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Friday, April 21, 2017

A Closer Look at a Detail of the Columbia Harbour House You've Likely Overlooked

A Closer Look at a Detail of the Columbia Harbour House You've Likely Overlooked 
by: guide4wdw - Collin

For many of us, Disney vacations have been a part of our lives for quite some time, but no matter how many time you go, there's always something new to learn about the parks. There are so many simple hidden gems and story building details that so many guests look right past. However, Disney takes that extra step to add those details to enrich the overall experience despite the majority of guests looking right past them. The Disney difference truly is in the details.

For example, many of you have likely eaten at and/or walked passed the Columbia Harbour House restaurant at Magic Kingdom. The dining establishment could even be your favorite counter service offering in the park, but I can almost guarantee that you've never taken a closer look at the sign hanging just outside of the location. 

(Photo: dadsguidetowdw)

The sign itself essentially tells what the restaurant is called, but upon closer examination, a greater backstory develops that really ties in the theming of Liberty Square. If you look closely, the sign features an eagle which is similar, yet strikingly different than the United States Eagle (found on the dollar bill). This particle representation shows the eagle clutching arrows in it's right claw and an olive branch in it's left. This symbol based representations develop a visual image of the state of our nation at the time represented in this portion of Liberty Square. Right before the Revolutionary War our country was broken in many ways and preparing for a fight (as represented by the arrows) and the peace we experienced after the war is represented by the olive branch. As you may notice in the image (above), the eagle is also crying and the stature of the animal is very somber and looking down and away. 

Today, the eagle we find on the dollar bill is very much reversed from what is seen on the Columbia Harbor House sign. The eagle found on the dollar, better known as our national symbol, clutches the olive branch in it's right (presumably dominant) claw and faces that claw with it's head held high. The peace is favored over war and the proud symbol of our nation represents that reality today.

As you can see, this is certainly a detail that Disney could have easily left out, but as you go through Liberty Square you can follow a path of our nation if you start your journey from Fantasyland. You start your journey looking towards America and potential opportunities that could arise after migrating from the east. As you move a few steps into the land Disney develops a greater story of the struggle for freedom that developed our nation over time. 

As mentioned before, many guests will never notice these detail, but for Walt Disney, story was always the key to the experience. If it didn't tell a story, it wasn't worth developing. Walt was a story teller that brought his stories to life for guests to explore and understand on a grand scale across the parks, while allowing guests who simply want to go and ride the attractions the opportunity to do so. The history and these stories simply add to the overall experience because the destination isn't about the history, but rather the history and the story are a part of the larger scale experience.

If you liked this article, be sure to follow along with us in the coming weeks as we reveal even more backstories of the parks that often get overlooked! In case you missed it, here's  A Look Back at the Only Forgotten Walt Disney World Theme Park - River Country

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