It’s always a thrill for me to visit Walt Disney World and my last trip was no exception. My entire family had a great time sharing new experiences and making new magical memories that will not only last until our next visit but will last a lifetime. Unfortunately, I also experienced guests behaving badly.
As perfect a place as Disney World is sometimes guests can make it not so perfect. I contemplated long and hard whether or not to write about this because I know I am preaching to the choir. However, this bothered me enough that I had to get it off my chest.
My last Disney trip was in the middle of July which is traditionally a very busy time of year to visit the parks. The day we went to the Magic Kingdom it was unbelievably crowded. I have been to the Magic Kingdom with high crowd levels before but this was Christmas day crowded! Nevertheless it was still manageable.
When day turned into night we got to thoroughly enjoy the Electric Light parade followed by the brilliant Nightastic fireworks. Then as the crowds dispersed I saw something I have never seen before in a Disney park and something I hope to never see again. It was something that gave me a sinking feeling in the bottom of my stomach. I didn’t say a word to anyone nor did I let on what I witnessed because as appalled as I was I didn’t want it to ruin anyone’s night or my own.
I couldn’t believe what I saw covering the ground of Main Street U.S.A. It looked like giant confetti had fallen from a ticker tape parade except this wasn’t confetti. The street was littered with garbage from paper plates, cups, dirty napkins, and leftover food. What boggled my mind was the lack of care these guests had for themselves, the park, other guests, and the cast members whose job is tough enough already.
The cast members work around the clock to keep Walt Disney World in pristine condition. It is a shame that a small percentage of guests in a matter of minutes can do something like this to detract from the beauty of the park. The cast members are on top of things and the garbage is quickly removed but the streets shouldn’t be littered in the first place for them to clean up.
Being on vacation doesn’t give anyone a license to litter. How would those littering in the parks feel if they found garbage strewn all over their front lawn? My guess is most wouldn’t be too happy. So, why is it okay for them to use Main Street as if it were a giant trash bin? If a child sees their parent leaving garbage in the street or conversely a parent doesn’t ask their child to pick up after themselves then what kind of example are they setting?
It also bothers me when I see people in the quick service restaurants finish their meal, get up from the table and leave their tray and garbage for the next guest to clean up. What happened to common courtesy?
One can only hope that the few inconsiderate guests remain just that, a few. I’m very grateful the majority of guests do care, do get it, and do their part to help keep the parks, our parks clean.
Contributed by: Stuart S. (NDD #47). Stuart is our resident Disney geek and creator of Disney Geek Dad.