|Katie and her boss!|
Katie was one of the first people that I had met on the DCP Facebook group page. She and her best friend were almost our roommates, but unfortunately we had different arrival and departure dates so things didn't work out. Turns out, we became neighbors! I'd visit her all the time at work since she was always stationed in my favorite park (Hollywood Studios). I'm so glad we were able to meet and become friends!
What role did you have during the DCP, and where did you work?
Character Attendant based in Disney’s Hollywood Studios but a global role :)
What was a typical day like at work?
Wake up, get my beautiful blueberry costume on, get to work. Once you get to the Entertainment base you check in and get a radio if needed then you walk/pargo/van run to your location. Once you’re there you make sure you have the set schedule written down (though you memorize it after a few times) and help dress the performers if needed. Then you go outside and form a line for the guests and turn on all the lights and music. Then you constantly spiel about Photopass, Autographs and personal cameras. And repeat for the rest of the day.
Is this the role you originally wanted? If not, are you happy you got it?
It was my top role! I wanted to work in entertainment from the get-go. I’ve always been into behind the scenes for everything and this was my way to get to know every little annoying detail about entrainment for the Walt Disney Company.
What are your favorite and least favorite parts about your job?
The best part about my job is handsdown watching little kids interact with their favorite characters for their first time. Sure, some of it gets repetitive but does it get old watching a five month old slobber all over Mickey’s nose or the six year old who is wearing a Little Mermaid Dress see Ariel in her grotto for the first time, no that will never get old.
The worst part about my job is the obsessive guests. I have been threatened,I have been bribed, I have been told I was a bitch who hates children, I’ve even been swung at. People get obsessive about characters and I’m the one who gets blamed when its time for Pluto to go get a dog treat.
Another part that I don’t particularly like is that like everything entertainment, there are going to be some divas. I’ve been chewed out by some performers for doing my job correctly, but you learn to shrug it off and move on because chances are, you will rarely ever work with them again. (Fact, I have met more diva fur performers than face performers)
|Me visiting Katie on my last day in the parks!|
Some people also absolutely hate closing lines, but I don’t mind it. I always try to have a solution for when a character is done for the day.
Any specific magical moment you want to share?
Any specific magical moment you want to share?
A magical moment that I remember vividly is when I had a Make-a-Wish family come to the Hat at Hollywood Studios when the characters were finishing up for the day. (At the Hat are Minnie, Pluto, Goody, Donald, Daisy, Chip and Dale, and Stitch.) Make-a-Wish children always skip the line, no exceptions. But they came up right when I was bringing Stitch in for the day and there was nothing I could do, when it’s time for Stitch to go surfing, it’s time for him to go surfing. But I found a solution, I asked Stitch if he would mind to do a private meet and greet with him, and if anything he was excited. So we brought them over to our private fountain and they took some pictures. I decided to radio the other attendants and explain the situation and then before I knew it we had all the characters surrounding the sick little boy and they spent an extra five minutes with him. The mom cried and thanked me over and over again and it was the best feeling in the world.
What made you want to do the DCP?
Disney has always been my thing. I had Pocahontas birthday parties, a Little Mermaid room, I’d watched Toy Story so much that I wore out my VHS by the time I turned 8. It was always something I could relate to. I heard about the college program sophomore year of high school and I applied illegally and got in, until they realized I was in High School. Whoops. I then applied my sophomore year of college and got in. :)
Is there something you wish you would have known before doing your program?
Honestly I did so much research for four years that nothing really shocked me when I got here.
What advice would you give to those who are going to be participating in your role?
Enjoy every minute of it. It will get hard, you will want to go home, you will want to breakdown at work. It will get better and its the experience of a life time.