Welcome to the inaugural 2017 Dreaming Tree Gala, supporting the Walt Disney Hometown Museum.
Every year the Dreaming Tree Gala will give Disney fans a unique opportunity to come together in an intimate setting, succumb to the temptation of an amazing meal, hear a few 'never before shared' stories and rally around a specific Marceline based project that will celebrate the memory of the Disney family. This year The Walt Disney Hometown Museum is excited to announce that the proceeds of the inaugural Dreaming Tree Gala will go towards the return of Walt's dying gift to his boyhood hometown, Midget Autopia.
What is Midget Autopia?
Midget Autopia is a piece of Disneyland history that ran at the park between 1956 and 1966. The ten car ride allowed children to meander peacefully through a country setting, complete with rolling hills, and a cheerful yellow barn. But after a decade of fun in the hot California sun, space was needed to install 'It's A Small World' fresh from it's run at the New York World's Fair. The tough decision was made to remove Midget Autopia from the park, but thanks to some quick thinking from Walt and Roy that decision would not mean the end of this perennial childhood favorite. In early 1966 the announcement was made that Midget Autopia would be dismantled, and moved to beautiful Marceline. When the ride reopened on the 4th of July 1966 it became the first Disney attraction to maintain operation outside the control of a Disney owned park.
Fast forward some 50 years later and the Walt Disney Hometown Museum is prepared to bring this piece of Disney history back, in the heart of Walt's boyhood hometown.
Our Keynote Speaker ? Robert Wilson CEO/COO Retlaw (retired)
It's safe to say 13 might be Robert's 'lucky number' because he was offered a truly life changing position in the accounting department of Retlaw (WED) on Friday July 13th, 1968.
As we all know the initials WED stands for Walter Elias Disney, and over the next 30 years of his life Robert would not only immerse himself into this amazing family company, but he would also find himself equally immersed within the Disney family itself.
After a name change from WED to RETLAW (Retlaw is Walter spelled backwards) Bob helped broaden the scope of the company, moving beyond the already significant Disney Company connections and diversifying into the worlds of real estate and broadcasting.
During a 30 year career at Retlaw Bob helped establish the Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Silverado Winery and worked closely with three generations of strong Disney woman from Lillian to Diane and Sharon to Michelle Lund. He learned from Disney Legends such as Ward Kimball, John Hench, Marty Sklar, Bill Cottrell and Herbie Ryman and mastered every aspect of this complex business, retiring with the title Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer in 1998.
For the first time ever Bob will be sitting down to discuss his amazing career and his close working relationship with the Disney family. Warm and funny, infinitely gracious and truly blessed for a fantastic career and loving family, Mr Wilson will undoubtedly share stories that have yet to be told; and take us behind the scenes at the inner workings of a largely secret family company that was established by arguably the most public figure in the world.