Celebrate the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World by seeing where it all began.
50 years ago today, Walt Disney World opened its doors for the first time, and Disney has planned an 18-month celebration to honor its half-century of operation. To celebrate, fans can watch the entire The Grand Opening of Walt Disney World special, which originally aired on NBC on October 29, 1971.
Filmed from October 23 to 25, 1971, the opening celebration showcases a park that is much smaller than the one we know today. Over ten years before the opening of Epcot, and before Disney-MGM Studios (later, Disney’s Hollywood Studios) and Animal Kingdom were even a consideration, Magic Kingdom was the first park to open at Disney’s east coast park. This hour-and-a-half celebration is a look back at where this park started, and just how far Disney World has come.