Don’t Take Fireworks On The Rides, Unless You Want To Be Banned
“My uncle has a lifetime ban. My mom and her brother are not close, so my knowledge of the incident it a bit hazy.
In the late ’70s, my mom and her family went to Disney with a couple of their friends and their families. Apparently, her brother, some of his friends, and possibly some additional Disney delinquents went on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, got out of the boat and set off firecrackers. They probably could have gotten away with the noise since there are fake cannons as part of the experience and everyone in their boat was in on it, but apparently this was in the early days of security cameras so sure enough, when the rag-tag bunch got off the ride, they all were swiftly picked up by security. I think my grandparents demanded proof, and they were shown the footage of him getting out of the boat.
My mom likes to claim that he was the reason there is an announcement at the beginning of the ride to stay in your boat; apparently, they didn’t say that before.”
Mattie…She Has Problems
“Long time Cast Member (CM) here. Most of the bans from Disney in Anaheim are because they’ve assaulted CMs, defaced property, or did something to endanger other guests.
We also have this one guest…I’ll call her Mattie…she has problems. She’s chemically unbalanced, doesn’t understand personal space, has a habit of breaking rides on purpose by standing up or throwing things out her vehicle so we are forced to stop the ride, has been known to stalk CMs, tries to take upskirt pictures of the performers, steals property from strollers, and generally is an all-around bad person. She keeps getting her pass taken away, only to have her deranged mom, who is a lawyer, get it back for her.
Now we are notified by security whenever she enters the park and is followed the entire time she’s there. I’ve not even begun to scratch the surface on the stuff she’s done. Mattie has a file that is probably the size of a novel by now. In my personal experience with her, she’s creepy, a perfect example of why parents should always be present if your child is mentally handicapped, and the only reason I’ve ever considered filing a restraining order on a guest. We had a time where the girls performing with Phineas and Ferb refused to go out because Mattie was there with her camera. She likes to ride an electrical wheelchair in front of the Red Car Trolley really slowly so she can shut it down. She throws toys and cameras out of ride vehicles. All the time. She’s stalked CMs to the point of gaining two restraining orders.”
Fired For Beasting Out Like A Beast In A Beast Costume
“I was working as Beast from Beauty & The Beast.
A little background on the Beast costume: First, I would put on my leg pads (think football pants with pillows on them) over my basics (company issued short shorts and t-shirt). Then, I would put on the tail that strapped around my waist. Next, I’d put on the furry feet. Then furry gloves. Last, someone would help me lift the head. No. There is NO FAN OR COOLING SYSTEM INSIDE. The process itself took a good five to seven minutes and was the hottest costume I ever wore there.
Since the Beasts’ lumbering tail and limited vision makes going table to table inside the dining hall an impossibility, Beast spent his time roaming the hallway and peeking in on the diners to ‘check on Belle.’
No one bothered to tell me it was break time. Everyone cozied in the break room, got their water, changed shirts, and were enjoying the free delicious snacks the serving staff would sometimes sneak us. I noticed this set was unbearably long and I was feeling a bit woozy from sweating so much. I looked around for the greeter (this dumb guy named Mark), but he and the characters were nowhere to be found.
I was furious, sweaty, possibly heat stroking, delirious from dehydration, and just a little upset that I had been forgotten. I stormed off set and up to the break room discovering along the way I had been on set nearly an hour!
The only way to get the Beast head off by yourself is to bend completely over and wiggle out. We were told not to do this because it can damage the handmade head, but I didn’t care. After I worked my way free, I lumbered with it toward the break room only to run into Mark, who was stuffing his face with food and heading out for the next set. He laughingly asked me: ‘Where have you been?’ I would like to say that my reply was cordial and I handled the situation diplomatically, but the reality is I launched into a profanity-fueled tirade about responsibility and how hot I was and told him I would NOT be doing this set and that I was done for the day and went to the break room, forcing my way past him with this enormous head in tow.
