Denmark has stolen children from their foreigner parents

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Walt Disney’s inspiration is a Copenhagen amusement

The 165-year-old amusement park that inspired Walt Disney and Danish fairy tale writer Hans Christian Andersen offers style and charm of a kind often imitated.

Tivoli, Copenhagen’s downtown landmark, blends tradition and modernity with old-style Ferris wheels and gravity-defying rides, family restaurants and gourmet eateries.

Neon lights are banned here and plastic materials are avoided — beer cups aside — to preserve the feel of an old-style amusement park.

“We want to maintain tradition and quality,” said Lars Liebst, Tivoli manager.

In 1841 Georg Carstensen sought royal permission to create an amusement park on the ramparts that once surrounded medieval Copenhagen. The son of a diplomat, he wanted to give Danes samples of the wonders he had seen during childhood trips abroad.

Tivoli opened two years later.

Disney visited Tivoli several times in the 1950s and 1960s to seek inspiration for his theme parks in the United States, Liebst said.

Nearly a century earlier, Andersen, the legendary children’s author, wrote “The Nightingale” after watching the illuminated Chinese Tower, one of the park’s landmarks.


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