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The WDW Radio Show Disney Podcast Discuss Is Disney building in Missouri? What do YOU think?? in the The WDW Radio Show forums; Rumored Disney park 'shenanigans' Kathryn Buckstaff News-Leader Neosho — People in rural Newton County will have to forget, at least for now, the prospect of selling their land for big ...
  1. #16
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    Rumored Disney Park Shenanigans

    Rumored Disney park 'shenanigans'

    Kathryn Buckstaff
    News-Leader

    Neosho — People in rural Newton County will have to forget, at least for now, the prospect of selling their land for big bucks to the Walt Disney Co.

    After rumors flew last week that Disney was planning to build a $1.1 billion theme park in the area, Presiding Commissioner Jerry Carter got the word Monday that, as he put it, it's "shenanigans."


    "I just talked to the vice president of public affairs for Disney, and she said there's nothing to it," Carter said.


    Carter said Disney officials didn't recognize the names of any of the three owners of ARM Risk, the company supposedly working to assemble the 1,000 acres of land.


    "(Disney) can say absolutely that they're not involved in Newton County or in southwest Missouri," Carter said.


    Two weeks ago, Todd Marshall, who said he represented ARM Risk, attended a Board of Commissioners meeting to ask about making changes to rural roads leading to the site of a planned theme park. Marshall did not identify who would develop such a park. But when commissioners checked addresses on ARM Risk's registration with the Missouri Secretary of State's office, two of the three addresses were those of Disney corporate headquarters in Burbank, Calif., and Lake Buena Vista, Fla.


    Also, the business address listed on the registration form is 1826 S. Glenstone Ave., Springfield, Suite 353. That address is the site of a UPS store with a mailbox numbered 353.


    And lending an odd touch, the name of one of the company's owners is registered as Robert Brown. While it may be a common name, it also is the name of the deceased first husband of Walt Disney's daughter, Sharon Disney. That Robert Brown died in 1967.
    Carter said he's perplexed by the events.


    "It's amazing the number of people who have called with the thought of their land going up in value. We're calling the attorney general's office."


    Robert Fougere, press secretary for the Missouri Attorney General's office, said he couldn't yet say whether the events will come under scrutiny by that office.


    "We certainly would be interested to hear if someone has complaints," Fougere said.


    While Marshall gave commissioners a toll-free number, repeated calls yielded a busy signal. Also, e-mail to the address he gave commissioners was not returned.


    "It doesn't smell right," said Steve Critchfield, a commercial real estate broker in Branson. If Disney were seeking property, "they would never be this public if they didn't control all the land they needed."


    "It would happen before we'd hear anything about it," Critchfield said.


    Despite rumors, there's never been any sign of Disney interest in the Branson area, he said.


    Jim Hill, a New Hampshire resident, has been writing about Disney for 25 years. He makes his living from his Disney-related Web site.
    "It's a cruel prank," he said. "The history of the Disney Company is that they're incredibly careful about this stuff."


    According to a timeline of the Disney Co., in 1964, Disney attorney Robert Foster began to purchase land in Florida. To keep his identity secret, he used an assumed name. Among the property was 12,400 acres owned by three Orlando home builders that he bought for $145 an acre.


    However, Disney officials have begun exploring expansion by building stand-alone Disney-branded businesses such as resort hotels and water parks because travelers go to major theme parks only once every four years, according to minutes of a report by Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.


    In February, Rasulo said Disney is thinking about developing themed hotels that could be built in large cities that already are tourist draws. Disney also is contemplating "niche theme parks" and water parks in other cities, Rasulo said.
    "Our relationships with millions of families will enable us to expand to new businesses and new markets," Rasulo said. "We will never stop dreaming."


    "The irony is that Branson would probably be great turf for Disney," Hill said.
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  2. #17
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    Post Rumors Running Wild

    From AssociatedContent.com:
    ==================================================
    Rumors Circulate A Possible Disney Theme Park in Joplin, Missouri

    By Kelly Keltner
    Published April 23, 2007

    A news item in Springfield's News-Leader has ignited rumors of a possible plan by Disney to build a new theme park in Joplin, MO.

    Though rumors once circulated in the mid-90s that Disney had planned to build a theme park near Branson, MO, rumors are once again sparking following a request for road improvements that would make way for a $1.1 billion theme park in Newton County.
    ==================================================
    Full story here: http://www.associatedcontent.com/art...le_disney.html

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    Although this is not directly related, obviously, Disney was already aware of Branson for at least one project that I mentioned earlier. Disney was helping Branson Landings develop the theme of Port Branson, which I don't think they used?? Here's an interesting article related to that from 2003.

    http://www.bransoncourier.com/branso...r-bran-39.html

    It's too bad it's just a rumor as I thought it would make an already nice destination simply wonderful. The weather would be a problem, but probably only in January and February. Spring usually comes early to the Branson area.
    “To all who come to this happy place; welcome. Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past...and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America...with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.”



