Walt Disney’s own personal plane is going to make the trip to this year’s D23 Expo 2022. The ultimate Disney fan event has announced that Walt Disney’s Grumman Gulfstream I plane will be making a trip across the country to Anaheim, California, where it will be on display for this year’s attendees at this years convention.
D23 and Walt Disney Ar and with D23 Expo Platinum sponsor Amazon, have teamed up to restore the plane’s exterior for guests to see in a specially curated exhibit. The plan will be on display in the Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center called Mickey Mouse One: Walt’s Plane, presented by Amazon, from Sept. 9 through 11.
WALT DISNEY’S GRUMMAN GULFSTREAM I PLANE IS RETURNING TO THE WEST COAST FOR THE D23 EXPO
Mickey Mouse One: Walt’s Plane will highlight the plane’s history. The Grumman Gulfstream I, nicknamed “The Mouse,” will also showcase the plane’s significance in the history of The Walt Disney Company.
According to the D23 Expo, the plane received updated wing edges and windows, and it’s been newly repainted. It will be shown with some never-before-exhibited items from the plane’s interior, including a customized instrument panel originally located near Walt’s favorite onboard seat. The panel allowed Walt Disney himself to monitor flight conditions, a telephone handset that gave Walt a direct line of communications to talk to the pilot in the cockpit, a flight bag with an image of Mickey Mouse sitting on the tail of the plane, and much more.
This is the first time Walt Disney’s airplane has returned to the West Coast for the first time since October 8, 1992. At the time, it landed on The World Drive in Orlando, Florida at Disney-MGM Studios (now Disney’s Hollywood Studios) as part of the Studio Backlot Tour, where it stayed until 2014. Walt Disney Imagineering helped make the recent exterior repaint job and finishing work possible, along with helping the move of the aircraft across the country.
Disney previously acquired the Gulfstream plane in 1963. It was initially designed with creative input from Disney and his wife, Lillian. It sat up to 15 passengers, included a galley kitchen, two restrooms, two couches, a desk, and nods to Mickey Mouse, such as matchbooks, stationary with a Mickey Mouse silhouette, and more. Mickey Mouse’s initials were later included in the tail number of the plane later in 1967. The plane was in service to The Walt Disney Company for 28 years, where it flew 20,000 hours and transported an estimated 83,000 passengers before it was grounded.
The Gulfstream played an important role in The Walt Disney Company’s 100-year history. The exhibit will showcase the role the plane had in Walt Disney’s scouting of potential locations for Project X, which later became Walt Disney World. The plane also flew over 277,282 miles between Burbank in New York from 1964-1965 for the New York World’s Fair, which brought the “It’s a Small World” attraction to the audience on the East Coast before it later went to Disneyland.
The D23 Expo 2022 is scheduled for Sept. 9-11 in Anaheim, California at the Anaheim Convention Center. The event is currently sold out. Also, D23 has confirmed that the Mickey Mouse One: Walt’s Plane exhibit will have an immersive showroom space at the convention center, where Disney fans will be able to shop, browse, and play. Attendees will be able to take part in in-person peeks at custom merchandise related to the plane as well.
What do you think of the news? Have you ever heard of Disney’s Grumman I Gulfstream Plane before? Are you fascinated with its longstanding history with The Walt Disney Company? What else do you hope to see from the D23 expo? Let us know what you think on our official Twitter account.