Thursday, August 28, 2008

Disneyland - Swiss Family Treehouse - 1980s

We shall say hello to an old friend, Jackie Lacey, at the main entrance turnstile to the Swiss Family Treehouse in the mid-1980s. Jackie provided this autographed picture on a former cast member website and I'm reposting it here.

I spent many shifts at the old Treehouse and it contained my favorite water feature in the Park: the stream running beneath the tree and through "volcanic rock" toward the old Jungle Cruise queue. The water was always peacefully moving in the background as the guests rolled through the turnstile and gazed up at the big water wheel, which, in turn, carried the water up to the top of the tree (and back down through a "bamboo" plumbing system).

Jackie Lacey worked in Adventure/Frontier Attractions and was dating (and later married) my old foreman on Main Street, Dave "Ranger Dave" Fraser. They are both great people and I understand they are still doing quite well. I expect that some of you folks from "Club 951" will remember Jackie from her days on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Tiki Room, etc.

I love the photograph because it captures the location as I fondly recall it. It also shows Jackie is "taking the count," (see the clipboard), so she must have just rotated to the position and is making note of the turnstile count (shown on an old odometer-type meter on the turnstile). We would do this periodically through the day, keeping a log of the number of guests who toured the attraction. I suppose this is all done by computer nowadays.

Well, move along now and enjoy your trip through the old Treehouse!



Anonymous said...

I just stumbled onto your website. I was an A/F cast member between 1970-1977. Your descriptions bring back memories that have been nearly forgotten. Some of those involve the Tree House. I can hear the music now. Thanks!

Mike said...

Well thank you for drifting by! All former Cast Members and Disneyland admirers are heartily welcomed.

Please don't be a stranger. I work with enough strange people already...

Now, all you crusty adventurers, rise like bread.
No loafing about.
Please exit the boat.
But don't go off half-baked,
even if you thought these stale jokes were crumb-y.
They're the yeast I can do.
Sorry for any mix ups.
I promise to do butter next time.
I didn't mean to cause a stir.
Any way you slice it,
this monologue is a recipe for disaster.
I milk it for all its worth and still end up with egg on my face.
But I take it all with a grain of salt.
And, sifting through it, pick up kernels of wisdom along the way.
Sure, I may get battered,
since this job is no cakewalk.
But I can't let that frost me.
Because I really need the dough.

Hey, don't stop me now,

I'm on a ROLL.

Thank you! Enjoy your day here at Walt Disney's Magic Kingom!


outsidetheberm said...

That was great! More of the above please!

Mike said...


The foregoing was one of my favorite ways of ending a tour around the Jungle. It really came off well, especially if you emphasized each word that involved bread, baking, etc. I garnered some of my best groans with this one.
Haven't heard any variation of it recently, though my version was by far the most detailed and intricate bakery pun mixture.
Each Skipper brings his (or her---I mustn't forget there are ladies running boats nowadays) unique gems to the spiel (even though non-S.O.P. stuff is always frowned upon by Operations managers).

Lacey said...

Thanks so much for posting this picture of my mom. I love hearing stories and seeing pictures of the park when my parents worked there. They are both still together and living near Sacramento. We still go to the park often and I don't think they ever lost the "Disney cast member" in them. Thanks so much for this great website!

~Lacey Fraser

Mike said...


Please say hello to your mom and dad. I knew they would be together for the long haul---they were very much in love and were great friends to each other back when I knew them briefly.

I worked as a sweeper under old "Ranger Dave" on Main Street in the summer of 1984. He may also remember Eric Grubb and John Toth and Jerry Loftquist and Helmuth and others!

Please have them post a story or memory from their days in the Park! I'd love to hear from your Mom about her adventures on Big Thunder. I'm sure Dave has some stuff to share from his days as a Lead in Day Custodial, too!

All my best wishes, hopes and prayers go out to you and your family! Thank you for stopping by!

---Mike Kelly

Anonymous said...

Gotta love the Internet -

Just stumbled across your site, via a google search.

Saw the pic of Jackie. I worked with her (maybe you too?). Spent '84 - '86 on Big Thunder, Jungle Cruise, Mark Twain. Then went into Mgmt. in Adv/Front Foods.

Thanks for bringing back some great memories!

Jon Woods

Mike said...

Jon Woods,

We never worked Thunder together, as I came on board there in 1987. However, we might have run into each other during the 1984-86 time period, as I worked in Frontierland as a sweeper on many occasions!

Ain't the Internet great??

Jackie's daughter found this site and sent me a nice note. She and Dave are doing well and living in Northern California, I believe.

Too bad we can't all just go back and work at Disneyland! Trust me, I tried!