Disney World is much, much bigger than Disneyland in California, but I think Disneyland beats Disney World hands down. It’s the climate. When Walt Disney bought the land that became Disney World, it was a tropical swamp, which is why Disney got the land cheap and why it wasn’t already developed or being used by others. Walt Disney dramatically reshaped the land, but he couldn’t do a thing about the climate. In summer, the high season at Disney World, it is hot and muggy, and it rains 20 days a month. In July, the humidity often exceeds 90%. In other words, climatically, it is still a tropical swamp. Disney World is also expensive. I know families that visited Disney World in summer and spent $10,000 for a week there, and it rained every day. When it stops raining, it doesn’t dry out. Someone who went to Disney World last summer said to me: “When you leave your hotel, it feels like you are walking into a sauna.” On the other hand, at Disneyland in L.A., it never rains in the summer.
Alligators! Take a look at the photo below. There are alligator warning signs like this all over Disney World. These signs are there because they need them. Disney employees have captured hundreds – literally hundreds – of alligators at Disney World, some weighing several hundred pounds. Guests at Disney World hotels frequently report seeing alligators. You may recall that a couple of years ago a 2-year old child was killed by an alligator at Disney World. After that, Disney put up more warning signs, but there is no way to rid of the alligators. I’m sure that Disney would if they could, but they can’t. That is because it is impossible to get rid of alligators in an ideal alligator habitat like the land inside and around Disney World. The American alligator has been living in Florida for over 100 million years. The asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs and most other animals 65 million years ago failed to wipe out any of the 20 or so species of alligators and crocodiles that were alive at that time. Most are alive today and virtually unchanged. That is how tough these critters are. Today, there are over 1 million alligators in Florida. Think about that – 1 million alligators just in Florida. And what about Disneyland in California? There are no alligator warning signs at Disneyland. They don’t need them. If you are in Los Angeles and you want to see an alligator, you have to go to the zoo. In California, we think that’s where alligators belong!
Florida has always been playing catchup with California when it comes to amusement and theme parks. Disneyland in California opened in 1955. Disney World in Florida opened in 1971. Universal Studios in California opened in 1964. Universal Studios in Florida opened in 1990.
Well, with the opening of Machine Gun World in Orlando, Florida has finally got a kind of theme park that we don’t have here in California. At Machine Gun World, children as young as 13 years of age can shoot military-grade machine guns, and with no prior experience or gun training required. (See photo of a boy with a machine gun at Machine Gun World. Isn’t that cute?) Machine Gun World is located 6 miles from Disney World in Orlando, so families with children can visit both theme parks on the same trip. Visitors to Machine Gun World can choose from a wide range of weapons, and they can pick personalized shooting experiences, including Special Operations, and a ‘007’ license-to-kill game, all using live ammunition. Machine Gun World says that they will not give loaded machine guns to people who are obviously intoxicated, and people show up drunk fairly often. In other words, sober children can have machine guns, but drunk adults cannot.
There are no machine gun theme parks in California, and it is highly unlikely that one will ever open in this state. Gun laws in California are very different from those in Florida. There is no way that a theme park could get a license to operate in California in which 13 year old children with no prior experience using firearms are given loaded machine guns.
So I guess we are going to have to concede this one to the Sunshine State, also known as the Sinkhole State. Congratulations to you, Florida! You finally got a kind of entertainment that we don’t have here in California.
Florida News Update: Last week, Disney raised adult admission to Disney World in Orlando to $105. a day, and Disney considers anyone age 10 or older to be an adult. Disney’s Park Hopper, which provides transportation between Disney attractions, hotels, and restaurants in the Orlando area will cost you an additional $60 a day. Gee! For what it costs a family of 4 to go to Disney World for 1 day, you could buy each of your kids a brand-new machine gun as a souvenir of your trip to Florida! Plus, there is no minimum age in Florida for the purchase of ammunition, so even a 5 year old child can legally purchase unlimited quantities of armour-piercing bullets in Florida! So its hats off to the Stand Your Ground State – Florida!