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by JollyFrogger Diva

For this edition of Throwback Thursday, we’re taking a journey back to 1996. Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was a themed land that opened at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom named Mickey’s Toontown Fair. According to my research on Wikipedia, it had previously been known as Mickey’s Birthdayland, Mickey’s Starland, and Mickey’s Toyland. It was a whimsical little world where everything looked like a cartoon and you could visit Mickey and Minnie’s homes and even arrange a meet-and-greet and an autograph with The Mouse himself.


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In addition to visiting Mickey and Minnie, you could tour Donald’s tug boat, ride Goofy’s Barnstormer, and even make a stop at Pete’s Gas station if you needed to use the restroom.

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To be honest, before 2009 I never spent a whole lot of time in this land. Whenever we visited as children, I think my parents avoided the area because of the heavy crowds. As a teenager, I thought I was too cool to hang around a cartoon-themed land. When I got older, there wasn’t much reason for me to visit since I could meet Mickey several other places throughout Walt Disney World, and Barnstormer was a ride that I only needed to ride once so I could say I had. Then, rumors begin to surface that Mickey’s Toontown Fair wouldn’t be long for this world, as the space would be repurposed as part of a large expansion that was to take place at Magic Kingdom. We happened to visit in November of that year, and being the Disney fan I am, I decided I needed to be sure to get some good photographs of Mickey’s Toontown Fair, so I could look back and remember it if the rumors held true. I discovered that what I had previously seen as an area just for children was, in fact, so much more. In true Disney fashion, there were a lot of charming details that accented the area perfectly. For example, Mickey and Minnie’s mailboxes were carved in the shape of their faces.

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As it turns out, it was also really cool to be able to meet Mickey Mouse in his own home, which included a life-size cartoon Christmas tree for the holiday season.



In retrospect, I am glad that I made it a point to explore this area from behind the lens of my camera.  My reward was capturing a part of Magic Kingdom that I would have missed out on otherwise. In 2011, the rumors came true and Mickey’s Toontown Fair closed down to make room for part of the gigantic Fantasyland expansion. The area was redone and became part of the area now known as Storybook Circus. Parts of Mickey’s Toowntown Fair remain, such as Goofy’s Barnstormer. The train station was also left intact, although it was re-themed to match the new land. Thankfully I gave the area a second chance, because now I have some great pictures to show my daughter when she’s older so she can see what the area looked like when I was a kid.  Once upon a time, when it was known as Mickey’s Toontown Fair.