The "most magical place on earth" is about to get a lot less magical for kids of a certain age.
Starting March 23, Disney theme parks will require anyone 14 or younger to be accompanied by someone older than 14, a Disney spokesperson announced Saturday. The new rule will only affect Walt Disney World and Disneyland properties in the United States, and enforcement will fall in the hands of park workers, notes the Daily Mail.
"If a cast member who is working at the front gates sees a guest who appears to be younger than 14 without someone who appears to be older than that, they will engage in a conversation with the guest," Disney spokeswoman Suzi Brown told NBC4.
Brown added that children of that age do not carry identification with them and the child's parents of guardian would be notified if the visitor was too young. That adult would then need to physically come inside the park with the child.
The decision to ban kids under the age of 14 from some of Disney's properties came after a guest survey was conducted. Disney says the group has been in talks with a number of welfare associations. Last Tuesday, a 13-year-old boy drowned while swimming at Disney's Pop Century Resort in Orlando, Fla. according to reports from local media. However, Disney says that no particular incident sparked the new rule.
We regularly review all of our policies, and we identified an opportunity to provide a consistent age of admission and address a question we occasionally get from parents. The question is just if we have a minimum age, Brown told the Inquisitr.
While the ban may mark a first for age restriction for Disneyland parks, other Walt Disney properties have been considered off-limit to kids for years. Disney World's Pleasure Island entertainment district has always been an adult-only playground.
In 2008, the Victoria & Albert's, a restaurant in the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, banned children under the age of 10 from dinning, the Orlando Sentinel reported. According to staff from the five-diamond rated restaurant, the eatery wanted "to be the restaurant that's available for that adult experience."
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