I spent my childhood visiting the parks with my grandparents, while my boyfriend had never been until our trip this past week. Those childhood visits are what caused me to fall in love with the parks, architecture, storytelling, even urbanism, and history--the very interests that have shaped my career and adult life. I always wanted to bring any future kids we had to the parks to have similarly inspirational experiences.What they are foolishly forgetting is that Disney has very much been a generational fandom at its core. Parks included. Children with Disney parks loving parents grow up and pass the tradition on to their own children, and the circle continues. Memories have driven a lot of Disney nostalgia, and they drive them long term. Hollow things, be they attractions, shows, or merchandise, drive social media attention and like and retweets, not anything long lasting. They will get Disney short term gains, but long term losses.
On the way home after the trip, my boyfriend and I talked about how we felt. We both agreed we have no desire to bring our kids and expose them to what has become a profoundly shallow experience. We'd instead save our money and bring them to more uplifting and inspiring places.
Spot on.Clearly I am apparently no longer the kind of guest they want at their parks, so my thought now is why should I keep going or later down the road pass the tradition on to my own child or children? If I’m not alone in that thought, they could be in for a world of hurt financially down the road.
I'm a young twenty-something gay man with a disposable income, my bf and I have large followings on social media--we are Disney's new targeted demographic. After our visit this week, we have no interest in returning or passing down this tradition to our kids or encouraging other family members to go. Disney is not worth the money, and it is not what it used to be.