Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Little Bit o’ N’awlins! (with a side of silly story)

All right, so every time I see something from New Orleans Square, I’m reminded of Christmas 1997. I was working in the park and there was a campaign going, “Welcome Home for the Holidays!” in which, we were forced to greet every guest with that same phrase.

The management in New Orleans Square was very particular that we would address the area with an “accent” and say N’awlins rather than New Orleans. So, the spiel when working in that area was, “Welcome home to N’awlins!” or “Welcome home to N’awlins for the holidays!” or some such compound. Not really the most natural greeting, but we do what the Mouse commands.

So, being the dutiful cast member, I greeted a guest, with a big Disney smile, and it went something like this:

Me: Welcome home to N’awlins! Happy Holidays!

Guest: (confused expression) I… I don’t live here.

Me: Yes, sir. I know.

Guest: (still confused) I’m from Nebraska.

Me: (not sure how to get out of this one) Well, welcome to Disneyland, sir! Are you enjoying your day here?

Guest: Can you really  live here?

Me: No, sir.

Guest: Then, why did you say, “Welcome home”? What’s Naw-linns?

Me: (ignoring the first question, trying not to say “I have to say it.”) N’awlins is New Orleans Square. Now, how may I help you?

Guest: Why didn’t you just say, “New Orleans Square”? 

Me: (little bit hating on the management at this point) Because that’s how they say it down south, sir. How can I be of assistance to you?

Guest: You know you’re not in the south, right?

Me: (really quite embarrassed at this point) Yes, sir. Proud Californian. What can I do for you?

Guest: (walks away).


Since then, every time I see anything from NOS, I think of that day… which was, by the way, the last time I said that phrase, and henceforth stuck with a simple, yet effective, “Happy Holidays!” I figured Walt would prefer it that way.

Anyway, that was a long introduction for a very small little item, which is seen here. A lil’ beauty from the late 60’s, I believe. Just check out the great color! I am assuming this was to be something similar to join the miniature plates of each of the lands that were produced prior to this (which I should post photos of in my next blog post… note to self), though it’s not round. Either way, I keep them all together and they look mighty perdy. I have to say, the look of the whole thing reminds me of the London Bridge section of “The Truth About Mother Goose”.


Hope y’all are having a mighty fine week! ;)


Kirk Hanson said...

I miss the old One of a Kind Shop in New Orleans Square--do you remember it? It was filled with all kinds of antique bric-a-brac, and functioned sort of as set dressing for Ol' N'awlins...They didn't sell much, but that wasn't the point---it was theming, part of the show.

Of course, nowadays retail would never run a store whose purpose was to reenforce the theme of the was a different era...

Tinker Bell said...

Remember it? It was my absolute favorite store in the whole park!! :) So perfect with the theme and so much fun to walk through. I purchased a few things from that store.
I also remember the little store on Tom Sawyer Island, which always had a nice amount of themed type goods there. Some great beaded rings, from my memory. I wore those till they unraveled.
At least we have our memories. :)

Kirk Hanson said...

Where was the little store? In the fort? Down by the mill? I...I don't remember it...I am unworthy...

Tinker Bell said...

I don't recall the name of it, and I don't have any guide books handy prior to 1989 (it's not listed in the guidebooks after that), but it was in a very small store I believe just off to the right of the raft landing. It was only open seasonally... possibly even just in summer. I don't recall it ever being open after around 1990. They sold other things that were themed to the area... American Indian type stuff, beaded jewelry, things with feathers, etc.

Kirk Hanson said...

Don't worry, I'm going to consult with my Tom Sawyer Island expert to get to the bottom of this...

In the meantime, you have so many interesting things featured on the site that I don't know where to start...I'd love to know about where you found the T.Hee Christmas (card?) list with the enchanting little drawing of Santa and (Dasher?, Dancer?)

T. was my caricature instructor at CalArts and an absolute delight...He even looked like a rail-thin Santa, with his white beard...And the list is fascinating..."Elmer and Ginny," for instance, are Elmer Plummer (our life drawing instructor) and his wife Ginny...I think I miss Elmer the most..He was one of the real unsung heroes of Disney because he was such a quiet, unassuming man, but supremely talented...I am continually stumbling onto projects that Elmer was involved in "Elmer worked on that, too?"

So have you worked in animation, or maybe working now? I've been to your site and think your paintings are lovely...

Sorry to just keeping running on, and having so many questions...I'll try not to be such a geek in the future...

Tinker Bell said...

Awesome! I'm eager to hear.

I'm really glad you like the stuff on my blog! That's great to hear. The T.Hee Christmas list/card idea I got from a friend of mine, who got at auction, I believe. I just love it. Whimsy all over!

I'm finding it particularly cool that he was one of your instructors at CalArts. Lucky man! I also appreciate knowing now who Elmer and Ginny were. :) Thank you for the added bits of information. Sounds like you were there at a very fun time!

No... actually that began as my aim. I had every intention of going into animation until one fateful day when a paintbrush whisked its way into my little hand and proudly proclaimed it was first in my life. Since then, I do commissions mostly and sell in some galleries here and there with a goal of doing Disney Fine Art one day, if I can ever find a connection there.

Never apologize for running on. I enjoy questions and comments from anyone visiting my blog. :D Anyway, geeks are cool.

Kirk Hanson said...

All right, but as a wise man (I think it was George Sanders in "THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY") once said, "Be careful what you ask for; you may get it..."

If there's any info or other knowledge you think I can help you with, you can always e-mail me at:, plus I'm also on Facebook...

sb-illustrations said...

Greetings Miss Tink'............Not a commercial plug here, but take a look over at (3rd, & 4th pages....I think!?!). He has some great Christmas cards that were done by John Hench, & sent to Roger Broggie. Whimsy, humour & the personal touch......or inspiration for this season's mailing!......Cheers!
P.S.........I just dug out some Disneyland Guide Books, from Summer 1960-198can't remember. Nothing listed about a shop on Tom Sawyer's Island. Only listed are the dock, Ft. Wilderness Snack Bar,& the Fishing Pier Snack Stand (Summer 1977).

Tinker Bell said...

Oohhhhhh. Loving those!!! (Loving everything on that site, truly.) I adore John Hench. Great stuff. I'm even loving the style of penmanship. Thanks for directing me there!

Yeah... I honestly don't know how long that little store was in operation.I know I bought stuff there in approximately summer 1990 (might even have been 7-17-90), was surprised to even find the location there... went back on my next trip, it was still there, however on the third trip (to replace the well-worn ring) it was gone, never to return again. It's not in any of those guidebooks, so it's a real mystery to me. I still have the busted up ring though. hehe!

Tinker Bell said...

Thanks, Kirk!! :) And yeah, I think it was that film.
Thank you also for your compliment on my art, which I forgot to mention in my last comment to you. :D It was kind of you to take a look.

Kirk Hanson said...


Would you really like a connection to the Disney Fine Art Division? (actually known as Merchandise/Special Projects), and is based down at the Park...

If so, do you have either an e-mail or Facebook account where I could contact you with the info, as I don't feel comfortable doing it on a blog...

Tinker Bell said...

Yes, definitely I would! Every avenue I've tried has come to a dead end.

You can email me at

Thank you!! :D