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Posted on Tue, 06/20/2017 - 08:27

On March 18, 1967, Pirates of the Caribbean opened to the public at Disneyland. The atmosphere, music, and rich Disney history of the attraction has helped it remain one of the most loved and cherished pieces of Imagineering innovation, even 50 years on.

Walt Gives Back: Toys for Tots!
Posted on Mon, 11/22/2010 - 06:00

Many of us can speak at length about the ways that Walt Disney's creativity and imagination have touched our lives. Sharing the wide-eyed excitement and wonder he brought to everyday life, our stories continue his legacy as we share them with our children and generations to come. Here is your opportunity to help fill Walt’s impossibly large shoes and share a happy holiday with those who can often be overlooked.

Imagineering Your Career... with Peter Kelly!
Posted on Tue, 02/26/2013 - 11:30

Every kid wishes they could make their favorite toys and characters real and Peter Kelly has the amazing job of bringing such characters to life. Kelly creates motion and performance of computer generated characters for feature films. He has worked at Industrial Light & Magic for almost 12 years and has had the opportunity to work on characters such as Iron Man, Yoda, and Davey Jones... and we are honored to introduce Peter Kelly to you, who has agreed to share a little bit about what he loves about animation and how he got where he is today.

So Dear To My Heart: Aunt Margaret
Posted on Thu, 09/08/2011 - 06:00

“…my father had a very close brother [Robert Disney] all his life,” Roy O. Disney recalled in a 1968 interview. “His wife’s name was Margaret. We called her Maggie. She was a wonderful character with an infectious laugh, and laughed at the slightest provocation, and she was always enamored with Walt from the time he was a little fellow.”

Posted on Sun, 04/24/2011 - 06:00

In observance of this Easter Sunday, our consulting historian Paul F. Anderson takes a few moments to reflect on the fundamental impact of charity and generosity of spirit, and Walt's commitment to these attributes.

Gentle Visionary: Walt's Disney World
Posted on Sat, 10/22/2016 - 12:33

Although devastated by his brother’s death in December 1966, Roy mustered the resolve to see through Walt’s plans for the Florida project, which would not be a replica of Disneyland. John Hench recalled Roy saying, “I simply had to do it. Because when I meet Walt again, if I hadn’t even tried to build that thing, I would really catch hell.”

Our social narrative is a resource for persons on the autism spectrum who may benefit from descriptions and pictures that show what a typical visit to The Walt Disney Family Museum is like. If you, your child, or someone else in your group would benefit from this resource, you can download our Social Narrative as a PDF below. 


A photo of your pet has been successfully submitted for a chance to be included on a digital display in the exhibition, surrounded by some of the most famous animals in Disney history. Our Featured Pet area will showcase companions from around the world and furry friends ready for adoption from local organizations.  

Follow us on social media for additional opportunities to have your pet featured, including original artworks, look-a-like competitions, and more. 


Questions: publicprograms@wdfmuseum.org 


Connect objects in our galleries with the stories behind them as we look closer at Walt Disney's life and legacy. Join a museum staff member for a brief exploration of topics central to Walt's life.

Spotlight Talks are 5-10 minute talks led by a museum staff member that take place in the museum galleries on weekends. Topics, times, and locations vary by day and are subject to availability. Check in with a Gallery Associate on the day of your visit for more information.

Posted on Mon, 05/01/2023 - 15:15

Legendary artist Burny Mattinson passed away recently at the age of 87. Born in San Francisco, he had moved to the San Fernando Valley later in childhood, and first wandered up to The Walt Disney Studios’ gates back in 1953. He was just 18 years old—still a high school student—and was looking for a job.

Sat & Sun, May 6–28 | 2pm
No screenings May 7, 20, 21, and 27

Join us in celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with a special month-long screening of Turning Red (2022), the critically acclaimed animated feature from Disney and Pixar. With her best friends by her side, Mei Lee is an average Chinese-Canadian preteen dealing with the...

Mission Statement

The mission of The Walt Disney Family Museum Animation Academy is to provide comprehensive training in art, animation, and storytelling. Inspired by Walt Disney’s brilliance in fostering creative talent, the museum is committed to supporting the next generation of creative talent, with a focus on reaching marginalized individuals and communities. Our intention is to expand the reach of the program, encouraging creative and diverse voices to shape the future of the animation and film industry.

Marty Sklar, X. Atencio and Bob Gurr talk "Pirates"!
Posted on Fri, 10/29/2010 - 12:00

Retired Imagineer Marty Sklar was gracious enough to field some questions from us about one of our favorite attractions at Disneyland, those scourge of the seven seas, the Pirates of the Caribbean. Marty, as many of you know, worked at WED and Walt Disney Imagineering for over forty years.

Look Closer: Lilly's Oscar Bracelet Recap!
Posted on Mon, 02/28/2011 - 06:00

As visitors to The Walt Disney Family Museum make their way through the second floor galleries, they occasionally overlook the displays in 7b, intent on taking in the breathtaking view of the Golden Gate Bridge that awaits them just beyond. But when that occurs, these guests miss the opportunity to see the special treasures arrayed in the cases in this gallery...

Happy birthday, Elias Disney
Posted on Wed, 02/06/2013 - 10:30

On February 6 we celebrate the anniversary of the birthday of a man who is sometimes overlooked in accounts of Disney history: Elias Disney, Walt’s and Roy’s father. Disney and film historian J.B. Kaufman gives us a closer look at the man who played a very important role in Walt's life.

Posted on Fri, 10/31/2014 - 14:00

When hinges creak in doorless chambers, and strange and frightening sounds echo through the halls... whenever candlelights flicker where the air is deathly still... that is the time when we share our favorite Haunted Mansion-themed blog pieces with ghoulish delight. Now, as they say... look alive!

Flying to New Heights: Celebrating 75 Years of Walt Disney’s Dumbo
Posted on Wed, 10/19/2016 - 15:36

Walt took a swing at a different kind of picture after releasing Fantasia (1941). It was a feature film not as grandiose as those that preceded it, but was perhaps even more effective in emotional impact. The film was Dumbo (1941), now celebrating 75 years since its release.

Walt Disney on Jungle Cruise boat, 1955; courtesy of the Walt Disney Archives, Photo Library, © Disney
Posted on Wed, 12/19/2018 - 15:46

With its charming Audio-Animatronics® and leafy adventures, the Jungle Cruise has long been a fan favorite. How did this attraction come to be?

In 1951—four years before the grand opening of Disneyland—a man named Harper Goff browsed the shelves of Bassett-Lowke, a miniature train store in central London. When a particular antique train took Goff’s eye, he was told that it had been promised to someone else. “I found one,” Goff later remembered, “and the man said ‘There’s a gentleman coming in...