California Archives | Page 10 of 22 | Uncle Walt's Insider
The face of indentured servitude? Photo by Dinosaur918 [CC BY-SA 4.0] via Wikimedia Commons

Unpaid house elves working at Universal’s Wizarding World

Guests describe the place as magical, but does it operate using slave labor? UNIVERSAL CITY, CA -- For Harry Potter fans, a visit to "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter" is almost like actually being a part of the magical world of J.K. Rowling's books and the resulting movies. But Uncle Walt's Insider now reveals a dark secret lurking out of sight at Universal Hollywood: the park apparently has hundreds of house elves working in secret, for little or no pay. A legacy ... Read more
A few of the remaining functional cars at Tomorrowland Speedway. Photo by Theme Park Tourist [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Car #19 breaks down at Autopia and Speedway on the same day

Is this a sign of maintenance issues at the parks? ANAHEIM, CA and WALT DISNEY WORLD, FL -- Uncle Walt's Insider has learned that Car #19 at the Tomorrowland Speedway in Magic Kingdom, and Car #19 at the Autopia in Disneyland Park recently broke down on the same day. Although the two attractions are run separately from each other, it is a curious coincidence. Uncle Walt's reached out to Tom "Click" Tappet, Supervisor of Maintenance at the Magic Kingdom Park, who told us, ... Read more
Summer heat.

Theme parks in summer: tips for beating the heat

Forget hi-tech towels and misting fans -- Uncle Walt's Insider tells you the best ways to stay cool. UNCLE WALT'S HQ -- As we approach the summer months, theme park visitors will soon be dealing with high temperatures (except at Universal Studios Idaho, of course). Although many travel sites provide tips for staying cool, Uncle Walt's brave correspondents aren't afraid to think outside the box when it comes to heat-busting ideas. [Ed.: Some aren't even aware there is a box, Ub.] Here are some tried and ... Read more
News Brief - Disneyland. Inset photo by Tuxyso [CC BY-SA 3.0] via Wikimedia Commons.

Disneyland to close during the summer

Travel agents are scrambling to adjust their clients' vacation plans. ANAHEIM, CA -- Guests with plans to visit the Disneyland Resort this summer may be shocked to find the park closed. Disney Parks and Resorts has released a statement that both Disneyland Park and Disney's California Adventure will be closed to guests daily during the months of June, July, and August, which are among the twelve busiest months of the year for the parks. According to the release, the closures will occur daily ... Read more
Teodor shows off his cast member name badge. Photo adapted from NameTagMuseum.com.

Disneyland cast member certified in non-existent language

"I thought it came with extra pay." ANAHEIM, CA -- It's not uncommon to see cast members at Disney parks in the United States with an addition to their name badge indicating their fluency in a language other than English. But Teodor Kennard, a custodial cast member at Disneyland Park, is the only cast member able to speak Êçeþadüàño, and with good reason -- the language does not exist. "It's this gibberish thing my brother Trevor and I made up when we were ... Read more