It’s that time of the year, everybody: Mickey Mouse’s birthday!
It has been 92 years since Mickey first appeared on television, in a movie called “Steamboat Willy” in 1928. Minnie Mouse also made a brief appearance in this movie, making Nov. 18 her birthday as well. Over the years, Mickey Mouse has become a symbol of our childhood, as a character who has provided entertainment and hope to generations of children everywhere.
Bailey Tietz, a senior at Emmaus High School, has been visiting Disney World with her family her whole life.
“I’ve gone at least once a year for as long as I can remember,” Tietz said. “My family has stayed there on Christmas three times now, and there’s nothing really like it. The decorations are insane.”
Disney has played an important role in her life up to this point. Mickey Mouse reminds Tietz of her favorite childhood memories, times of simple enjoyment and fun, free of stress.
“He resembles everything great that I associate with Disney,” Tietz said. “Growing up, it’s been my happy place.”
Ellie Urenko, another EHS senior, recently returned from a trip to Disney World. Despite the new COVID-19 restrictions, she had a fun-filled trip there with her family.
“It was definitely different because of the restrictions,” Urenko said. “But it was a lot of fun.”
Like Tietz, Disney has been a defining aspect of Urenko’s childhood.
“When you go there, you kind of get taken to a different place,” Urenko said. “You kind of forget about all your problems and are just immersed in all the excitement there.”
Mickey Mouse has become an icon over the years, synonymous with youthfulness and laughter and fun.
“Mickey Mouse is just a symbol of childhood,” Urenko said. “As I get older, it’ll continue to be a symbol of happiness.”
Tietz, like many others, finds inspiration through Disney and the character of Mickey Mouse. The stories send a message that anything is possible.
“My mom sometimes reminds me that ‘it all started with a mouse,’” Tietz said. “I know that wherever I want to go, there’s always a starting point. I think there’s some really great lessons that can be learned from Walt and Mickey’s stories.”
Happy 92nd birthday, Mickey Mouse!
Photo by Meliha Anthony.