View Full Version : Ed Grier Confirms Attraction Closure [Fort Wilderness]

06-15-2007, 07:25 PM
I ran into Ed Grier-- the 51 year-old president of Disneyland -- the other day...

In our brief conversation, Grier officially confirmed the rumors of the imminent destruction of Tom Sawyer Island's Fort Wilderness attraction.

This won't come as a surprise to many of you as the rumors have been circulating for awhile-- but to my knowledge, this is a first --BONAFIDE-- confirmation, "Straight from the horses mouth."

The wooden fort will be replaced by a stone fortress similar in style to the one found in the Pirates of the Caribbean battle scene.

When asked if the fort would be re-opened to the public and feature a pirate themed stunt show or small store (as rumors have suggested), Grier said, "No-- it'll be used for storage and a backstage break area for cast members." When we pressed that this would be a loss for the kids (remember climbing up to the fort's shotgun lookouts to peg passing canoe paddlers?), I was told the change was necessary to fill a need for a critical lack of "backstage" space for staff.

There have been unofficial internet posts that suggest demolition work has already begun-- but that they have stalled because of asbestos found in the fort's fifty-one year-old structure.

Don't kill the messenger...

06-15-2007, 07:48 PM
I say it's a matter of money. Why not build a stone fort with a basement for a break room and storage, and have a store or two above it, along with stairs and look out points. Cheap basta....

Another Dimension
06-16-2007, 01:38 AM
Time pretty much confirmed the 'attraction closure' a while ago...
Ed Grier has just confirmed the 'imminent attraction demolition'.

It's quite true that the Island CM's do need a 'break room', not just a 'tent a few feet past the ever-forbidden fence'... and so it really is a money issue, with Disney not wanting to re-build Fort Wilderness AND actually build the Cast Members an actual and new break room.

The new fort, as with the old fort, will still be used for storage daytime and F! costuming nighttime (when applicable).... newer and better new new restrooms will probably be built and the fort structure will be 'sound' and 'safe' for everyone near it and in it again...
That is most important.

I'm not happy about the fort being rebuilt and seemingly permanently being 99% useless to Guests... that will be seeking magic only around the front half of the fort from now on, and also Disneyland has lost one of it's graveyards... but change is constant.

Change is not always good... it never was always and it never will be...
But change, and changes and new things, openings and closures, were why the park was created, and why the park still exists.
And another reason the park is so wonderful!!!

I had a lot of fun at Fort Wilderness as a kid, and various amounts of fun and reflection there since, minus the past 5 years or so..., of course. :)

Another piece of Walts Magic enters history and Yesterland, and hopefully a new piece of After-Walk Magic will be born in it's place; sooner or later... to not replace any memories... but to simply accompany and add to them.

06-16-2007, 06:36 AM
Well, depending on what day you actually talked to him - sounds like he confirmed it AFTER the fort was already being demolished...

Same old stuff - a little late with the information. Then again, it's probably what's being dictated to him by Burbank (never tell anyone anything until after it happens or WE say it first)...

07-09-2007, 11:34 AM
"... (snip) sounds like he confirmed it AFTER the fort was already being demolished...

Nah-- I believe he told me this JUST PRIOR to the tear-down.

That said, I heard another rumor (from a good source) that said once the second phase of the island's rehab is complete, the fort would later be expanded to add a show for the public.

I KNOW that's not NEW news, but it offers hope.

One Question: Does this mean the expansion will include the burning settler's cabin falling under the buldozers bucket???