Walt Dated World
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Camp Minnie-Mickey | Countdown to Extinction | Discovery River Boats/Radio Disney River Cruise | March of the ARTimals Parade | McDonald's Sponsorship in DinoLand U.S.A. and Other Early Attractions | Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade | Pocahontas and Her Forest Friends | Safari Village | Tarzan Rocks!
Countdown to Extinction
Countdown to Extinction
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Countdown to Extinction was an opening day attraction at Animal Kingdom. It features the same track layout and ride vehicles (called EMVs, or Enhanced Motion Vehicles) as Disneyland's Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye. The ride is still the same but the name changed to Dinosaur on May 1, 2001 to tie in with the then-current movie. Younger dinosaur fans were finally able to experience the ride, as the height restriction was lowered from 48 inches to just 40. Some Countdown to Extinction fans claim that ride seemed "toned down" in terms of speed and whiplash after the height restriction was lowered. There were also some subtle changes made to the soundtrack. The outside facade also changed when the attraction was renamed.
Here's the old entrance.
And here's the new exterior. Notice the small McDonald's logo on the bottom of the sign. McDonald's sponsored the entire DinoLand U.S.A. area from 1998 to 2008.
Merchandise was available at the park that featured the original ride name. In addition to a button and pins, there was also a picture frame and a chapter book that featured Dr. Grant Seeker's nephew traveling back in time in a CTX Time Rover. A die cast metal CTX Rover was also produced that was packaged with the ride's original name.
Countdown to Extinction Tributes
References to the former ride name are still inside Dinosaur. The ride vehicles were always called CTX Rovers.
The wall near the boarding area references the ride's original name, Walt Disney Imagineering, and that Animal Kingdom opened in 1998.
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See ya real soon!