities, and this was my first time in 32 years I have ever seen this. I of course forwarded it to Andy as well, and she too was blown away at how special that time wasand seeing it. The next year I was also chosen to sing the theme to the Horizons Pavilion as well, and again have never seen that footage either. Might that be a part of your archives? I believe it was the following year and the vocalist were myself, Laura Compton and a little girl named Joy, can’t remember her last name…again the dancers were KOK I believe. At any rate, it was a true blessing to see and remember…Thank You! Gary Kwiatek

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