SOME MORE NOT SO SECRET (DISNEY SECRETS) YOU NEVER KNEW, PART 2
By now, if you’ve followed my posts, you know that I’ve been to Disney Parks my entire life and have had the honor of working with them behind-the-scenes in production. (I swear I am one shoe away from calling Cinderella Castle my home). Speaking of behind-the-scenes there are a lot of things to know when visiting the parks besides long lines and popcorn buckets.
On the heels of my son’s birthday and of course another trip to celebrate at Disney – I thought it would be fun to cover another post on Disney “secrets.”
If you missed the first post, please visit to read about some fun things you may not know.
One of the unique things about Disney are the hidden Mickeys. But let’s clarify: those Mickey waffles, do not count as “hidden Mickeys.” So, what classifies an actual hidden Mickey?
They are three circles forming the shape of a Mickey Mouse head or seen as a silhouette or even an entire Mickey that is disguised into a design where you’d least expect it. On our recent stay at Disney’s Grand Floridian, we noticed them in places we hadn’t during our first visit. Look up, look down, look all around. You will start to see the Mouse everywhere but it’s not a hallucination. Even the ones you think are a coincidence, or are they?
- Look up, look down, they’re all around. When you think you see it you don’t, or you see more than one.
- When you cruise through Germany’s Pavillion at EPCOT, grab a pretzel and look closely at the bell. (I had a rough time finding it at first, especially after making it halfway around the world, IYKYK). Let us know if you find it!
- When you’re driving into the Magic Kingdom, turn on your GPS, you’ll see a familiar shape in the landscape.
- If you happen to ride Aerosmith’s Rock’n’Roller Coaster at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, check out the cables on the floor during the pre-show.
- Where there is water, there are docks, and you may see some ferry boat ropes tied in Mickey shapes on several docks.
SOME HISTORY BEHIND THE HIDDEN MICKEYS
Allegedly, it all started as an inside joke early on with Disney Imagineers and soon after became a park tradition. The history of Hidden Mickeys can be traced back to when Imagineers were designing EPCOT in the late 1970s. The Walt Disney Company decided that EPCOT would be a more adult-friendly park which included the sale of alcohol. They concluded that alcohol and Disney characters were not the best combination, so it was decided that none of the Disney characters would make cameos at EPCOT at the time. Imagineers started including hidden Mickeys in design elements of that park. However, as the park became more popular, Guest opinion led Disney to eventually include characters in EPCOT. Thus, the tradition was born. Today, hidden Mickeys have been integrated by Imagineers into every design and construction to date. Sometimes, they’re so obvious they’re easy to miss.
OTHER FUN “SECRETS”
- At Pirates of the Caribbean, if you ask a Cast Member at the souvenir shop, they will point out Barbosa’s sword.
- To stay within theme with that time period era, Liberty Square in Magic Kingdom has no bathrooms. (So make sure to go before you go!)
- We haven’t tested this one yet, but plan to when we go next week. Supposedly, most Cast Members at Walt Disney World can tell you where the bathroom is in 14 languages.
- If you feel a rumble under your feet, it’s not your imagination. The Magic Kingdom is actually elevated, originally because of Florida’s high-water table, and there are tunnels “underground” that are actually ground level. They are referred to as “utilidors” and designed for Cast Members and service workers to move about from location to location unseen by parkgoers so that the Magic for Guests is not disrupted.
- That said, the park is built on the second story, giving the Magic Kingdom an elevation of 108 feet.
SO MANY SECRETS, SO LITTLE TIME
- EPCOT’s Spaceship Earth weighs approximately 16 million pounds. (Close to what I weigh after a day of eating and drinking my way around the world at the park).
- For any Beauty & The Beast fans, in the song Be Our Guest you’ll hear the lyrics, “try the grey stuff, it’s delicious!” You can actually order the dessert at the restaurant inside the park.
- I learned this one while actually working behind the scenes with Disney production. Walt Disney World never discloses actual numbers, like “how many hot dogs are consumed in a day at the parks” or “how many sodas sold” or the number of Guests in attendance. If you see those numbers pop up on blogs, they are guesstimates.
- The movers you ride on in Haunted Mansion are dubbed “doom buggies.”
- If you’re like me, you’ll remember (and love) the 3D film that debuted at EPCOT, Captain EO. Did you know that it was directed by Francis Ford Coppola (yes who directed, produced, and wrote The Godfather).
I am always asked for my “Disney tips.” My best advice: go with the flow.
Comment below with your favorite Disney tips. If you spot any Hidden Mickeys on your next trip, tag us @MiamiMomCollective! Do I feel a Miami Mom Hidden Mickey scavenger hunt coming on?
Believe in the Magic