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Dive into the world of The Walt Disney Company and experience 100 years of magic like never before! Disney100: The Exhibition is a once-in-a-lifetime event that celebrates the iconic characters and stories that have captured the hearts of audiences around the globe. It all began with a mouse and a dream. That dream became a reality, and now the story of The Walt Disney Company is being told through this remarkable exhibition.

Step into the Bank of America Gallery located within Union Station in Kansas City and prepare to be amazed. The exhibition takes you on a journey through a century of Disney innovation, from the classics that started it all to the latest members of the Disney family. It’s a celebration of the creativity, innovation, and timeless storytelling that defines The Walt Disney Company.

As you explore, you’ll discover ten imaginatively themed galleries that transport you into the worlds of your favorite characters. Each gallery tells a different chapter of the Disney story, showcasing the beloved characters, films, shows, and attractions that have become part of our cultural fabric. From renowned classics like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to the recent hit Encanto, Disney100: The Exhibition comprehensively explores Disney’s rich history and enduring appeal. You’ll see beautiful works of art, how your favorite stories came to life, and how the creation of the most popular characters is often grown from the simplest of ideas.

What to Expect at Disney100: The Exhibition at Union Station

Information about Walt Disney's beginnings in Kansas City, Missouri.Union Station in Kansas City, Missouri is perfect for Disney100: The Exhibition. Walt Disney grew up and learned many important lessons during his time in Kansas City. Through the exhibit, you will embark on a magical journey through a century of that Disney magic Walt once found during his early years as an animator.

Located in the Bank of America Gallery, this exhibition invites visitors of all ages to experience the stories, characters, and experiences that have made Disney a beloved part of our lives. Whether you’re a longtime fan or new to the world of Disney, this exhibition offers a unique opportunity to learn even more about the first 100 years of The Walt Disney Company.

Journey Through a Century of Disney Magic

Disney100: The Exhibition takes visitors on an extraordinary journey through a century of triumphs, tragedies, innovation, and success. From the company’s humble beginnings with Walt Disney and his iconic creation, Mickey Mouse, to the global entertainment powerhouse that it is today, the background information on what we see now as a global corporation drives the point home that Walt Disney was truly an innovator ahead of his time.

As you step into the exhibition, you’ll be transported through the years as you learn the history and creative genius behind the company’s most beloved stories and characters. Marvel at the evolution of animation, the groundbreaking technology, and the unforgettable music that have made Disney a cultural phenomenon.

Throughout the exhibition, you’ll witness the incredible impact that Disney has had on popular culture and how its timeless storytelling continues to resonate with audiences of all ages. Prepare to be enchanted as you take a deep dive and discover the legacy of a company that has shaped the entertainment industry for the past century.

What Makes This Exhibition Unique?

As you enter the first area of the exhibit, Walt’s connection to Kansas City is explained in great detail. Not only did he live in Kansas City and open his first animation studio, Laugh-o-gram Studios, here, but he also developed relationships with the University of Missouri-Kansas City and JC Hall, the founder of Hallmark. Though the inspiration for Disneyland and Walt Disney World came after his move to California, Walt fondly recalled experiences in an area of town called Electric Park that also shaped his vision for the theme parks as we know them today.

With over 250 artifacts and props on display, including original costumes from your favorite Disney classics worn by beloved characters, visitors have the chance to get up close and personal with Disney’s most timeless stories. What makes this exhibition truly unique is its inclusion of rare and valuable production props and unique interactive installations that allow you to experience Disney in a unique way. From the beloved classics to the recent releases of MARVEL, Pixar, and Star Wars, this exhibition truly showcases the breadth and depth of Disney’s impact on entertainment through its extraordinary objects and incredible memorabilia.

Highlights of Disney100: The Exhibition

Historical photos of Walt Disney an his family.Disney100: The Exhibition is filled with highlights that will delight Disney fans of all ages. From iconic artifacts and costumes to interactive zones and multimedia experiences, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Iconic Artifacts and Costumes on Display

The exhibition features a stunning collection of iconic artifacts and original costumes that will transport you into the world of your favorite Disney characters. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Cinderella’s Glass Slipper from the live-action film
  • Captain America’s Shield from Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  • Memorabilia from Walt Disney’s travels to South America
  • Emily Blunt’s costume from the live-action Jungle Cruise
  • Original animation gels and sketches from various animated films

These artifacts and costumes are more than just props; they are the crown jewels of Disney’s rich history. Seeing these legendary items up close is a truly magical experience that allows you to appreciate the craftsmanship and attention to detail that goes into creating these beloved characters.

Interactive and Multimedia Experiences

Disney100: The Exhibition takes interactivity to a whole new level with its themed galleries and interactive installations. Each gallery walks you through the vision of The Walt Disney Company, from its beginnings to the importance of music to the techniques Walt Disney invented to make his animations come to life.

Each section has artifacts to view and spaces for children and adults to interact. The gallery about the Disney theme parks has an interactive screen full of photos and information about each park, including those in foreign countries.

These interactive elements will transport you into the worlds of your favorite Disney stories. My personal favorite was the interactive storybook that recreated the beginning of Sleeping Beauty. Watching the pages “turn” on the screen as I physically turned them was a neat experience.

Behind the Scenes of The Walt Disney Company

Disney100: The Exhibition is a monumental undertaking that showcases the creation of some of Disney’s most popular characters and stories. Take a peek behind the curtain and explore:

  • The process of character design and development.
  • The creation of iconic scenes and settings.
  • The evolution of animation technology.
  • The storytelling techniques that have made Disney a household name.

