Disney Legend Annette Funicello was born this day!
October 22, 1942, Disney Legend and Mouseketeer, Annette Funicello, was born in Utica, New York!
BTW, this was actually the Beach Boys debute!
Walt Disney first saw 12-year-old Funicello dancing the lead in Swan Lake at the Starlight Bowl in Burbank, California, and later invited her to audition for his new children’s show, Mickey Mouse Club. She was a featured Mouseketeer on the hit series and took part (along with the other original Mouseketeers) in Disneyland’s grand opening in 1955.
She later starred in several Disney features, including The Shaggy Dog, Babes in Toyland, The Misadventures of Merlin Jones, and The Monkey’s Uncle. Her Disney television credits included Zorro, Elfego Baca and The Horsemasters. As an adult,
Funicello was one of many celebrities who took part in Walt Disney World’s three-day opening festivities in
October 1971. In 1977, Funicello guest starred as the Blue Fairy in Disneyland’s Main Street Electrical Parade!
Named a Disney Legend in 1992, her autobiography A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes: My Story was
published two years later.
Fun Tidbit! In the pre-show waiting area of Disney’s Hollywood Studios at the Muppet Vision attraction, notice a net suspended from part of the ceiling. The net is full of Jell-O. A net full of Jell-O. “A-net-full-of-Jell-O.” This is a fun nod to one of the first ever Mouseketeers, Annette Funicello.
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