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This 100-Year-Old Tree At Disneyland Is Dedicated To A Latino Exec Who Helped Create Disney Magic

Most Disneyland fans know dozens of secrets about the “Happiest Place on Earth,” like the hundreds of hidden Mickeys dotted around the parks, secret food menus and unrevealed entrances. And if you’ve ever been to Walt Disney’s original park, you’ve likely walked down Main Street, U.S.A., ridden on many of Walt’s classic attractions, and even stopped to snag the perfect selfie with Mickey himself.

But there are plenty of lesser-known spots and fun facts that that even the most seasoned Disneyland veterans probably aren’t aware of: like the fact that there is a 100-year-old palm tree dedicated a Latino man who used to own the property where Disneyland was built.

There’s a very special tree in Disneyland’s Jungle Cruise attraction that dates back more than 100 years.

The official TikTok account of @disneyparks recently uploaded a mini history lesson regarding a very special tree located at the park’s Jungle Cruise ride. In the video, we learn about a 100-year-old palm tree that has been in the same spot long before Disneyland was even built.

The palm tree is dedicated to Ron Dominguez who owned and lived on the land where Disneyland was built.

Ron Dominguez
Credit: D23 / Disney Studios

The Dominguez family has several interesting connections to the Disneyland park.

Over 100 years ago, Dominguez bought and dedicated the tree to his grandparents as their wedding gift. When Walt Disney approached the Dominguez family to buy the Anaheim property where Disneyland now sits, Ron Dominguez agreed to sell the land to him with the condition that the tree stays in its place. Disney kept that promise and the tree is still standing in the exact same spot to this day.

With the Dominguez family tree now a permanent fixture in the Disneyland park, Ron went on to become an integral part of the amusement park. When Disneyland opened, Ron started working at the park as a ticket-taker.

His summer job quickly turned into a permanent one, and he was able to work every attraction in the park.

He quickly moved up the Disney ladder, from supervisor to manager to director of operations, vice president of Disneyland and chairman of park ops to executive vice president, Walt Disney Attractions, West Coast. His family home was even used as an administration office for decades until it had to be moved to make room for Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. Ron was such an important part of the park’s story that he was inducted as a Disney Legend in 2000 and has a window on Main Street, U.S.A at Disneyland park.

Dominguez went on to serve as vice president of Disneyland for 16 years. He died on January 1, 2021, but the story is now making its rounds thanks to this viral TikTok.

Disneyland is no stranger to wild secrets and urban legends, but this one is extra special and we love to see history – of a Latino family’s magical contributions, no less – being preserved as a special part of the Disney experience.

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