The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

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The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Poohentrance.jpg
The entrance sign for The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.
Magic Kingdom
Land Fantasyland
Attraction type Dark Ride
Opening date June 5 (or 4th depending on the source), 1999
Vehicle names Honeypot
Vehicle capacity 4
Ride duration 3 minutes
Based on Disney's Winnie the Pooh series
FastPass + Yes

The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is an attraction located in Fantasyland.

Attraction History

The idea of a dark ride based on Disney's Winnie the Pooh franchise began in the late 1970s. Following the popularity of the Winnie the Pooh movies, Imagineers began to make plans for a Winnie the Pooh attraction to be added to Disneyland's Fantasyland. In fact Disneyland's 1976 long range master plan noted that "a new dark ride type attraction, possibly a Pooh theme with 900/hour capacity would be added near Casey, Jr." [1]. With Fantasyland scheduled to go under a significant renovation soon, it was assumed that the Winnie the Pooh dark ride would be added then. When Disneyland's Fantasyland re-opened in 1983 however, there was no Winnie the Pooh ride present.

Although the attraction was not built, the idea of a Winnie the Pooh dark ride was not dead. In the late 1980s, Imagineers once again began making plans for a Disneyland Pooh ride. This time, the attraction was going to be located in Disneyland's Mickey's Toontown Fair. The new Winnie the Pooh ride would have allowed guests to travel through what were deemed the three best scenes in the movies in a spinable honeypot [2]. Once again however, the attraction never came to fruition, as the location earmarked for the Pooh attraction would instead become home to Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin. [3]

Several years after the last attempt at a Winnie the Pooh dark ride, Imagineers once again pitched the idea. This time, they wanted to build the attraction in Walt Disney World. Although Walt Disney World's Fantasyland had enough space to build the new attraction, it was eventually decided that Mr. Toad's Wild Ride would be replaced, and its show building reused. Although an official reason for this decision was never given, it has been widely accepted that Mr. Toad's Wild Ride was chosen for replacement due to the fact that Pooh would be a more marketable character than Mr. Toad [4]. Despite Mr. Toad fan protests (as well as some bad publicity) [5] Disney closed Mr. Toad's Wild Ride on September 7, 1998 [6]. Mr. Toad's show building and ride structure were then reused, and on June 5, 1999 The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh officially opened [7].

On November 23, 2010 The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was given a new interactive queue. Sections in the new queue included: Tigger’s Bouncy Place, Rabbit’s Garden, Eeyore’s Gloomy Place and Pooh’s Hunny Hives [8]. At this time, the large tree that serves as Pooh's house was relocated from the recently closed Pooh's Playful Spot to the entrance of the queue [9]. Almost as soon as the new queue was installed, Disney decided to close Tigger's Bouncy Place due to safety concerns. In January 2011, the area reopened with new bounce pads and a softer surrounding area [10]. Eventually however, Disney decided to do away with the pads altogether and in March the area was walled off for refurbishment [11]. That area remained closed until it was later repurposed for a Pooh meet and greet.

Attraction Plot

The interactive honey wall found in the queue. Photo Credit: Disney

Queue

The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh's queue, is themed to be Chapter One of the story that guests are about to enter. Pages from a Winnie the Pooh book are used to give guests the attraction's backstory as they walk through the line. The queue begins with Winnie wondering what he will do today. A map of the Hundred Acre Woods is present, showing the various places that Pooh (and guests) can go. The Hundred Acre Woods begin with guests passing Pooh's house which is inside a large tree. Hanging off of the tree are two signs. The first reads "Mr. Sanders" and can can be found above the front door. The second sign is the attraction's entrance sign, which marks the beginning of the attraction. As part of the attraction's new interactive queue, guests can go into Pooh's house and see how the bear lives.

As guests continue on through queue, they pass both Eeyore's and Piglet's house. Storybook pages outside the homes, give a little background about the locations. As guests continue on, they would formally come upon Tigger's house and also his bouncing place. Here, they could bounce on Tigger themed springs around a small area. In 2011 this portion of the queue was removed.

Next up in the queue, is Rabbit's home. Here, despite his best efforts, gophers are tearing up the garden. The gophers pop up and down, interacting with guests. One section of the garden allows guests to stomp on a button, which will knock the gophers back to down into their holes. Another part of Rabbit's garden allows guests to spin giant sunflowers and beat (like a drum) various vegetables. After passing through Rabbit's garden, guests come upon the interactive "honey walls". The honey walls are large interactive touch screens that allow guests to smear and draw in the honey.

At this point, guests finally come to the loading area. Here, another storybook page tells guests that Chapter One is ending but Chapter Two will start soon. As guests board their honeypot ride vehicles, the pages of Chapter Two line the back wall. At this point, guests enter the story and the attraction begins.

Main Attraction

As Chapter Two begins, guests enter the Hundred Acre Woods on blustery day. As the wind howls around them, Piglet and Gopher can be seen on the left, being blown around in a garden. Next to them, Pooh is holding on to a balloon and using the wind to try and get into a beehive. Back on the ground, Eeyore looks on, commenting that Pooh will never get the honey and across the room, Rabbit can be seen lying in his garden underneath a pile on unearthed carrots. Next to him is Kanga, who is desperately trying to hang on to Roo who is up in the air and holding onto the other end of a scarf. As Kanga pleads with him to hold on, Roo says, "Look mama, I'm a kite!". Riders then go through a door and into Owl's House.

