Did You Know?

WDW Magazine - - Content - BY TERRI MILLER

There’s so much to be dis­cov­ered at Epcot! So let’s dive right into the lesser-known fun facts… one fact in par­tic­u­lar that I didn’t even know un­til re­cently! Do you know about the Sunken Gar­den at the Canada pavil­ion? Ac­cord­ing to the Vic­to­ria Gar­dens plaque in the gar­den, you’ll find that the gar­dens were in­spired by the Butchart Gar­dens of Bri­tish Columbia.

Upon fur­ther re­search, you’ll learn that Robert Pim Butchart was a lime­stone worker. He de­vel­oped a quarry and a ce­ment fac­tory. Af­ter he dug out lime­stone, the area was left with a big, empty pit. His wife, Jen­nie, made the pit into a beau­ti­ful gar­den. To­day, the gar­dens are a pop­u­lar tourist at­trac­tion and a Na­tional His­toric Site of Canada.

An­other in­ter­est­ing thing about the gar­den area is that the moun­tain in the back uses forced per­spec­tive. The plants on the moun­tain are big at the bot­tom and smaller at the top. The dif­fer­ences in sizes makes it ap­pear taller than it ac­tu­ally is. See? Dis­ney’s use of forced per­spec­tive isn’t just used on Main Street, U.S.A. and Cin­derella Cas­tle in the Magic King­dom!

Forced per­spec­tive is used again at the Amer­ica and Italy Pavil­ions! The U.S.A. Pavil­ion looks like it’s only a few sto­ries tall, like tra­di­tional Colo­nial build­ings are, but it is ac­tu­ally five sto­ries! The doors may look nor­mal, but are twelve feet tall! Our eyes are tricked once again with the tower in Italy. The bricks that make up this tower get smaller as they go up (just as the bricks do on Cin­derella Cas­tle), mak­ing the tower seem taller than it re­ally is.

Did you know that the large troll statue in­side the Nor­way Pavil­ion gift shop isn’t one of a kind? Nope! There’s at least one more ex­actly like him, lo­cated in the ac­tual coun­try of Nor­way! Nor­way’s troll can be found in Voss, Nor­way at the Flam Rail­way - and he’s painted too! Epcot’s troll doesn’t have color though.

Dis­ney has a rea­son for each and ev­ery plant used in their land­scap­ing. So, it’s only fit­ting that Italy has an olive tree. You can find an olive tree next to the canal bridge. Where else?

When look­ing at the Moroc­can Pavil­ion, you can see the Tower of Ter­ror in the dis­tance. When the Tower of Ter­ror was first built, it looked out of place, so Dis­ney added minarets to the top to help it blend in with the Moroc­can ar­chi­tec­ture. The king of Morocco sent crafts­men to Amer­ica to en­sure the ac­cu­racy of their build­ings. The Moroc­can Pavil­ion is the only World Show­case Pavil­ion that is spon­sored by a gov­ern­ment, not a com­pany. If you watch Il­lu­mi­na­tions, you may no­tice that the Morocco Pavil­ion, with respect for Mus­lim be­liefs, does not light at night.

Speak­ing of Il­lu­mi­na­tions, did you know that the very tip top of the Mex­i­can Pavil­ion con­tains the con­trol tower for the nightly show? All of the magic, if you will, hap­pens through the con­trol sta­tion housed on the top of the Mex­i­can Pavil­ion pyra­mid! There’s so much more fun hid­den within Epcot - we only touched on World Show­case, per­haps next month we’ll see what Fu­ture World has in store!

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