Just beyond the entryway, Club 33 proudly displays Lillian Disney’s hand-painted harpsichord as well as an animatronic California Turkey Vulture, which was originally designed to talk to guests while they dined via a remote voice actor (he’s still chatty today).
TBT: The above photo is of Mr. Vern Preston. He passed away decades ago.I only met him one time but it was a special day indeed.One day I will make a video telling the story, explaining how important it was meeting this man back in 1987. He was an audio-Animatronics pioneer who deserves to be better known. though I have some information on his career,His history is very obscure and very few photos of him exist online, which I find strange for a guy who was building advanced figures often by himself at that time ( around the same time as Disney Imagineering was taking flight ! )
Long ago fate intervened and I met him through unusual circumstances. He handed me a rough copy of a book he wrote and illustrated on how to build animated industrial theme park figures... it never was published for one reason or another. I looked through it often over the decades and used it to learn a little at a time. Without it and his encouragement, I may never have attempted to build automata and animated figures... certainly not alone.... Another strange thing... the below photo was taken of me in 1998. For years I have searched for photos of him and this one emerged about a year ago out of a portfolio of a man who worked with him back then! The staging of the two images is so similar yet I had never seen this picture of him until recently!... I hope the ghost of Vern is alive and well in my workshop...I hope I have made him proud... I will never forget him.