The Children Under the Stars – Part 1
When I first moved to Orlando, I got a job at Disney. It was at Pleasure Island, which was an area of nightclubs in Downtown Disney. That job only lasted about six months, but I’ll never forget my manager there. His name was Clint, and he had worked at Disney World since its first day in 1971 when he was only 17 years old. Clint had some amazing stories about Disney, but they always seemed sincere and honest. That’s why I thought it was odd when he told me about The Children Under the Stars.
Clint’s stories were never very dramatic. We talked a lot about the history of rides and attractions. There were never any “tall tales” that I can remember. It wasn’t like grandpa telling ghost stories around a campfire. It was more like your uncle telling you about the time he arm wrestled Sylvester Stalone in a Tallahassee bar. But the story I’m about to tell you, was like no other story that Clint told. It’s an extraordinary story to say the least. I really haven’t told it to anyone until now. I haven’t really known many people that could appreciate a good Disney World story until now. So here it goes…
In 1998, Clint was an attractions manager in what was then Disney/MGM Studios. He often worked the late shift and typically didn’t leave the park until well after midnight. It was not unusual for Clint to see castmembers still working in the park whenever he left for the night. After all, employees are working round the clock to make sure everything meets the Disney standard. But one night he saw some activity that was certainly out of the ordinary while getting in his car.
This particular night was a cool March evening, around 12:30am. Clint got into his car, which was parked in one corner of the lot, close to a wooded area. At this time of night, things were very quiet and most of the cars had already gone, leaving Clint’s vehicle alone. As he started up his car and turned the headlights on, he made a u-turn toward the exit. As his headlights scanned across the line of trees at the edge of the parking lot, Clint caught a glimpse of something unusual in the lower branches of one tree. A figure sitting on a tree limb, feet dangling.
Being that it was dark, and Clint had already had a long day at work, he took a second to think about what he’d just seen. Was it his imagination? Just a tree limb shaped in an odd way, making him see things? He did another quick u-turn and pulled back around to where he had seen the silhouette. But, of course, nothing there. No sign of anyone or anything. On the drive home, Clint kept playing the scene over and over again in his mind, finally convincing himself that it was a figment of his imagination.
The next day at work, Clint mentioned his “sighting” to a fellow castmember. As he explained what happened, he expected the gentleman to laugh at the incident. But, instead the coworker listened intently, nodding slowly. Once Clint had finished recounting his experience, the other manager gazed eerily into Clint’s eyes, and with a slight grin on his face, whispered…”The Children Under the Stars”.
To Be Continued….
I’ll tell more of the story soon. Until then, check out http://www.dizmeet.com and join us for an event! #dizmeet #disneyworld #wdw