The Golden Horseshoe is an original opening year restaurant and attraction at Disneyland Park filled with lively entertainment which has changed over the years. On my recent trip, I enjoyed the current form of entertainment in this western style saloon.
The Golden Horseshoe
The Golden Horseshoe restaurant first opened in 1955. The restaurant also serves as an entertainment venue that has housed many different shows seven days a week. Prior to the closing of Disneyland Park due to the pandemic, “Showdown at the Golden Horseshoe!” portrayed a dueling piano show with a western theme.
The quick service restaurant that was meant to mimic a western saloon is located in Frontierland with a beautiful view of the Rivers of America, New Orleans Square, and part of Critter Country.
Fun Fact: The Golden Horseshoe Stage unofficially opened on July 13, 1955, as the Golden Horseshoe Saloon. Walt and Lillian Disney, along with dozens of guests, celebrated their 30th anniversary with a private party and the premiere showing of the original Golden Horseshoe Revue.
Imagineer Harper Goff, who had prior experience designing saloons for a couple Hollywood western films, designed the interior of the saloon. He also worked on the designing of the exterior building on Main Street, USA.
Productions Over the Years
Over the years, different productions have welcomed guests inside the Golden Horseshoe. The first show, The Golden Horseshoe Revue, was the original and longest running show at the saloon. It ran from July 17, 1955 until October 12, 1986. The show featured a saloon owner, Slue Foot Sue, and her dance girls. The show featured various skits, song and dance.
The next show to perform, Golden Horseshoe Jamboree Show, ran from November 1, 1986 until December 18, 1994. Billy Hill and the Hillibillies, which closed in 2014, featured bluegrass music and comedy. The Golden Horseshoe Variety Show, which closed in 2003, featured comedy and a magic show. In 1999, with the popularity of Toy Story, “Woody’s Round-Up” opened and featured characters from the animated film. he show closed in 2000.
Fun Fact: The Golden Horseshoe was also where the music video for the Woody’s Round-Up Medley music video starring Riders in the Sky was filmed to promote the Toy Story 2 companion album, Woody’s Roundup.
Sporadically between 2001 and 2003, the saloon featured Frontierland: “The Little Town That Could”, a fictional history of the founding of Frontierland in Disneyland Park. In 2012, the saloon ran A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue. It featured song and dance numbers from the original production. The salute closed in 2013. Then, in 2019 Showdown at the Golden Horseshoe first opened. However, after the park reopened in 2021 from Covid, the return of the show has not commenced.
Currently, the entertainer at the Golden Horseshoe is a piano player.
Piano Player At the Golden Horseshoe
The Golden Horseshoe Piano Player is a live piano player who sings and plays his piano on stage. Throughout the performance, he encourages the audience to participate and sing along to various famous western songs.
One of the aspects that I very much enjoyed about the show was that the piano player also provides historical context to each and every song performed. And of course, it’s not Disney entertainment without performing a couple of Disney songs!
The show lasts around 30 minutes.
I (Marisol) and my kids enjoyed the show for the first time in April of 2022. Although we had eaten inside the restaurant many times, we had not had a chance to see the live entertainment. Luckily, we were seated at the front of the stage which made the view really nice and felt as though we were part of the entertainment during the audience participation portion. On this occasion, the entire saloon was filled with guests enjoying the performance.
Shows play at 12:30pm, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:40pm, 5:30pm, and 6:30pm.
I would very much recommend not only viewing the Piano Player At the Golden Horseshoe but enjoying a meal or dessert while doing so. Do keep in mind that this location can be very loud even when there is no entertainment occurring. This is due to the fact that there is plenty of seating inside the restaurant and houses a lot of people.
The Golden Horseshoe Quick Service
The Golden Horseshoe Restaurant is a Quick Service location which offers a very limited menu. Options include: fish and chips, chicken tenders, chicken mixed green salad, mozzarella sticks and fries. The only kids meal that is offered at this location is chicken tenders.
Even though this location does not sell many food offerings, our personal favorite to order at the Golden Horseshoe is dessert! The house-made chocolate chunk cookie sundae is a warm, rich Triple Chocolate-chunk Cookie made with Brown Butter, topped with Hand-scooped Vanilla Ice Cream, and drizzled with Caramel and Chocolate Sauce. The other two desserts available are the Golden Horseshoe ice cream float and the Mickey Ear hat bowl sundae.
Relive the golden era of Disneyland Park at this old-timey saloon that’s been here since the very beginning. Enjoy a spirited lunch or dinner over a roundup of frontier-style chow, including pepper jack chili mac, loaded potato skins and chicken wings. Tiny trailblazers can tuck into the chicken slider meal or Kid’s Power Pack, a bounty of healthy snacks.
The restaurant opens each day at 11 am. Mobile Ordering is available at this location and is highly advised as the lines especially during peak times at lunch and dinner are very long.
The Golden Horseshoe is a great place to relax, enjoy the air conditioning, and listen to the entertainment while having a meal at the same time. The interior design and feeling of being in a western saloon is quite convincing and makes for great photographs. I look forward to our next visit with the piano player at the Golden Horseshoe.