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September 5, 2001

Farewell to the Country Bear Playhouse at Disneyland

Anaheim, CA -- The "Country Bear Playhouse" attraction in Disneyland park that features more than 20 "Audio-Animatronics(R)" bears wielding banjos and fiddles and singing fractured tunes about their "beary" amusing adventures, will lower the curtain on its 29-year run on Sunday, September 9, 2001. The longtime attraction will be making way for an undisclosed future attraction that is still in development.

The classic attraction has had a varied history during its three-decade engagement at the park. "Country Bear Playhouse" premiered in 1972 as the "Country Bear Jamboree" in what was then known as Bear Country, and was the first attraction to be re-created from a similar show at Walt Disney World in Florida, which had opened the previous year. For the 1984 holiday season, "Country Bear Jamboree" made a festive transition into the "Country Bear Christmas Show" and marked another first: the "Country Bear Christmas Show" became the first existing "Audio-Animatronics" attraction at Disneyland to be re-programmed into a whole new show. This holiday version of the attraction has been a special presentation during many of the past 17 Yuletide seasons.

It was in 1989 that the Bear Country land was re-themed to Critter Country to reflect the addition of the fun-filled "Splash Mountain" flume-ride attraction. In 1986, a new daily version of the show starring the Country Bears made its debut in the form of the current "Country Bear Vacation Hoedown," and it is this edition that will continue until its finale on September 9.

"We are constantly in the process of refreshing and updating our parks with new shows and attractions," said Cynthia Harriss, president of the Disneyland Resort. "The Country Bears have been a part of Disneyland for nearly 30 years, and we feel it is time to give our cast of bears a well-deserved rest and create a brand new attraction for our guests to enjoy."

Editor's Note: Country Bear Playhouse is slated to be replaced by the yet unannounced Winnie The Pooh dark ride scheduled to open in early 2003.