Disney’s Viewliner Pressed Penny | Privately Designed

I’ve said it before but the Monorail is an iconic mode of transportation at the Disney parks and it seems like it’s always been around. But in actuality there was a time out in California when there was no monorail, and for a short period of time instead there was a different attraction based on another form of futuristic transportation.

One thing Walt Disney was proud of was his collection of miniature trains. He even had a miniature train installed in his backyard called the Carolwood Pacific. This passion eventually led to the Disneyland Railroad and one other lesser known Disneyland train, the Viewliner.

Legendary Imagineer Bob Gurr came up with the initial concept designs for the attraction’s sleek aluminum siding and super-sized windows.

It was based on the design of General Motor’s full-scale Aerotrain, a failed experiment to reduce costs and help keep passenger train service alive as highways and car ownership were surging.

Dubbed the fastest miniature train i the world, the Viewliner debuted in Disneyland on June 10th, 1957. It was capable of a top speed of 60 miles per hour, but would zip around the park at a more comfortable speed of 30 miles per hour. The attraction would move guests between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland.

The Viewliner had two separate tracks that intertwined and even traveled alongside the Disneyland Railroad at points. Each track had its own train with the Red Tomorrowland cars being named after planets Jupiter, Mercury, Mars and Saturn, and the Blue Fantasyland cars named after Disney characters Pinocchio, Cinderella, Bambi, Alice and Tinker Bell.

Unfortunately it was always designed as a placeholder attraction and was never planned to stick around forever. But while it was there Walt used the train to showcase what he thought could be the future for rail travel. Of course things have not worked out quite that way, but it was still a novel idea. Its time eventually came to a close on September 30th, 1958 making it one of the shortest-lived non-season attractions ever in the Disney Parks. On the bright side things worked about because as a perk of its closure we eventually got the Matterhorn, Submarine Voyage and of course the Monorail.

This coin was commissioned by collector Jim McNally. It was designed by Don Cade and features a beautiful image of the Disney Viewliner train, and has an exclusive backstamp advertising Jim’s website which you can check out here.

The website has a large selection of elongated coins available for purchase including many active and retired designs from Walt Disney World and Disneyland theme parks. Currently you can receive a free Viewliner pressed copper penny with any order placed through his website. You can also purchase additional copies of the penny for $2.99 each, or $10 for a full denomination set that includes a penny, nickel, dime and quarter.

A huge thank you to Jim and Don for creating yet another fantastic elongated coin, and of course a big thank you to all of you out there for taking this fun little trip down Disney memory lane. Were any of you lucky enough to take a ride on the Viewliner? Be sure to let me know down in the comments below I’d love to hear all about it. Have a fantastic week and as always Keep on Pressing!


Mystery Mail Pressed Penny Box

I’m always looking to try new things when it comes to pressed pennies and a few months ago I came across something that a fellow collector was organizing. The description sounded interesting and fairly straight forward so I sent him a message through Facebook and signed up. Basically this was an opportunity to trade a bunch of pressed pennies through the mail. The organizer would put together a box that contained 50 pressed penny sets, and it would be mailed to the first people on the list, then when they were done trading with the box, they would send it to the next person on the list until everyone had a chance to go through it and the box would eventually be returned to the organizer.

There was no cost to sign up and the only financial responsibility was each person needed to cover the cost to ship the box to the next person on the list. It was required that the package be sent priority mail with tracking so try and ensure it didn’t get lost along the way. That cost was roughly about $9.00 so that wasn’t too bad and I was pretty intrigued by this.

It didn’t take too long for me to get confirmation back from the organizer that was all signed up and at that time I was also sent the rules to review. They were pretty straight forward and basically just gave more details on how the box would work. You were supposed to not break up a set, and needed to trade full set for full set which all made sense. It did also request that only copper sets be traded unless it was one of the new 8-design machines that is preloaded with zinc pennies which was allowed. Once I agreed to the rules and terms it was then just time to wait for my turn to arrive with the box.

It took a little less than a month before I had the box in hand. Once I had it opened there were a few different bags, once with some loose individual pennies both zinc and copper, a second bag had some zinc sets, and the third bag was all copper sets.

I perused the individual coins, and zinc sets with not much catching my eye. But once I was in the copper sets things got interesting. Each bag included a little note that had information about where the coins were from which great and helped make going through them a little easier.

I found coins from Missouri, Nevada, California, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and many more places throughout the US. It took quite awhile to go through all of them, and I really enjoyed seeing what was included.

Once I was done going through all of the coins I had put aside 8 full sets and 2 individual designs. These weren’t sets had previously been looking for or missed along my travels, but instead just had designs that caught my eye and I immediately wanted them for my collection.

