Logo by Chris Mercaldo

Friday, July 17, 2015

1981 Photos

This site features a handful of 1981 images worth checking out! Images of Oscar's Obstacle Course, Twiddlebug Tunnel and Rainbow Pyramid.

Win a copy of the Sesame Place book!

Sesame Place is having a contest on their Instagram page to give away 5 copies of the new book!

From their page, here is how you enter:

Take a trip down memory lane with us and enter to win a copy of our new book celebrating #SesamePlace throughout the years! Comment with your favorite Sesame Place memory using the hashtag #SesamePlaceBookContest then check back on 7/21 to see if you're a winner! 
We can't wait to read all your fun memories!

CLICK HERE to enter and read the other great memories!

Guy Hutchinson
Guy Hutchinson

The logo on the Computers

Guy Hutchinson

You may remember this post from the other day about a detail I noticed in a photo from the book. Turns out Greg Hartley, a long time Sesame Place employee, had one of these and let me see it in person. It was made of metal and bolted to the frame that went around the computer monitor. Ernie's said "7 and up," Grover was "under 7."

This showed which computers played games for what age range.

Posted by Guy Hutchinson

1983 National Park Service newsletter

Here is a 1983 National Park Service newsletter with a great article on Sesame Place by Sandra Hanna. Ms. Hanna was the director of education programs during the early days of the park and was very influential in shaping Sesame Place at the very beginning.

This article does provide us with some very interesting details. First, it came out in 1983 and it mentions that Sesame Place closes for the late fall and winter months. This is contrasted by the 1980 brochure that explained that they were open year round and only the outside attractions closed in the cold months.

I assume that there was not enough customers that came to the park when it was partially closed. So the park was only year-round for 1 or 2 years.

Also, this confirms that the animatronic Oscar and Cookie Monster were indeed called Automated Muppets. This term had previously appeared in a newspaper article, but we have found flaws in them in the past.

Finally, this article mentions that additional Sesame Places were planned around the country. At this time Texas was still open.

When we were researching the book we had heard from longtime Sesame Place employee Greg Hartley that San Diego was expected to be the third park location, but it never happened. Also, these articles show that Florida was also scouted.

Ears of Steel

My buddy Bart Scott gave a wonderful endorsement of the Sesame Place book on his podcast Ears of Steel!

Bart talked about how much he enjoyed the books, particularly praising the photographs.

Bart knows his theme park books, in addition to hosting Ears of Steel, he wrote Ears of Steel:

Bart and I are 2 of the 3 hosts of Drunk on Disney (along with Dana Snyder) where we often talk about theme park design.

We've spent time chatting about the similarities between Disney and Sesame Place. For example: the larger than life props of Disney's Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: Movie Set Adventure and Sesame Place's Twiddlebug Land.

As well as all the unique changes that have happened in all theme parks over the past several decades.

 So check out episode 84 of Ears of Steel to hear Bart chat about the book towards the close of the episode. Then check out his whole site and get a copy of his book!

Guy Hutchinson
Guy Hutchinson's book

The Princess Papers

Big thanks to Jeanie Gallo-Ciscon! On her great blog The Princess Papers she showcased the copy of  Sesame Place she bought!

You can read it here!

Posted by Guy Hutchinson

Guy Hutchinson
Guy Hutchinson

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Detail from the computer gallery computers

On page 36 of the book there is a photo of one of the Computer Gallery computers.

In scanning this photo I noticed a detail that isn't fully visible in the book:

"UNDER 7" aapears above Grover's head. This leads me to guess that computers were arranged by age,

The image below does indicate that the computers were also arranged at different heights:

1980 brochure

Here's a neat brochure that Sesame Place posted on Facebook. This gives us two neat bits of info:

Sesame Place was open all year round! I had read this in newspaper write ups from 1980s, but one paper said it was open for 8 months a year.

This also mentions the parks hours, 10am until dark.

Posted by Guy Hutchinson