The Tampa Tribune

Web site vows to save Toad

By Dirk Lammers
Tampa Tribune Columnist

Friday, November 7, 1997
Section: Friday Extra
Column: Lost in Space
The news shocked the Net world.

OK, it actually upset a lone Web designer, but we'll mention it anyway.

The Orlando Sentinel reported last month that Disney officials were considering axing "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride," one of the Magic Kingdom's original attractions. Its possible replacement: Winnie-the-Pooh.

Within days, the Save Mr. Toad's Wild Ride site at was up and running. The author, apparently a Disney traditionalist, notes that he is not trashing that lovable golden bear, simply hoping that Pooh can avoid evicting the amiable amphibian.

"While a Winnie-the-Pooh ride has a definite place in Walt Disney World, Mr. Toad should not have to suffer because of it," the author preaches. Sounds reasonable.

The site offers addresses, telephone numbers and an e-mail link so parkgoers can try to change Disney officials' minds.

Seeing this site, we here at "Lost in Space" began wondering just how seriously people take their childhood Disney memories.

We may have found a profound answer at If You Had Wings: A 25th Anniversary Multipage Memorial.

The site at is the work of a former park employee who wants to preserve the fond memories of this attraction, which was ... um ... a few steps down from an E-ticket.

The site goes way overboard, which makes it a favorite. Its 13 pages feature a lengthy description, full walk-through, photographs, a map, even the "If You Had Wings" lyrics: Wanna buy a sombrero, made of real fine straw? / How about a nice handbag for pretty mama. Huh?

"Take Flight," the current version of this ride, also is reportedly on the chopping block. That news probably won't upset the author, who notes it was never the same after Eastern airlines went bye-bye. He witnessed the historic dismantling.

On my first visit, I was overcome with a sense of loss, scarcely able to believe that a stronghold of so many childhood pleasures was literally being torn apart."
[If You Had Wings link corrected by me. -JT]
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