Magic Kingdom - it's a small world
it's a small worldOpened: 1971
Ride Length: 10 minutes, 30 seconds
The “legend” has it that if you ride it’s a small world at Disney World or Disneyland, the song will stay in your head forever, its a small world after all. A lot of people claim this ride is just a cliché or is “just for kids.” People will tell you that they avoid it like the plague. These are the same people that will turn around and moan that the Carousel of Progress should be saved, or that they never should have taken out Mr. Toad ’s Wild Ride. Their reasoning is that these are Walt Disney’s Legacy (this should be said in an extremely reverent tone.)
Let’s talk about that. Many of the older, or original if you prefer, attractions at Disneyland and Disney World have Walt’s touch. Walt and his team of Imagineers, led by artist and designer Mary Blair, created it’s a small world as tribute to the children of the world for the UNICEF pavilion at the 1964/65 World’s Fair. The Sherman Brothers, responsible for a big chunk of Disney music (ex. Mary Poppins) originally wrote the theme song as a ballad. Legend has it that Walt told them he needed something “peppy” that would last throughout the ride. It was decided that the song you love to hate would be sped up and sung as a round. What you see today is very close to Walt’s original attraction for the World’s Fair. Seems like a pretty good pedigree to us.
After the World’s Fair ended, it’s a small world was moved to Disneyland, where it remains one of the park’s premiere attractions. It has also been a staple of Disney World since 1971.
There have been some minor modifications, but for the most part it has remained that brightly colored attraction that people love and love to hate. Mary Blair’s original concept for the ride was a vision in stark white and gold. The huge smiling clock face that adorns Disneyland’s version is known to millions as the face of it’s a small world. This is the classic look for this attraction.
Walt Disney World’s version now has the classic “Mary Blair” look. The mechanics of the loading area has remained, for the most part, the same. Everything else about the loading area has been changed. There are recognizable silhouettes of world landmarks all done in different textures and white and highlighted in gold. We also now have our very own clock tower with the “seesawing” clock face. (I was told that every 15 minutes there will be a surprise involving the clock). The ride itself has been brought back to its original splendor. (After so long, some of those kids were looking a bit raggedy). They have new costumes, new wigs and new paint. If they originally sparkled, they sparkle again. The mechanics of the ride have also been updated. The click clacking noise often heard in the past is gone.. In addition, the soundtrack has been restored as well. The sound is crisp and clear. And the best part ….all the visible wear and tear on the building itself, that has been so apparent….has been fixed. It’s like a brand new attraction.
Disney World has given a classic look to a classic attraction. From those of us that love this attraction, we say thanks.
Handicapped Accessibility: Guests must be able to transfer from their chairs in order to ride.
Handheld captioning is available.
Fun Fact: The ride's artist and designer Mary Blair also created the huge multi-story murals on the Grand Canyon Concourse at Walt Disney World’s Contemporary Resort.
- csjordan - "This ride is overall good for kids. The only bad thing is the song that gets stuck in my head everytime I ride!"
- Rainkiss - "I love this ride, I really do. Sure, the music will require a sledgehammer to get out of your head, but there's just SO much to see, you catch a new detail or two every time."
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Today's Theme Park Hours
Epcot Future World:
Epcot World Showcase:
|6:00 - 6:00
9:00 - 9:00
11:00 - 9:00
8:00 - 10:00
9:00 - 7:00
10:00 - 6:00
10:00 - 6:00
Extra Magic Hour Evening: Epcot FW