Above was one of the first individual pennies I found in the miscellaneous bag. The design from was the Oklahoma Aquarium and was of a Water Snake. Now I’m not normally a snake fan, but this design was just too cool to pass up. I loved the image of the snake and all the bubbles around it was just very unique and not something I’d seen before.

Next was a set from Kennebunk Maine and had some really fun designs as well. I’m a sucker for a good Lighthouse design, and that lobster I just couldn’t pass up.

Another of the sets I pulled aside was from the National frontier Trails Museum in Independence Missouri. The details on these coins was really impressive.

This next set I found very interesting. Years ago when I was vacationing in Orlando Florida I visited a Titanic Experience along International Drive specifically because they had a pressed penny machine. I didn’t realize that there were more Titanic attractions around and figured I now needed to try and collect all the different sets.

There were a few other sets I picked out but won’t go over in this post just to try and keep it a from going on too long, but if you want to see all of the sets and more of this process you can see our YouTube video at the very bottom. This last set for this post was from the Circus Circus Casino and Resort in Las Vegas Nevada. I visited Las Vegas quite a few years ago with my wife for a quick weekend trip to see a UFC event, and we had very little time to sightsee. I was able to press a few pennies at the MGM Grand and Luxor resorts but I know there are so many more and this set just called to me so I put it aside for myself. Guess I need to hurry up and schedule another longer trip to Vegas to try and get the rest of the resort themed pennies.

Following all the rules I had some duplicate copper sets from Florida, Vermont, Pennsylvania and New Jersey to try and help give some variety to the mystery penny box. I filled out similar white labels with the location information before I placed my traded sets inside the box, taped it all up and shipped it out the next day. One of the rules was to try and turn around the box within a few days to keep it moving and I had it back out the following day.

Of course the big question is would I do it again. Now I’ve mentioned in the past that for my collection I primarily prefer to only collect pressed pennies from placed that I have actually visited. That’s not to say that’s the only way you should do it, and the nice thing about collections is they are all personalized and you can do them however you like. With that all said however I did really enjoy going through the box and seeing all the different pennies, the incredible designs and was kind of amazing at just how far some of these coins had traveled. It was a lot of fun, and I’m happy with the new coins I have added to my collection. So the final verdict is yes I really liked this and would definitely do it again. I’ll be on the look out for other similar programs as the allure of a mystery pressed penny box is quite exciting.

Have you participating in a similar program? What did you think and did you get any special coins? Be sure to let me know down in the comments below, I’d love to hear all about it. Thanks for visiting this week and as always Keep on Pressing!

Pirate’s Dinner Adventure Pressed Pennies | Orlando, FL

As with so many vacation destinations there are a wide variety of theme parks, attractions, and restaurants available for guests to experience. But with so many options, these places have to try and have a gimmick to draw people in. One niche are Dinner shows here around Orlando, and in years past my family has experienced Medieval Times on numerous occasions. Over the years I also seen similar options like a Gangster dinner, Wild West dinner, and even one where you are attending a scripted wedding. Recently however I came across one that caught my eye and as luck would have it they also had a pressed penny machine so figured this was a great time to head over to International Drive and check out the Pirate’s Dinner Adventure.

This unique dining experience is located not too far from Universal Florida near the big International Drive and Sand Lake Road intersection.

The outside of the building has quite a bit of theming. For one there is a large pirate ship out front, and plenty of cannon damage to the sides of the structure.

We arrived very early for our scheduled time mostly because I wanted plenty of time to wander around and see everything they had to offer. If you arrive a little closer to show time this entrance / check-in area will be pretty busy.

After you check-in there is a green screen photo-op area that you can purchase later on. Once you are done with that you enter into the kind of holding area before your dinner and show start. This is setup like an outdoor market, with plenty of pirate themed merchandise and a couple bars selling all different kinds of drinks both alcoholic and non-alcoholic.

Eventually they will make announcements to start seating guests inside the theater. Your Pirate hosts will walk you inside which has a large water tank in the middle with a pirate ship / stage. Then on either side are long rows of tables with everyone seated facing forward towards the ship.

Each section of tables is color coded and you have your own Pirate to cheer for. All the colors that are on your side of the theater are your allies, and the colors on the opposite side of the ship are our enemies.

The show is all scripted with an interesting story that I won’t spoil here. There is also lots of singing, dancing, fighting and swinging around. Just as a word of warning there is A LOT of audience participation. I personally was brought up on stage to participate about 2-3 times, it was all in fun and I didn’t mind. But I do know that some people are not in to that and just let them know you would rather not participate and the Pirates will quickly move on to find another volunteer.

