Stories Behind the Scenes

Disney Security

From: Wade 02 MAY 06

I was at Disneyland two weeks ago and was able to witness Walt Disney's "Parade of Dreams". By far, the best parade I've ever seen. Anyway, my best friend and I would always stake our same spots at both showings of the parade for the three days that we were in the park. Well we never moved and it got to the point where certain characters in the parade began to notice and point us out in the crowd. This ranged from Peter Pan to the Mad Hatter. We felt very special and everyone would look at us like we were something special when the characters went out of their way to say hi. As stated above, we were in the same spot everyday for every showing and began to strike up a conversation with one of a few people who can be seen walk around Main Street up to an hour before the parade starts. This Cast Member's name was "Dick". Dick quickly became someone we spoke with everytime he saw us. Dick would walk away from whatever he was doing to greet us and talk to us about what we had done and where we were going to go. He even went so far as to tell us (after the fifth time of seeing the same parade in the same spot) that Disneyland should paint two stars that would be for us only. But I still don't know what he does. He wore an all brownish/khaki colored Detective-like uniform and walked around slowly, in certain areas of Main Street not talking to anyone unless approached. I only saw three of these people... are they some type of security? Anyway, try and meet Dick if you get the chance.

From: Ben 23 FEB 02

I'm a fairly frequent (at least 7 times a month) visitor to Disneyland, so I tend to get bored occasionally and try new things on my favorite rides. One thing I'd been doing for awhile was after both drops in Pirates of the Caribbean, putting my feet up on the seat and leaning back to relax and enjoy the pirates. Well, I learned there's a hidden camera in the first skeleton cave, because I timed my getting comfortable a bit wrong, and ended up hearing (of all things) "PLEASE REMAIN SEATED! THIS IS FOR YOUR SAFETY!" over the loudspeaker. The people in front of me turned around, and I just shrugged. I still wonder why they thought I was climbing OUT of the boat...

From: anon 14 AUG 00

A friend of mine had an annual pass to Disneyland and went there very often. He said once he saw a group of people engage in a gang fight and pulled out knives. Within moments he said, a group of Japanese-looking tourists complete with flags and huge fanny packs pulled out handcuffs from the packs and detained the gang members. So, think twice when you see a group of tourists at Disneyland.

From: Kevin Hainline 18 JUN 00

My fifth grade science teacher was a great guy, with a strange addiction to ducks, and a Disney Mickey watch. Little did I know that he was a plainclothes security guard! On a trip to Disneyland with my friend Kenny (these trips were so much fun, because we would always do something strange and unusual, find the coldest drinking fountain, see how fast we could step in all of the lands, etc etc etc) we were walking down Main Street towards the Magic Shop when Mr Mcfann, our teacher steps out, to our surprise. My eyes widened. "Mr Mcfann?" I gasped. He looked at me and smiled, and we talked for a half hour about his job. He didn't have to have the second job, but he enjoyed it a whole bunch. It was kind of scary seeing a teacher outside of school and at Disneyland working was a double whammy! Oh, and my mother saw the person who played Gomez in the original Addams Family when she was 10 behind her in the Autopia line.

From: Andy Hicks 03 MAY 99

I hear some people (I have to admit, even myself sometimes) complain about the high prices at Disneyland, but what everyone has to remember, is a lot of that money must go behind the scenes to things the normal law-biding tourist doesn't even see. Case and point- I was in Disneyland last weekend (May 1-2) in line for the Matterhorn. Then out of the blue, a gentleman walked up to some kids who looked like they were playing with some merchandise that they didn't buy. (Of course, I don't know this for sure, but they did look pretty nervous when you'd look in their general direction, like they were looking around trying to hide what they had, yet play with it at the same time) Anyhow, the gentleman, looked like an average tourist who approached them almost like they were related. He spoke very softly and very inconspicuosly to these kids, and if it wasn't for the fact that I was directly behind these kids in line, I would have never known it was a Disney plain clothes security guard. All I heard him say to the kids was something like, "I'm (whoever). I'm plain clothes security, here's my ID, I need you kids to follow me." And they did. The incredible thing was too, was when he flashed his ID, he palmed it, so no one ever knew what was going on, other than the kids involved. The entire situation was over within seconds, the kids followed a uniformed security officer, who appeared on the scene, out of line. My Dad didn't even know what was going on, until I explained it to him. That was perhaps the most professional way of dealing with trouble-makers I'd ever seen. They didn't make a big deal out of it, no one knew what was going on, and the plain clothes security guy fit in as a tourist PERFECTLY!! You would never know by looking at him that he was a security guard. He was dressed perfectly and the situation was handled perfectly. So while you might complain about high prices, just remember how incident free your visits to the Magic Kingdom usually are.

