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Something New

Editor: I would like to welcome Kevin Yee as a guest author. I hope it becomes a regular thing.

“Don’t you ever get sick of it?”

That’s the question that almost always follows the moment when a new acquaintance learns that I visit the Walt Disney World theme parks literally every weekend. The only exceptions occur when I’m speaking with equally rabid (but out of town) Disney fans, who often sigh and wish out loud they could do the same. The truth is, I don’t get sick of it. I’ve been in love with Disney, particularly the parks, for a long time. From 1987-2002 I worked at Disneyland, leading eventually to a book called Mouse Trap that chronicled what it was like to work there. Since 1999 I’ve been writing online columns for multiple websites. And still I tingle with excitement each Friday, when the weekend looms over me like a mini-vacation, beckoning me toward Lake Buena Vista with a mouse-shaped, white-gloved hand.

Many of you reading this don’t get sick of it, either – we are the true believers. And it’s not that we keeping doing the same things over and over again. Einstein defined insanity as repeating the same thing ad infinitum, and yet expecting different results. I would protest to Einstein that it’s not really the same each weekend. We go because it really is different each time, in subtle ways.

Certainly at least every month there’s a new (or dramatically updated) establishment, such as a shop or restaurant. If you’re like me, you’re driven to see it, simply because it’s Disney and it’s new. Less frequent are the new rides and enhancements to the rides, but even those may occur every other month, on average. So there’s lots to do. And that’s not even taking into consideration how enormous these four parks and two water parks are – you could visit twice per week and still not make it to some corners of the parks until six months have passed. Something is definitely new by then.

Take the Orange Bird, the former mascot for the Sunshine Tree Terrace. He disappeared for decades from WDW, but surfaced this summer on T-shirts in Epcot’s America pavilion… though I didn’t notice those shirts until early October.

So not only do I fail to get sick of it, I get actively more excited as time goes by. You would think fandom would stop expanding past a certain point, but with Disney, it never does. After all, “fan” is short for “fanatic.”

I’m excited by the prospect of sharing new things with readers of The Disney Blog (thanks to John for the invitation!) We fans like nothing better than to revel with others in our fandom.

5 thoughts on “Something New”

  1. I don’t think I could ever get sick of Disney and the parks themselves myself, but the one thing I think I could get sick of is the crowds. Until we had annual passes a year ago and finally got to take our time wandering the parks I realized how stressful going to the parks can be for some families. We knew we were coming back and didn’t try to cram everything into 4-5 days or a long weekend of non-stop park open to park close days. To many people, that’s their vision of visiting Disney: the stress, the cramming, the crowds interfering with plans, and the aftermath of a tired family that may need another vacation after coming home from this one. When you have the luxury of returning on a regular basis, the stress is gone, the parks, to me at least, get to be so much more enjoyable.

    The crowds can be annoying though. The seas of people can be stressful, and as a former customer service rep. I know that people just plain suck sometimes and there’s nothing that can be done about it. The crowds are all I could ever get sick of, and honestly, after a while we learned how to avoid them pretty well. Anyways, I can see why people always seem to say that, but I’ll never be sick of the parks either!

  2. I’m a S. California resident and have practically grown up in the parks. I visit the Disneyland Resort and Disney World regularly (sometimes weekly, sometimes less frequently) and agree with you – it never gets old and there’s always something new.

    I love that the parks are ever-changing, but a part of me always feels a bit sad at seeing things go – like the Maliboomer at the California Adventure. I didn’t particularly love that ride, but it was part of the park. However, knowing Disney, something wonderful will take its place and I look forward to whatever that is.

    Great post! I look forward to reading more of your work here.

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  4. Also when people ask you this questions, they’re usually thinking of the rides and attractions. When it comes to true Disney fans, it’s not all about the rides, it’s about the experience and being able to see others enjoy themselves. That’s the true spirit of the Disney Parks.

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