ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Walt Disney introduced Mickey Mouse to the world in the 'Steamboat Willie' cartoon feature 56 years ago, an event celebrated by thousands Sunday at a Magic Kingdom birthday party for the famous rodent.
Although a light rain dampened the finale of Disneyland's month long 'Mickey's Month' celebration, amusement park spokeswoman Debra Garron said 'there is a normal weekend crowd.'
Although exact figures were not available, Garron said thousands of people attended Sunday's Magic Kingdom festivities.
'This mark's the 56th anniversary of the premiere of the movie 'Steamboat Willie,' which featured Mickey in his first feature length film,' said Garron. 'Mickey was 'born' in 1928 in the Old Colony Theater in New York City.'
Disney drew the famous rodent character and was the high-pitched voice in Mickey's early years.
Guests to Disneyland Sunday were treated to a 25-minute parade down the park's Main Street, USA, a 'Mousercise' aerobics show and free gifts, including head bands reading, 'Happy Birthday Mickey.'
In the Space Stage Amphitheater, nine of the original Mouseketeers were reunited in a 40-minute nostalgic musical re-creation of the popular 1955-59 television series 'The Mickey Mouse Club.'
Participants included former Mouseketeers Bobby Burgess, Darlene Gillespie, Don Grady, Bonnie Lynn Fields, Lonnie Burr, Tommy Cole, Sharon Baird, Sherry Alberoni and Cubby O'Brien.