Fotomat

Fotomat

Somewhere in a parking lot near you, there might just be a tiny old shack, perhaps converted into a drive-up coffee stand or some other small business. Chances are, this was once a Fotomat and, in its glory days, was painted a brilliant sky blue with a pyramid-shaped gold roof. Continue reading...

Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios Hollywood

Americans have had a love affair with movies for over a century, not to mention the mystical place that produces them known as Hollywood. This is where it all happens, right? And if you should happen to visit Tinsel Town, what could be more fun than seeing how the movies are made? The special effects, the elaborate sets, the glamorous stars? Well, how about two out of three? Continue reading...

Dodger Stadium

Dodger Stadium

High atop a hillside known as "Chavez Ravine", and just a stone's throw from the City of Angels, lies a magical place where the inhabitant’s blood runs blue - Dodger Blue. From April until October of every year from 1962 to the present, the air has filled with the fragrant smoke of grilled foot-long Dodger Dogs, cheers from a legion of loyal fans, and the soothing, fatherly voice of Vin Scully to celebrate the wins, and comfort during the defeats. Fans and players agree that when it comes to Major League ballparks, Dodger Stadium scores a home run. Continue reading...

Motor Boat Cruise

Motor Boat Cruise

It was a proposition sure to widen to eyes of any little tyke with nautical aspirations, an opportunity to navigate their very own motorboat, and skillfully navigate through treacherous boulders and hairpin turns with the skill of a seasoned sailor. And, for over three decades, Disneyland's Motor Boat Cruise provided countless voyages for millions of delighted kids. Continue reading...

Gatorland

Gatorland

You squirm impatiently in the back seat of the family sedan, waiting for the endless greenway of Florida’s Orange Blossom Trail to yield something of interest. For miles, roadway signs have promised wonders ahead at “The Alligator Capital of the World.” Soon, there it is, a long strip of buildings and walkways, fronted by a memorable entrance - a giant concrete gator head, its mouth wide open, beckoning you to enter. Welcome to Gatorland. Continue reading...

Peoplemover

Peoplemover

Never mind those pesky jet packs or flying cars from The Jetsons. In the future, man will travel in groups of four, roughly at the pace of a hurried snail. At least that was the vision put forth by Walt Disney, with his futuristic transportation system called the Peoplemover. While this form of transportation never quite caught on in the real world, it did provide a nice, leisurely journey through a section of Disneyland. Continue reading...

Lazer Tag

Lazer Tag

Lazer Tag was all the rage when it was introduced in 1986. It was the cops and robbers of the future, the ability to shoot light beams at each other and score points for direct hits. With a Starlyte gun, StarBelt, StarVest, and even a StarHelmet, players were well equipped to battle each other in 23rd century fashion - in playgrounds, backyards, or even better - in giant futuristic arenas, complete with space-age obstacles and concert light shows. If you were a kid in the late 80s, you certainly remember Lazer Tag and the extensive marketing campaign on television and in comic books that accompanied it. Continue reading...

Disneyland's Haunted Mansion

Haunted Mansion

The following scenario plays out dozens, if not hundreds of times a day in front of Disney’s Haunted Mansion:Small Child: “I don’t want to go inside there.” Parent: “It isn’t scary. It’s fun!” Small child: “No, it isn’t.”And back and forth they go, the young child unable to reconcile their parents’ reassurances with the menacing-looking house that stands behind an eerie wrought iron fence and is purported to be haunted by 999 happy haunts (with room for one more). Continue reading...