Mini Trip Report – Northern Wisconsin – Part 4

Holy Cow!  I’ll bet you forgot that I was still doing this trip report, didn’t you?  Well, I didn’t.  Not.  At.  All.

Let’s just say I was taking a break.  We’ll call it a “Don Break”.  (And thanks Mark for pestering me about it.)

I probably need to do a little refresher, so here goes. We are up in the North Woods of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan (by less than 1/4 mile, but Michigan none the less).  We had already gone swimming in Lake Superior and have just left the Montreal River Scenic Overlook.  Our tummies are getting grumbly, so we head back  toward civilization.

Our destination was Little Bohemia Lodge in Manitowish Waters.  There are hundreds of little inn/lodge/restaurant establishments in the North Woods, but only one was home to an FBI shoot-out with John Dillinger and his gang.  With all the hype over the Public Enemies movie based on Dillinger that was partially shot there (get it?  “shot” there!) we decided to give it a try.  We’d never been there, so we searched the GPS database for it’s address, set it as our destination, and settled in for the 55 minute drive.

Now, Northern Wisconsin has an abundance of several things – lakes and trees being among them.   Put those two things together and you get very curvy roads and very indirect routes to wherever it is that you’re going.  So we weren’t too concerned when the GPS started telling us to make turns off the highway onto smaller and smaller roads.  I had a general idea where the lodge was from looking at online maps before we left, so I started getting a bit nervous when the GPS said we had less than a mile to go and we were on a back road dotted with nothing but vacation cabins.  Finally, the nice lady in the GPS told us that we were arriving at our destination.  I stopped the van, looked at the run-down cabin to our right and the swampy bog to our left and decided that maybe, just maybe, the GPS was wrong.

Exactly the way it looked in 1934! Except for the pavement, the conversion van, ...

So, I let Bambi drive while I search frantically for cell phone signal to find the real address.

Within 15 minutes we’re pulling into the complex.

I believe there are still guest cabins on the property, but from what I saw the entire main lodge has been completely turned into restaurant space.   We got there before the Friday night rush, so we got a nice table next to a window in one of the side dining rooms.  I didn’t take many pictures of the interior (mostly because the battery in my main camera had died and I was working with the backup waterproof camera), but the decor was typical North Woods.  Lots of rich, dark wood and plenty of dead animals on the wall.  The menu was filled with traditional fare – steaks, chicken, fish.  This being a Friday night in Wisconsin, they had a Fish Fry special.  I ordered that, Bambi got Prime Rib, Evan ordered a hot dog, and Madison got the Mac & Cheese.

Clearly, this place’s draw is it’s history.  Because it certainly isn’t the service or the food.  The Prime Rib was good, and  the rest of the meals were serviceable, but it’s certainly nothing I will need to do again.

So that’s really all of the interesting parts of the vacation.  I’ll have one more entry on all of the extended-family fun aspect of the weekend to wrap it all up.  I won’t take nearly as long of a break to get that entry up, though.  Because I’m going to Disney World in 31 days. 🙂

Little Bohemia Lodge
They're not trying to increase business by shilling for the movie, are they?
Evan checking out the bear in one of the dining rooms
Plenty of newspapers and other artifacts are on display
The back side of the lodge
Nope, nothing's changed since that shootout in 1934...
Some of the stuf Dillinger left behind when he fled
The stairs were roped off, but I'm sure some very interesting things happened up there

Two Weeks in Disney Parks & Resorts History

Sheesh, life gets busy, and I fall way behind on this!  ….

OCTOBER 20

 

Walt Disney World:  October 20, 1965
“The Orlando Sentinel” runs a story pegging Disney as the mystery industry buying up all the land required for the future theme park/resort destination.
 
 
Walt Disney World:  October 19, 1989
Body Wars debuts at Epcot Center in the Wonders of Life pavilion, in Future World.