This behind-the-scenes look offers glimpses into the creative process and storytelling magic that has captivated audiences for generations. Learn about the visionaries behind the scenes who brought the world of Disney to life, and gain a deeper appreciation for the artistry and innovation that go into creating these beloved stories.

How Walt Disney’s Legacy Is Brought to Life

The Walt Disney Archives plays a crucial role in bringing Disney’s legacy to life in Disney100: The Exhibition. This once-in-a-lifetime event offers a rare opportunity to explore the archives and discover the carefully preserved treasures.

From original artwork and concept sketches to props and costumes, the Disney Archives is a treasure trove of Disney history. Step into the exhibition and experience a lifetime event that showcases Disney’s rich legacy, celebrating the characters, stories, and experiences that have become a cherished part of our lives.

Planning Your Visit to Disney100: The Exhibition in Kansas City

Photo opportunity with a statue of Goofy at Disney100 The Exhibition.Like many experiences today, planning ahead is key to a great experience. Knowing what to do before you go will ensure your entry process is smooth, and you can get started on the fun of the exhibition right away!

Tips for an Unforgettable Experience

To ensure an unforgettable experience, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. Plan your visit in advance and book your tickets online to secure your preferred time slot.
  2. Arrive early to avoid long queues and make the most of your time in the exhibition.
  3. Bring your camera to snap photos and selfies at photo spots throughout the exhibition.
  4. Take your time to explore each gallery and interact with the installations.
  5. Don’t forget to visit the gift shop to bring home a piece of the Disney magic.

By following these tips, you can make the most of your visit and create lasting memories of this incredible celebration of Disney.

Best Times to Visit and How to Get There

To make the most of your visit, here are the best times to visit and how to get there:

  • Best times to visit: Weekdays will be the least crowded, even during summer.
  • How to get there: Public transportation is available and may be your best bet. When I was visiting, there was a lot of construction going on right around Union Station. For those who want to drive, parking is available.
  • Parking options: Two parking lots nearby charge $15 for any-time parking. The parking deck behind Union Station is also available at $6 for four hours, $15 for four to eight hours, and $23 for more than eight hours. No overnight parking is allowed.

Union Station is conveniently located in the heart of Kansas City and is easily accessible by car or public transportation. Plan your visit accordingly to avoid peak times and ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience.

Exploring Kansas City Beyond Disney

Poster for Laugh-o-gram Studios in Kansas City.

Kansas City, often referred to as the “Paris of the Plains,” is a bustling metropolis with a rich cultural scene and plenty of attractions to explore. Beyond the enchanting Disney100: The Exhibition, visitors can see many of the places Walt Disney once lived and worked.

Dining and Entertainment Options in Kansas City

Within a few minute’s drive of Union Station, you’ll find an array of food and drink options catering to various tastes and preferences. Additionally, the vibrant bar scene in the vicinity boasts craft cocktails, local brews, and fine wines for those looking to unwind after a day of exploring the city.

Kansas City is famous for its barbecue scene, and there is a barbecue restaurant on virtually every block. I tried Jack Stack Barbecue at the recommendation of the fine folks at Visit KC, and I was not disappointed. I ordered the mac-n-cheese topped with pulled pork, and it was the right amount of creamy and tangy mixed together in one delightful dish. There are multiple Jack Stack Barbecue locations throughout the Kansas City area so you’ll have your pick of which location is most convenient for you.

I was also impressed with my dinner at The Wise Guy, a speakeasy-esque Italian restaurant serving everything from wings to pizza to familiar Italian dishes. The ambiance is reminiscent of the 1920s, with dim lighting and cozy seating that transports you back in time. The bar staff was a highlight, and the prices during Happy Hour were very affordable.

A Must-Visit Experience for Disney Fans

Peter Pan's Flight ride vehicle.

From iconic artifacts to interactive zones, this exhibition offers a captivating journey through a century of Disney magic that has captured the hearts of audiences of all ages around the globe. Discover the behind-the-scenes stories and explore the rich legacy of Disney brought to life. For true Disney fans, you simply cannot miss this event.

Plan your visit to Kansas City for an unforgettable experience filled with cultural attractions, dining options, and historical wonders. Uncover the magic of Disney beyond the exhibition with a trek around the city. Disney100: The Exhibition is truly a must-visit experience for every Disney enthusiast looking to discover special treasures and create unforgettable memories.

Frequently Asked Questions

Disney100 The Exhibition Gift Store.These are some of the most frequently searched-for questions about the exhibition. Let me know if you have another question that is not answered here!

How long will Disney100 The Exhibition be in Kansas City, Missouri?

Disney100: The Exhibition at Union Station will be in Kansas City from May 24 to November 30, 2024. Visitors have ample time to plan their visit and explore the immersive galleries showcasing 100 years of Disney magic but don’t wait too long to make those plans.

Are There Special Events Associated with Disney100: The Exhibition?

Yes, there are special events associated with Disney100: The Exhibition. Union Station, The University of Missouri-Kansas City, and the Missouri Humanities Council have organized a series of programs, including speaker sessions, to enhance the exhibition experience. Check the calendar online for specific dates and details of these unique events happening in June.

Can Tickets Be Purchased Online?

Yes, tickets for Disney100: The Exhibition can be conveniently purchased online. Online reservations are encouraged to secure your preferred date and time slot. Visit the official website of Union Station to book your tickets in advance and ensure a seamless and hassle-free visit to this unforgettable celebration of an iconic American company.

Philadelphia, Chicago, London—Where is Disney100: The Exhibition going next?

While it is expected to remain in Kansas City until at least November 30, plans beyond that date have not yet been revealed. There are considerations for several domestic and international locations, but if you’re hoping to see it in the US, I would strongly recommend planning a visit to Kansas City as you can.