Happy New Year to you all. I came across this article about one of my favorite places and I wanted to pass along these 8 secrets of Disneyland to you as well as eight things you may not know about us. Here we go!
8 things you may not know about GP&C and our team members:
- There really ARE dead bodies in the Haunted Mansion - every year people sneak the ashes of their cremated relatives into the park to stealthily scatter them. A group was caught in the act inside the Haunted Mansion and the ride was immediately shut down. Gross!
- Every night, the park fills up with...feral cats. The Disney employees realized long ago that these cats help control the mouse population. So they place the cats in feeding stations during the day, release them at night, have them spayed or neutered and provide medical care. All of this to make sure the park only contains cartoon mice, not real ones.
- When people realized that cameras were put up to capture the moment they go over the top of Splash Mountain, in a tourists gone wild phenomenon, women starting flashing the cameras leading to many non-G rated photos put on display for all the kids to see at the end of the ride. Park officials created a job for someone to screen all the photos before they go up to make sure no flashers get posted. This took the fun away and the trend stopped. However, to this day, the ride still has its nickname of 'Flash Mountain'.
- Although Walt Disney himself had a mustache, he wanted his employees clean shaven. In their employment agreement, facial hair was forbidden. Once they experimented with changing this rule, only to return to their original ban on facial hair, unless you were hired with a mustache.
- Disney World is actually its own city. The plot of land in Orlando that Disney purchased straddled two counties in Florida which meant navigating the bureaucracies of not one, but two local governments. So, they petitioned to be able to govern their own land, essentially making it's own city. City council meetings are fast and agreeable though as all the board members are park employees.
- The less than magical parts of the park are all painted what Disney calls "Go Away Green", a proprietary color that is designed to make the ugly doors and fences at the park fade into the landscape.
- The Matterhorn ride occupies the bottom two thirds of the actual mountain leaving the top third empty. When employees voted on what to do with that empty space, they decided to put a basketball court up there! The space wasn't big enough to fit a regulation court so they only installed one goal.
- The most shocking secret - there is a speakeasy at Disneyland. Hidden behind a green door in New Orleans Square is one of the park's most exclusive and mysterious attractions, a VIP lounge called Club 33. It was designed by Walt Disney as a secret hideaway for dignitaries and celebrities. Joining this club is quite difficult though, it takes 10 years or so to get off the waiting list, then $10,000 to join and $3,500 each year you are a member. But some say it's worth it to have a place you can ditch the kids for a cocktail at Disneyland!
We hope you have enjoyed this information as much as we did. Have a great month
- Brad Ghaster has five grown kids and three grandkids.
- Thomas Wyatt, one of our painters, is a world class fisherman and professional angler who has caught record breaking fish in Hawaii and Alaska.
- Chuck Harris, one of our veteran foreman who has been here over 25 years, is also a professional musician who has travelled the world playing in a very successful original Native American band.
- Brad also is a musician who has played drums professionally for Carvin Jones, Glen Campbell, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans.
- Kirsten Ghaster has an MBA from ASU and an BA from Occidental College and spent 10 years in Los Angeles testifying in court as an Expert Witness in Economics.
- Brad was given a job painting 25 acres of fences when in 8th grade when he infamously uttered "I will never be a painter".
- Gary Ghaster is a walking sports almanac with an impressive knowledge of all sports factoids, big and small.
- We have painted homes for many famous celebrities, professional athletes and politicians (but our lips are sealed - some secrets you just cannot reveal!)
Brad A. Ghaster