OCTOBER 19

OCTOBER 18

OCTOBER 17

New York World’s Fair:  October 17, 1965

The 1964-65 World’s Fair officially closes.  Three of the Walt Disney Productions produced attractions will be shipped back to California to be installed at DisneylandCarousel of Progress, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, and It’s a Small World.

OCTOBER 16

Walt Disney World:  October 16, 2001

It is reported that the opening of newest Walt Disney World resort, POP Century, is postponed until further notice due a marked drop in theme park attendance since the September 11th terrorist attacks.

 OCTOBER 15

 

Walt Disney World:  October 15, 1971
The newly opened Walt Disney World resort is featured in LIFE magazine.  A color photo of 1,500 Disney employees, posing in front of Cinderella’s Castle, is featured on the cover.
 
OCTOBER 14 
 
Walt Disney World:  October 14, 1971
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea officially opens in Fantasyland.
 
Disneyland:  October 14, 2004

Bidding officially begins on eBay for the “Disneyland Haunted Mansion 1000th Ghost Experience”. The winning bidder will have their own personalized “tombstone” immortalized at the classic Anaheim park attraction, as well as receive a miniature version to keep. The unique gravestone will bear the winner’s first name and a humorous epitaph to be inspired by the winner’s interests or hobbies written and personalized by Walt Disney Imagineering.

 
 OCTOBER 13

Disneyland:  October 13, 1986

The Golden Horseshoe Revue, which has been running since day one (July 17, 1955) in Frontierland officially closes. The show holds the Guinness World Record for “greatest number of performances of any theatrical production”.  The show features Betty Taylor, who has played Sluefoot Sue for 30 years, the longestrunning cast member.

OCTOBER 12

 

OCTOBER 11

Disneyland:  October 11, 1955

 

Ticket books are available for the very first time at a cost of $2.50 per adult, $2.00 per junior and $1.50 per child.   The “A Day at Disneyland” book contains three A, two B, and three C tickets (D tickets won’t be added until the following year and E tickets in 1959).

 

 

OCTOBER 10

 

OCTOBER 9

Walt Disney World:  October 9, 2003

Epcot closes at 3:00 pm for a special evening press event in celebration of the grand opening of Mission: SPACE. The dedication is presided over by Michael Eisner, Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Co., Carly Fiorina, CEO of  Hewlett Packard, and Sean O’Keefe, President of NASA. In attendance are legendary astronauts Buzz Aldrin, Jim Lovell and Wally Schirra.  

OCTOBER 8

 

Mickey’s PhilharMagic, a new computer-animated 3-D  attraction officially opens at the Magic Kingdom.

 

OCTOBER 7

Today in Disney Parks & Resorts History

Disneyland:  October 6, 1989
A brand-new, state of the art marquee, complete with digital readerboard is unveiled at the entrance to Disneyland‘s parking lot at Harbor Boulevard.   The new sign is 50 percent taller than its predecessor, the original sign first errected in 1958
 

Disneyland:  October 6, 2002
Disney’s California Adventure opens an all-new land, A Bug’s Land, designed especially for small children, inspired by
the Disney/Pixar movie “A Bug’s Life”.  Attractions include Flik’s Flyers, Tuck and Roll’s Drive’Em Buggies and Heimlich’s Chew-Chew.  The new land is an extension of the original Bountiful Valley Farm area, which has been home to the 3D film adventure, “It’s Tough to be a Bug” since the park opened in February 2001.

A Few Days in Disney Parks & Resorts History

OCTOBER 2
Walt Disney World:  October 2, 1987
Following a very successful year of use at Disneyland,  the same $1 and $5 Disney Dollars debut at EPCOT Center.
 
