On today’s date in 1987, the Star Tours ride officially opened at Disneyland. Take a look at this photo of Mickey Mouse celebrating the event with a couple of famous friends on opening day, courtesy of the Disney Parks Blog archives:
A few years ago, Star Wars historian James McFadden contributed a detailed history of the Star Tours travel company to StarWars.com. From his article:
The Star Tours travel agency existed as far back as the Clone Wars, but new ownership re-launched the company about a year before the Battle of Yavin with the aspiration of preserving unrestricted space travel while the Empire was tightening its grip on the galaxy. Star Tours opened a new terminal on Spaceport THX1138 in the Earth system, along with other members of the Galactic Tourist Bureau (GTB): Air Alderaan, Bespin Direct, Dantooine Express, Naboo Spacelines and Tatooine Transit.
Star Tours’ success was instant, and the ride was soon added to both Tokyo Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 1989, and Disneyland Paris in 1992.