Saturday, May 31, 2014

X-Men: Days of Future Past ~ Review

X-Men: Days of Future Past ~ Review

I saw the newest Marvel Movie, X-Men: Days of Future Past last night. I will do my best to leave spoilers out of this review and apologize right now if any slip in.

X-Men is a great popcorn flick (a movie that is fun and a good excuse to sit and eat a bag of popcorn). More than that it is wonderful Thinking Man’s movie. It makes you think about what if . . . What if I had made a better choice back when . . . What choices am I making now that will affect my (and other people’s) future and how can I chose best? How should I respond to intolerance?

I saw it in a standard theater not 3D (I do hope to see it again in 3D sometime). The special effects are wonderful, per usual and the storyline well done. The characters stay true to the past movies and this installment just deepens them.

First off I suggest you see at least the movies X-Men: First Class and X-Men Origins: Wolverine before seeing this movie. This movie can stand alone as a fun popcorn flick but it helps if you have the background to make it a much fuller and more enjoyable experience.

Per usual X-Men is full of action, adventure, a touch of comedy and a good message about tolerance. The entire X-Men franchise is about teaching tolerance. If you did not know it be aware that Professor X is based on the moral teachings of Martian Luther King and Magneto is based on Malcom X. The idea Stan Lee had for this story was to teach the next generation that discrimination for any reason is wrong. The other message behind this movie is hope. Hope for a better tomorrow. Hope and faith that if given a chance people will make better choices.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Fullerton Railroad Days 2014

Fullerton Railroad Days 2014

March 3rd & 4th was Railroad Days at the Fullerton Train Station. So why am I talking about that in a blog about Disney? Well . . . . keep reading!!

Disneyland often brings something from the Disneyland Railroad to the show. This year they had the Earnest S. Marsh Locomotive on display along with the Kalamazoo Handcar that was a gift to Walt Disney. The last item they brought was an old boiler from the C. K. Holiday Locomotive. The boiler is the Steam Plant for the locomotive and provides the energy. This boiler was cut open so people could look inside and see how a steam engine works. This was a fantastic education for those that know nothing about Live Steam Engines.

Disneyland Railroad Engineers, Firemen and Conductors were there to explain the locomotive controls as people climbed aboard the locomotive and went through the cab. An engineer was always standing next to the boiler to explain how it worked for those that wished to know. They also would explain the function and use of the.

Next to the Disneyland Railroad display was two displays from organizations that are close to Walt Disney and the Disney Family. The Los Angeles Live Steamers and the Carolwood Foundation had displays.
Barn Crew Day 1
Barn Crew Day 2
Walt Disney was a member of the Los Angeles Live Steamers (LALS) and would come to the LALS property to enjoy small scale steam trains. After he stopped running his Lilly Belle in his backyard he enjoyed LALS trains. LALS brought several of their historic small scale trains for people to enjoy. A member was there to answer questions.

In 1999 Walt Disney’s Carolwood Barn opened for public visits. The Barn from Walt’s backyard where he would work on his trains is now sitting at one end of the LALS property and is run by the non-profit Carolwood Foundation. The goal of the Carolwood Foundation is to share Walt’s love of Live Steam Trains and let people see a bit of Walt Disney the MAN versus Walt Disney the Company or Company Mogul.

The Carolwood Foundation brought several items from the Barn to share with Railroad Days goers. Walt’s Gondola, a model of the Barn and other items were on display as were several volunteer members of the Carolwood Barn Crew who shared stories and information about Walt’s love of trains.

It took 4 organizations to bring the Disneyland locomotive to the Fullerton Railroad Days. It took Disneyland allowing one of its engines off property. A trucking company with the proper tow truck and both LALS and Carolwood Foundation.

Want to see how a Disneyland Locomotive leaves a train show after sitting
in a parking lot for two days?
Check out the video.

Would you like more information about the Los Angeles Live Steamers?
Follow the link:

Would you like to visit Walt’s Carolwood Barn?
Check out the link:

Walt’s Carolwood Barn is open the 3rd Sunday of every month. Admission is free but donations are welcome. Donations is how we expand our collection and restore items for display.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Dick VanDyke's Carolwood Barn May 11th, 20014 Event Cancled

I’m so sorry to have gotten this message from the Caroolwood Foundation today about Dick VanDyke’s scheduled visit to the Carolwood Barn on May 11th, 2014.

“The Carolwood Foundation regrets to announce the cancellation of our May 11 signing event with Dick Van Dyke. Due to an unavoidable scheduling conflict, he will be unable to join us at this time. We cannot guarantee that another date will be available in the foreseeable future. Therefore, we are refunding your Priority Access purchases.

We appreciate your support for the Carolwood Foundation and Walt Disney’s Carolwood Barn. Please join us for our next public day at Walt’s Barn on May 18.

The Carolwood Foundation”

I have idea why he can’t be there or if he will reschedule or when he may reschedule. Just wishing Dick VanDyke well and hoping everything is alright. I know the Carolwood Foundation did what they could to make it happen but, as we all know things happen that are beyond everybody’s control.

As a volunteer at the Carolwood Barn I know we were all looking forward to Dick VanDyke’s visit. I know that yesterday at the Fullerton Railroad Days the volunteers were talking about his visit and saying how much we were looking forward to being part of it all.