Thomas Caselli

Published: October 18, 2011 at 2:22 PM

#3 is a pet peeve of mine all the time. Here in New Jersey, people pull out in front of me more times then I care to remember. We live on a road that the speed limit is anywhere from 25 to 40. People regularly drive 50 to 60 or faster. There are some roads that it seems like it is a race track all the time. People are always talking or texting on their phones. If you blow the horn at somebody who has done something wrong they either look at you like you are the one with the problem or they give you the finger. I can see your points, but it seems like that is the problem anywhere you go in any situation.
199.184.238.132

Published: October 18, 2011 at 2:41 PM

I've never understood what kind of person really would prefer that every last surface on earth was covered with signs warning one of every conceivable danger.
E Ticket

Published: October 18, 2011 at 4:06 PM

#5 should be #1 :)

I love this article SO HARD.

Anon Mouse

Published: October 18, 2011 at 4:18 PM

This puts the blame on parents. This is unnecessary. Another thing, just because someone enjoys a soft drink does not mean it is abused. Same with everything else. It isn't a good idea to take anything too far. The real issue is whether theme parks contribute any health risks. Yes there are.

1. No decent shady place. Why are many lines out in the open with no shade?

2. Not enough water fountains. Its easy to get dehydrated. Of course, buying a soda is not a good solution and bottled water is way too expensive.

3. Food is too expensive. Should I go hungry? Or eat cheap calories from snacks. That's why I always bring food into the park by hiding it in my backpack.

4. Not sure how safe the rides are. Are they keeping it in good condition. I don't want to lose my limbs in an attraction.

5. Crowds. Why does Disney pack them in? It is unsafe to have people stand so close to each other to watch a parade or fireworks.

6. Standing. Why do they make you wait until the last minute to sit down at the theater? I stopped trying to go longer than 8 hours. I do need to rest a bit.

Safety should be achieved from park design and common sense with crowd control, food service, queue line management, and ride maintenance/safety.

216.175.121.117

Published: October 18, 2011 at 4:28 PM

I agree with most of my points and they do make sense.But some kids do need to be on a leash because they are wanderers. It's better for them to be safe and dry than to be lost or wet. As for the strollers, I don't mind them if the parents don't run over my heels or use them to barrel through crowds. Carriers are probably better but some people have more than one baby.
Mike Gallagher

Published: October 18, 2011 at 5:03 PM

Healthy Tips for specific amusement parks:

Cedar Point: Don't ride Mean Streak

SF Great Adventure: Don't ride Rolling Thunder

Kings Dominion/Carowinds: Don't ride Hurler

Kings Island: Don't ride Vortex

Jacob Sundstrom
Writer

Published: October 18, 2011 at 4:38 PM

"1. No decent shady place. Why are many lines out in the open with no shade?"

It's California. It's Anaheim. You're not going to die because you're out in the Sun; on the contrary, it might just be good for you. Wear a hat, come to the park in the Fall when it isn't so hot outside and your problem is solved.

"2. Not enough water fountains. Its easy to get dehydrated. Of course, buying a soda is not a good solution and bottled water is way too expensive."

I can't speak for other theme parks - but Disneyland has a plethora of water fountains. Just ask a cast member, if they know their area (and they should) they should be able to point you in the right direction.

"3. Food is too expensive. Should I go hungry? Or eat cheap calories from snacks. That's why I always bring food into the park by hiding it in my backpack."

Yes, the food is too expensive. Pack a cooler, get a locker, problem solved.

"4. Not sure how safe the rides are. Are they keeping it in good condition. I don't want to lose my limbs in an attraction."

This.. just no.

"5. Crowds. Why does Disney pack them in? It is unsafe to have people stand so close to each other to watch a parade or fireworks."

It's actually perfectly safe. As someone who has performed a LOT of guest control for Fantasmic! and fireworks, I've NEVER seen a guest injured because of high crowds - unless they start a fight with another guest, which happens more than it should. If you're not a fan of crowds - come when the parks are less busy. Weekdays, for one, would serve you well.

"6. Standing. Why do they make you wait until the last minute to sit down at the theater? I stopped trying to go longer than 8 hours. I do need to rest a bit."

I'm really not sure what you're referring to here, but I know that in the case of Fantasmic, guests are asked to stand to make room for as many guests as possible.

"Safety should be achieved from park design and common sense with crowd control, food service, queue line management, and ride maintenance/safety."

And for the most part, it is. What Robert is getting at is that since most of those things are taken care of, the parents should take some responsibility AS WELL for their safety. He's not saying it's "all on the parents" - on the contrary, he's saying that parents should control what they can for their kid's safety.

