Tony Baxter

Tony Baxter and Big Thunder MountainWe’re probably going to hear a lot about Tony Baxter today, as he begins to scale back his day-to-day involvement with Disney.

He started his career at Disneyland selling popcorn and scooping ice cream and worked his way up to ride operator when he signed on to the crew of Submarine Voyage. He worked there for 5 years.

After graduating from Cal Poly, he applied at WED where he became the first of the second generation Imagineers. The legendary Claude Coats took him under his wing and helped him develop Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, the first attraction to open without any input from Walt. He said this about the attraction:

“Big Thunder Mountain [which opened at Disneyland in 1979] became a major hit because it looks impressive and frightening and it rings all the roller coaster bells. But most of its impact comes from the story, the emotion, and the effects, rather than the [relatively tame] physical experience. So a lot of people can enjoy it together. There is a sense of triumph when an older person or a little kid gets off the ride and had a great time. In the end, it’s all about the repeatability of an attraction.”

All the best to Tony and thank you for everything…..

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4 Responses to Tony Baxter

  1. Are you connected with the Walt Disney Corporation and/or the Imagineering Department yourself?

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