This was a real classy ride to work on. I mean come on, you get to wear 3 piece suit, speak like a southern gentlemen and of course work on Walt's favorite attraction.
But it didn't stop the Hijinks!!!!
- The break pattern on this ride was incredible, you got a 25 break every 45 minutes or so and a 50 minute lunch.
- The little shack closest to Big Thunder is known as the Ice House, this is the lead's office as well as a break room for the CM's.
- You can as I am sure you all know, ride in the Wheelhouse. It was really left up to the cast member to deccide if he was taking passengers up there. New hires would generally not take people up there as it is confusing enough to run the attraction.
- The captain is more of a lookout for the engineer downstairs who actually controls the speed of the ship via a series of bells.
- The whistles are as follows :
- Leaving the dock, whistles and bell. this alerts the rafts that we are coming.
- At the Columbia, Long whistle short whistle, alerts the canoe guys to our presence.
- At the waterfalls, 2 long whistles, this alerts dockhand to prepare for docking and also lets the CM on break know it's time to come back.
- There is a foot locker in the wheelhouse, supposedly Walt kept this in his room (below the wheelhouse) and is where he kept a bit of nip. He was a frequent passenger on the ship....hmmm.....
- Whenever we would get a celebrity, they would automatically be brought up to the wheelhouse. The Guestbook is filled with celebrity autographs.
- The Guestbook is also filled with fake autographs that we deemed funny to insert at the time.Most common autograph? Elvis Presley.
- Races between the ship and the canoes were quite frequent and the engineer would crank up the boilers, nothing like feeling that paddlewheeler shivering with exertion.
- An untold number of people have used the Wheelhouse and the bedroom below it for unsavory activities of a salacious nature. Surely not your narrator you ask?......umm.......