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Florida Guide > Magic Kingdom

Hall of Presidents Re-opens

If this is your first visit to the Hall of Presidents since it re-opened mid 2009 the first thing you will notice is that it now has the title –“The Hall of Presidents – A Celebration of Liberty’s Leaders. ”

As you enter beneath the porch there is a countdown clock showing how many minutes until the next show begins. Previously you had to ask a cast member for this information. As before the first thing you will see as you enter the room is The Great Seal of the United States.

Have a look at the display cases that contain actual artifacts from previous presidents. My Father enjoyed seeing a tea caddy/game box used by George Washington at Mount Vernon.

If you are visiting this attraction in a wheelchair you line up on the right side of the waiting area and after you go into the theatre you are directed to a special area toward the back of the room.

The new movie is digitally projected so unlike a film it does not become scratched. We found it really clear and the colours were very bright, this along with what I presume was a new sound system made it a great experience.

It starts with a with a brief discussion of the war for independence and George Washington. By Washington refusing to become king and then stepping down after his second term it meant that any man, not just the gentry, could rise to the highest office in the land. Thus the next president to be shown is Andrew Jackson who was a common man that played a big part in America’s early years.

Slavery is discussed and there is a very powerful moment when you see Lincoln deliver the Gettysburg address, I do believe my Father wiped a tear from his eye after this!

You then see videos including Teddy Roosevelt, Kennedy, Reagan, Clinton, and Bush and they are all discussed. My father said he saw a picture of a school-aged Clinton meeting Kennedy but the rest of us missed this.

At the end of the film the curtain rises on all 43 presidents and the roll call commences and the new lighting system highlights each president. I personally found this very moving.

When the roll call finishes George Washington stands and talks about the importance of the presidential Oath of Office that all of the men here on stage have taken. He then gestures to Obama who recites this oath.

When Obama finishes, Morgan Freeman gives him a second, more elaborate introduction. Obama then gives a short speech about the significance of the American dream. The show concludes with a stirring rendition of “America the Beautiful. ”

Our audience all applauded at the end. I feel this is a must see not only for all Americans but also for the rest of the world to understand more about American History.

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Page added on: 5 October 2009
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