The next day, I was called into the supervisor’s office and asked my side of the story. It seems Mark, rather than be a man and accept that he messed up, had run like the sissy man he is to management and complained I shoved him. In truth, the Beast shoved him. I never physically touched him. I was summarily fired for violating Disney’s no violence policy and for verbally mistreating a fellow cast member.”
A Father Is Banned For Child Abuse
“I work front desk at one of the Disney resorts (refraining from identifying which one for anonymity’s sake, but I will say it’s not one of the deluxe resorts).
A little over a month ago, a teenage girl came up to one of our lobby greeters sobbing and said she needed to speak to a manager. The greeter tried to talk to her, but she insisted upon talking to a manager. Two of our managers took the girl into this side room that we usually use to diffuse situations with loud, unruly guests who insist upon screaming and cursing about their stays – they could tell she was really upset.
The next thing we knew, Disney security showed up, Orange County Police showed up, the Department of Children and Families representative showed up.
Long story short – the girl had some form of mental disability – we were never given the specifics, but from the description of the situation, it was assumed to be autism. She got into an argument with her dad in the room (only the two of them were traveling together), he was wasted, and he completely DECKED her in the face – like a full-on punch. She freaked out, ran out of the room, and came up to the desk, putting us where we’re at in the story now.
The dad eventually came down to the desk. Police took him outside for questioning while they kept the girl in the other room (behind a locked door). At that point it was time for me to go home, but found out a few days later at my next shift that the girl’s mom was out of state, was called about the situation, Disney arranged to have the girl flown home the next day (female DCF rep supervised in the room for the night), and the dad was arrested and trespassed from property and issued a lifetime ban.
Some sneaky cast member I work with had gotten the family’s last name, creeped on their hotel reservation, and discovered the dad had been REGULARLY visiting the pool bar and buying bottles from the hotel gift shop every night. Yay, a drinking problem and anger – what a good mix.
Apparently, the dad also made excuses that the daughter provoked him by hitting him first. Granted she was like 14, so he was just an idiot.
You ever wonder why they don’t sell hard stuff in the Magic Kingdom (well, with the now-exception of Be Our Guest)? Prime example. People get stressed out and lose their cookies on Disney vacations. I’ve dealt with some absolutely insane people. So the fact that this happened at Disney resort doesn’t surprise me at all. What surprises me is that this doesn’t happen MORE often.”
Obscene Gestures Will Definitely Get You Banned
“I have a friend who went to Disney World in Orlando, a few summers ago. For fun, he flipped off the camera on the biggest slope of the ride he was on. Due to no line, he was able to ride the same ride repeatedly without having to get up. The ride began with a slight rise, and then a complete turn around to the first slope. The turnaround was situated directly over the booth that displays and sells your photos after the ride.
After a few passes flipping off the camera, the guy in the booth started yelling up at him to stop as the ride would pass by. Fight The Power! He flipped the camera off even harder. This happened a handful of times until he decided to get off, somehow thinking very little about what he had been doing.
On his way through the ride’s exit, the man at the booth pointed him out, and two security guards took him out of the park and told him never to come back.”
Full Body Elastic Suits Are Apparently Bannable, Even If ‘Every Precaution Is Taken’
“In the summer of 2011, my best friend invited me to go to Disneyland with his family. This was an annual tradition for his family, and this was the third time I had been asked. The reason this time was special because it was likely the last time we would go because we were both leaving town for college, and would likely skip the next family vacations.
The first time we went was a fairly normal trip. We were sophomores in high school becoming juniors and we thought it would be funny to take pictures with as many characters as possible making a pose where we gave two thumbs up and leaned in on either side of the character. The pictures were funny and posted all over Facebook where we got a lot of likes. Not to be outdone by our past selves, we decided to take pictures with even more characters when we went next time. Except there was a twist. We both approached a few girlfriends of ours and asked if they had any orange Soffies. We both got a pair and created ridiculous orange outfits to wear around the park for the day. I had a duct tape orange hat, long-sleeved orange shirt, oranges short shorts, long orange socks, and duck tape orange Iverson basketball sneakers. My friend dressed similarly. We walked around the park all day long getting hollers and girls talking to us. It was great for a couple high school kids going into their junior year. A few park employees asked if we were Dutch.
