Speed Reads

seriously wtf

This drama between Disneyland social clubs is about as bizarre as it sounds

Lurking in the shadow of Sleeping Beauty's Castle, they face off, West Side Story–style, the Furious Flounders against the Marvelous Maleficents, knowing that only one Disneyland social club can come out on top.

Okay, it's not quite that sinister, but a lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court does allege that the leader of one Disneyland social club threatened another if he didn't pay up $500 as a "protection" fee. Social clubs started popping up at Disneyland in 2013, and now there are about 100 of them, with some boasting more than 100 members, the Los Angeles Times reports. Members wear vests with patches featuring the characters their clubs are named after, and in an ode to motorcycle gangs, instead of putting "MC" on their vests, they add "SC."

Typically, there's no beef between the clubs, and members say they wave when they pass each other. That's not the case between Main Street Fire Station 55 Social Club and the White Rabbits Social Club, though. In a lawsuit filed by Main Street Fire Station 55 founders John and Leslee Sarno, they claim that while they were planning a memorial walk at Disneyland in 2016 to raise money for the families of firefighters who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, White Rabbits leader Jakob Fite approached John Sarno, telling him if he didn't pony up $500 for "protection" during the event, he would ensure Sarno never got into Disneyland again.

Fite told the Times that in his podcast about Disney subcultures, he did question John Sarno's character and suggested he may be misleading his club members about the money they raise, but that's it. The lawsuit doesn't describe who or what Fite would protect the Sarnos from — the Seven Dwarves? Roving bands of 10-year-olds hyped-up on turkey legs and churro dust? — or how he could possibly bar their entrance to the Happiest Place on Earth, but it does ask for compensatory and punitive damages.