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Real Human Ashes at Disneyland?! Shocking Urban Legend IS TRUE!

Jan 15, 2024

Earlier this week, I was talking to my bestie and fellow Disney enthusiast, getting pumped about my upcoming trip to Disneyland in Anaheim and I was saying that I wanted to get creative with some fun and unique ideas for content to create and share with you that went beyond posing with food.

She was like, “oh why don’t you talk about how so many people every year try to scatter ashes of their deceased loved ones inside the Disneyland theme parks?!”

“Wait, what?!?! Is that a thing??” 
I had never even thought of this in all the times I’d been there but I HAD to know and, as it turns out, this is absolutely true….and not at all legal. 

Still thought by some people to be just an “urban legend”, the scattering of cremated remains of loved ones continues to be a big problem at “The Happiest Place on Earth” 

So in this week's solo chat, I'm sharing everything I learned and you'll walk away with answers to....
How are they getting the ashes into the park? 
How are they getting caught and what happens when they do??  
What's the secret code used by cast members when this happens?
What's the excuse they use for closing the ride?
How do they know if it's actually ashes?
Do they ashes just stay in the ride??
What are the MOST popular places cremated ashes are being spread?
What could Disney be doing instead that's a win-win?
And my question to YOU, what ride or area of the Magic Kingdom would you want your ashes to be spread in ( if it was legal, which it IS NOT)?!

Additional sources:,but%20they%20do%20it%20anyway.

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Episode Transcript:

Hey beautiful soul Welcome to Spirit Speakeasy. I'm Joy Giovanni, Joyful Medium. I'm a working psychic medium energy healer and spiritual gifts mentor. This podcast is like a seat at the table in a secret club, but with mediums, mystics and the spiritual luminaries of our time. So come behind the velvet ropes with me and see inside my world is I chat insider style with profoundly different souls. We go deep share juicy stories laugh a lot and it wouldn't be a speakeasy without great insider secrets and tips. You might even learn that you have some gifts of your own. So step inside the spirit speakeasy.
Hey, beautiful soul welcome in for another episode of spirit speakeasy. This time we have a bit of an unusual topic. Of course, you know, we talk about all things spirit world here and today's topic is real human ashes at Disneyland shocking urban legend is true. I can hardly believe this. I'm so excited to share this with you. I'm going to talk a little bit first about how this episode came to be like, why I have this idea.
And what I've learned, and then I am going to go through it with you. And we're going to talk about these real human ashes at Disneyland. A lot of people consider it an urban legend. But in fact, it is true. So let's just dive right in. I hope that you are well, I hope that your new year is off to a good start.
And I just wanted to keep it a little bit light and fun, I will put a tiny trigger warning we are going to talk about real human ashes. So if that feels triggering to you, maybe skip this one. My intention is never to offend anyone. But that is what we are talking about today. So in a recent episode, called the resolution solution, an AHA perspective shift. It was episode 55, I shared my take on new year's resolutions and why they don't work and what I am focusing on instead this year. And one of those things is regularly considering the question, What am I offering. So if you missed that episode, I would suggest going back and checking it out. But you can listen to this one without having listened to that one. It just is me letting you know that this is this is how I came to this. So on a personal level, I really am considering that question this year and have been for several weeks now. And one of the things that I want to offer myself just personally is more opportunity for experiences for fun for enjoyment, for connection and for Yeah, really just having experiences. So when they became available, I was able to get a Disneyland annual pass. I haven't had one for years when my kids were little we had them. And now it's just me and I have one again, and I have a couple other friends that have them. So I'm pretty excited. And my best friend is a fellow Disney enthusiast I love Disneyland, you guys. Just let me just throw that in there. I'm fortunate enough to have visited many times, they do have some special deals for Southern California residents. So I've gotten to take advantage of that many, many times. And it just for me is such a happy place. And I really, it's nostalgic and and just so special. I really love it there. And my bestie is also a Disney enthusiast and I would say like probably even more than me, we have so many memories there together and separately. And she and I used to go together all the time actually in dress up and just be silly and and have a great time. So I was talking to her about it and sort of kind of planning, you know, some trips that I want to take and talking about, you know, maybe she'll come to town and I was also talking about really wanting to get creative and think of some ideas for like videos and content and things to post for you guys and to share that would feel fun and light and different but also wasn't just like me, like Hi, here I am at Disneyland. Do you know what I mean? I'm always very trying to be very aware of like, I don't know, we're not all in the same place and I just happen to be in a good place right now. And I never want it to come off as like braggy or show offy or so I really try have been real I'm struggling with this actually to try to find the balance between, you know, showing my life and what I'm doing and what I'm up to and being aware and cautious. So that was the conversation we were having is like how do I make this fun but make it also you know, kind of
related to my work and to what I do that it doesn't seem, you know, I don't know, show off you in any way. It just is, is feels authentic to like who I actually am. And she is brilliant, of course. And she was like, Oh, why don't you talk about how many people every year try to scatter ashes inside the Disneyland Park? And I was like, wait, what no, like, is that a thing? I don't know why I had never thought of this. I had never considered that this was even a thing in all the times I've been there.
I tend to just be naturally a bit of a rule follower. So I don't always think of these kinds of things. It seems so set like common sense now that she brought it to my attention. I'm like, Yeah, of course people do that. But I just, I had never considered it it like took me aback. I was shocked. And I just was like, Wait, that is that a thing? And as it turns out, this is absolutely true. And also not at all legal. So we're going to talk about that too. But I really did a deep dive Google search and and just wanted to understand, like, you know, hold on, is this an urban legend, she actually grew up in Southern California. So she sometimes knows these urban legends that I don't know, from not growing up here. But a lot of people still report it as an urban legend. The scattering of cremains or cremated remains, continues to be a really big problem at the happiest place on earth. So I read chat threads and articles and accounts from anonymous guests and previous cast members. And I guess at the time, some of them were still current cast members, I actually have a plan to go there this week, the day after this podcast is going to be released. So I'm going to be making some videos while I'm actually at the park, I'm going to see if I can get some cast members to like triple validate some of this stuff. So if you are not on my social media, you might want to be a hop on my instagram at joyful medium if you are not already. But in doing all this research, so many people had accounts and reports and cast members, I've seen people, you know, do this, and they talk about what happens and how frequently this happens and what their procedure is. And some of the guests that share that they had actually done this, like there were accounts of people saying yeah, I did this. One lady reported that she snuck her mom's ashes in in some sort of like camera case in a film canister just took a small amount of ashes. Someone else said that they brought a small amount in like snack packaging, like kind of packaged it in snack packaging. And another person said that they had just brought some ashes of of I don't remember in that instance, who it was like their loved one in just a baggy deep in a in like a bag wrapped in a sweatshirt. But I was thinking like once you get the ashes into the park, right? I mean, we all know that there are cameras everywhere. I've even seen and experienced all of the plainclothes security. So they have if you've never been to Disneyland, I haven't been to Disney World in a million years. So I'm I'm sure it's sort of similar there. It's the same company, obviously. But at Disneyland, there are cast members that are in uniform. So you know, they have badges, name badges, and all of that. But then there are also security that are in just regular clothes. And they look just like regular park guests. And you wouldn't, I mean, maybe some of them you could pick out but by and large you wouldn't be able to pick them out. We had an experience the same best friend.