The third time was the time we got banned. We went to the park dressed in full body elastic suits. Mine was bright pink and my friend’s was sky blue. We had taken every precaution to be unoffensive. We put band-aids over our nips, taped our private parts between our legs, and were generally PG after we got ready. Getting into the park was a non-issue. People were laughing, and we got pictures with guests and characters alike. The only thing we had to do was keep our faces revealed. We decided to do our personal tradition at Disneyland and take a picture at Space Mountain. We knew where the cameras were by the feel of the roller coaster, so we always took hilarious pictures to put on Facebook and show people. Well, we got one trip on the ride and took a glorious picture.
Afterward, two security guards stopped us and asked us what we were doing. We said we just got off Space Mountain and he scoffed and said: ‘That’s not what I mean. You’re what, 14? 13?’ We answered: ‘Uhh… I’m 18 and he’s 17.’ The guard continued this line of questioning for a while before telling us we weren’t welcome in the park. They took down our driver’s license information and walked us out through the back of the park ‘really cool’ telling us we weren’t welcome back.
So that’s how I got banned from Disneyland before I went to college.”
It’s Best Not To Try To Swim To Tom Sawyer’s Island
“For years, it was a tradition for our high school grad night to be held at Disneyland. Apparently, the park would be kept open later than usual for a number of schools around Southern California to let their seniors frolic around. Just like any prom or school event, you had your gaggle of teens that would sneak (or attempt to sneak) in all sorts of contraband.
A few particularly rowdy seniors from my high school somehow managed to smuggle some substances into the happiest place on earth. After doing some in a bathroom, they decided that the absolute best next move would be to go explore Tom Sawyer’s Island. The only problem was that that attraction was closed and no ferries or canoes were making the trip to the island.
The solution: simply jump into the river and swim across. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer landed us a lifetime ban. We’ve been holding our grad nights at Dave and Buster’s ever since. Extreme downgrade.”
Exploring The Secret Tunnels At Disney
“I was really young and always felt invincible, fueled by a comfortable group of friends. We lived in Orlando and a few of my friends worked parking at MGM. Our Disney Days usually began at MGM to get ‘passed in’ by our manager friend’s gold pass.
On one of these Disney Days, I chose to break the fourth wall and venture into the underground tunnel system of Magic Kingdom. For those who haven’t heard, Disney World has an elaborate tunnel system that was created to serve as the back lot, allowing for dressing rooms, food service, vehicle and personnel movement between areas.
My Disney-employed friends knew from their manager where some of the secret tunnel entrances were, and on this day they casually pointed one out.
It was a cartoonish wooden door that didn’t seem functional and it was in full view of a main walking path. ‘Pull on the hinges,’ they said. So I did, to see if it was legit. My friends’ faces were just as surprised as mine when the door opened easily. The hinge was a doorknob and the real hinges on the other side were concealed.
I guess my friends were expecting me to shut the door at this point because just as fast as it opened I made the decision to slip inside and close it behind me. I heard them gasping ‘no-no’ as it closed.
Now I was inside a yellow-lit and completely quiet cement block room with a single steel door opposite me. I went straight to the door and opened it. A stairwell, like any building’s. I counted the levels as a breadcrumb trail in my mind. One. Two. Three. There were no other options but to exit the stairwell at the bottom through another door. Easier than I thought.
Now I was in a narrow hallway. I walked to the very end, only about ten strides, and entered the main artery. This had to be it. I came in through a small spoke but now I was in the hub, wide enough for vehicles. I kept walking and looking for the next spoke to slip into but only found dead ends and locked doors. Now I was getting nervous I’d never find my way back out.
I began to develop my tale of ignorance. ‘Where am I? I’m trying to find my family. Is this the right way to get to Tomorrowland?’ Or maybe I’d fall back on my foolproof ESL method of repeating ‘Switzerland’ and ‘sorry’ while smiling and shrugging.
