Did you ever wonder what is up with the Orange Bird at Disney World? The Orange Bird’s popularity has been rising in recent years, so much so that Disney released new annual pass holder magnets with him on it. So, why is this bird so popular?
With its orange head, leaf wings, and bird body, Orange Bird is a true Disney original. Get to know this sweet, fun-loving bird!
Origin of the Orange Bird
The Orange Bird Character with the head of an orange was created in 1969 for the Florida Citrus Commission, in exchange the FCC would sponsor the 3 million dollar pavilion that included The Tropical Serenade a duplicate of Disneyland’s Enchanted Tiki Room), The Sunshine Tree Terrace snack bar and the rest of The Sunshine Pavilion at the Magic Kingdom theme park.
The Florida Citrus Commission needed a persona to represent its fresh Florida citrus. The creation of the Orange Bird stems back to Disney animator Bob Moore, along with publicity art designer Don MacLaughlin, who together crafted the Orange Bird specifically for the Commission.
The Orange Bird’s first appearance happened on March 3, 1971, at a press event in Lakeland, Florida and was used in several print ads and coupons in the central Florida area.
Originally from the north, The Orange Bird wanted to migrate south to the Sunshine State where he was adopted by a family that was vacationing.
Disney guests were once able to meet the Orange Bird character at Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom! The character once met guests in Adventureland until his removal in 1987. This is because Disney and the FCC severed ties that year.
Although, over the last few years, online fascination with the Orange Bird has increased. D23 and Disney’s Pin-Trading arm have featured him on merchandise and he has continued to grow in popularity. In April 17, 2012, the Orange Bird returned to Disney World and now resides at the Sunshine Tree Terrace.
How does the Orange Bird Communicate?
The Orange Bird doesn’t sing or speak, instead he would think “orange thoughts” that would appear as orange smoke above him.
The Orange Bird Song
The Sherman Brothers, better known for writing the songs for the Disney films Mary Poppins (1964) and The Jungle Book (1967), also wrote “The Orange Bird Song” for the album, which became the theme song for Orange Bird.