Many years ago, we were there with her oldest son when he was only like five I think, and we were goofing around. We had another friend with us and had her son on his shoulders and was skipping and playing and tripped and fell and so her son was on this person's shoulders and they both fell and cast members that were in plainclothes the security people rushed out from like every direction and we were right in the entrance to frontier land from the main part of the park. So if you know Disneyland at all, you walk down that Main Street, the castle in front of you and then Disneyland has these off shoot different avenues that you could travel to like the different lands of magical Disneyland. And to the left is frontier land. And that's where we were right through that entrance of Frontier land where there's a store on the left and some video game while there were there was like one of those old fashioned shooting gallery things back then. I'll let you know what's there now. I think it's a restaurant and plainclothes security rushed out from every door.
Action, making sure he was okay making sure he didn't need medical attention. It was the craziest thing. So that's what's there. Plus, I think we all, even if you don't know or haven't seen them, but could assume that there are 1000s of cameras everywhere in that park, they do have really tight security just to keep everyone safe and to keep things running smoothly, as you might imagine. So once someone hypothetically gets ashes into the park, right, because lots of people sneak in lots of things to lots of places. But once you're in there, how difficult is it to actually spread ashes, like a human remains cremains ashes? And how often does this actually happen? I was wondering,
the answers are pretty difficult, and it happens a lot. So in fact, this happens so often, that the Disney cast members actually have a special code.
Like, you know, when they will shut down or right or we're going to talk about that, or when you hear them call a code out. So it's Code A and A is for ashes. So if you are ever at the park and you hear Code A that means someone is spreading the ashes of their dearly departed loved one. And here's how it works. When the ashes
are spread, a cast member typically sees it on the cameras first, they say it the accounts tend to say it looks kind of like a white powdery substance. And the cast member immediately calls this code a
closes down the ride. And they say that the closure is due to technical difficulties. So I'm definitely going to be listening for this and posting about it if it happens. So technical difficulties is the way that they announce it to the riders, the guests right, and they evacuate the ride. Once the ride is evacuated. The managers you know, the higher level employees have to ride through the attraction and look for anything that resembles ashes. So the members of their custodial staff can then come and remove the you know, ashes are like ultra fine dust like thinner than dust if you've never seen them. And they have to clean up the ashes and the entire process has to be completed before any more guests can return to the ride and it can like resume operation.
Now, reports have been given that when the custodial staff comes out, they're in a special like hazmat suit, like it kind of looks like something out of a Disney movie seems to be the way that they're explaining this, where it's like a person in one of those full white, et style hazmat suits with this special vacuum that I read in one account kind of looks like something out of Ghostbusters. And they go and they I'm sure it's like a special HEPA filtration vacuum they go in, they vacuum up everything they can find and clean everything. Which kind of made me a little bit sad because, you know, not that anyone loves the thought of human ashes being at the happiest place on earth. But also, I don't think people of course, would not want their loved ones cremains in a vacuum with other loved ones cremains other dust other things that need to be cleaned up in that high power way and then dumped into some sort of like trash facility. So that is what actually happens. Now, what the accounts also say is that human ashes have been spread in flower beds. Some of these were interesting to me because I was like, Okay, where are people putting them and I was still talking to my bestie at this point, we're kind of on and off the phone throughout the day most days. And she was like, Oh, I would want to be in the haunted mansion.
Like thinking like okay, you you have this answer prepared. All right. Let's let's learn about this. So flowerbeds, bushes on the lawns. A lot of the Magic Kingdom parks have these like special curated lawns with like Mickey sculpted bushes and just beautiful lawn areas. So on the lawns. outside the park gates, people have said, some people will spread them wherever they are during fireworks displays, I guess maybe thinking they won't be as noticed during that time. One of the most popular places is the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. And the moat that goes under the flying elephants of the Dumbo ride. So most of you probably know Pirates of the Caribbean, you get on that ride. You're in this little boat and you're taken through this whole journey. And it's a pretty long ride. The Dumbo ride seems like it'd be a little more difficult. It's these flying Dumbo elephants and there's this little moat of water that's kind of around the bottom that you're flying over. So I guess people have put them in there. And the most frequent of all, according to custodians, and
And the cast members at the park is the Haunted Mansion. They've been dispersed at the Haunted Mansion, which is more than 50 years old at this point. And some cast members have said you wouldn't even believe how many human remains ash and ash form are inside that ride. I will in the show notes link some of the sources that I got this information from. So you can check out those articles too, if you if this just makes your interest like it did mine. So it's so interesting, because, you know, Haunted Mansion, obviously is a write about imagine that's haunted, and there's ghosts. And we'll we'll talk more about that. I think I'm gonna do some videos about that. But I guess that is the most popular place that people want to be. There have been people seen even scattering the ashes, and then the whole process begins. And
