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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Epcot VP Announces Removal of Mickey Mouse Arm and Wand Structure

    Mickey Arm, Wand Coming Down From Spaceship Sphere





    Scott Powers| Staff Writer
    Orlando Sentinel
    July 5, 2007

    The 257-foot-tall Mickey Mouse arm, glove and wand logo structure at Epcot is coming down.

    Epcot Vice President Jim MacPhee announced this morning that the time has come to remove the structure, which has served both as a colorful, lighted Epcot sign since 2000, and as a lightning rod for criticism from Epcot purists who contended the image was out of character for Epcot's architecture.

    The structure leans on Epcot's previous and future iconic figure, the Spaceship Earth Pavilion, a 180-foot geodesic sphere that can be seen for miles.

    The arm and glove went up for Walt Disney World's 2000 millennium celebration.

    Now, however, with but with Epcot's 25th anniversary this fall, and the temporary closing of Spaceship Earth ride, MacPhee said, "We think the timing of the removal is right."

    Deconstruction of the 50-ton structure begins Monday, and will be completed shortly before the park's 25th anniversary, October 1. Also coming down are the 36-foot-high "Epcot" letters and colored stars splashing across the sphere.

    Also Monday, the Spaceship Earth ride will close to complete a refurbishing sponsored by Siemans AG. The work should be done by November, MacPhee said

    At 257 feet, the arm-glove-wand addition to the Epcot dome made the structure the tallest point in all of Walt Disney World.

    Once it comes down, the tallest points according to Sentinel research will be two structures both estimated at 199 feet tall -- the Tower of Terror at MGM Studios and the new Expedition Everest at Animal Kingdom.

    The tallest point in the Magic Kingdom is Cinderella's Castle at 180 feet.

    In terms of park centerpieces, Epcot's dome and Magic Kingdom's castle will both be the tallest, followed by Animal Kingdom's Tree of Life at 145 feet and then the sorcerer's hat at MGM standing at 100 feet tall.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The following is the internal announcement regarding the removal project:

    Mickey Mouse Gloved Hand and Wand to Be Removed from Spaceship Earth

    As we did with Cinderella Castle for our 50th anniversary celebration, from time to time, we add special treatments to our icons to enhance or “dress them up” for our celebrations and then restore them back to their original state. As a result, beginning July 9, the Mickey Mouse gloved hand and wand treatment that was installed on Spaceship Earth at Epcot as part of the Millennium Celebration and then updated for the 100 years of Magic celebration will be removed. The timing was ideal to restore Spaceship Earth to its original, classic look, since the venue was already scheduled for enhancement work through November. We anticipate the restoration effort will be complete by mid-September.

    Many people have asked if the structure will be donated to a local museum or park, but since it is going to take nearly three months to remove, it is doubtful that it will be maintained in one piece. In addition, the size of Mickey’s gloved hand, the wand and the “Epcot” logo weigh nearly 50 tons and each letter in the logo is 36 feet tall. Those letters are also covered with more than 250,000 reflective eye-catchers.
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  3. #2
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    Well, this will make lots of people happy
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    My DS3 will not be happy about this!! This will upset him for sure.... oh well, change happens! I never had a problem with the wand....just the hat at MGM!
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  5. #4
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    Does this mean there is going to be some kind of 25th anniversary celebration????

    That will make me happy if they do, do something.
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    1) THANK YOU!

    2) You have made my day!
    3) After the celebration, I wanted the hand down.
    4) The ball IS the ball.
    5) Spaceship Earth IS Spaceship Earth.
    6) Who ever heard of a space ship with a hand attached?
    7) Who ever heard of the Earth with a hand attached?
    8) I don't need a hand to tell me it is Epcot.
    9) And I am sure others don't, either.
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  7. #6
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    I like that wand and I'm upset it's coming down.
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  8. #7
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    For me and my family, we will see the ball as naked. We have not seen the ball without the wand or hand. It is like the castle, it will seem naked to us with the charaters missing. but, progress must move foward.
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  9. #8
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    Well, I don't know. I wish there was more warning. Another thing I would have taken more pictures of if I had known. I need another memory card or whatever they're called for my digital camera. DH actually likes the wand and "Epcot" words up there. Also, we saw it at all times of the day and night while staying at the BC and that was so cool. So I thought I would be happy if they took it down but now I am torn. Funny.

    Another thing- I went to WDW with my family when they were first adding the stuff to Spaceship Earth for the 2000 celebration (The cranes were up, they were working on it while we were there), and then we were back the next year to see it up... And then I've seen it a lot now with it as "Epcot".... The only thing that's never going to change is that everything is going to change, right?
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    Unhappy

    Not happy at all....




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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRustyScupper View Post
    1) THANK YOU!

    2) You have made my day!
    3) After the celebration, I wanted the hand down.
    4) The ball IS the ball.
    5) Spaceship Earth IS Spaceship Earth.
    6) Who ever heard of a space ship with a hand attached?
    7) Who ever heard of the Earth with a hand attached?
    8) I don't need a hand to tell me it is Epcot.
    9) And I am sure others don't, either.
    You have just crafted a perfect post.
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  12. #11
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    This makes my day!

  13. #12
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    This is great news! Spceship Earth will be itself again.
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  14. #13
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    I think the only time I have seen SSE without the wand was in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey.

    Good thing DW and I got a good picture from the WS side back in Feb. (The pics with our camera was much better than the ones on PhotoPass!!!)

  15. #14
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    THANK YOU!

    THANK YOU!
    THANK YOU!

    THANK YOU!


    It will be so nice to have Epcot and Spaceship Earth, back to the original design, and they way I rememebered it when I walked through the gates in 1985.
    Chris °O°

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  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibrowse17 View Post
    Well, this will make lots of people happy
    Not me i liked the wand and the letters and all. now i'm mad, sad, and confused.
    You may leave the magic, but your heart will always be there (psst. I'm bored) (P.S. probably will be until I return to my true home {DISNEY})

  17. #16
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    I've never seen it without the hand and wand...so for me, it's going to look like something is missing...kinda plain!
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  18. #17
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    I'm excited for this and sad at the same time. I didn't like it when they first put it up, but then I grew used to it and even (dare I say) began to like it. The "presence" of it will be missed.

  19. #18
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    I liked the wand too...boring old ball anyways.... Now maybe the continuous thread about how dreadful it is will die....oh wait we still have to complain about the hat at MGM, right??? Which BTW I also like....
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  20. #19
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    I'm pretty much an architecture and Disney purist but I kind of liked the wand and letters/numbers. Especially how it sparkled -- but maybe that's because a girl can never have too many sparkles.

  21. #20
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    Well...I dont care if it is there or gone to be honest. But I am getting bumbed out with all of the things that are going to be "worked" on while I am going.

    We leave in two weeks and I hope I dont have to look at half of an arm standing there.

    Do you think it will be cleaned up enough to be presentable while we are on our trip?

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