N B

Published: October 18, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Lead poisoning.... I doubt it. I'm pretty sure a Butterbeer is more dentrimental to your health than an entire week's worth of lead exposure at a theme park.

I had at least 7-8 of them.... :)

Anon Mouse

Published: October 18, 2011 at 5:42 PM

"Problem solved" You could have said the same thing from the original post. As for your solutions, sun exposure happens all year around. Problem not solved. Food is expensive. I already said I put it in my backpack. Lack of water fountains is a problem especially if your in line for over an hour, which is common at Disneyland. I wish they would do every a favor by charging bottled water more cheaper than sodas. Ride safety... it's completely wrong to be complacent with their track record. Animal Kingdom had a death recently. Crowds can be very scary at times especiallyat night after a show. Jams and inconsiderate guestsand inattentive cms can worsen a situation.
Skipper Adam

Published: October 18, 2011 at 7:52 PM

Anon,

Are you referring to the cast member who died because he was in the way of a moving vehicle? Because that's nobody's fault other than his.

Water fountains are in abundance. If not enough for you, I would consider the use of a bottle. They're nifty little inventions.

I have to agree, compared to most of the country who's weather is far worse than CA's, there are a lot of outside space. But, nothing sunscreen, a hat and going at night can't solve.

As for the crowds...unless it's a protest that goes violent, Disney crowds are mild in intensity, if you want to call it that. I don't see how the crowds are dangerous themselves.

I have to agree that parents who make the mistake have the family drink soda over water is bad, and a mistake I've seen more often than I should in the park.

As for the food, just don't eat there. Disneyland especially, is easy to leave for a cheaper meal. But I would never call expensive food dangerous. But any venue, from restaurants, to theaters to stadiums to county fairs, the price of food is usually higher.

Joshua Counsil

Published: October 18, 2011 at 8:45 PM

Completely agree, Robert. I moved to the United States recently to start a new job. I've been living out of a hotel for 3 weeks because I don't yet have an apartment, meaning I've been eating out a lot. Despite working out 4 times per week (and it's a strenuous workout, definitely more than you'd burn walking around a theme park for 12 hours), limiting myself to one soft drink per week, and completely avoiding fast food (except for two instances where I ate pizza), I've already put on 5 to 10 lbs. That's ludicrous.

America's number one health concern right now is obesity. It's an epidemic. People are not dying in masses because of unsafe rides or standing in the heat or lead poisoning. They're dying from lack of exercise and proper diet.

For the past several years, we've seen amazing advances in theme park entertainment technology, crowd control systems, and lodging availability. What we're not seeing, and what should be the biggest concern and what I'm most concerned about, is a substantial availability of good food. If the number one cause of death in the United States was heat stroke, we'd see an increase in indoor, air-conditioned queues. Instead, the number one cause of death is heart disease, yet how many theme parks are offering healthier dining options? Hell, Holiday World gives out soda for free! Dining options need to change.

Dominick D

Published: October 18, 2011 at 9:45 PM

Im disgusted when I see children on child leashes. At MNSSHP, the leashes were literally sewn into some kids costumes!
Anon Mouse

Published: October 18, 2011 at 10:28 PM

Skipper Adam: "Are you referring to the cast member who died because he was in the way of a moving vehicle? Because that's nobody's fault other than his."

That's not what the government said. "Disney Cited for Safety Violations" "Fined $69,000 in total by OSHA, Walt Disney World was issued a “serious” citation"

http://www.diszine.com/content/primeval-whirl-to-reopen-this-weekend-disney-cited-for-safety-violations


"Water fountains are in abundance. If not enough for you, I would consider the use of a bottle. They're nifty little inventions."

Yes, I do that because Disney sells bottled water at the same prices as their overpriced sodas. Goodness, another problem that I solved on my own. Nice to tell what I already do.


"I have to agree, compared to most of the country who's weather is far worse than CA's, there are a lot of outside space. But, nothing sunscreen, a hat and going at night can't solve."

Thank you for telling me what I already do. HOWEVER, I must point out that Disney's rides are known for having extremely long lines that are easily over one hour long for their most popular rides. Even with a hat, it would be easy to get overheated. Disney needs to provide more shaded areas for waiting. Otherwise, they would be negligent. Next.

"As for the crowds...unless it's a protest that goes violent, Disney crowds are mild in intensity, if you want to call it that. I don't see how the crowds are dangerous themselves."

You don't acknowledge what I said. So when large crowds congregate and people are having trouble exiting at the same time all many locations and causing traffic jams, this doesn't pose a safety risk? It is not mild when compared to other theme parks.

