Wherever there is Disney merchandise, there are people scooping up enormous amounts of it to resell at a much higher price online.
Turns out even a pandemic can’t keep these eBay resellers away.
On the first day of annual passholder previews at Magic Kingdom, multiple visitors spotted people buying loads of merchandise — especially anything related Splash Mountain — and then quickly leaving the park.
— Christine F. (@FLChimichanga) July 9, 2020
More photos of Splash Mountain eBay resellers continue to surface on the Disney annual passholder Facebook groups. If you guys are looking for merch and can’t find any then this is probably why pic.twitter.com/sbtG0jCmzY
— Theme Park Express (@ThemeParkExpres) July 9, 2020
Splash Mountain merch going fast! 🤣 pic.twitter.com/wZnKvAGRuo
— Mickey Views (@MickeyViews) July 9, 2020
Similar scenes played at the World of Disney store at the Disneyland Resort’s Downtown Disney on its reopening day Thursday.
— *Its The Duoo* (@itstheduoo) July 9, 2020
Disney did crack down on APs who resell park-exclusive merchandise — which is a violation of the annual passholder agreement — but only in Disneyland, revoking some annual passes in 2018. No such enforcement has been reported for Disney World passholders.
Disney World actors allege retaliation after asking for COVID-19 testing
Disney World has a union battle on its hands, with the Actors’ Equity Association filing a grievance accusing the resort of retaliation when it demanded COVID-19 testing for its members as part of a deal to return to work.
While most unions representing workers at Disney theme parks agreed to return to work without a testing provision, Actors’ Equity argued it was necessary because on-stage roles make it difficult to wear masks or maintain physical distance. Unions representing Disneyland employees have also asked for regular COVID-19 testing.
According to Deadline, Actors’ Equity said Disney initially recalled its members for rehearsals on June 23. Two days later, the union issued a statement asking for testing — and Disney then rescinded the recall notices on June 26.
“Since our public request that Disney test performers in the park, there have been more than 114,000 new coronavirus cases in Florida,” Mary McColl, executive director of Actors’ Equity Association, said in a statement. “Rather than agree to testing of performers, Disney has decided to retaliate against workers fighting for a safe workplace during this pandemic.”
In a statement to multiple media outlets, an unnamed Disney spokesperson said, “Seven unions signed agreements to have their employees return to work, the Actors’ Equity rejected our safety protocols and have not made themselves available to continue negotiations, which is unfortunate. We are exercising our right to open without Equity performers.”
Disney World began its reopening with cast member previews at Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom on Tuesday. Those parks will reopen to the public on Saturday, followed by Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on July 15.
Midwest water parks reopening before their theme park neighbors
Two Midwest theme parks will stay closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic while their adjacent water parks get to reopen.
In Illinois, Six Flags Great America has not been allowed to reopen. The Daily Herald reports that the Hurricane Harbor water park next door will reopen on July 20 for a preview for season passholders. Like other Six Flags parks, reservations will be required.
“The safety of our guests and team members remains our number one priority, and the new safety guidelines we have put in place are designed to create a safe environment for everyone,” said Hank Salemi, park president of Six Flags Great America and Hurricane Harbor.
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Rockford, located about 60 miles west, will also reopen on July 20, according to the Rockford Register Star.
Across Lake Michigan, the Cedar Fair-owned WildWater Adventure water park in Muskegon County, Michigan will reopen to season passholders on July 16. The adjacent theme park, Michigan’s Adventure, will remain shuttered.
“Our new health and safety protocols align with CDC recommendations and have been shaped by information from company and industry health and safety experts, along with our state and local government officials,” said Camille Jourden-Mark, vice president and general manager at Michigan’s Adventure and WildWater Adventure. “We are ready to welcome our guests back for some family fun.”