Friday Find: Mark Twain Cast Member Hat & Info Packet
Another one of my finds while I was cleaning some of our bins were these two items.
When my husband, MacSparky, worked at Disneyland during the 1990s, he got trained to work on the Mark Twain. The Cast Members back then referred to the attraction as a "floating break room." If there was a 3-person rotation, they would be assigned 20 minutes on the dock, 20 minutes on the ship, 20 minutes off (like on a break). If it was a 4-person rotation, they would stay on the ship for another 20-minute ride or on the dock. Let's just say that it was an easy shift.
In the early 1990s, most attraction training materials were put together by lots of Cast Members and didn't have official marks. There was not a big centralized training department. There was official SOP paperwork that you had to sign off. Most of the time, Cast Members were the one who put together background info or additional training materials like this one that gives someone a general overview of the attraction.
Don't forget that all this was before computers are word processing was available. Photo copies of training and supplemental materials were what existed. Someone had to type all this out on a typewriter then it was copied for distribution.
Here are some photos of the inside of MacSparky's hat. The only Disneyland "mark" is the letters "WDW" that stood for "Walt Disney World." They were fitted hats, too.
According to the Disneyland website, it is now referred to as the Mark Twain Riverboat. It has been closed since last year in preparation for the new Star Wars themed land. It is scheduled to re-open summer 2017. We'll see if the Mark Twain Cast Members get new costumes and hats, too.
MacSparky has fond memories of his shifts on the Mark Twain. It was a more relaxed and mellow attraction in terms of Guest demand and popularity. He really enjoyed being able to take Guests up to the WheelHouse.