Not Just a Walk in the Park: My Worldwide Disney Resorts Career (Hardcover)

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The never-before-told, behind-the-scenes story of Disney’s pioneering and triumphant global theme park and resort expansion.

On June 16, 2016, Shanghai Disneyland Park, located in Pudong, Shanghai, opened to great fanfare and acclaim. Disney Chairman and Chief Executive Bob Iger called the world's twelfth Disney park “one of the proudest and most exciting moments in the history of The Walt Disney Company.” But a short three decades before, there were only two Disney parks—both in the U.S. How this unique entertainment enterprise expanded and was embraced all around the world is one of the most ambitious and successful, but little-documented aspects of The Walt Disney Company’s history.

Leading that pioneering and influential initiative was a fascinating man who, like Walt Disney himself, was the right combination of experience, enterprise, curiosity, and cultural complement at just the right time and place: Disney Legend Jim Cora. Part memoir, part cultural history, part documentary—and always fascinating, revealing, candid, and frequently humorous—Not Just a Walk in the Park: The Creation of Disney’s Global Resorts is the first-ever documentation of Disney’s rise as a worldwide powerhouse in destination recreation and cultural export; and the circumstances, events, and individuals who brought it all to life.

Filled with remarkable information, insight, anecdotes, and reflections of places, people, projects, problems, and ultimate successes, this is a one-of-a-kind recollection of a previously unknown aspect of the wide, wonderful world of Disney and how it got that way.

About the Author

Jim Cora started as a part-time Disneyland attraction host in 1957, but a push from a fellow named Walt Disney began a forty-year career exporting the ideas and ideals of Disney to far-flung locations around the globe. The international success of Disney theme parks and resorts, and indeed, the growth of the theme park industry worldwide, owes an enormous debt to his experience, vision, and diligence. Jim was named a Disney Legend in 2005 and has the prestigious honor of a “Window on Main Street” in four Disney Magic Kingdom Parks around the world.

Praise For…

“An untold story that demands to be told, Cora paints a picture not just of a fascinating career with The Walt Disney Company, but of a personal culture, starting with an immigrant family in Southern California, that continues through the development of Disney Resorts worldwide. Jim Cora’s memoir is a fascinating read from start to finish, steeped in a culture and philosophy that we all can learn from.”——Craig D. Barton, writer and editor of Communerdy web site

“Jim Cora certainly made enormous contributions to the success of Disney parks internationally. He paid attention to operating details, but most of all he constantly cared about Guests’ park experience, making sure they were happy and were having a fun time. Readers of Not Just a Walk in the Park will discover Jim’s remarkable and impressive career, and how his impactful practice has touched the hearts of millions of Guests each year in ways that will always be admired and remembered.”——Wing T. Chao, Disney LegendFormer Executive Vice President, Walt Disney Imagineering—Wing T. Chao,

“Jim Cora is a major part of the history of Disney Theme parks, and Disney Theme parks are a major part of Jim. His book explains the growth of Disney’s worldwide outdoor entertainment; built with sweat, creativity, and a massive commitment to excellence during a half a century of fortitude.”——Michael D. Eisner, past CEO, The Walt Disney Company

“Jim Cora’s personal values and love of entertainment became an unstoppable motivation to learn and teach others, training his way, a smile at a time, to the top—eventually opening ‘The Happiest Places On Earth.’ From Walt Disney himself seizing Jim’s potential in a life-changing moment, to overseeing parks globally amid government challenges, setbacks, and operational hurdles, Cora’s story fills us with life lessons as well as valuable management techniques. When the product of your factory is fun, then creating that atmosphere where work gets done with spirit and a smile is a ‘how to’ we could all use more of. Great Read. Recommend”——Eddie Sotto, former Imagineer

“Jim’s story is an American story. A story of how opportunity, curiosity, hard work and a chance encounter with the preeminent entertainment businessman of his day propelled him on a career that would make him one of the elite theme park executives of all time. Jim is at once a charming, fair, but tough leader with high expectations—forged in him by his parents, grandparents, and Walt Disney himself. His early experiences in those formative years of Disneyland set the stage for him to captain Disney’s international expansion on two continents. A true Disney Legend, Jim has been a leader, mentor and friend to the very best in the theme park industry and reading his book you’ll feel like you took a walk in the park right beside him.”——Jon Storbeck, Vice President & General Manager, Knott’s Berry Farm

Product Details
ISBN: 9781368043649
ISBN-10: 136804364X
Publisher: Disney Editions
Publication Date: December 28th, 2021
Pages: 192
Language: English