Magic Still to Be Found at Downtown Disney

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The Takayama family — George, Kily, Max and Jill — enjoyed a day at Downtown Disney, despite the continued closure of the theme parks.

By JILL IGARASHI TAKAYAMA

For the past few years, Disney has been our family escape from the long workweek and stresses of life. I grew up as a pass holder, cast member, and have always loved the magic of Disney.

George just recently gave in and I think actually started looking forward to our weekly trips. We were fortunate enough to visit 10 times in 2020 before the closure on March 13. It was a strange turn of events to not be able to visit our happy place for so long, but we understand.

Our hearts break for the cast members who have lost their jobs and we hope they find work soon. I know that Disney training is outstanding; it’s where I got my start in customer service. Employ­ers looking for new recruits, please highly consider taking on a former cast member and encourage them to share what they learned working for the mouse.

Today, we took the littles to Downtown Disney to throw our money in the fountains and purchase some goodies. We ate at Tortilla Jo’s and had the best service. We haven’t eaten out since March 11, and I was nervous that maybe we had forgotten how to do it correctly.

Halloween is different this year, but signs of it can still be found at Downtown Disney.

Max struggled a bit towards the end, because he was tired and didn’t understand why we couldn’t go to Cars Land. Lily thoroughly enjoyed all the decor and laughing big laughs with her brother. George finally got to use his birthday backpack to carry all our stuff and I bought some 2020 ears because this is definitely a year to remember.

Many think that DTD isn’t worth the visit, but for us, it was. It was worth every minute of the entry line and having to wear a mask, to feel the magic and hear the laughs that Disney has always brought to our family.

Though he was disappointed with not being able to visit Cars Land, young Max drew inspiration from the mural tribute to late “Black Panther” star Chadwick Boseman.

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