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Anywhere But Disney

Anywhere But Disney

Ever thought about where you want your ashes scattered? If cremation is in your future, that is.

(As much as I like the idea of a granite headstone with something like, “She Wrote Good” on it - in a leafy cemetery where pals could toast my memory with cheap wine - I find the notion of embalming repulsive. Just incinerate what’s left of me.)

Once ashen, I assume my family might sprinkle me on the beach. My happy place. Where I’ve wiled away countless lazy summer afternoons when I should have been home cooking them supper.

(Yes, I know it’s probably illegal to dump “cremains” in the sand. We’re speaking hypothetically.)

But now that I’m thinking about it, I’d like them to break a different law. I’d like one of them - looking at you, Bryn - to sneak into Vaught-Hemingway Stadium and scatter my ashes in the North End Zone. On the very spot where Reb defender Senquez Golson caught that game-winning interception on Oct. 4, 2014 with 37 seconds left to beat Alabama 23-17.


From our seats in Section M we had a perfect view of that dazzling catch.

It was a thing of beauty.

I know one place I definitely wouldn’t want to spend eternity: Disney World. I was there earlier this month. It felt like a lifetime in that 99-degree heat.

Yet, according to yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, Disney World is a popular place to fling Grandma. And, despite thorough inspections of bags at the entrances, lots of visitors sneak ashes in and promiscuously toss them around the Happiest Place on Earth.

No code is kept more under wraps at Walt Disney World and Disneyland than the call for a “HEPA cleanup.” It means that, once again, a park guest has scattered the cremated ashes of a loved one somewhere in the park, and an ultrafine (or “HEPA”) vacuum cleaner is needed to suck them up.

Disney custodians say it happens about once a month.


“Anyone who knew my mom knew Disney was her happy place,” said Jodie Jackson Wells, a business coach in Boca Raton, Fla., who in 2009 smuggled a pill bottle containing her mother’s ashes into Walt Disney World.

Once inside, Ms. Wells helped spread ashes on the platform of It’s a Small World near a head-spinning bird, a moment in the ride that always made her mother laugh. 

Later in the day, overcome with grief, Ms. Wells hopped over the barricade surrounding the lawn outside Cinderella’s castle and ran across the grass, flinging them as she crossed.

Wells isn’t the only mourner who picked that weird little amusement with that annoying song - a leftover from the 1964 New York World’s Fair - as the final resting place for Mom, The Wall Street Journal reported.

…Kym Pessolano DeBarth, a 47-year-old optometrist-office worker from Northfield, N.J., dumped a small amount of her mother’s ashes in the water underneath It’s a Small World. “I didn’t want to clog the filter,” she said.

In December, she’ll return to the park to commemorate the 15th anniversary of her mother’s death.

“Instead of going to a grave,” she said, “I go to Disney World.”

Gawd. Of all the places in the Magic Kingdom, why there? According to ABC, “During a 16-hour operating day in the parks, the ‘It's a Small World" song is played, on average, 1,200 times.”

Twelve hundred renditions of that tinny song a day? Sounds like Hell to me.

America. Worth The Wait.

America. Worth The Wait.

Don’t Stand So Close To Me

Don’t Stand So Close To Me