I was getting deeper into the heart of this park and really alarmed that I hadn’t seen a soul. Any minute now, I thought. I also hadn’t found a side door. Suddenly, it happened. I was face to face with three employees and they were managers. The managers wear the suits. At first, I kept my confident and purposeful pace and they kept theirs, laughing and absorbed in their own conversation. We were headed straight for each other and I thought I was home free. My hair did not conform to cast member standards but I’m below average height so maybe I could have been a character actor.
The three suits stopped dead in their tracks and stared at me. I took a few more steps to ignore it but it became obvious the sham was over. Now I had stopped and we were face to face. Mine was a Cheshire cat and theirs was a nervous terror as if they had never encountered an intruder or pondered what to do with one.
We stood in place for a few seconds, which in silence felt like a minute.
I saw one react by reaching for a walkie-talkie. So still charmingly smirking, I turned around and RAN. I ran SO FAST the dim fluorescent lighting blurred. I have not run faster to this day.
This is when the adrenaline triggered. I did not want to be banned for life from Disney. I didn’t even want to be kicked out for the day. I ran and ran praying that I’d find the right corridor. If I turned down the wrong one I’d lose precious time. I didn’t even know if I was being chased but prudently assumed the whole calvary on electric carts was within reach at my back.
I turned the corner and booked it for the door I came in through. Unlocked! Now I was back in the stairwell. Up three flights. Though the door. Down the room to the other door and WHAM!, I’m struck by the bright sun and loud clammer of the tourist crowd. I slammed the fake Snow White style door behind me and looked around in a frenzy. My friends were right there, having waited. My friends barely had a chance to meet my crazy eyes and ask: ‘What happened?’ before I said: ‘Meet me at the gate,’ and ran directly into the thickest crowd I could find. I stowed away from crowd to crowd and whenever I was alone I’d sit on a bench or face a wall and pretend to lean over to tie my shoe.
Outside the gate, my group reassembled and I explained the adventure. We headed to Epcot. I didn’t feel like a fugitive outside of Magic Kingdom that day, and apparently, I wasn’t.”
Fighting Donald Duck Is A Bad Idea
“I worked for Disney and was there for two bannings.
One was a group of three Portuguese guys who decided that it would be cool to smack Donald Duck in the face when it was time to get their picture taken with him.
The other time, it was at EPCOT, and two guys, after what appeared to be the full circuit around the World Showcase, took off their shirts and ran through the mini maze garden in France. I guess that wasn’t enough, so they started harassing Aurora, who was taking pictures with kids and trying to keep it cool. That’s the only time I used my radio for an actual issue, and I wasn’t quite sure what to say. Security responded surprisingly quickly, and the guys weren’t very hard to corner because they had gone back to doing the maze, and they wouldn’t jump the mini hedges.
Both of those stories ended in lifetime bans, and the Donald Duck whackers actually had charges pressed against them.”
Insiders Trample Unpopular Mickey Mouse
“This happened in the ’70s at Disneyland, as told by a friend of mine, who was an accountant for the park.
That year, the whole band who marched in the parade intensely disliked the cast member who played Mickey Mouse. Apparently, he had a real attitude and was a real diva. After Mickey started leading the parade down Main Street, he tripped hard and fell, so the band members quickly started running past him, leaving him on the ground and angry.
Parents and children started laughing as they watched Mickey trying to catch up with the running band, so he could be in front, again. When they were almost to an employees/only gated area, Mickey hauled off and started punching the tuba player, (the leader of the coup) which ended up in an all-out, legendary brawl.”
An Email Fight That Leads To Some Hard Feelings
“I bought a pass in full just over a year back and enjoyed it for a few months. I had gone enough for it to pay for itself. I was enjoying having a pass again.
Then, about four months after buying the pass, I got an email from Disney saying, ‘You owe $44 for your pass.’ I was confused because I paid for it in full at the park. I basically told them: ‘No I don’t. I paid for it in full. I have proof.’ They answered back saying that I didn’t and that I needed to pay for the pass if I wanted to be allowed in the park. I sent them proof that I paid for it in full and they didn’t respond.
