Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Guest Post: Happiest Birthdays on Earth!!

Hi Friends!  Here's my first ever guest blogger post from my best friend BJ who celebrated his 30th birthday at Disneyland last month!  Enjoy!!!

I consider myself a lucky, and fortunate, person. I have a wife I love more than anything, a caring family, and some of the best friends anyone could ever ask for (hence the reason why I am writing this blog post for Melissa). I truly am blessed and am thankful everyday for everything I have at the ripe old age of 30...that's right people, 30. I know, I don't look a day over 29!!  ;-) On top of the people in my life, I have been incredibly fortunate in emptying my bucket list by 30. I have seen and done so much both near and far. Of course, I am a HUGE Disney fan. 90% of the bucket was filled with Disney experiences I always dreamed of.

Let's rewind a few years to 2002. This was the year I graduated high school. As a gift to myself, a friend and I decided to take a road trip (thanks to my grandparents) to Disney World. It was then, February 2002, a cast member at the Country Bear Jamboree changed my life by saying "I am an intern on the College Program." What?!?! How had I never heard of this?!?! Immediately upon my return home, I began researching and made a goal. At 21, I would apply to this program in hopes of being selected as part of the cast of Walt Disney World.

Fast forward 3 and a half years to October 12, 2005 (yes I remember this date as it was my mom's birthday) where I open a letter from "Walt Disney World: College Program". The first word? CONGRATULATIONS!!! Let the tears, jumping up and down, and annoying phone calls to anyone and everyone I could think of commence!!!

While the program itself, and the position of "Cast Member", were not as wonderful as I had dreamed, I did however, get to cross yet another thing off the bucket list. Celebrating a birthday (in this case 22) in Disney World. On March 12, 2006 I was originally scheduled to work. I did ask for the day off, but as a CP you are low man and treated awful so no day off. Instead, my friends encouraged me to call in "sick" and then snuck me into Magic Kingdom. Mind you, I worked at the Emporium so this was VERY risky. I also snuck in through the cast entrance which meant I had no ticket into the park. Your ID was your complimentary park pass. Because I was "sick" any use of my badge would be logged and I would be axed!! Instead my friends took care of me.

While we spent the day sneaking around Magic Kingdom, only those who knew I was there were able to track me down. It was the most fun birthday I had ever had, and I still think of it fondly. I realized at that point, I needed to have a birthday in Disney again, but when / where?

Lets jump to April 2007. This is when I went to Disneyland for the second time. My first trip was in 2003 and I wasn't exactly impressed with Disneyland. This trip changed my mind completely and I fell deeply in love with Disneyland. I realized then that I found my next birthday location. Given the distance it was from New England, I also felt a "BIG" birthday would be the best time. At the time I was 23, so 25 was not that far off. But 25? That isn't all that big of a birthday. 30? YES....30!!!

Now here we are March 12, 2014. After years of planning, my big 30th birthday celebration!! In preparation for this awesome jump into my 30s, my wife Katie made myself and my best friend Amanda shirts to mark the occasion. Now as all us Disney freaks know a day at Disney is not complete without an ear hat (well unless you are at Disneyland Paris, but that's a whole other post which I can add in the future if asked ha ha!!). For this occasion, no regular ear hat would do, and the birthday ear hat was just too generic. Insert another one of my very best friends, Melissa and her new creative line of ear hats: Happily Ever Hatter (Did he just insert a promo?! Yes he did!!). Katie and Melissa brainstormed and came up with the perfect hat to match me, equipped with the logo from the 30th anniversary celebration of Tokyo Disneyland that I MAY have mentioned a few million times that I would like as a logo for my 30th birthday!!  :0)

Well the day at Disneyland was more fun than I could imagine. While I was happy to have two of my favorite ladies with me (Amanda and Katie the wife), I was over the moon at everything we were able to do. We conquered Disneyland Park, and I was wished Happy Birthday so much, I don't remember anything else that was said the entire day!!

In conclusion, celebrating a birthday at a Disney park is pretty spectacular. To celebrate two (one of them being a milestone year) that's just pure lucky!! Disney World and Disneyland do not differ in how they celebrate birthdays. At both parks you are given a button which you put your name on. You are wished Happy Birthday from Cast Members and Guests alike. You still feel like a little kid, your eyes still well up seeing the castle (be it Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty) and seeing my best Disney friend.... Mickey!!!

It sounds like it was an awesome experience!!!  Thank you BJ!!!  °o°


  1. I would love to read a post about his experience with the college intern program. Our daughter is very interested in this program and it would be great to hear a first hand account! Love your blog!

    1. Hey Michele, I'll definitely let him know! We've been discussing ideas for other posts he could do. We'll add that to the list! Thanks for reading! :-)