Hidden Things: Dreamfinder’s Ship at Epcot

Alicia Stella Hidden Easter Eggs

When the original Journey Into Imagination opened at EPCOT Center in 1983 it included an incredible opening sequence featuring Dreamfinder and his flying machine. The ride vehicles would encircle a loop of track for nearly three minutes during this opening scene while Dreamfinder and Figment talked about imagination and turning little sparks into new ideas.

You can still see the airship hidden in plain sight at Epcot’s main gift shop, Mouse Gear. It’s located near the ceiling in the middle of the store, among all the gears and steampunk decor. Mouse Gear originally opened in 1999. (Previously the gift shop was called Centorium, and was two stories tall with a glass-enclosed elevator in the center.) The first update to the ride was also in 1999, transforming it into Journey Into YOUR Imagination (and officially ruining the ride.) That’s about when the slightly altered ship was moved to its new home. Mouse Gear was updated in 2011, but the ship survived the revamp and remains there to this day.

Check out the video above for more information, including a brief history of Dreamfinder’s ship from the ride to now, and check out the photographs below as well!

Dreamfinder’s Airship in Mouse Gear

Welcome to Mouse Gear, the largest gift shop known to man

The Dreamfinder ship is located near the middle of the store

How the ship looked on the ride for reference (Photo Disney)

When compared to a photo of the original it’s easy to see what’s missing

Missing parts include Dreamfinder’s chair, navigation controls, and the end of the tube opening in the front

Obviously the fabric “blimp” portion of the ship is gone

Plaid fabric from tail section also gone

This part in the middle is where Figment is born at beginning of the ride

This gauge used to have lighting effects but has since been painted over

Clearly the ship is not in the best of shape, but hey, duct tape fixes everything

References in Journey Into Imagination With Figment

Welcome to the Imagination Pavilion!

Figment’s home for more than 30 years

After the first scene there’s a door that has the words “Dean Finder” on it, I believe this is a nod to Dreamfinder and the original ride.

In the finale, look real close at the sheet music for One Little Spark, and you may see a familiar shape

A closer view of the sheet music reveals a silhouette of Dreamfinder’s airship, complete with Figment aboard

On the way out, in the final scene, you’ll see a hitchhiking space-Figment figure. You may recognize this character as one from the original ride, only repainted bright yellow.

Figment as he appears in final scene today

Figment from the original ride (Image INTERCOT)

You can watch a full ride-through of the current ride in the video below.

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