Written by Admiral Duke for DisFanReview
At 6am on Friday May 23rd Disneyland Resort opened up for a unique 24 hour period dubbed 'Rock Your Disney Side.' Guests were encouraged to come to the park dressed in costume as your favorite Disney character or dress in a manner that best expresses your Disney side. Thousands of people did exactly that, there were many elaborate costumes of Princesses, Heroes and Villains. Then there were the offbeat ones, an adorable couple dressed like Walt and Lillian Disney, the trio of friends dressed like the scuba diver, a jellyfish from Finding Nemo, and then there were the two girls dressed like characters from My Little Pony.
Then there was me. As I contemplated what I would wear to the 24 hour event I had a few options. My wife and I had tried to plan out a Kevin Flynn costume from Tron Legacy but there were some logistical issues that made that costume impractical for 24 hours. Then I decided to fall back on my 'go to' costume; The Dude from the Coen Brothers 1998 film The Big Lebowski. What does that character have to do with Disney. On a literal level, nothing. However, I had a moment where I realized that there was an abstract connection. The Dude is a character who lives in Los Angeles. So, is it out of the realm of possibility that the Dude would go to Disneyland? Nope.
The reaction to my costume was quite unexpected. Park guests and Disneyland cast members recognized the character and complimented me on the costume, there were also several instances of guests wanting a photograph with me, which I was happy to oblige seeing as how I wasn't instantly recognizable as a costumed character and to the uninformed would simply look like some guy who rolled out of bed, put his bathrobe on and headed to Disneyland.
Throughout the 24 hour event there were a number of great things to experience like exclusive food items and film screenings. The Avengers Movie marathon in Tomorrowland was a great place to drop into to to either get out of the heat or to warm up depending on the time of day. What was especially remarkable was to see park guests through the day who had been there as long as you had. Then, when you saw those same faces at 6am on Saturday morning, heading for the exits, you knew that they were feeling just as threadbare but equally as satisfied as you were.