Friday Find: Jason Chandler's Trunk in New Frontierland Walkway
One of the best things that happen when Disney Parks opens something new is all the other stuff that surrounds a new attraction/area. Last weekend, Disneyland shed some construction walls and re-opened some classic attractions like the Disneyland Railroad, the Mark Twain and Davy Crockett's Explorer Canoes. I had a chance to walk around some of the new trails that will eventually lead to the new area, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. Walt Disney Imagineers ("WDI") are known for their attention to detail. I was excited to see that WDI put many fun elements in these new walkways.
One of the new walkways that can be found is the area where Big Thunder Ranch BBQ used to occupy. There is this wagon that looks like it got stuck there. If you look closely at the wagon and it's content, there is a clue as to where it may have been going and who the contents belong to. There is a trunk on top and it has a tag that reads "Jason Chandler."
Whenever you read names on at Disney Parks, there is usually something to it. WDI would not just put a generic or made up name on small details like this tag. Sometimes names are of the people who may have been involved in the attraction (eg. license plates on all Autopia cars). In this case, it just take the internet to discover that "Jason Chandler" is a fictional character that goes way back to when WDI drew up plans for an area that is known as Discovery Bay. Big Thunder Mountain was the main attraction of the never built Discovery Bay. There was a back story created by WDI Legend Tony Baxter that introduced the character of Jason Chandler as the founder of Discovery Bay. Chandler was to have found gold deep within Big Thunder Mountain.
For some reason, the Wilderness Expeditions and Delivery Service was never able to deliver the trunk to Jason Chandler. It might have contained much need supplies, important tools or clothes that Chandler might have ordered or someone was sending to him.
It is so fun to learn about some Disney Park history and stories. I love that WDI always includes things like this red wagon to pay tribute to things that might have happened in a Disney Park or retired attractions. Next time you walk through these new walk areas in the Frontierland area, pay attention all all the props that are scattered throughout the landscape. Everything is intentional. The super-hyper attention to detail is what makes DIsney, Disney.
NOTE: The character of Jason Chandler lives on in a series of books called Disney Kingdoms.