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As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.

So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.

Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.

And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.

We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm​. You made it all happen.

There are other changes as well.

Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:

We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.

It's time to move on and move forward.

PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.

But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.

So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.

And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.

That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!

If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.

So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!

Best wishes for a wonderful and magical new year!

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Old 08-02-2012, 07:40 AM   #16
num1DVCfan
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I like them both, but I do tire of the MSEP music pretty quickly. I guess it's the nostalgic side of me that tolerates it for a bit.
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Old 08-03-2012, 05:28 PM   #17
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It seems this is all about the music. Like any well-loved music, it's going to depend on what you grew up with.

MSEP, like the music for Electrical Water Pageant, is a holdover from a bygone era, when synthesizers were just emerging from "experimental" and "avante-garde." The first big hit for synthesized music was Switched On Bach by Walter (later Wendy) Carlos (1968). Before that, folks mostly heard synthesizers booping, beeping, and going wooooWoooWooooo in sci fi movies and TV shows. Electrical Water Pageant debuted in 1971, MSEP in 1972. Disney was pretty bold to bring synthesized music to Main Street at that time.

SpectroMagic debuted nearly 20 years later. To the extent that synthesizers are used at all, they're just instruments in a regular orchestra - they'd gone mainstream. Spectro is a big, orchestral score like nearly all of Disney's parades and fireworks shows, written by a Hollywood film music composer. It's great stuff, professionally done, but not at all groundbreaking. Still, whether it's MSEP or Spectro, I end up humming the themes for days after I see the parade.

Baroque Hoedown (the MSEP theme) was originally composed and recorded in 1966 by synthesizer artists Gershon Kingsley and Jean-Jacques Perrey, making it older than "Switched On Bach." Basically, Baroque music, which depends much more on counterpoint than massive chords, was perfect for the synthesizers of the day - until around 1975 nearly every keyboard-controlled synth could only play one note at a time. Without multi-track tape over-dubbing, there was no way to build up an orchestral-style sound. Digital synthesizers came along in the early 80s - they were way easier to use, and were polyphonic - they could play many notes at a time (chords).

If this all sounds like a history lesson, or a museum exhibit? Yeah, it's that. It doesn't mean you have to like the sound, and you probably won't have any affection for the musical style unless you're of a certain age (my career as a recording engineer began in 1973, and I recorded/broadcast at least one "experimental music" concert weekly on public radio in NYC). When I first experienced MSEP at Disneyland in the mid-70s, my jaw dropped. "Disney? This is DISNEY??"

What was even more amazing was the sound system. Ever notice that the floats play their own melodies, while the main theme (vamp) plays on the permanent speakers along the parade route? Musically, it's very intricate, and they needed some very sophisticated, custom-designed systems to keep it all synchronized. About 10 years later, MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) came along, which made this kind of synchronization a piece of cake. In many ways, the technology behind MSEP was just as cutting edge as Enchanted Tiki Room.

For me, Enchanted Tiki Room, Carousel of Progress, and MSEP fall into the same category, symbols of Imagineering in the days when most of the Imagineers had worked directly for Walt. Should the parks preserve attractions like this for nostalgic reasons, or because they have an interesting legacy? No. If they're no longer entertaining, if most guests don't visit the attraction... the parks do have to keep moving forward. But, as long as guests still enjoy them and Disney finds it useful to keep these attractions alive, I'm happy to revisit these parts of my youth.
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:04 AM   #18
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So, is the major difference between MSEP and Spectromagic the music? Or are there other differences?
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:38 AM   #19
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The floats are all different, so if you have favorite characters/movies, that can affect which parade you prefer (MSEP has Pete's Dragon, Spectro has Chernabog, etc.). But the basic approach is quite similar for both parades.
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Old 08-04-2012, 06:14 PM   #20
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Agree about the music for MSEP. Ugh!!!!
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:40 PM   #21
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I agree..I miss Spectro and wish they would bring it back!
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