There are a variety of rumors and legends, ghost stories and true life strange-happenings that come from the Happiest Place on Earth. You’ll find that not everything is always as it seems, because some of these weird stories are actually true! Some are false as well, but they are worth mentioning, because a lot of people think they are true and I am here to prove them wrong! So here are the Top 5, True and False, Urban Legends of Disney Parks!
5. Haunted Mansion was closed shortly after opening because a guest suffered a heart attack from how scary it was!
As it goes, the Haunted Mansion attraction in Disneyland was closed shortly after opening somewhere between it’s facade appearance in 1962 and it’s official known opening date in August 1969. A guest climbed aboard the brand new Doom Buggy as the ghost host voice boomed out of no where. The ride began and the shrieking heads, singing busts, floating eyes, and dancing ghosts were all too much for him. He had a heart attack and Disney Imagineers realized the attraction was just too scary, closed it down, and did a whole remodel to tone it down.
This legend has been proven false.
The true story: It is not ridiculous for this story to have risen. The reason is, in 1961 fliers for this new Haunted House attraction started getting handed out around Disneyland. Guests were ready for it, and could see the facade of the building for years… and years… Really, due to a variety of factors (mainly Walt’s tragic death and the NY World’s Fair) the project took waaay longer than originally planned and didn’t open until 8 years later! Guests started rumors to explain why it was taking so long, so the story became a legend. Note that minor refurbishments to “tone down” any scary features happened gradually over the course of the attraction’s history!
4. There’s a basketball court in Disneyland’s Matterhorn
The blueprints for Matterhorn proved it was to be so tall that it violated Anaheim city ordinances in regards to height. Walter Disney and his clever ways found a loophole: there was no restriction on how tall you needed to build as long as it was a sports facility! So, he through a basketball “arena” in the very top and, voila, it met the requirements!
This one is true! There is a basketball court!
The ordinance wasn’t real, Disney just wanted a place for his cast members to wind down!
3. Disney Parks have a dress code
It may be obvious that Cast Members and other employees of Disney have to follow a dress code, but did you know guests are expected to follow one as well? Girls and Women are not allowed to wear their bathing suit tops and/or bottoms without anything covering them, men and women must keep their shirts on at all times, no clothing that is excessively torn is allowed, no wedding attire, and no one over young-child-age can dress like a character! All guests are to wear clothing free of profanity or naughty images. What’s even worse, in the earlier years men were denied entry to the parks if they had LONG HAIR! Whaaaat!? There are also dress codes for certain restaurants, the pool, and sports type arenas.
This one is ACTUALLY true!!
Though men and women with all types of alternative looks are allowed access to the parks, they weren’t always! But please, even if they aren’t enforcing it, at least keep yourself decent – this is a family friendly park after all.
2. The black square of windows on the Swan and Dolphin can be removed to accommodate a future monorail path from Epcot to Hollywood Studios
In order to have options in the future, the blueprints for the Swan and Dolphin resorts were purposely built with empty space directly in the middle, defined by a large black square with fake windows directly in the center of the resort hotels facades. This way, when it comes time to build the monorail, they will simply slide these sections out and install the track!
There is much evidence proving this to be false. Or at least, no evidence to prove it true.
There are actually normal hotel rooms within these black sections. Now, that’s not to say they would cut those out to add a monorail, but there is no evidence to suggest that was in the original plans of the buildings and there are no plans to do it now!
1. You cannot be declared dead within Disney parks, even if you literally die on Disney property
Disney made it so that you technically aren’t declared dead until your body leaves their property. Because of this, no one can be declared dead within the Disney parks, and the Walt Disney Company takes full advantage of this by using it as a method to draw people to the parks.
This one is so freakin’ false!
Multiple guests and Cast Members have died, and been acknowledged to have been dead, within Disney Park property. People who have died due to something other than a preexisting, expected cause have usually died doing something stupid. Swimming across the Rivers of America, standing while a ride vehicle is in motion, trying to climb over and switch your ride vehicles on the People Mover, and climbing aboard the monorail track to sneak into the park. Of course, there were some undetermined faults in regards to some of the deaths, and some that could or could not have been Disney’s fault, like the 2003 derailment of on of the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad trains. This was deemed “due to improper maintenance,” and one man died, while others were injured.