Hedge Fund Firm Swarms Disney Park, Locks Out Regular Guests

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Magic Kingdom New Years Eve

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World Resort is a place of celebration for many. They even offer customized “celebration” buttons for Guests visiting for birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, and more!

Related: How to Find Out If Your Disney Outlet Store Is Closing

Recently though, the Florida Disney Park hosted a different type of celebration. Billionaire Ken Griffin, the owner of Citadel and Citadel Securities, sent over 10,000 employees and their families on an all-expense-paid trip to Walt Disney World Resort. The celebration also featured exclusive performances by Coldplay, Carly Rae Jepsen, and DJ Diplo.

A mother and two children in front of Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World during an after hours event
Credit: Walt Disney World

According to Business Insiderthe extravaganza lasted three days, with thousands of employees converging on Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Many traveled from New York, Houston, Paris, Zurich, and other cities.

Though much of Wall Street and the stock market has suffered a challenging year, including The Walt Disney Company, Citadel saw record increases. The company is primarily a trading and asset management firm, taking care of billions of dollars in hedge funds, endowments, and pensions.

A doll in a red German style dress.
Credit: Disney

While the employees and their families enjoyed the vacation to Cinderella Castle, social media users weren’t fond of the celebration. @Lowscrowtom wrote:

This maneuver is either: 1. Prepare for upcoming tax write-off. 2. Flaunt / Mislead public on Citadel’s well-being. 3. Indirectly fund Disney to perhaps “Pursuade” Disney to not aquire any detrimental partnerships (if any) 4. Enjoy freedom before world comes crashing down.

@berglett joked that Citadel’s employees are “Disney Adults” – a derogatory term describing childless adults that enjoy Disney and went viral multiple times this year:

citadel would hire disney adults

Though it’s unknown whether Griffin rented out one of the Disney Parks for an exclusive event, the trip undoubtedly had an impact on non-Citadel Guests. They certainly made up for a large portion of Disney Park Pass Reservations and luxurious dining reservations throughout the three-day visit.

Did you notice increased crowding at Walt Disney World Resort this week? 

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