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Meet the Animal Experts at Disneyland Resort

posted on October 20th, 2010 by Betsy Sanchez, Manager of Media Relations, Disneyland Resort

Did you know that behind the Rivers of America lies a five-acre ranch where all of the animals you see at Disneyland park live? We call it Circle D and it’s been in business since 1954, when it was set up to begin training horses for the Main Street, U.S.A. carriages you still see at the park today.

This month, we’d like to introduce you to our animal experts who devote their time to making sure that our animals are happy, safe and well. Meet Maggie Gitchen and Gina Mayberry, our ranch managers, both of whom have called Disneyland park home for many years and have incredible stories to tell about the history of Circle D and Disneyland park. Check out the video below to hear from our very own animal whisperers.

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Filed: Behind the Scenes, Cast Member Profiles, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort



Thor from CA on October 20th, 2010 at 1:58 pm

I love Disneyland’s Big Thunder Ranch petting farm! The goats are hilarious to hang out with.

But my favorite thing at the petting farm is at Christmas when they bring in Santa’s real live reindeer down from the north pole. Unlike the chatty and perky goats, the reindeer are very quiet and rather noble. Bravo to Disneyland for keeping live animals on display in Frontierland, aside from the gorgeous horses at work on Main Street USA.


Anonymous on October 20th, 2010 at 2:50 pm

How do I get this job?!


Chase on October 20th, 2010 at 2:50 pm

How do I get this job?!


Isabel on October 20th, 2010 at 6:08 pm

I absolutely love the goats! Its one of my favorite things to do at Disneyland!!


Robin on October 20th, 2010 at 6:42 pm

This is my dream job! If I lived in LA I would totally try to get a job working at the Circle D.


Loren on October 20th, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Riding the Horse-Drawn Streetcar and visiting Big Thunder Ranch are regular parts of my visits to Disneyland. I’ve come to know many of the cast members who work there and I really appreciate Disneyland spotlighting them. They are truly special people working with truly special animals. Yay for the Circle D!


Karen from CA on October 21st, 2010 at 1:54 am

As I as watching the video it brought back so many memories. I remember riding on the stagecoach and riding the burros. It was great. I still enjoy and always will being able to go to the Circle D to see the animals.


Wendy from CA on October 21st, 2010 at 5:49 pm

As a “horse person” this video was really cool!


Krista on October 21st, 2010 at 5:51 pm

Thanks for the great video!


Kimberly on October 21st, 2010 at 8:10 pm

Hands down my dream job since I was a little girl!