What began as a type of joke has become a point of pride for one Huntington Beach, California, man. Jeff Reitz, 50, has become a celebrity of sorts with his record-breaking streak of 2,995 consecutive visits to Disneyland. The annual pass holder started his adventure in 2012 when Reitz and a friend visited Disneyland on Jan. 1.
“It started as a joke between friends when Disneyland announced they were giving an ‘Extra Disney Day’ when they announced the Leap Day 24-hour event in 2012,” Reitz told Guinness World Records. They quipped that it couldn’t be an ‘extra day’ unless you attended every other day. “We decided to use Disneyland as a positive as we were out of work and had annual passes that had been gifted, so it was a source of free entertainment.”
Little did Reitz know that this would lead him to break records.
Guinness World Records tweeted about the record-setter.
Imagine going to Disneyland so often that the cast recognise you!https://t.co/LRHif6iHjm
— Guinness World Records (@GWR) February 21, 2023
Reitz continued with the challenge even after his friend dropped out and set some ground rules for himself: to stay in the park for at least an hour each day and document his journey online through social media. Then, when he found a new job, he would head to the park after work.
“Then on 2012 July 1, halfway through the year, the Orange County Register reporter printed a story about making it to Day 183,” Reitz told Guinness World Records. “And then the Associated Press picked up the story and it became real as I was getting contacted by newspapers and radio stations from around the globe asking for interviews.”
Covid put a halt to Reitz’s streak on March 14, 2020, which meant he spent a whopping 8 years, 3 months and 13 days at Disneyland consecutively.
Disneyland has showered Reitz with gifts over the years as he achieved his various milestones, topping it off with an Honorary Citizenship certificate and a pair of golden Mickey ears. For now, though, he has taken a break from his daily visits to dedicate more time to travel and attending concerts with friends.