D23 Gold Members Take Off at Opening Night for Mickey Mouse One: Walt’s Plane at the Palm Springs Air Museum

By Emma Zomerman

D23 Gold Members landed at the Palm Springs Air Museum on Monday, December 5, to experience the opening night of Mickey Mouse One: Walt’s Plane, the exciting new exhibit featuring Walt Disney’s recently restored Grumman Gulfstream I airplane.  

The evening began with drinks and refreshments, including one of Walt’s favorite foods, his chili recipe. As everyone found their seats, Michael Vargo, head of D23, welcomed guests, thanking them for their membership and kicking off this eventful evening!

Michael Vargo on stage welcoming guests to the event. Vargo is wearing a gray blazer over a white shirt with black slacks. Vargo is standing in front of a screen displaying the event logo. The room is filled with guests sitting at circular tables watching Vargo.

After the crowd applauded Michael’s remarks, guests were excited to welcome Becky Cline, director of the Walt Disney Archives, to the stage. Cline gave a beautiful presentation about Walt’s Plane and debuted a brand-new documentary about the aircraft for guests to enjoy.

After the documentary, Cline introduced the vice chair of Palm Springs Air Museum, Fred Bell, who delivered closing remarks and thanks to members.

But the evening wasn’t over yet. We couldn’t celebrate this amazing artifact on this special day without celebrating the man who started it all. Guests celebrated Walt Disney’s 121st birthday with a special cake dedicated to him. Members had the rest of the evening to celebrate Walt and mix and mingle with other members until the event came to an end.

Walt Disney’s Birthday cake with white and orange frosting. On the left of the cake is a decoration of Walt’s Plane. To the right of the decoration reads Happy Birthday Walt in orange frosting.

In preparing the cabin for arrival, we were thrilled to help celebrate Walt Disney with our Members on this momentous occasion! On behalf of the D23 team, we hope the memories made that night helped you to continue your exploration and learning about Walt’s Plane.

To visit Walt’s Plane for yourself and learn more about the Palm Springs Air Museum, visit this page!