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    I'm not buying it. I also think Disney is way to careful and why spend all that money to purchase land when they have enough down in Fl ? Would I go if it turns out to be true ? Probably not.

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    There is a great article on Jim Hill's website which references this.

  6. #21
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    I would actually tend not to believe Disney is going into Branson, weather would be the issue. Disney likes to keep a warm summer fun ideal going. Considering rides, stages and space as well as the chosen location, I would tend to think that maybe, just maybe, Knotts Berry Farm is expanding-finally. Knotts would fit well with the overall themeing in Branson and, for those who have not been, the food is incredible. I hope it is Knotts, the shows are good and it is very family friendly with the Charlie Brown characters.

  7. #22
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    I'll believe it when I see it.......
    I am in need of some Disney magic!!

  8. #23
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    I really think that if a disney park is going to be going in Branson then its going to have to be seasonal due to the cold weather in the fall and winter.

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    I'm surprised this has gotten as far as Jim Hill Media and Lou Mongello's podcast/forums. I live 4 blocks from Newton County. The area that they are talking about in Newton County would not be a good place for a Disney Theme Park or even a hotel. We have tons of hotels and restaurants here but not a lot of tourism.

    Now, I could see Disney building a "destination/themed resort, etc." as mentioned previously on Lou's podcast in Branson or just outside of Branson. Branson is a little under 2 hours from here and we visit often. You have to time your visits just right because of the crowds and traffic. It is a booming area from spring to early winter.

    It's also the ozarks and thus very hilly. We get terrific ice storms and snow ~ you couldn't pay me to travel on those curvy hilly roads in Branson during the winter. I just don't see them doing more than a resort/shopping area if anything.

    You would think with the article about Disney possibly going into Newton County everyone would be a buzz around here. My family and friends know that I'm a Disney fanatic. No one is discussing it. I think everyone realizes how ridiculous this sounds.

  10. #25
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    For us Midwesterner's the possibility of a Disney park in our backyard was just too much to resist. I bit on it like catfish on a doughball...

    But, alas it is not to be...

    “To all who come to this happy place; welcome. Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past...and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America...with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.”



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    I agree that disney would not use such obvious fake names if they were trying to buy up land for a new theme park!

    this was probably just me... but when Lou said this new park was near Springfield in Missouri, my first thoughts were that Fox were building a Simpsons theme park (in springfield?!) !!

    I would guess that Disneyland Paris attendance suffers due to the cold winters.. so it would seem strange for Disney to build a themepark in an area in the USA that does too.

    interesting news though, we shall see what happens!

    disney barbie xxx

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by disney_barbie View Post
    I agree that disney would not use such obvious fake names if they were trying to buy up land for a new theme park!

    this was probably just me... but when Lou said this new park was near Springfield in Missouri, my first thoughts were that Fox were building a Simpsons theme park (in springfield?!) !!

    I would guess that Disneyland Paris attendance suffers due to the cold winters.. so it would seem strange for Disney to build a themepark in an area in the USA that does too.

    interesting news though, we shall see what happens!

    disney barbie xxx
    How does the Paris Disneyland Park deal with its winter season, which I imagine would be as severe as a winter in Missouri? I would also imagine that the Asian Disney parks would also suffer from cold spells as well??
    “To all who come to this happy place; welcome. Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past...and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America...with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.”



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    Post Disney deal needs explanation

    From The Joplin Globe.com (Joplin, MO):
    ==================================================
    In our view: Disney deal needs explanation

    Published April 30, 2007 12:24 am

    Is Disney bringing a theme park to Southwest Missouri? No way, suggests Dennis Speigel, president of International Theme Park Services, in response to a question about a purported $1.7 billion, 1,000-acre park that would offer 27 rides, 95 shops, 12 stages, 18 restaurants, six hotels and employ 1,200 full-time and 6,000 seasonal workers. Disney officials also say no.

    ==================================================
    Full story here: http://www.joplinglobe.com/editorial...yword=topstory
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    I agree that Disney probably wouldn't be that careless. If they wanted to hide it, they would. If they wanted everyone to know, we would. Unless Disney has some ulterior motives, I think it's a big hoax. This may be a stupid question, but what would someone have to gain by doing this? Also, isn't there something illegal about this? I mean, they could have cost a lot of money for road improvements!
    Last edited by hgraber; 05-01-2007 at 11:37 AM. Reason: got a little comma-happy. :)
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    I'm glad this rumor seems to be going the way of the Skyway. Even though I live in Central Illinois and a Disney park in the midwest would be head and shoulders above the 2 Six Flags that are in the area (Chicago and St Louis), I just couldn't see it. Part of the magic with the Disney park experience, in my opinion, is making the trek to either California or Florida. I also believe if they have the funds to make a new park in the United States, those funds should be divided up and sent to improving either Disneyland or Walt Disney World first, as I believe that neither of these parks have reached their peak in terms of development. Instead of 3 great parks, it would be more important to me to have 2 excellent venues instead. Just my two cents.
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