When Fantasyland was redesigned in 1983, it brought along with it many additions. Among them, the Sword in the Stone Ceremony, located just ten feet south of the King Arthur Carrousel. The ceremony was to be held several times a day and is derived from the 1963 Disney animated movie of the same name.
As in the movie and T. H. White’s 1938 novel, the sword Excalibur was buried in a stone and could only be removed by “the true-born king of England.” However, at Disneyland, the sword has been plunged into a large golden anvil.
The ceremony begins when Merlin the Magician appears to audition park visitors for the honorary role of Wart, the chosen young lad in the aforementioned story. When a nearby cast member decides to temporarily release the sword from the anvil, the boy or girl who has been able to “pull the sword out of the stone” is heralded as royalty for all to see. After the ritual, the sword will again become immovable.
In 1986, there were just three ceremonies a day, which doubled during the holiday season of 2006. The Sword in the Stone Ceremony continues to this day.