Continuing our journey, we wound up in Legend's Plaza. This section of the studios pays tribute to all the men and women who've made such an impact on the Disney company that they've become Legends.
I asked Austin if he could figure out why Ward Kimble was such a good artist.
"Uncle Joe, did he really have 12 fingers?"
One of the great treats I think is how up close you can get to the Partners statue. In all the parks, it's in the middle of a planter a good 10 feet away from you. Here though you can stand right next to it!
Kind of an aside, but too good not to share. Ruston had the best Halloween costume this year.
All the families had to get a picture with Walt and Mickey.
Right behind the Legend's Plaze, the Frank G. Wells building was our next stop.
Located on the ground floor, everyone needs their coffee, don't they.
There's even a photo on the wall of Walt enjoying a cup.
The lobby has glass display cases with all sorts of Disney memorabilia. From Zorro's hat, an original pair of Mickey Mouse Club ears from Jimmie Dodd, a chimney sweep broom from Mary Poppins, and even a tool belt from Tim "the tool man" Taylor, off the tv show Home Improvement.
Jack Sparrow's rings from Pirates of the Caribbean.
A sign telling the history of how the Studios came to be here. Ruston took us around to all these places a few years ago and it was awesome! You can read about our whole day here.
Next, Ruston took us into the Walt Disney Archives!
As soon as you enter, there's a Christmas tree with a variety of Disney ornaments hanging from it. It made me smile to see that instead of a train going around the base of the tree, they have a monorail! Ian and I were playing with our monorail not 2 days ago! If you want to learn more about the monorail, you can read more about my set here.
Ian playing with his monorail a couple days ago.
Inside this small lobby of the archives are even more exhibits, along with a doorway that surely leads to even more treasures.
Jack Sparrow's compass, from Pirates of the Caribbean.
A card with Walt's signature on it.
After leaving the archives, we came across this really cool art piece on the wall. Made from sheets of lexan, there's dozens of silhouettes of characters all over. We tried to identify as many characters as we could and find our favorites.
The next area we visited holds a very special place in our hearts. When you think Disney, of course you think about the great storytelling and the wonderful animation, but what really sets Disney apart for me is the music. As soon as I hear a classic Disney song, in my head I'm right back in the middle of the movie.
Not only that, but it's also where Ruston works!
Way back when, this building had been used for assembling some of the Disneyland Main Street vehicles.
A photo of what it used to look like here. Ruston said he figures his office is towards the top right of this picture.
And here's where Ruston does his part to keep the Disney Music Group going. I see a flyer for the Pasadena Chalk festival! Ruston and I need to figure out what we're going to be drawing again this year soon.
Walking through the kitch"Annette". Oh Ruston, you're so punny.
Are these your next big Disney Music stars?
Our tour is slowly coming to an end. Walking back towards the entrance, we all stopped for a group photo in front of the Studios water tower.
A making-of shot.
Hey! They also do the filming of the new Muppets show here! Ruston said he's walked by here and seen many of the muppets before.
A shot from the show.
No visit to a Disney site would be complete without a visit to the gift shop.
When I asked if I could take photos inside, I was told "As long as you take a picture of us!"
Ruston walked us back to the parking garage, where we loaded up in the cars and headed home.
You'd have thought we walked for miles and miles. These girls were a little worn out and fell asleep.
Thank you Ruston for spending your afternoon with us, and giving us a great behind-the-scenes look at where all the magic comes from!