Have you ever gone to Disneyland and found yourself wondering “How is everything here always so perfect?”
Even the smallest details, from the precisely cut hedges to the expertly crafted ride decorations, are monumentally effective in fostering the sense of magical nostalgia that defines the Disney experience.
In his book, Elbow Grease and Pixie Dust, Special Collections Librarian Rand Boyd includes two memoirs, one of Eileen Schneider, and the other of himself. These memoirs recount Eileen and Rand’s individual experiences working in Disneyland maintenance. Their stories reveal just how Disneyland maintained the park during the 1980s and 1990s. Rand offers readers an insider’s perspective on the unexpected range of jobs that take place behind-the-scenes to preserve Disneyland’s magical facade.
Sure to be a fascinating, funny, and exciting read, Elbow Grease and Pixie Dust will transform your view of Disneyland and divulge exactly how much work it takes to make magic look effortless.
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“The magic doesn’t maintain itself. At Disneyland, skilled mechanics, engineers, and other craftsmen work around the clock to keep Walt’s park working to pixie-dust perfection. This is their never-told story… In Elbow Grease and Pixie Dust, Boyd immerses you in this essential but little-known aspect of Disneyland. But he tells another story as well—a love story, the Disney-like tale of how two kindred souls in Disneyland’s maintenance department fell in love and went on to live happily ever after.”
Rand Boyd put on his ears in 1983 and went to work in the Disneyland warehouse. From there, as a full-fledged Teamster, he transferred to Maintenance Services, where his job took to him to every nook and cranny of the park, at all hours of the day and night. Then he moved to the Arcade Shop, where he worked on pinball machines and antique player pianos and finally he transferred to the Electric Shop where he helped maintain the kitchen and bakery equipment throughout the resort.
Featured image by Zach Wilt.