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From the call to action of the fife and drum and the mute statement of thirteen lanterns hung on the giant Liberty Tree oak there is no doubt -- revolution is at hand, and a new Nation is about to be born. Liberty Square recalls the era of 1776 and the founding of the United States of America.
The architecture is reminiscent of colonial New England, at a time when the refinement of a town was never far from the wildness of the Frontier, as Liberty Square blends seamlessly into neighboring Frontierland.
The Haunted Mansion
That big, brooding old house tucked into the
far corner of Liberty Square holds one of the Magic Kingdom's best attractions.
Mournful howls and, at night, the occasional lightning flash, set the mood
for this king of the spook houses. Be sure to read the tombstones in the
queue area, their tongue-in-cheek epitaphs make an interesting diversion
while you wait (The names on the tombstones, by the way, honor the imagineering crew that designed the ride).
Hop aboard one of the "doom buggies" (a continuously moving
omnimover transport system) for your tour of this lively haunted house. Wheelchair bound guests must leave their chairs and be
transferred to the ride vehicles -- the line can be temporarily stopped
if need be (in fact, if it does stop while you're in the middle of the
ride, this is probably why).
Your "Ghost Host" (voiced by the late, great Paul Frees) follows you through the
attraction's 999 haunts -- the floating head in the crystal ball, the ballroom
full of waltzing ghosts, the cemetery with its singing busts -- which are some of
Disney's most effective, if simple, special effects. A recent rehab has made some of the effects even more, um, effective, adding a new scene to the attic (some grooms just seem to loose their head over their bride) and Madame Leota is now positively lightheaded.
Small children are sometimes worried about just what they'll see inside, but
the haunts are more spooky than scary -- these aren't malicious spirits, just
"Grim Grinning Ghosts" come out to party.
The Haunted Mansion is definitely a must see attraction -- fortunately it handles large crowds fairly quickly, and it's part of the FastPass program. When the Hall of Presidents or Riverboat let out they can send a lot of people in this direction, so try to get there between boats and shows.
The Hall of Presidents
This rather dignified stage presentation is a direct descendant of the "Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln" show that Walt Disney designed for the Illinois pavilion at the 1964/65 World's Fair. Not only does Lincoln come to life in this show, but so do all the other United States Presidents, from George Washington right down to Barack Obama.
Liberty Square Riverboat
The sternwheeler Liberty Belle makes a regular circuit of the Rivers of America around Tom Sawyer Island while "Mark Twain" narrates your trip.
- The Liberty Tree Tavern is Liberty Square's only table
service restaurant, with character dinners in the evenings. Preferred seating recommended.
- Columbia Harbour House offers fast food sandwiches, chicken fingers, and fish in a fairly pleasant, for Disney counter service, atmosphere.
- Sleepy Hollow Refreshments is the place for snacks, punch, and
caramel corn and ice cream. The tables near here on the patio are usually an oasis of calm, even on a crowded day.
- Liberty Square Market. Fruit stands and other snack wagons may usually be found in this open area beside The Hall of Presidents.
- Diamond Horseshoe Saloon (Yes, this is technically in Liberty Square, although it has dropped off the park maps entirely). There's no show here anymore, but we have seen it open occasionally in the afternoon as a counter service location offering sandwiches.
The Yankee Trader deals in culinary and kitchen wares, with
Mickey Mouse shaped waffle irons sometimes available. They also stock a generous assortment
of its sponsor, Smuckers, jams and jellies. It's Christmas in every season at
Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe, where Disney character ornaments
abound. On the other hand, Madame Leota's Cart, on the way to the Haunted Mansion,
looks more like Halloween. The Heritage House still stocks some items of
historical interest among the character T-shirts and such. You can sit for a portrait in the natural sunlight at the Liberty Square Portrait Gallery.
Liberty Square is between Fantasyland and Frontierland, and also connects to Main Street USA.