(CTN NEWS) – Fans who firmly believe that Disneyland is truly the happiest place on Earth are about to be rewarded with more than just a souvenir.
In Burbank, California, a devoted collector has transformed a vast 30,000-square-foot (2,800-square-meter) building into a haven of Disney magic.
Disneyland Enthusiasts Delighted as Collector Unveils Vast Haven of Disney Magic and Previews Auction
Here, enthusiasts can immerse themselves in the enchanting atmosphere, listening to the delightful sounds of birds chirping in the Enchanted Tiki Room section or reveling in laughter provoked by the animated ghosts from the Haunted Mansion ride.
This extraordinary venue serves as a preview for an upcoming auction, where over 1,500 remarkable items will be available for bidding.
Joel Magee, the passionate collector behind this extraordinary treasure trove, has spent the past 30 years assembling his impressive collection of more than 6,000 items.
This extensive assortment includes captivating costumes, rare posters, and life-size vehicles inspired by beloved rides such as Dumbo and Peter Pan.
Passionate Collector Magee Shares Decades-Long Disney Collection with the Public
After dedicating decades to acquiring these remarkable pieces, Magee has finally decided to share a portion of his cherished collection with the public.
“I’m one of those individuals who believes in going all out or not going at all. If it’s not the biggest, then it’s not the best,”
Magee shared with The Associated Press during a recent interview, while fans excitedly explored the exhibit.
Magee proudly holds the distinction of owning the largest individually owned collection of Disneyland/Disney Park memorabilia in the world.
“This is truly an exhilarating moment. It’s the first time that all of my belongings have been gathered in one room simultaneously,” Magee expressed.
Known in the collectible industry as “the toy scout,” Magee has amassed an extensive collection of toys and Disney items.
As a child, he religiously watched “The Wonderful World of Disney” on TV every week, but it wasn’t until he attended a toy show and encountered a man selling Disneyland artifacts that he developed a fascination for collecting.
“At that time, I didn’t have much to spend. I purchased a few pieces, and that’s where it all began,” Magee recounted.
“Throughout my travels as ‘the toy scout,’ people from all over the country have been bringing me their cherished items for the past 25 years, and now they’re all here today.”
Extraordinary Disney Auction: From Trading Cards to Rare Artifacts
The items available for sale range from small trading cards to large-scale artifacts like a 1917 Model T moving van from Disneyland’s original Main Street, which Magee believes Walt Disney himself created.
Mike Van Eaton, the co-owner of Van Eaton Galleries, the auction’s organizer, revealed that some of the most highly sought-after items include those from the Haunted Mansion attraction, such as original stretch paintings from the iconic ride’s elevator and the “doom buggy” that guests ride on.
“Joel also possesses one of the most extraordinary collections of Disney attraction posters in the world. He has every single attraction poster ever created for the park.
Those will undoubtedly attract significant interest as well,” Van Eaton explained.
The auction offers items at various price points, with some starting as low as $50, but many exceeding that range.
“For instance, a Dumbo ride vehicle could potentially fetch $200,000 to $300,000. We even have park trash cans that might sell for $5,000 or $6,000, and posters that could reach $50,000 to $60,000,” Van Eaton disclosed.
Magee finds it challenging to select favorites from such an extensive collection, but he has a particular fondness for the static props that he has breathed new life into.
“The Tiki birds, oh my gosh, they were in terrible condition when we acquired them! They were worn out, with missing pieces,” Magee revealed.
“Fortunately, some good friends of mine who specialize in this field brought them back to life in a way that surpasses imagination. And when people see them, you can see the magic sparkle in their eyes.”
The exhibition is located at the Burbank Town Center Mall and will run until July 16. The auction will take place from July 17 to 19.
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