Meet Me Down on Main Street
Meet me tonight on Main Street
‘Cause we’ve got a date tonight at 8
So meet me down on Main Street
Please don’t be late, don’t make me wait
Just meet me down on Main Street
We’ll take a ride on an old horse car
I’ll buy you a chocolate bar
And you’ll be the sweetest girl by far
Down on old Main Street…
Disney legend Thurl Ravenscroft recorded these words alongside the rest of the members of the Mellomen. It’s a song that perfectly captures the nostalgic charm of Main Street U.S.A. Every time I hear it, my imagination transports me there. I can see the train pulling out of the station and the singing dancing citizens of the Main Street Trolley show. I can hear the hustle and bustle of Guests as they enter the Emporium and the Main Street Confectionary, or stop to buy a balloon.
When our family arrives on Main Street, we typically make a bee line for the Town Square Fire House, to pick up our Sorcerer’s of the Magic Kingdom cards. If the line isn’t too long, we might stop for a character meet and greet. We also love to stop and watch the Dapper Dans performing. It’s always a treat to listen to them sing. On one particularly memorable occasion, they teamed up with the Citizens of Main Street to perform a few numbers.
Main Street is also home to one of our favorite dining experiences in the Magic Kingdom: Casey’s Corner. Named for the ill-fated Casey of Casey at the Bat (released in 1946 by Walt Disney), the restaurant is the quintessential All-American experience. Offerings include macaroni and cheese, chili, and chili-cheese fries, but the hot dogs are the main attraction.
Our family favorite is the plant-based hot dogs. The adults always get the Loaded Slaw Dog, which consists of a plant-based Sausage topped with pickled slaw, barbecue vegan aïoli, and roasted corn relish and is served with french fries or apple slices. We get the french fries, because obviously calories don’t count in Walt Disney World. That’s one of the reasons why it’s the Most Magical Place on Earth. The kids prefer the “Sausage” Dog, which is a plant-based sausage in a potato bun, also served with french fries or apple slices. Hot dog purists may not like to hear this, but they also slather their dogs with ketchup.
Casey’s always seems to be hopping with Guests, so sometimes it can be a bit tricky to find a place to sit inside. Fortunately, the best place to sit is outside. It’s not just because you get a perfect view of the castle. It also allows you to watch some of Walt Disney World’s finest entertainment: the ragtime piano player.
Ragtime is one of the great American musical forms, created by musical pioneers like Scott Joplin. Sitting outside, you can hear the piano player perform things like Maple Leaf Rag, The Entertainer, or Alexander’s Ragtime Band. For a special treat, try and catch Jim. He’s a cast member who has been performing the piano at Walt Disney World since the 1970s, and he shows no sign of stopping. He is, without a doubt, one of the great “hidden” treasures of the Magic Kingdom. It’s easy to lose all track of time while listening to him, but even if you only spend a few minutes there, I guarantee they’ll end up being one of the highlights of your visit.
Main Street U.S.A. is a perfect feat of Imagineering and theming, and the perfect way to start your day at the Magic Kingdom. Next time you visit, take a casual stroll around it. Peer through the windows, admire the architecture, and whistle a happy little tune. Maybe a quaint little melody by the Mellomen?