From: Eric Fiebig 04 FEB 99 Graduation Clock

About those cameras in Pirates... I was there for a Grad Night party for my high school, it went all night, and I guess they turned up security to keep us hooligan seniors in line. Anyway, I was being a hooligan senior in POTC cause I reached out, pushed against the wall to make the boat bump against the other side (why? i don't know..) and the booming voice of reason came over the PA and said, "DON'T PUSH THE WALLS. KEEP YOUR HANDS IN THE BOAT!" They were watching me. Creepy.

From: anon 26 AUG 97

I am 18 and have nothing but good experiences with Disney Security. My boyfriend and I took my car for a day at the park and by 11:00, my car was totally dead. Security calmed me down and offered every bit of assistance that they could. They even started to fix my car (which needed a new alternator). The only problems I have had are with Car Care. Security even let me keep my car there in the parking lot for three days without threatening to tow it.

From: Al St. Germain 02 APR 97

My high school English teacher for my sophomore year was and still is to my knowledge the head of security at Disneyland. He is notorious at school for being the toughest teacher, and we could only imagine that he took the same attitude to his job at Disneyland. Nevertheless, he was always very mysterious about it, but he did admit to us that on one or more occasions he had run into students at work. However, one of the other English teachers did tell us that he was the victim of pranks played by his own staff, one of which was filling his entire car with styrofoam peanuts.

From: David Vaughnn 27 AUG 96

As a normal inquisitive kid growing up in Huntington Beach I had an enormous imagination and fondness for Disneyland. (Parenthetical Note: Once when I was an undergraduate at Arizona a friend asked me how many times I had been to Disneyland... I asked him how many times he went to the bathroom last month.) One occasion about 6 neighbor kids & I went for the day. We were about 10 years old. Some of the kids were of the bad-influence-type. So, we get on the "bucket-ride" (that's what everyone called the Skyway) and my aforementioned associates began their saliva assault on the unsuspecting guests below. Needless to say, we got busted. First mistake. Upon exiting in Tomorrowland, a very serious security type pulled us off to the side, "OK. WE GOT YOU ON CAMERA. PLEASE FOLLOW ME." We went down the back stairs to the behind-the-scenes area. I was both in complete dread fearing they would call my mom and utter amazement at seeing all the off-limits stuff. So the security type asks if we were there with our parents. The leader of our group lied and said yes. Second mistake. So the security type continues to lead us around backstage and give us a hard time for about a half hour, "I DON'T KNOW WHETHER I SHOULD TURN YOU OVER TO THE ANAHEIM POLICE, OR THROW YOU OUT OF THE PARK. WHERE ARE YOUR PARENTS NOW?" Well, the associate (who was a quick thinker) says that we are going to meet them at The Castle at 3:00. Third mistake. So the security type lets us back into the park somewhere about midway down the east side of Main Street. He tells us "YOU WILL WAIT AT THE CASTLE FOR YOUR PARENTS AND YOU WILL IN NO CIRCUMSTANCE GO ON ANY MORE RIDES WITHOUT THEIR SUPERVISION. WE WILL BE WATCHING YOU CONSTANTLY ON CAMERA TO MAKE SURE." So, we end up walking around for the next half an hour and get bored. So, the brainchild figures now it is safe to go on a ride. I protest to no avail. So, we head back to Tomorrowland to go on the Autopia (Cars). I refuse to join them, but they insist and threaten to beat me up. So here I am last in line. I swear the guy taking D tickets (Yes, they took tickets!) gives me this I-know-something- you-don't look as I pass. So here I am in the last car. I am extremely nervous and I am driving my car down the track. Well, one of the things they do on this ride is make sure there are enough spaces to park on exiting the ride before they let you drive-up to the loading area. There are some controls for the hosts (Autopia authority types) on the right side of each car which over-rides your control of the vehicle. Needless to say (and un- beknownst to me), there are only enough spaces for the guys in the cars in front of me to park. So the Autopia authority type walks 20 yards back up the track and picks me out. "YOU. STOP RIGHT THERE. HOLD ON." Convinced now that I was going to spend the night in jail, it was too much for me. I couldn't stop crying! (That's okay, I'm laughing now.) So the guy says, "THAT'S IT. I'M TAKING YOU IN."

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