About a month later, I got another email, this time saying I owed $88 for my pass. I said: ‘No! I sent you proof that I paid for the pass. Stop harassing me.’ They didn’t like that, and said: ‘You need to pay the $88 or you are never going to be allowed back in the parks.’
I refused to pay more money, and a month later they sent me another email saying I owed $132. I refused to pay again and sent them the same proof of payment. They said: ‘You are no longer allowed in the parks. You are still required to pay the rest of the money owed for the pass. If you refuse to pay for the pass we will send a third party agency to collect the money.’
I basically said: ‘Bring it, pricks.’ They never sent the third party agency. It’s fine. I’ve been to Disneyland enough for a lifetime. I grew up in SoCal going to Disneyland 20 times a year. It was just a really weird experience. They were unrelenting, even when I presented proof of purchase. They won’t let me in the park… so now I go to Knott’s. Waiting for an email from them.”
Stop Swimming In The Rides, There Is No Faster Way To Get Banned
“According to the friend, he and a few buddies were in college and decided to drink before hitting up the happiest place on earth.
They got there, yadda yadda yadda, one of the friends tripped out during the ship battle of the pirates ride, freaked out and jumped out of the boat thing they were all in. He was wading through the water frantically when one of the cannonball splash effects went off right next to him and he reacted as if he’d actually been hit and dove off to the side. The friends still in the boat were losing their minds and Mr. Gottagetouttahere still hadn’t surfaced. He finally came up like 20 feet away from the boat and like ninjas, Disney security appears and took him away.
After the ride, they went to the security office looking for him and explained it was the guy’s 21st birthday and that he was just really wasted, so they let them all go.”
Haunted Mansion Is Not A Good Place For Substance Abuse
“It was 1995, a friend showed up with controlled substances. We decided it would be a great idea to head to Disneyland.
We got to the park and hit a couple of rides. We took a ride on the Haunted Mansion. I was in the front of our group. I got off and a large cadre of Disney security was waiting there for our group. We’re summarily taken to the backstage area and taken to Disney jail. One by one they started questioning us. They got about four in and must have given up at that point as they just rounded us all up and walked us to the front gate.
As it turns out, the two that got messed up on the ride had a brief moment of clarity upon exiting the ride and handed them off to a third who walked out a different direction. They couldn’t find any contraband, so they just kicked us all out.”
A Bunch Of British Teens Almost Dumps A Couple Into The Water, Gets Banned
“In 1997, my husband and I spent 10 wonderful days at Disney World. I was pregnant with my first child, so I only went on mild rides.
We went on Pirates of the Caribbean quite a few times. One time, a group of very noisy, British teenage males rode with us. They were generally loud and obnoxious in the line, but not as bad as when we got on the ride itself.
They started swearing and singing at the top of their voices. They then started trying to shake the boat and push each other off. I was afraid that they would tip the boat over. My husband told them to knock it off, but they just laughed. All of the sudden, the monitors came on and it was a cast member on the video warning them to knock it off, that they had observed their behavior and would stop the ride and kick them off if they did not settle down.
As soon as the ride stopped, the whole group bolted, but there was a bunch of security people at the end and they caught quite a few. I think maybe two got away. My husband asked what would happen to them and he said the group would be kicked out and banned from the property. We then were walked back to the front of the line with the rest of the people who witnessed this and got to ride again without waiting.”
Kids Take In Contraband, Almost Get An Entire School Banned
“Our high school almost got banned from having our orchestra/band trips there because a couple of guys got caught with substances on Pirates of the Caribbean. Luckily, they ended up only banning those guys for life and giving the rest of us the benefit of the doubt, but I think they must assume that troublemakers come from bad environments or something, so it’s just a matter of time before other students from the same school do something inappropriate as well. Either that or they’re hoping the kids get harassed by their classmates for getting the whole school banned, further punishing them.”