By Jocelyn Buhlman
Disney100: The Exhibition opened this month at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, showcasing a dazzling display of over 250 treasures from across 100 years of Disney history. On February 15, D23 Gold Members got a sneak peek at the exhibition—but they weren’t the only ones who stopped by the museum. Our pals Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse joined in for the opening celebration, dressing extra-festive for their short visit in their dazzling platinum attire.
Our pals checked out the “Where It all Began” gallery, which celebrates the very start of Disney Animation, including the Alice Comedies and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit—along with a certain charming mouse duo!
Over in the “Where Do the Stories Come From?” gallery, the platinum pair paused to admire the exhibit’s interactive display on the Sleeping Beauty prop book. While guests cannot open the actual, physical prop book, a special display lets them flip through pages of the book to view enlarged and animated versions of the pages—featuring beautiful art by Disney Legend Eyvind Earle.
The “Where Do the Stories Come From?” gallery highlights the inspiration sources for Disney films—from fairy tales to comic books! One of Disney’s most famous adaptations is Mary Poppins, and guests can admire several props from the film—including the original carousel horse that Mary herself rode in the “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” musical number.
Music is an essential and beloved part of Disney magic, so naturally there’s a whole gallery dedicated to the Disney grooves that make our feet tap and our hearts sing! Mickey and Minnie couldn’t help but dance while visiting “The Magic of Sound and Music” gallery, but they also stopped to admire some of the featured art on display, including promotional art for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and concept art for Encanto.
Some of our favorite places to experience Disney magic are Disney Parks, and Disney100: The Exhibition celebrates those happy places in the “Your Disney World” gallery. Besides showcasing Disney Parks items from the Walt Disney Archives, such as a Matterhorn Bobsleds attraction vehicle and a Red Demon Figure from Walt Disney World’s Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, the gallery also features an interactive table full of fun facts about every Disney Park! (Seasoned D23 Gold Members may recognize the art featured on the table, too!)
It’s hard not to be overcome with emotion and nostalgia while exploring Disney100: The Exhibit, and even Mickey and Minnie needed a moment to pause in front of the stunning model of Walt Disney World’s Cinderella Castle.
Mickey and Minnie weren’t the only Disney icons to visit the exhibit for a sneak peek—Disney Legend Bob Gurr, the Walt Disney Imagineer behind more than 100 attraction designs (including the Matterhorn Bobsleds vehicle displayed in the gallery), stopped by to visit the exhibit himself. Mickey and Minnie were so excited to see their friend that they just had to give him a big hug!
Our pals only had a quick visit to Philadelphia to visit Disney100: The Exhibit, but you can see it for yourself at The Franklin Institute. If you’re a D23 Gold Member in Philadelphia, you can get discounted admission to the exhibit here.