If you live in Southern California and are a frequent visitor to Disneyland, then you might have noticed a dark cloud descending on the Magic Kingdom on certain days of the year. For the past 20 years, “Bats Day” has been the occasion for the goth community to get together and spend the day at the Happiest Place on Earth.
Why the end to all the spooky fun? Well, according to a press release on the Bats Day Facebook page, the problem of rising costs have made it too much of a hassle to continue the event past this year. From their press release:
“Due to the new 2018 tax plan, the struggling economy and ever-rising costs, we can no longer run Bats Day in the Fun Park on the grand scale that it has had for the past 15 years. What most people don’t realize is that Bats Day is a labor of love; we don’t make money on it. Bats Day has never had any corporate funding or sponsorship, either: It is an event we do for the community. It is something our crew donates varying amounts of time and energy toward without seeing any kind of pay or profit from it.”
Now, it may seem strange to many of you out there that goths, a community famous for their frowns that are not turned upside down, would love a place like Disneyland. But think about it – between Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean, Disneyland’s New Orleans Square is a gothic mini-theme park itself. And then there are all the Disney villains afoot like Maleficent and the Evil Queen, all gothic icons themselves. One can even say Disney’s The Nightmare Before Christmas helped invent the so-called “mall goth.”
Goths, if anything, are all about maintaining a very specific theatricality in their everyday lives, and Disneyland is all about maintaining a very similar facade 24/7, 365 days a year. That’s why I, a peripheral goth at best (does going to a lot of goth clubs in my teens and early 20s count?), understood the symbiotic relationship between goth culture and Disneyland, and why Bats Day always brought a smile to my face (sorry, goths!). I for one will be sad to see it go, and I hope it makes a return before too long.
How do you feel about the end of Bats Day at Disneyland? Be sure to let us know down below in the comments.
Images: Disney / YouTube user Marie Winton