It’s called the “happiest place on Earth,” but it certainly didn’t seem like it when one group of visitors attempted to take a family photo at Walt Disney World. Instead of capturing a happy moment in time, tensions rose between two families before things turned shockingly violent — and it was all caught on camera.
Walt Disney World in Florida is a popular family vacation destination, so one would expect that patrons of the amusement park would behave in a family-friendly way. Sadly, that doesn’t always seem to be the case as one viral video seems to prove. Instead of magic and memories, an all-out brawl was captured on camera after one group refused another group’s simple request, causing tensions between the two families to rise.
The incident reportedly unfolded on a Monday afternoon at around 2:30 pm as an unidentified family group strolled through Walt Disney World near Orlando, Florida. After entering the Magic Kingdom, the family decided to stop for a group photo in front of a sign and decorative garden arrangement at the park, but they soon faced a problem, according to The Blaze.
A larger family had reportedly stepped into the same spot, preventing the first family from being able to capture a photo of just themselves. So, doing as most anyone would, the first family asked the other group to move over briefly — out of the frame — in order for them to take an unobstructed photo by the theme park sign, the NY Post reported.
Sadly, rather than complying with the simple request, a man in the second, larger family responded by decking a member of the first family in the face, and things only went from bad to worse from there. Very quickly, both groups were throwing punches at each other. With one man on the ground, video cameras rolled and Disney employees frantically called for backup.
fight at Disney World over a picture pic.twitter.com/FmijwgXeBV
— Daily Loud (@DailyLoud) May 17, 2023
As members of both groups broke out into fistfights with one another, interspersed with incoherent shouting and cursing, Disney World staff and a security officer arrived to split them up. At some point, park employees requested backup after rushing over to the scene to try to separate the two camps, leading to someone calling the cops. Meanwhile, bystanders quickly pulled out their phones to capture the brawl, which was then shared to social media as so often happens in the digital era.
In one clip, a man is seen on the ground as another man lands several blows to his head and body. After help arrived to split them up and the attacker left, the man who was on the ground is seen in video footage struggling to get up. Eventually, he opted to stay seated while looking dazed, exhausted, and unable to stand. One person was reportedly treated for injuries at the scene but declined to press charges, but it is unclear whether the injured party and the man on the ground were one and the same.
As various videos circulated on social media, appearing to show groups of adults throwing punches at the theme park while onlookers watched, one clip appeared to show authorities handcuffing someone on the ground. However, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said it is unclear whether the video depicts the incident in question. Also, because the victim did not want to prosecute, no one was arrested, but at least two members of the larger family were removed from the park, the sheriff’s office said.
NBC further reported that two people were banned from Walt Disney World after the physical altercation. Two unspecified people “were issued a trespass warning, which means they are not welcome on the property,” a spokesperson for the sheriff’s office said, adding, “If they return, they can be arrested,” the outlet explained.
In all, WJXT reported that at least eight adults were involved in the Disney melee as two young children stood nearby, but none of the names of the participants were released. Apparently, these eight adults didn’t get the message that certain behaviors, including “using profanity or engaging in unsafe, illegal, disruptive or offensive behavior, jumping lines or saving places in lines for others,” are prohibited at the park.
Sadly, children bore witness to this despicable behavior, and it’s a childhood memory they will now carry with them for a lifetime. And, for what? If this is your reaction to being asked to move out of the way briefly, do everyone a favor and just stay home because your pride and ego are obviously too big for your carry-on. This is an embarrassing way for adults to behave, and every innocent person who had their happy, family-friendly vacation disrupted by this unnecessary brawl deserves an apology from those involved.