“I have a special something just for you. Here, take my business card. It’s a very special card, you see. Show this to any Cast Member and it will get to to the very back of any line.”
This was a favorite quote of Mayor Christopher George Weaver, a beloved Citizen of Main Street, U.S.A. as part of streetmosphere entertainment at Magic Kingdom. It is with deep sadness that we report of Weaver’s passing away. The park won’t be the same without his smiling face and boisterous glee. We can, however, celebrate the magic he brought to literally millions of Guests, and the memories with him that will be part of vacation memories forever.
While no official information about Weaver’s tenure with Disney was released over the years to preserve character integrity, he held office as “Mayor” for at least two decades. Footage from 1998’s Walt Disney World Happy Easter Parade telecast shows Mayor Weaver waving proudly along the parade route, even getting a special shout-out from hosts Regis Philbin and Anne Jillian. So it was at least two decades, and probably longer, that Weaver’s personality brightened Main Street.
And what a personality it was. Loud, hilarious, and at times even a bit comically blunt (“Young lady, you look like you get into a lot of riffraff. Is that true?”), Mayor Weaver guaranteed a memorable encounter with every interaction he had. My family has been meeting Mayor Weaver each Disney trip since I was 10 years old, and each visit was a delight. Upon saying to him, “Good to see you!” his reply was, “Good to be seen!” I remember one particular moment when Mayor greeted me in Town Square on my way into the park, then a few minutes later as I was waiting in line at the ice cream parlor (the complete other end of the street), he saw me from outside the line, and made quite a scene to exclaim, “Hey! You’re following me!” Classic Mayor Weaver. He also continually rallied for his ongoing electoral campaign, urging Guests to “Pull the lever and vote for Weaver.”
While most of Mayor Weaver’s time was spent strolling Main Street and its various shops, he also hosted the former version of the park’s Welcome Show several times each week. The previous iteration, which performed 2003-early 2017, took place on the railroad station platform above the Mickey floral at the park entrance (the new version is at the Castle). A Citizen of Main Street would lead trolley performers in ushering in Mickey and the gang, who arrived quite magically via steam train, to open the park. Weaver often spoke about his love for the show, and was distinguished from his fellow Citizens in the way he would excitedly shout the park’s name when welcoming Guests at the beginning of the ceremony.
Weaver was a recipient of the prestigious Walt Disney Legacy Award, an honor bestowed to a limited number of Cast Members each year who create, dream, and inspire through their work in a way that exemplifies Walt Disney’s spirit. Depending on how long ago Legacy honorees received the award, they can be identified in the parks by having either a completely blue nametag, or a white nametag with a gold pin of the Walt/Mickey Partners statue on it. While Weaver was the sole performer to ever portray the Mayor, he never wore a nametag because his role was still somewhere between the areas of Cast Member and fictional character. Because of this, his Legacy distinction was a specially made pendant, still matching the theming of Main Street and the rest of his costume. At Halloweentime each year, Mayor Weaver also was honored with a pumpkin in his likeness in Town Square. (“They thought I was so pretty, they turned me into a pumpkin!”)
There will never be another like Mayor Christopher George Weaver. He was an icon—an embodiment of joy. Even the most magical place on earth will be a little less so without him.
What’s your favorite memory of Mayor Weaver?
(Citizens group photo © Disney. Other photos belong to author’s personal collection.)
- 1998 Happy Easter Parade (see [15:18] mark)
- Magic Kingdom Welcome Show hosted by Mayor Weaver (see [1:08] mark for signature shout)