What Happens at Disney World after the Families Go Home?


By Jennifer Close

The Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark
Destination: Disney World, Florida

Book: The Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark (2009) by Ridley Pearson

If you have been to Disney World at night, you know how exciting it can be. Tinker Bell flies across the park and the fireworks, parades and light shows mesmerize. Glow sticks and light necklaces seem to bounce through the darkness on their own. The stores on Main Street are lit up beckoning you to buy that last treat or souvenir before leaving. The rides don’t seem as crowded because many families have headed back to their hotels.

What does happen when the families head back to their hotels?

Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark by Ridley Pearson answers that question. Finn and four other teens become models for Disney’s first Holographic Hosts. The hosts give visitors information and guide them around the Magic Kingdom. The hosts are enjoying their fame but at night when they sleep something strange happens. Their holograms are called back to the Magic Kingdom were they are given the task to save the park from the evil Overtakers, who want to control the Magic Kingdom.

Disney street art
Disney street art, Photo by Jennifer Close

Many beloved Disney characters make an appearance in this adventure like Maleficient, from Sleeping Beauty and the Pirates of the Caribbean. This book is not for the little ones though because many of the characters play an evil role. The dolls from It’s a Small World come alive and start attacking the Hologram Hosts. Reading that passage sent shivers down my spine.

Downtown Disney at Night
Downtown Disney at Night, Photo by Jennifer Close

The Kingdom Keepers: Disney after Dark is the first in a series that already has five books on the shelves with a sixth book, Kingdom Keepers VI: Dark Passage, set to release April 2, 2013. If you are planning a trip to Disney World with your pre-teen or teenager, this book might help get them excited for their own adventure.

Five Favorite Disney World Tips

1. Buy your souvenirs off-site. Visit the Orlando stores like Target, Wal-Mart or the Dollar Store before you go to Disney World to pick up water bottles, stuffed animals, bags and more. Pass out the souvenirs throughout your trip as you see fit.

2. Bring your own snacks and share meals. You can bring your own food into Disney World (some parks even allow soft-sided coolers) so pack plenty of fun snacks. Another way to save money is to share a meal. Many of the meals come with enough food to feed more than one person.

3. Bring a water bottle or a Camelbak. Disney World can be very hot and you will want your water bottle handy so you don’t have to keep buying drinks. Fill it up at the many water fountains during the day.

4. Buy a fan/spray bottle combo before you get to the parks. As the day goes on and the humidity rises, those $10 fan/spray bottle combos sitting on ice everywhere you turn look very tempting. Save your money and bring your own.

5. Pack a poncho, batteries for your camera and sunscreen in your bag every day.

Mary Poppins Flies Away
Mary Poppins Flies Away, Photo by Jennifer Close

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About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, or recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons . She has written for Reel Life With Jane, Life is a Trip and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

9 thoughts on “What Happens at Disney World after the Families Go Home?

    1. Jen: This book sounds like a great Disney lure for bored teens (or pretending-to-be-bored teens). But, like Jane, I wonder how Disney feels about having this scary darker side in print?

  1. Ooh, I like the sounds of this! On a related note, someone shot a film in Disney World last year, which sparked all sorts of discussions about whether it was legal or not. I don’t know if Disney ended up suing them or not.

    I wonder if Ridley Pearson had any legal issues from Disney with the book.

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