After two decades of planning and creating, Disney's theme park dreams became a reality - and he was involved every step of the way.

On July 17, 1955, Disneyland opened its gates in Anaheim, California. On that day, Walt Disney saw a dream of 20 years become a reality: He had finally created a theme park where adults and children could enjoy a real-life version of his captivating films.

Of course, taking Disneyland from a few sketches and 3D models to a full-blown theme park wasn’t easy. Disney had to pour $17 million into the park and hire 2,500 workers to make Disneyland come to life. Opening day was a smashing success, complete with Fantasyland castle, a jungle cruise, a carousel, a railroad station, and so much more.

22,000 people showed up on that day in July, and at the time a one-day ticket to Disneyland cost just $1 for an adult and 50 cents for kids, with additional fees tacked on (usually about 25 to 35 cents) depending on which attractions you wanted to see.

These days the price to spend the day at Disneyland is a lot steeper — which is why it’s nice to take a moment to step back and remember what Disneyland looked like in the moments when it was transforming from a fantasy to the happiest place on earth. 

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