Let me quickly just go over the food which in my opinion was the weak point of this experience. The appetizer was a simple salad with ranch dressing, the main entree was a half roasted chicken with mushy veggies and some mashed potatoes. The chicken was juicy but not seasoned very well. Our dessert was a stale chocolate brownie. It tasted okay, but was very hard and just seemed like it had been sitting around for awhile, it would probably have benefited greatly if they just popped these in the oven for a few minutes to warm them up.

As we ate the show continued non-stop and even had some arial acrobats performing to music which was both mesmerizing and nerve racking at the same time.

The show culminated with a big finale that included a sea creature, lots of cannon fire, sword fighting and even a mermaid. It was really impressive.

Before we headed out I did want to go over the pressed penny machine that is located here. If you remember after we checked in for our reservation there was that market place area with the bars and this is also where the penny machine is found. If you have trouble finding it just look up at the ceiling and head towards the large Great White Shark which is having over top of the machine. Quick side note here please make sure if you are going to use this machine that you do so before you head in for your dinner show. On some days they have more than one showtime and once your show has started they won’t always allow you back into the market as the next group of guests is already waiting out there.

This machine is themed perfectly for this location. The nice wood design to the cabinet looks like it was create and stored below deck on a huge pirate ship. Even the hand crank you use to press you designs is a held from a ship. I will note though that it does look cool, but turning this thing can be a bit of a pain as it’s not as easy to spin around as you may think. At least that was my experience.

The designs at this machine just like the cabinet are well themed. They include the Pirate’s Dinner Adventure logo which is awesome, a Pirate Ship, Mermaid and the classic Skull and Crossbones.

Once the show was over, we were escorted out through exits inside the theater. You cannot go back into that market place area so please make sure you pick up all your souvenirs and pressed pennies before your show starts. As we headed home the consensus among my family was all unanimous. The experience was fantastic, the show and actors were amazing and our servers all did a great job, the only low point was the food. Maybe it was just an off night, or maybe because we had the early showtime I’m not sure. As much as I would love to go back sometime and I think the show itself was well worth it, but the food is really a downer. Have you experience the Pirate’s Dinner Adventure or any of the other Dinner shows around the Orlando area? Let me know down in the comments below I’d love to hear all about it, and am always looking for new places to try. Have a fantastic week and Keep on Pressing…Argggh!

Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Pressed Coins | Privately Designed

Well I don’t know about you but I am super excited for the Olympics to start in a couple days. I’ve mentioned in the past that I’m originally from Canada and we certainly love our olympics up there. However I will admit that the Summer Olympics are not really our strongest events (I kid, I kid!), but where we excel is in the winter games.

The 2022 winter Olympics are taking place in Beijing China and begin on February 4th with the Opening Ceremony, and will then conclude on February 20th. During that time we will be privy to a large assortment of sporting events.

Photo Credit: IOC

Of course Hockey is my top sport. I used to play when I was younger and just grew up watching some amazing players and teams throughout the years. But there are so many amazing events during the winter games that I find myself just sitting through all of them.

Photo Credit: IOC

Even events like the biathlon where athletes ski through a cross-country trail and then need to shoot some targets each lab. Seems a bit strange but I’m all in on this one. Plus watching things like bobsledding, speed skating, ski jumping, luge, figure skating and so many more I just can’t wait.

But if there is one event that is my guilty pleasure it’s Curling. Now this sport can be a bit confusing when you first start watching them throw those huge rocks down the ice and then there is all the seeping and yelling. Seems like something out of a Harry Potter novel, but the strategy that comes into play especially when it’s a close score can be super intense.

Plus there is always some amazing shots that take place to either clear out the house, or place their rock right on the button to score some points. This year I’m all set and even have my US Curling team t-shirt all ready to go.

To help celebrate this years Olympic games elongated coin designer Rob Gilber created an amazing design. It includes the Beijing 2022 logo, and the Olympic Rings along with the dates for the entire event.

This design was made available on the standard US Cent, but also in various denominations including US nickel, dime, quarter, half dollar, dollar, 1/4 oz copper round and even a special $2 Mexican coin.

At a quick glance it also looks like I have my very own collection of Olympic medals just in elongated coin form. If you are interested in this design I’ve included the link here to The Elongated Collectors Facebook page where Rob makes his designs available for sale. I would recommend you act quickly if you are interested since the Olympics are starting soon, and some of the unique coins that were pressed are in very limited supply.

I certainly can’t wait for these Olympic games to start. It’s always nice to take a break from everything going on in the world and just enjoy watching some very talented athletes represent their countries and hopefully get a chance to stand atop the gold medal podium. Stay safe everyone and enjoy the Olympics!