George Lucas himself wanted to make the Star Tours simulator to look and feel as authentic as possible and decided to donate real props from the original Star Wars trilogy. The C-3PO and R2-D2 figures in the simulator were loaned directly from George Lucas and are some of the real props used in the filming of the original Star Wars movies. The park really wanted to go all-out and make the simulator as real as possible, even while you’re standing in line.Read More →

1. George Washington Washington was an ultra-successful liquor distributor in the new country. He made rye whiskey, apple brandy and peach brandy in his Mount Vernon distillery. 2. John Adams Adams and Thomas Jefferson were close friends and correspondents — but they also had a bit of a rivalry. Adams’ dying words were, “Thomas Jefferson survives,” unaware that he had died hours earlier. In another shocker, both died on July 4, 1826. 3. Thomas Jefferson Jefferson and John Adams paid a visit to William Shakespeare’s home in Stratford-upon-Avon in 1786. There, they chipped off a piece from Shakespeare’s chair as a souvenir. 4. James MadisonRead More →

Alabama Before Europeans landed on American shores, the upper stretches of the Alabama River in present-day Alabama used to be the home lands of a Native American tribe called – drum roll, please – the Alabama (Albaamaha in their own tribal language). The river and the state both take their names from the tribe, that’s clear enough, but the meaning of the name was another matter. Despite a wealth of recorded encounters with the tribe – Hernando de Soto was the first to make contact with them, followed by other Spanish, French and British explorers and settlers (who referred to the tribe, variously, as theRead More →