Thursday, February 20, 2014

Remembering Pleasure Island

Dear old Pleasure Island,

As we look forward all the amazing Downtown Disney area refurbishment I can't help to look back and be somewhat disappointed that I didn't truly get to experience your former glory.

Photo Credit: BZalewski via Compfight cc

I have many memories of Pleasure Island. When we were really small, we visited Superstar Studios and filmed a lip sync video to Paula Abdul. (Maybe if I get brave one day, we'll share that, but for now just picture it!) We also visited the Comedy Warehouse improv comedy show at least once a trip. We celebrated New Years Eve EVERY NIGHT! We used to go visit with my parents when it was a part of our ticket package.

For those of you new to Disney - yes, you used to have to have a ticket to get into Pleasure Island. You also needed to be 21 to get into any of the clubs, which is why I feel like I missed out.

On the Walt Disney World College Program, almost every cast member traveled to "PI" each Thursday for free cast member night. Disney was always strict about alcohol to minors and I was 19 on my College Program. Some clubs were 21 and over and I couldn't step foot inside. Other clubs were open but I was truly afraid of getting "terminated" (what normal companies call "fired") from my College Program.

One night I truly enjoyed was my dear friend Brandy's 21st birthday. We went to Pleasure Island that night and I bought Brandy her first legal drink: a Pleasure Island booze bucket.

In order to buy her this drink, we went into the ladies room and I handed her the money under the stall. In retrospect, maybe we were a little TOO careful. However, I knew of fellow underage College Program cast members getting terminated for simply holding a friend's drink. I wasn't going to be one of those people.

We had a lot of fun dancing the night away in 8TRAX, a 70s and 80s dance club. There were a lot of laughs that night.

That was 2004. By 2008 when I did my Disney Professional Internship, PI was all but finished. 

I still can't help but feel that I missed out on something great. I'm bummed that I missed out on this piece of Disney history.

Pleasure Island - may you Rest in Peace. 

Love, Rosanne


Heidi Strawser said...

I never experienced Pleasure Island either. In fact, up until a few years ago, we had never even ventured beyond the shopping district section of DtD. Now, we've walked the length of DtD several times. I'll be anxious to see all the changes that will be taking place there with the upgrades.

Kim said...

ooooh the PI memories..... (and my lovely cameo up there, lol) I think the cast members enjoyed it more than the guests! I remember you being nervous about being "termed" that night LOL We were so young :)

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