Yes, Virginia, there was a time when Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom had buildings that were not used for retail space.
The Main Street Cinema used to be a small cinema that played classic Mickey Mouse cartoons. It was still doing this in 1996:
That is the only photo of it from 1996 I have, but here is is in January 1998:
Later that year, it was being used to show previews for the new animated film Mulan:
In 1999, Tarzan had replaced Mulan:
…and Toys Story 2 soon followed (they changed it out during my visit):
I do have a photo of the cinema ticket booth from 1999:
I wonder what her name tag said. At Disneyland, it has her hometown listed as Marceline, Missouri (where Walt Disney grew up).
After my 1999 visit, I turned my focus to Disneyland trips and did not return to Walt Disney World until 2006. By that time, the Main Street Cinema had been turned into another shop. During this visit, it was also being used as the in-park headquarters for the Virtual Magic Kingdom online game:
They at least kept a projection screen at the back in tribute to the sign outside:
Meanwhile, at Walt Disney’s original Disneyland, the Main Street Cinema is still a cinema, with multiple screens inside showing various Mickey Mouse cartoons. I guess California didn’t need another spot to sell T-shirts.
Until next time…