The Westside used to sponsor an off-site party at the Orange County Fairgrounds which involved tent rental, large amounts of beer, and a large number of Cast Members from across the Park.
It was absolutely famous among Cast Members of the era, for reasons most of us are unable to remember (doh!).
Any sort of jungle or tropical-related dress was welcomed. I recall many hats with vegetation sprouting from them and leis and coconuts aplenty adorning most of the attendees.
It was our own not-so-secret, secret get away from the strictures of a summer schedule at the Park. No management. No unruly guests. No rotations.
Oh, and there was beer.
I would liken it to a Westside Mardi Gras.
The Banana Ball was shut down years later. Probably for good reason---Disney did not want to even accidentally be associated with such an event, if for liability insurance reasons alone---not to mention the extreme potential for bad press.
I just remember it was fun, a little crazy and filled with people I knew and loved from the Park.
I can't seem to find my Banana Ball '86 t-shirt. Darn.
To all the West-siders who put on quite a party back in the mid-80s---Cheers!