1/17/2018

The Magical World of Strollers

The second most popular question I get about my DCP experience, following "how was Disney," is "what did you do?"

Oh, let me tell you. The technical name for my position was Magic Kingdom Park Arrival Merchandise. But because that's a mouthful, we just called it Magic Kingdom strollers.



Going into this position, I felt really nervous. I remember crying to my mom the night before I moved in because I had no idea what this job was or how I would like it. It appeared to be mostly outside, which concerned me to no end. The probability of being inside was the whole reason I chose merchandise!


However, I soon began to make friends with my coworkers. They became my family, and strollers then became my home for the next five months.


I still haven't answered the question, though. What did I do at my job?



Well, I mostly rented out strollers, wheelchairs, and ECVs (scooters). I also could work at two little gift shops on either side of the train station. Sometimes I would bring out strollers to families. Other times I would put ECVs back in the storage room. I could help people rent ECVs (which mostly meant telling guests that we were out). I might stand out in front of the train station during the end of the day and direct guests where to return their strollers but mostly tell guests how to get to the monorail.


My job involved a lot of diversity and movement that most merchandise locations didn't include. I liked how it kept me moving, changing, and talking. I always got my steps in for the day. It offered on stage positions with lots of guest interaction but also a few backstage positions which gave me a relief from constantly telling people where to find the restroom.




Outside to the left, by City Hall. 

That phrase is engraved on my tongue now. Naturally, we took a picture in front of the restrooms, as shown above.


My job also was perfectly positioned. I got to see almost every guest as they entered and again as they exited. From various positions, I had front row seats to the parades, fireworks, and atmosphere of the park. Watching "Boo to You" for the Halloween party never got old. Crowding around with my coworkers to catch "Happily Ever After" got more magical every time. I felt proud of how I memorized the rhythm and patterns of the fireworks.


The best part of my job, though, was my coworkers. They made me laugh off the hard days, cherish the good days, and wish my days at strollers was longer. We became a family unlike anything I've experienced before. I learned so much from my coworkers, especially the ones that I differed from in personality type. I got to be friends with wonderful people from around the world, and now I really want to travel to new countries and places. The strollers family showed me a bit more of what loyalty, community, and fun look like. I'm so glad we found each other!


My favorite moments of my program were at two in the morning. At the end of the day, after all the guest left the park, we went to get the strollers that guests left behind. All of the Lands (Fantasyland, Frontierland, etc) brought their abandoned strollers to the Hub (right in front of the castle). We simply went to the Hub to bring them back down Main Street and into the train station.


I would stroll down Main Street, which was finally still and peaceful. Ghosts of laughing children and busy moms lingered in front of the store fronts, but right then, it was only me and Main Street. The music still played, as if it was just for me. I saw details on the buildings that I missed in the crowds. I also saw a lot of strollers for me to bring back.


Then I got to the castle. Oh, that view never got old. There she was, tall and beautiful. As I circled the Hub getting strollers, I often got distracted looking at the castle. There wasn't a crowd of people around the castle trying to take selfies. The smoke from the fireworks cleared away. The chaos of Snapchat and Instagram and Facetime disappeared. It was just me and Cinderella's Castle.


Is it weird that I feel as if I know the castle a bit? As if she has a personality that only truly reveals itself after hours? Maybe this is too much of a Toy Story vibe, but nonetheless, I miss the castle more than I miss a lot of other things about Disney. I miss her sparkling lights and sense of wonder. I guess Cinderella's Castle is the flouting lights to my Rapunzel dream.


Those moments of strolling down Main Street and enjoying Cinderella's Castle with just myself and my coworkers were my favorite moments of the program. They made me wonder, laugh, reflect, and cry. They made the hard parts of my job fade away from the lights of my favorite place on earth.


So yeah, that's what I did. It wasn't always glamorous, but it was magical.

Princess Hannah

20 comments:

  1. The Happily Ever After show is so magical I love it!!! (Also the Castle is so darn pretty omgns)

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    1. It gives me the chills every time, and I cry in at least one part every time. That's a lot, considering I watched it several times a week for a few months!

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  2. that sounds so beautiful. wow. It reminds me so much of my time at Wrigley. I had the same wide eyed wonder as you did. and being alone in a place so beautiful...it really doesnt ever get old.
    Im so happy you had such a great experience. Ive never been to Disney before so I really cant imagine what it must have been like

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    1. It really doesn't! And you really must go to Disney!

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  3. That sounds amazing and those pictures are just beautiful!!

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  4. What I would give to push a stack of strollers down an empty Main Street just one more time! Well written Hannah! Hope all is well ✨ -Jeff

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    1. Yes, yes, yes. I'm homesick for the Stroller fam and Cinderella Caste life, but I'm loving being home, too!

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  5. Disney is one of my favorite places in the world, and it's so exciting to hear how it is from a cast member perspective! And to hear that it has the same amount of magic from either side is just lovely. Now, the floating lights during the show at the end of the evening (I forgot the name) is just xDDD

    xoxo Abigail Lennah | ups & downs

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    1. Disney is SO GREAT! It really does have magic even for Cast Members. I am way more in love with Disney now than before I did my program.

      And the show is called "Happily Ever After," and that part... oh, it gets me every time.

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  6. I love all the pictures you have of you at Disney!
    Hi I'm new on your blog!
    Lily @ lilymaesday.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you very much, Lily! And welcome! Your blog is quite cute! I like all of your animal posts and the one about your typical day :)

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    2. I'm really glad you liked my blog!
      ~Lily~

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  7. Walking through the park after dark sounds absolutely magical. :) I'm so glad that you have all of these memories. <3

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    1. It is something that I can never adequately describe. Thank you, Grace, for your constant encouragement and friendship throughout this adventure!

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  8. Magical is the perfect way to describe this post. It's so sentimental and beautiful! I love that you got to have this super cool experience! The photos are so gorgeous and your words were lovely. :)

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    1. I'm so glad to see your name, Erin!!! I've missed you and the blogging world.

      Thank you for your kind words!

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  9. WOW this is awesome - I'm so happy for you to get a chance to experience this. <3

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    1. Why, thank you! It truly was life changing and I highly recommend doing the DCP!

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  10. Hi Hannah! I just have to say, THANK YOU for this blog post. I am doing the DCP Fall 2018, and I received my itinerary today. I spent the whole morning crying because I did not picture myself in this location. However, after reading your post, I am more excited about it! Thank you for helping me turn my outlook on the job around!

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