Sunday, January 23, 2011

Traditions, and Seeing the Magic Kingdom through Disneyland eyes

 When I hear the word “traditions,” I generally think of the song from Fiddler on the Roof. Here at Disney, it means something completely different.

For the Disney College Program, "traditions" means officially starting the program and taking your final steps towards becoming a full fledged cast member.

Isn't it pretty?
Final steps as in watching a number of videos, and learning what makes the Disney company the fantastic business that it is. Most importantly, it means getting your Disney Cast Member name tag. Not to blow it out of proportion or anything, but getting my Cast Member name tag is probably the third most important event of my life, only less significant than my future marriage and future birth of my child, neither which have happened yet, which puts getting it at numero uno for right now.

Part of Traditions was taking a trip into the Magic Kingdom, a park I have not been too since I was 12, so it was a completely new-ish experience for me. I’m a Disneyland guy, so seeing this interpretation of Walt’s original Magic Kingdom was shocking. The part I first walked into was Main Street, next to Fantasyland which is quite possibly the least similar part of the Magic Kingdom in comparison to Disneyland. The whole time, all I could talk about was how different yet the same things are here at the World.

After Traditions was over, I ate a quick lunch of PB&J and Ramen (not eaten together) at my apartment and then headed back to the Magic Kingdom in my street clothes to visit with some friends. It was pouring, much like it was in the morning, so the park was nearly empty. The first ride we hit up was Stitch’s Great Escape, which was was Preston’s Great Disappointment. Essential it’s a cheap re-theming of the old Alien ride.
Main Street and Cinderella's castle in the rain 

Then we went on Space Mountain, which was much different than the Land version, but still pretty good. The two separate tracks were cool, and I found the ride itself pretty thrilling, though the sound system on the ride was nothing compared to the headrest speakers at Disneyland.

We also went on Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin and The Haunted Mansion, which were both essentially the same as in California. After that we went on Big Thunder Mountain Railway, which we got stuck on right out of the gate. We got to have a fun conversation with some extroverted cast members, and were given fastapsses to any one ride of our choosing, which we wisely used on Peter Pan.

After partaking in a few more rides, we watched 'The Memories, the Magic, and You,” a projected show that takes place in Cinderella's castle, using pictures taken that day and projecting them onto the castle, using different themes from a number of Disney movies. It was a truly innovative show that really scored some points with me for the World. I thought it better than even the “Wishes” fireworks show. ‘Twas definitely a great example of Disney magic.

But it’s late, and I’ve got training in the morning, and I don’t have much else to talk about from today, my third day in the Disney College program. So this is the end of this.


  1. I love the name tag! The castle show is awesome. AND the world should be different from the land , so all is well in the Disney universe.

  2. How awesome!! Wait, so you're going to Arizona State University AND are part of the Disney College Program? Hmm...I'm a little confused but I guess I'll keep reading your older posts and hopefully figure it out haha. Congrats on the name tag :) I gather you already knew that when Disneyland first opened, nametags, in a way, didn't exist? Cast members were first given tags with numbers on them. Difinitely doesn't sound like Disney, does it? haha