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The Daily Need

Photo: To infinity and beyond!

A monorail glides past Future World's iconic 18-story-high globe days before the October 1, 1982, grand opening of EPCOT Center, Walt Disney's showcase of American science and industry. Photo: AP

On this day in 1982, the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, better known as EPCOT, opened to the public at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. Originally designed as a utopian city of the future, it was supposed to be a model community, home to 20,000 residents, transported by monorails and PeopleMovers between recreational complexes, business and commercial areas and residential neighborhoods. It was to serve as a testing ground for city planning and organization. What it became was the second theme park built on the Walt Disney World property.

In its early years, Epcot was often called a “permanent World’s Fair.” The park is dedicated to technological innovation and international culture and has two distinct sections: Future World and World Showcase. Future World highlights innovation and technology with exhibits on ocean life, the environment, imagination, health, energy, communication, space exploration and transportation. World Showcase contains pavilions representing 11 countries including China, Mexico, Norway and Morocco.

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