there's a book actually written about some of this. It's called mouse tales behind the seat. Oh, wait, let me let me try again. In it's called "Mouse Tales: A Behind the Ears Look at Disneyland". It's by someone named David Koenig. And Koenig, he quotes several employees. He doesn't actually identify the employees, which is kind of nice that the cast members for Disney.
And he also spoke to a small group of visitors that were out this, the story is there at the haunted mansion on a Saturday night, in 2002. It's December, and this group of attendees like park guests, ask if they can ask the cast members if at the Haunted Mansion ride inside the ride, if they can have a little extra time for just a quick memorial service for a seven year old boy that had passed away in their family. And the employee said,
you know that they just were like, okay, they decided to allow it in this account that Koenig writes. But later, the ride operators saw on the cameras that they were throwing out the way they said it is a powdery substance off their "Doom Buggy" is what the carts are called that take you on the ride. And after the ride, you know, they obviously they have to shut it down. They thought they were just gonna take a couple extra moments, you know, at the end of the ride, and they were gonna give them just a few minutes, you know, sometimes the ride will shut down for 30 seconds or whatever. They didn't the the cast members said they didn't realize that they were going to try to scatter ashes. So they shut the write down. And the employee recounts in this book.
The "discovering a smattering of dust, gray, like ash", is what Koenig writes. So they have to actually go through and look for the ash. Now, you might be thinking to yourself as I did, ash is pretty fine. And especially if someone had a small amount, how would they know? If you like we're dumping out baby powder, for example. There's lots of babies at Disneyland How would they know if it was just, you know, I don't know what else you would look like that. But like how do they know? Well, fun fact I discovered ashes glow. So weird thing about ashes is that they glow in the black light. They, I suppose what I learned is that they have a bit of a pinkish kind of tint to them. And so the cast members actually can go through with a blacklight. So they look with their eyes and see if they see anything. And then in the area that they suppose that they saw it on the camera, they also will hit it with a blacklight like run over it with those handheld. If you've ever seen those expos days of like hotels, when people travel and hit the black light on the bed or whatever, it's kind of like that. So they take the black light they look around and ashes, apparently glow in the black light, which makes sense because it's a biologic substance, I guess.
So once they confirm that the ashes have been spilled, of course, you know, like we said, That guy comes in who will clean Ghostbusters and cleans up the ashes of the loved one in that case. And the ride has to be closed for technical difficulties. Okay, so if your wheels are turning and you're wondering how do you add this request to your will? intention is not to give anyone any bad ideas. You need to know that it is actually illegal to spread ashes in this way.
Every state has different laws and rules about where you can spread ashes how they can be distributed, but most places and this is true of California check your check your local rules. But in California on private property you would have to have
have written permission. So it's illegal to spread ashes in Disneyland because it's private property and you'd need written permission from Disneyland, which they have a strict policy against. It seems like this is true at all of their parks worldwide.
So they technically in theory could give someone permission, but they have stated publicly that they absolutely will not. So what happens once all of this goes down?
If someone is kind of caught or seen and known to have scattered ashes, it's reported that they actually call the police and they get the guest off the ride, escort them to either Disney jail to wait for the police, they can escort them out of the park, and someone can even possibly be banned for life from Disney, if they're caught scattering ashes. And for good measure, closing any possible loopholes. I checked and Disneyland does now list cremated remains as a prohibited item. I'll put the link to that too, because they have a whole list of like the things you can't bring into the park a lot of them are things you might assume that you can't bring into a park, you know, weapons and that like all the things you might assume some of the things are maybe things you wouldn't assume like if you want to bring a selfie wand, it can't extend so there's there are a lot of nuanced rules. They didn't use to have cremated remains as an item and object, you know, on this list of things you can't bring in. So it was a little bit of a loophole, right. You weren't allowed to spread them. There was no rule against it wasn't on the list of things you can't bring in maybe gray area. So they caught that and closed the gap in that loophole. And it is actually on the list of prohibited items. Now cremated remains what I thought was really interesting about this just to pause for a second is it doesn't say human cremated remains. So that really made me wonder, Oh, how many people are also spreading the ashes of pets at the park? You might not think why would someone want to spread the ashes of appetitive Park, people have lots of reasons for doing lots of different things. But I just thought it was interesting that it says cremated remains so not human, not pet, not no cremated remains are you allowed to bring in or spread at Disney. On the bright side,
just from you know my viewpoint as a medium, I do want to let you know that you don't actually have to scatter the remains of your loved one in a place for them to actually be able to visit that place if they choose, especially with you. So, for example, suppose that you had your favorite auntie, let's call her auntie Margaret. And she loves Disney, she loves Mickey, she loves the whole thing. Maybe you have some memories of seeing Disney movies with her, it's your thing together. And you after her passing or going to take a trip there? Well just know chances are her soul would accompany you just because just because she cares about you, because she's excited to be with you. Because she still wants to share love and memories with you. So you don't actually have to put someone's ashes in a place for them to be able to visit that place. They're not.
They're totally able to travel around and move freely, our souls can be anywhere so they could even visit the park just because they felt like it hypothetically. So don't feel like you know, even if that was someone's wish, or they said like, I really want you to scatter my ashes at the Haunted Mansion. And you're like, well, that's illegal, I'm not going to do that. Please don't do anything illegal.
