Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Disneyland - Cast Activities Center - Disneyland Employees Federal Credit Union

A small, squat building was situated near the center of the backstage area behind Main Street in the 1980s.  It is still there today, but it is now a computer training location. 
It was the Cast Activities Center.
As you approached its main entrance (located directly across from the old Wardrobe/Administration building), there was a Bank of America Versateller machine/kiosk at the right side of the building.
There was not much architecture to the structure and its wooden support pillars were painted a dark brown.
Inside was a lounge area and there were TVs that constantly showed the then fairly new "Disney Channel." 
"Dumbo's Circus" seemed to always be on.
The classic "Disney Channel" logo would flash across the screen between shows.
TVs over in the "Inn-Between" show the Disney Channel as well.  It was being heavily promoted and it looks like it caught on. 
The Cast Activities Center was where you could get information about everything from the latest Red Cross Blood Drive to the Canoe Races to the Disneyland Employees Federal Credit Union.  Indeed, the structure that housed Cast Activities was originally where the Credit Union was located.  It move outside the berm and, in the 1980s, was located just inside the tall chain link fence that enclosed the Park property along Harbor Boulevard at the Employee Parking lot entrance. 
Like many other cast members, I had an account there.  I, however, still have checks left!  My old account from the 1980s has long since closed, but let me tell you it was always cool to write a check with a background picture of Sleeping Beauty's Castle and Mickey and Minnie. 
Whenever I would pay for something with one of these checks, it always, always sparked a conversation with the cashier.
"Oooh!  Where did you get this?  Do you work for Disneyland?!"
"What?  This old thing? Why it's just a regular old check."
"How did you get the Disneyland picture on it??"
"Well, I do actually work at the Park..."
"What do you do?"
"Ever been on the Jungle Cruise?"
"NO WAY!!  I LOVE that ride."
To this day, I must say, that having been a Jungle Skipper gets me more attention than anything I've done in my professional or educational career.  For some odd reason there's an instant connection---a bond---between guests and Jungle Skippers. 
"Do you remember the spiel?"
"In my sleep!  I've been 'round the jungle river a time or two."
"Can I see your driver's license please.  Is your address and telephone information correct?"
(Hmph.  "Jungle Skipper" only gets you so far in life).
I am sure today I could find a bank that would put a Disneyland photo in the background of my checks.
Except no one really uses checks anymore.
Can you imagine what my 1980s dollars would be worth today??
Shoulda bought Disney stock in bunches back then.

Have a magnificent Tuesday---or whatever day it is when you happen upon this post!!