"I have to agree that parents who make the mistake have the family drink soda over water is bad, and a mistake I've seen more often than I should in the park."

Like I already said, it isn't a problem for drinking soda once in a while, but Disney sure makes it seem like that's all you can buy.

"As for the food, just don't eat there. Disneyland especially, is easy to leave for a cheaper meal. But I would never call expensive food dangerous. But any venue, from restaurants, to theaters to stadiums to county fairs, the price of food is usually higher."

I already said I bring things in my backpack. Do I need to remind you again? I didn't say it was dangerous. That is an unfortunate way of distorting my post. You can easily review up above.

Brandon Mendoza

Published: October 18, 2011 at 10:27 PM

There are a lot of people who forgot how to parent and just want Disney and other people to take responsibility for everything. America is fat. I gained 10 lbs over a span of 2 years thanks to an office job. My own fault. Not the office. Not my boss. My own. I bruised my foot at the gym because I accidentally kicked a weight I was using. MY fault, not the gym's.

Yes, food is expensive when you go out. They're out to make money, not be a charity. Send them a message by not eating their food. Or spend the extra money because you saved up for the trip to Disney or whatever restaurant you're at.

People need to slow down while driving. Driving 90 vs. 65 doesn't save you as much time as you think. Check with a GPS unit... the ETA isn't shortened by much. Plus gas mileage goes significantly down at higher speeds. Not to mention, people don't understand how long it takes to stop a moving vehicle.

Entitlement... it's what a lot of people have a sense of. And they forget manners. Cussing up a storm in front of 5 year olds, shoving people out of the way... I'm not saying people should be like the Brady Bunch, but why is it so difficult for people to have common courtesy?

And again, let kids be kids. Don't let them be totally out of control, but let them play and explore. My $0.00002

Anon Mouse

Published: October 18, 2011 at 10:53 PM

A Disney style park is least equipped to allow kids to explore. I would suggest Legoland instead. Disney parks are more suited to a wait in line and listen to instructions spiels. It is hardly about education. It is pure passive entertainment.

As for books, a trip to Disney is really a vacation. I don't see how mixing education and entertainment is particularly useful. Disney can spark imagination and it has inspired millions, but I don't think I will be reading to them unless I need closed captioning.

Christy Hall

Published: October 19, 2011 at 5:45 AM

Well said, Brandon. I agree 100%. The sense of entitlement and "it's someone else's fault" in this country is ridiculous and scary! You are responsible for yourself and your kids. Plain and simple.
Skipper Adam

Published: October 19, 2011 at 7:28 AM

I never buy drinks at any of the Disney parks. I carry an aluminum Mickey bottle that I refill at drinking fountains and I ask for free cups of ice water. Yes, that's right, free cups of Ice water. So water is cheaper at Disney.

As for the crowd nonsense, the crowds exiting can be dispersed in case of an emergency. There isn't one and only exit for guest, just one for regular use. If you feel trapped in Disney crowds, I wouldn't go.

OSHA has a habit of fining for the littlest things. However, he was breaking Disney procdure when it comes to working with coasters (I know since I work at a Disney caster). This doesn't reflect at all Disney's ride safety track record for guest. The number on cause of death at Disney theme parks is....wait for it....natural causes, and mostly at the hotels during sleep. The second would be...natural causes while on a ride they don't belong on (I've seen this at Space) and then the third highest cause of injuries....stupid guest not following the rules.

Whenever I don't follow safety procedures and get hurt at Space Mountain because there isn't railing between me and the track, don't use it as an example for guest's safety. It was all me being stupid.

I agree, putting the blame on anyone else for simple things is a sign of a society that is turning extremely selfish.

Skipper Adam

Published: October 19, 2011 at 7:11 AM

I never buy drinks at any of the Disney parks. I carry an aluminum Mickey bottle that I refill at drinking fountains and I ask for free cups of ice water. Yes, that's right, free cups of Ice water. So water is cheaper at Disney.

As for the crowd nonsense, the crowds exiting can be dispersed in case of an emergency. There isn't one and only exit for guest, just one for regular use. If you feel trapped in Disney crowds, I wouldn't go.

I agree, putting the blame on anyone else for simple things is a sign of a society that is turning extremely selfish.