Pooh happily eating his honey at the end of the attraction.

Inside Owl's House, everything has been disorganized by the storm. On the right, guests can see a picture of J. Thaddeus Toad (Mr. Toad) handing over a deed to Owl. Another picture on the floor shows Moley (Mr. Toad's sidekick) and Winnie the Pooh together. Both of these pictures are subtle references to the fact that Mr. Toad's Wild Ride once was located in the current location of the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. After passing through Owl's House, guests enter the next scene through a sliding door.

In the next scene of the attraction, Tigger pops up across from the ride vehicles. He then invites guests to "Come bounce with me!" as the honeypot vehicles begin to bounce. As riders bounce around the room, Tigger pops up everywhere. In the background, the song "The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers" can be heard. As the honeypots stop bouncing, guests enter Pooh's House. Here they see Tigger perched on top of Pooh (who is wearing his pajamas). Tigger warns the bear to "watch out for Heffalumps and Woozles". He also tells Pooh that Heffalumps and Woozles will steal his honey, so Pooh decides to stand guard (holding a gun). Despite his best efforts however, Pooh falls asleep and magically floats into the next room.

As guests follow the bear into the next room, they enter a bizarre scene. All around the honeypots, Heffalumps and Woozles manically sing. Strange creatures such as Woozles with jack-in-the-box necks surrounded guests. One Woozle even seems to light the end of a Heffalump on fire, causing a smoke ring to come out of the Heffalump's trunk, which hits guests. After passing through a large hole in a Heffalump, guests can see room’s exit. Before exiting however, the honeypots travel under "watering can" shaped Heffalumps, which transition them to the next scene.

The next scene takes place back in the Hundred Acre Woods, where a large storm is brewing. Here, Eeyore, Roo, Rabbit, Owl, and Tigger all team up to save Piglet from being washed down Floody Place Falls. On the other side of the forest, Pooh can be seen (apparently stuck), trying to get into a beehive. After the storm has ended, all of the characters (except for Pooh) can be seen celebrating at Rabbit's House. A little further down the track, Pooh can be found happily eating honey inside the tree. After passing a beaming Pooh, a storybook page reads "The End", and guests can disembark from their honeypot. After unloading, guests exit into the Hundred Acre Goods store.

See the Attraction!

The painting of Mr. Toad handing the deed over to Owl.

Fun Facts and Trivia

  • A small carving of a submarine can be found on a rafter in Pooh's House. The submarine is a subtle tribute to the closed Fantasyland attraction 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea [12]. Pooh's House was originally a part of Pooh's Playful Spot, which sat on the location that once housed 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea [13]. When the playground closed, the tree was moved to The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh queue [14].
  • Guests can smell honey as they exit The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. [15]
  • From 1999 until 2010 the gift shop that guests exited into after riding The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was known as Pooh's Thotful Shop. The store was given its new name in November 2010. [16]

References

  1. http://jimhillmedia.com/editor_in_chief1/b/jim_hill/archive/2003/08/04/168.aspx#sthash.3HtXHepG.dpuf
  2. https://books.google.com/books?id=XqaWtV6Om1sC&pg=PA162&lpg=PA162&dq=1970s+Disneyland+Winnie+the+Pooh+attraction&source=bl&ots=IS3Z7p_e-P&sig=wo0q7AUXQ9ZSGIrA-wxJeQXLLPw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjY8-Sl2ovKAhUJPCYKHdsoAf4Q6AEITzAM#v=onepage&q=1970s%20Disneyland%20Winnie%20the%20Pooh%20attraction&f=false
  3. http://articles.latimes.com/1994-01-20/news/ol-18247_1_toon-spin
  4. http://www.omniluxe.net/wyw/mtwr.htm
  5. https://www.math.miami.edu/~jam/toad/ow/ow971218.html
  6. http://allears.net/tp/mk/toad.htm
  7. http://allears.net/tp/mk/mk_pooh.htm
  8. http://disneyparks.disney.go.com/blog/2010/11/behind-the-scenes-the-many-adventures-of-winnie-the-pooh-at-magic-kingdom-park/
  9. http://www.wdwmagic.com/attractions/the-many-adventures-of-winnie-the-pooh/news/29apr2010-pooh's-playful-spot-tree-now-installed-in-the-many-adventures-of-winnie-the-pooh-queue.htm
  10. http://thedisneyblog.com/2011/01/23/tiggers-bouncy-place-opens-at-winnie-the-pooh/
  11. http://forums.wdwmagic.com/threads/pooh-queue-rumor-tigger-bounce-spot-to-be-removed.684076/page-7
  12. http://www.hiddenwdw.com/20000-leagues-under-pooh/
  13. http://www.wdwmagic.com/attractions/poohs-playful-spot.htm
  14. http://www.wdwmagic.com/attractions/poohs-playful-spot.htm
  15. http://orlandoinside.com/the-many-adventures-of-winnie-the-pooh-ride-review-at-disney/
  16. https://www.mouseplanet.com/guide/1046/Walt-Disney-World//Fantasyland/Hundred-Acre-Goods