Last night there was a candlelight vigil held at the Magic Kingdom at park close to honor the victims of the Pulse massacre. It was unofficial and not sponsored by Disney in any way. And yet, Disney showed their solidarity and respects in a uniquely Disney way.
After the nightly “Kiss Goodnight,” the atmosphere music was shut off and all of Main Street was cloaked in dead silence as hundreds of people held candles, phones, and glow sticks into the air. And then, in an unexpected show of support, the colors of the castle changed from red to yellow, then green and blue and finally purple.
Disney also allowed working cast members to attend in costume and even shut down a few of the Main Street shops. Emporium cast members, who lost one of their own in the shooting, stood directly in front of the castle with a heart made of glow sticks. Inside the heart, among the candles, were trinkets and small things that cast and guests left to show their respects such as stickers, celebration buttons, maps, even Photopass cards and Mickey ears.
As guests exited the park, they were handed rainbow Mickey pins or Mickey love pins by working cast members. And cast members who left through the tunnels were handed rainbow Mickey antenna toppers.
I cannot put into words how comforting and important it is to see Disney showing their support for the LGBT+ community. They didn’t have to acknowledge the vigil at all but they did and they made it more magical than anyone expected.
Downpour on Main Street by Brendan Bowen Via Flickr: Is it even real…? Did I really trek around Disneyland Park in the pouring; and I mean POURING rain on this night back in January? Indeed I did with good company. It might be awhile before we see storms like that again in SoCal, but one thing’s for sure: it made my home park just that much more beautiful that night.