Have you ever watched the Country Bear Jamboree show while on a Disney vacation? It’s a favorite of ours in Frontierland. We visit the attraction each time we go to Magic Kingdom. Today, we’re discussing the history of the attraction and what makes it such a great show!
The Country Bear Jamboree
The Jamboree show consists of a crew of 18 different audio-animatronic bears. Each one either plays a folk music instrument or sings a different country song. The show has a significant fan base among the Disney community, but did you know the show was originally intended for an audience outside of the Disney Parks?
Even though Walt Disney worked on creating many theme park attractions, he once had plans for a Disney ski resort to be built in Miner King, California. Being an avid skier, he enjoyed the prospect of a Disney ski resort with multiple forms of entertainment. He had Disney Imagineers work on designing an animatronic show, which is how the idea of musical bears was first conceived. Walt’s Country Bear Jamboree attraction would fit the theme of ski resort. Unfortunately, the plans fell apart for the Disney ski resort due to various factors, but the concept of the Country Bears seemed like a winner to the Walt Disney Company.
Seasonal Shows and Movie
Did you know the Country Bear Jamboree once had seasonal overlays for both Disneyland and Magic Kingdom? Starting in winter 1984, Disney offered The Country Bear Christmas Special for guests. It was popular with guests and lasted until the early 2000’s.
They U.S. Disney Parks also had a summertime show called Country Bear Vacation Hoedown. It was seasonal at Magic Kingdom up until 1992, but it stayed a permanent show at Disneyland until 2001, which is when the west coast version of Country Bears shut down. Disneyland’s Country Bear attraction was then replaced by “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” in Critter Country. The Magic Kingdom still has The Country Bears Jamboree playing its original show these days.
Also, it’s worth mentioning how the attraction inspired the 2002 movie The Country Bears, which received little interest in its time in the box office. If you’re curious to see it, you can find the movie available on the Disney + streaming service. Even though the movie was poorly received, the Disney Park attraction still warms the heart of its many theme park fans.
Cast of Musical Bear Characters
The show is filled with a colorful cast of Country Bear characters. Each one is unique and has their own personality. We’ve included a partial list of the characters below.
Henry – He’s the host of the show and introduces each of the animatronic bears to the audience. Henry helps lead the final song of the show with his grand rendition of The Ballad of Davy Crockett.
The Sun Bonnet Trio – Bunny, Bubbles, and Beulah make up this singing trio. Their musical number is hilarious and a great reason to see the show!
Trixie – Trixie is known for her iconic blue tutu and sings a charming solo.
Big Al – This character is a bit of a fan-favorite. He’s voiced by Tex Ritter and amuses people with his out-of-tune acoustic guitar.
For those who have seen the show, which one is your favorite character?
Roaming through Frontierland
If you visit Frontierland, you have a fair chance of meeting the Country Bears while the characters roam around outside. They frequently engage in dancing with guests and entertain those outside their show.
It’s been previously confirmed that the attraction will be continuing its show for Walt Disney World Resort’s 50th anniversary celebration. We look forward to enjoying this classic Disney attraction for Magic Kingdom’s “birthday party” in 2021.
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