July 1998 – March 2015
Tomorrowland – If you followed the main path from Main Street USA, and you’d find the Innoventions building at the end, where the land opens up to a large patio. The entrance was to the right of the building, near Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port.
The Innoventions building has been home to a variety of attractions since its initial debut in 1967. The large circular building originally housed a rotating theater, showing the Carousel of Progress until 1973, and then the America Sings show from 1974-1988. After these two shows closed, the Innoventions building remained largely empty, though the top floor held the TRON Superspeed Tunnel, part of the PeopleMover/Rocket Rods track.
In 1998, the building found a new purpose: a walkthrough technology exhibit. The different interactive activities and displays have regularly changed, from predicting future computing to Marvel superhero meet and greets. But throughout its almost twenty year run, Innoventions served as Tomorrowland’s hub of future technology.
The bottom floor of Innoventions housed the Dream Home, a tech-savvy model house with both current and near-future digital devices. Sponsored by Microsoft, HP, and Taylor Morrison, the Dream Home acted like an open house, where guests can directly interact with the technology available in each room.
On the upper level of the building, guests could walk through a series of interactive exhibits. These included:
- Captain America artifacts and meet & greet
- Thor artifacts and meet & greet
- Iron Man artifacts and meet & greet
- Honda ASIMO theater, a 15-minute show about robotics
- Project Tomorrow Hosted by Siemens, a series of games and digital activities
And finally, the very center of the Innoventions building housed a massive tree, called the “Technology Tree”. The tree reached above both levels of the building, and its branches were made of giant wires and tubing.
Despite its ability to adapt with Tomorrowland’s endless changes and evolution, Innoventions never drew in major crowds. So after lots of speculation, the show building closed its doors, with the promise that a new attraction is on its way. Though Disney has yet to confirm Innoventions’ replacement, rumored attractions include a Star Wars walkthrough, S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters from the Marvel universe, or a 60th anniversary exhibit.
My original rating: Innoventions is cool to look through, especially if you’re into the Avengers and want to meet one of the heroes. The games are fun but the attraction doesn’t have anything that would make you want to visit over and over again. Innoventions is definitely an attraction to see once if you can, or a good place to wander through if you need to escape heat or rain. But if you’ve been through it before, you probably don’t need to check it out a second time. (★★★☆☆)
Innoventions closely resembled the Opening Day experience of Tomorrowland. In the 1950’s, Tomorrowland had no major attractions, and instead hosted a series of walkthrough exhibits about different technologies and recent industrial achievements.
Until 2012, Nathan Lane voiced a character called Tom Morrow, the fictional mayor of Tomorrowland. He welcomed guests to Innoventions and sang a version of “There’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow”, the theme from the Carousel of Progress.
The Innoventions building still has the rotating mechanism used in its shows, but does not use it.
Some of the former Innoventions exhibits include: a playground, an arcade, a Segway track, an interactive Lilo & Stitch show, and a Michael Jackson gaming tent.