Skipper Adam

Published: October 19, 2011 at 7:20 AM

Sorry about the double post....
65.170.41.5

Published: October 19, 2011 at 7:43 AM

Love the article. On my last trip to the park, for the first time I really took notice of how many parents were behaving badly. Folks cursing under their breath while scolding the kids, or losing their tempers and yelling "WHAT??" at an inquisitive kid. I saw multiple people really let their crabbiness from a tiring day get the better of them, and in the process, set a bad example for (and shamed/humiliated) their children.
Joshua Counsil

Published: October 19, 2011 at 10:06 AM

Of course there's a sense of entitlement. We're paying big money to attend these theme parks - hell, Disney alone probably has a year's worth of salary from me - and we therefore have the right to demand better food, among other things.

For the past couple of years, people on this site have constantly complained that the Yeti is broken on Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom. Are the consumers entitled to these opinions? Absolutely! They paid for a working ride, they deserve a working ride. In the same light, if I paid for a full day of fun, I expect to have decent dining options available yet most parks don't comply. Not everyone wants to make their own meals while on vacation, so healthy options should be available in the parks. That to me is much more important than one broken component of one ride at one park.

Brandon Mendoza

Published: October 19, 2011 at 2:41 PM

I totally agree that we have the right to demand better food and quality show in all attractions and atmosphere in the parks. But it's all relative... one person may never buy anything in amusement/ theme parks. The next person may not have the same view of the price of food and beverages in the parks and will spend their money like there's no tomorrow. Is that the average person? Probably not.

I don't know what DLR's daily electric bill is... water bill... phone bill... the parks don't make money per attraction like they used to, so charging high prices for food and drinks is expected. They gotta pay their cast members somehow right? Ticket prices alone don't do that.

But the one way to make a statement other than complaining to City Hall about food quality is by not buying it. Their bean counters will take notice and hopefully if the customer complaints are heard as well, they can put two and two together instead of laying off cast members.

But I'm talking more of "I'm an American, so I DESERVE to have (insert anything you can think of) regardless of how it affects everyone else. I'm the only important person here. I have the right to not wait in an hour line because you're not running your lines the way they should be."

Yes, everyone has the right to be safe in a theme park. But if this lawsuit has no grounds, then those people just wasted taxpayers' money by bringing it to court.

Jacob Sundstrom
Writer

Published: October 20, 2011 at 12:37 PM

Brandon Mendoza for president.
Joshua Counsil

Published: October 20, 2011 at 8:37 PM

Good points, Brandon, but I'm not talking about the right to quick queue times. I'm talking about health. Theme park attendees make a fuss about having properly located and enforced smoking areas. Companies comply because it's a health concern. So why, then, do they not offer healthy dining options?
Brandon Mendoza

Published: October 20, 2011 at 8:42 PM

Touche Joshua! Better choices of food would make Disneyland one of the best places to visit AND eat healthy foods. Disney's a leader in Theme Parks, so why not lead in that way even if it means making a little less profit but promoting a healthy customer?
Joshua Counsil

Published: October 21, 2011 at 12:47 PM

Oh, I doubt they'd lose too much profit. They might even make more. As of now, I cook my own breakfast and bring my own lunch to the theme parks, occassionally splurging on a table service restaurant at night. However, if the parks offered better dining options, I'd be more inclined to eat at the parks.
99.11.23.63

Published: October 23, 2011 at 5:33 PM

Disneyland: Don't go on Indiana Jones
66.143.47.19

Published: October 23, 2011 at 6:21 PM

Thank you Skipper for finally adding that cups of water are FREE at Disney, all you have to do is ask. Any where you can get a fountain drink you can get water.

Here is a great suggestion for food at Disney, since they generously allow food in... Quesadillas... Doesn't take up much space, kids don't complain the bread is squished, doesn't need heating or cooling, protein and carb combo that keeps moods/spirits/energy high. We always stay at a house, so it is easy to make the night prior. But can be microwaved or done on a stove top.

Hats... Sunday Afternoon's Hats are AWESOME for the parks. We call them our portable shade and we have more folks commenting on them than anything else.

As far as the lead, that is easy, stop licking the stained glass windows.

Ron French

Published: October 23, 2011 at 7:47 PM

I used to think leashes on children were cruel. But after taking a 3 1/2 year old grandson to a theme park who was a runner, they are sometimes necessary for their safety and our peace of mind.
70.41.207.152

Published: October 24, 2011 at 10:14 AM

Okay, so most of what was listed is good but you took it too far. A visit to a theme park is not a life style, it's a time to break out of that life style. Let your hair down and enjoy. In my oppion there is absolutely nothing wrong with junk food for the day especially if it's explained that it's a special treat. As for strollers and "leashes" they are needed items - FOR THE SAFETY OF THE CHILD. You can allow them to run and play at appropriate times but there are times when children need to be restrained especially in large crowds. Teaching children proper manners to be used at all times is important especially around large crowds.