Tangaroa, co-founder of Progress City and singing hillbilly bear enthusiast, welcomes you to this land of enchantment, and appears before you as a mighty tree. In his more corruptible mortal state, friends and foes alike know him as Michael – life-long Disney obsessive and unapologetic EPCOT fanboy:
After a formative childhood visit to Walt Disney World, there was no turning back. Addiction set in, and with it the ensuing notoriety amongst peers that comes from knowing just a little bit more than is seemly about omnimovers, utilidors and Disney Handwiches ™. Frustrating the conventional wisdom that Disney P.R. would have you believe about “boring” old EPCOT, it was my favorite park by far as a kid. Add in a soupçon of obsession for the art of animation, and you have the perfect storm of Disney nerdiness. Years later the unseemly compulsion with ferreting out the more obscure details of Disney past and present continued, but now thanks to the miracle of modern technology I can share my private shame with you wonderful people.
Fields of interest resulting from these experiences include futurism, urban planning, technology of all sorts – and I am inexorably drawn to those twin pillars of midcentury design, populuxe and tiki modern. Other Disney-overlapping obsessions include film and animation, the art deco lifestyle and the age of streamline moderne, the noir era, golden age sci-fi and futurism, steampunk, romanticized visions of frontier and colonial America, the South Seas, the early days of digital technology, and pie. Pie is good.
My spare time is spent existing as both a particle and a wave simultaneously, and I would gladly sell out to Disney immediately and completely should they choose to contact me via the link below.
My all-time favorite Disney attraction is Horizons, my favorite animated film (at the moment) is Fantasia, and I will throw down on some School Bread at a moment’s notice.
Beacon Joe, Progress City co-founder, drops in from time to time to dispense some down-home wisdom from his shanty on the Rivers of America. He also produces the Progress City Radio Hour, and spends his days penning and recording ditties to his heart’s content.
Beacon Joe spent a couple of stints working for Disney, first in Fantasyland and later at Guest Relations at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Thus, he has much love for Phase 1 Walt Disney World, all concerning the Seven Seas Lagoon and Bay Lake, and all horrific ’70s bits that still exist.
In addition, he has passion for Manifest Destiny and other romantic visions of the West, longing for a day where Thunder Mesa and the Western River Expedition could be built (oh yes its a long shot). Hobbies include Nescafe and churros in a rocking chair in Frontierland checking out the hot band with the tuba and banjo, exploring Fort Wilderness late at night, and picketing the restaurant “Waves” for the loss of the Fiesta Fun Center.
Favorite Disney park oscillates between the Magic Kingdom (WDW) and EPCOT Center, depending on time of day and anger at Future World and/or Tomorrowland (depending on wind direction and other factors). Favorite attraction also changes, but always rests somewhere between Disneyland’s Pirates, Spaceship Earth, Kilimanjoro Safaris, The American Adventure, and the Haunted Mansion – although El Rio de Tiempo lives long in his memory. Favorite Disney films – for sentimental purposes Robin Hood, for great art Bambi, for good fun Melody Time.
Beacon Joe, when away from the Rivers of America, is known as Jeff Crawford and is a musician/producer. You can hear his music on the Progress City Radio Hour, or check out jeffcrawfordmusic.com and arborridgestudios.com.
There’s also Twitter, but that just may be too trendy.
Email works as well.