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Theme Park Guests Say the Strangest Things

What time is the 3:00 parade? Believe it or not, theme park employees get asked that very question nearly every day. What can they do but laugh?

Orlando, FL, October 12, 2007 --( According to a survey from the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA), there are more than 400 amusement parks in the United States alone and in 2006, those amusement parks entertained approximately 335 million visitors. Those guests were assisted by an estimated 500,000 year-round and seasonal employees according to IAAPA's figures. That's a lot of guest stories to share among a lot of employees.

With the invention of the Internet has come the ability to share those stories worldwide; from park to park and from employee to employee. The Internet has also opened up numerous opportunities for theme park guests to share ideas and get travel tips and advice from those who work in the industry, as well as from fellow travelers.

According to Diane Graebner, a long-time theme park employee, "The guests give us something to chuckle about at the end of a long, hot, and tiring day. We love our jobs, especially the opportunity to speak to so many people from different cultures and from different parts of the world. But having something to share at the end of the day, be it a guest comment or funny story, makes each day more memorable."

As a theme park employee for over 20 years, Graebner has been asked the starting time of the 3:00 parade numerous times herself. "Guests don't mean to ask silly questions," she elaborates. "They get caught up in the moment and the question they meant to ask isn't the one that comes out of their mouths. The guests usually realize they've said something they didn't mean, and try to fix their questions. Laughing with them relieves the situation and gives us both something to chuckle about for the rest of the day."

Sharing humorous guest stories, through on-line blogs and forums, on t-shirts and bumper stickers, or just in the break room between shifts, gives the hard working theme park employees of the world a way to connect. "And that's what working in a theme park is all about," says Graebner. "Connecting to the world and having fun."

Diane Graebner is available for an interview. Please contact her at Diane has worked for five of the top theme park companies in the United States. At the age of 19, she took a summer job at Six Flags' Great America in Gurnee, IL. That summer job led to a career in the theme park industry. In addition to working two additional summers at Great America, Diane has worked a summer at Cedar Point in Sandusky, OH and for several summers as a tour guide at Sandusky's Merry-Go-Round Museum. After moving to Orlando, FL in 1992, Diane began working for the world's largest theme park, Walt Disney World as an attraction attendant, hotel front desk agent/Concierge, and finally as training coordinator at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. She also worked for several years as an entertainer at Sea World of Orlando. Diane is currently employed in an administrative position at Universal Studios Resort in Orlando. Her website gives her the ability to share her many guest stories through her blog and on humorous gift and apparel items. She also shares advice on making the most out of any trip to a theme park.

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Theme Park Where
Diane Graebner

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