You could just go there and know that your loved one will accompany you to the park, they will be there for those memories, they will share that time with you, you I'm sure we'll think of them in that moment. You could even ask them to send you a specific sign while you're at the park. Maybe you ask them to see bubbles or you ask
depending what their name is, maybe they could get their name to you in some way on a name tag or you might hear it so there's lots of other ways to invite your loved ones to the Disney parks with you. You don't have to scatter their ashes for them to be there. That being said, you know, people are gonna do what they're gonna do. And if someone has it in their mind, there's a chance that I mean, this has been a problem for Disneyland for years. Apparently like since the beginning of Disneyland and the resorts this has been a problem. So I don't know that it's gonna stop anytime soon. I was thinking like, Okay, is there a way to mitigate this situation right, is there some sort of like compromise or something that can be done?
I did actually even read another account. This is more Disney World than Disneyland, where a family
was writing in the Haunted Mansion ride. There's one scene where they wanted to distribute the ashes, they have them with them. And I guess there's a glass panel in front of the scene of this room. It's like one of the ballroom dancing scenes that's in that ride. And in Disney World, this story goes that there's this glass panel between the Doom Buggy, the writer and the room that they're viewing, right, so they can look through the glass and they see the ghosts dancing in this area. And that's how the ride goes, well, the people decided to try to spread the ashes right then. And the way the story is, it bounced off the glass and back on to them. So they're having to finish and exit the ride covered in their loved ones ashes. I just want to throw that out there. Because like we were talking about earlier, it's a powdery, very lightweight, substance more or less. And if there is any breeze or any glass wall or anything at all, you could end up covered in your loved ones ashes. So something to think about. Now, I don't know if Disney would ever consider this or this will ever happen. But what do you think about the idea of Disneyland coming up with some sort of program that allows people to have a small amount of ashes like a tiny amount, like a, like a dime size or Penny sized or teaspoon sized amount of ashes at the Disneyland Park, for example, in a safe and approved way? I don't know if they'll ever do it. But I was thinking how could this How could this work? I know that sometimes when they're creating a new area, especially years ago, when they redid the entrance to Disney, in California and Anaheim when when DCA, Disney California Adventure ,was being built and opened, people had the option the opportunity to purchase bricks in the pavement, and you could have your name on there, your family's name, whatever, well, they could do something like that, in a special area that they were creating or underneath arrived where they put a tiny, tiny bit of ashes inside those bricks, that'd be one way to do it that would feel safe and contained. And they could do some sort of like Mozza, Liam type wall or gazebo with tiny little vials inside or even just mixed into the paint. There's a lot of ways I think that they could do it to keep it safe and approve they could do a special pond a special garden.
I don't know I kind of ran this by my BFF. And she was like, I don't know if people would think that's too morbid. Like the other visitors visiting What do you guys think? Would you rather there be some sort of option for people to do it in like a safe and approved way? Or do you think like, definitely don't do that and just keep tightening security around people that are trying to illegally spread ashes?
Yeah, I don't know. And I had one more question that I just thought would be fun for you to consider hypothetically, if you could have your ashes spread at Disneyland, which again, is not legal at all. So please, definitely don't do that. But if you could, hypothetically in a magical world, where would you want your ashes to be? Would you pick haunted mansion? Would you pick the castle? Would you pick the moat around the castle? Is there some special area in Disneyland or Disney World that stands out to you as where you would want to be? I don't know that I would want my ashes spread at Disneyland. But if I didn't want them spread at Disneyland. I don't know it was a toss up for me, I think between the Haunted Mansion and the Pirates of the Caribbean, but we do have the Tiana's, Tiana's ride that's going to be replacing the old form or Splash Mountain ride. I think it's opening sometime near the end of 2024. I'll keep you updated. I might want to check out that ride before I give a final answer about where I would want my ashes spread hypothetically, if it was legal, which is not at Disneyland, so let me know where you would want your ashes spread. Just for fun. I think we're going to be talking about Disneyland a lot this year, but I'll try to keep it interesting. Why don't you if you have somewhere if you have a Disney story if you have a story about ashes being spread at Disney, or if you've seen it or know someone that has definitely if you're a former cast member, please call in call the spirit speakeasy hotline Leave me your store. You can be totally anonymous if you want. That number is 305-928-5683 That's 305928 Love L O V E 305-928-5683. Especially if you're an international listener you can also email your story to me admin at joyful medium
dot com, and that'll get to me. But I'd love to hear either where you would like your ashes spread at Disney if it was allowed. And it's not. Or if you have a story about knowing what's to be done or seeing to be done. Again, I was just floored, shocked, flabbergasted, completely taken aback that this was even a thing. Of course, it's a thing. I am going to try to get some video this week talk about this a little bit more when I'm actually at the park. And again, I might ask a couple cast members and see if I can get
the current opinion on there. I'm definitely going to be listening for Code A and for rides being shut down due to technical difficulties. Maybe I will see the man in the Ghostbusters suit or person I guess it's genderless job I'm sure who is going to be vacuuming up potential ashes. So you think about this one but urban legend
validated I guess on this episode. So there are so many interesting places that I think people work with the cremains of their loved ones and spread ashes and there's some of them legal and some of them not legal. And I just thought this was such a fascinating, interesting place that I had never ever even considered. So I hope this has been entertaining and mind bending and given you something to think about. Maybe some office cooler talk. Hypothetically, where would you want to... where would you want to haunt inside Disneyland? Big hugs. Thanks for being here with me for this little chat. Just you and me lots of love. Until next time, bye for now from inside Spirit Speakeasy.

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