 
Disneyland Paris:  October 2, 1999
Disneyland Paris introduces the FastPass system on Indiana Jones et le Tempil de Peril
 
OCTOBER 3
Walt Disney World:  October 3, 1971
Peter Pan’s Flight opens at the Magic Kingdom, two days after the initial operating day.  Based on the 1953 animated film, and the 1955 Disneyland original attraction, guests board mini-pirate ships and “soar” over the skies of London and on to Neverland
 
Walt Disney World:  October 3, 1996
The world’s largest Disney store, the World of Disney, opens at Walt Disney World‘s Village Marketplace
 
OCTOBER 4
 
OCTOBER 5
  
Disneyland:  October 5, 1955
The Disneyland Hotel, located across the street from the main exit of Disneyland‘s parking lot opens with 104 rooms. The hotel is built and owned by the Wrather Corporation, operated by Jack Wrather, a personal friend of Walt Disney, who Walt offered the use of the Disneyland name.  (The hotel won’t be purchased by The Walt Disney Company until 1988).

Today in Disney Parks & Resorts History

Disneyland:  October 1, 1956
Disneyland welcomes its’ five-millionth guest
 
 
Walt Disney World:  October 1, 1971
The Magic Kingdom, the Contemporary Resort and the Polynesian Resort all open for the very first time at the all new Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.  Nearly 10,000 guests arrive on opening day.  This is Walt Disney Productions second theme park.

Walt Disney World:  October 1, 1982

Walt Disney World celebrates the grand opening of EPCOT Center, the company’s third theme park, with more more than 100 television crews from all over the world covering the event. Walt Disney’s wife Lillian Disney helps in the dedication of Spaceship Earth. EPCOT is an acronym coined by Walt Disney in 1966 which stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow.  Though the EPCOT concept has changed from what Walt originally envisioned, the spirit and innovation needed to bring the dream to life live on in the theme park itself.
 
Tokyo Disneyland:  October 1, 1992
Splash Mountain opens at Tokyo Disneyland.  This is the third incarnation of this attraction.
 
Disneyland Paris:  October 1, 1994
Euro Disneyland officially changes its’ name to Disneyland Paris.
 
Disneyland and Walt Disney World:  October 1, 2006
Disney Parks’ new promotion, “Year of a Million Dreams” kicks off.  Daily prizes are awarded, including the coveted overnight stay inside Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom.

A Week in Disney Parks & Resorts History

SEPTEMBER 23
Walt Disney World:  September 23, 1980
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad debuts in Frontierland at Walt Disney World‘s Magic Kingdom park.
 
SEPTEMBER 24
 
Walt Disney World:  September 24, 1973
Construction begins in Tomorrowland at the Magic Kingdom on a new one story structure to house General Electric’s Carousel of Progress.  The attraction will be shipped east from Disneyland and become a permanent addition in Florida.
 
 
 
Walt Disney World:  September 24, 2001
Epcot‘s all new Tapestry of Dreams parade debuts as part of the 100 Years of Magic celebration, commemorating the 100th year since Walt Disney’s birth
 
SEPTEMBER 25
 
SEPTEMBER 26
 
 
Walt Disney World:  September 26, 1967
Compass East Corporation, a conglomeration of many dummy companies responsible for purchasing all of the land for the new Walt Disney World theme park and resort slated to open in 1971, is renamed the Walt Disney World Company

SEPTEMBER 27 

SEPTEMBER 28

 

Disneyland:  September 28, 1953
Herb Ryman and Walt Disney sketch out plans for a new theme park to be built in Anaheim, California – Disneyland.   Walt’s brother Roy will be taking the plans with him to New York City to meet with the 3 major TV networks seeking financing for the new park.  (Unfortunately CBS TV executives are not interested;  NBC’s parent company RCA, hesitates to make a commitment; But ABC eagerly agrees to participate!  The final agreement won’t be signed until April 1954, but will include a $500,000 investment from ABC, plus a guarantee for a $4.5 million line of credit – in return for a 35% ownership interest in Disneyland and a weekly one-hour TV program of Disney films and production for television, hosted by Walt Disney himself.  With the ongoing success of the park, both Walt and Roy find a way to buy back ABC’s ownership interest by 1957 – and ironically, in 2002, the Walt Disney Company purchases the parent company of ABC!)

SEPTEMBER 29 

SEPTEMBER 30