Credit: Becky Burkett

Tom Sawyer Island reportedly evacuated after man is seen carrying a hatchet

Tom Sawyer Island at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom was reportedly evacuated on Saturday after Guests reported seeing a man on the island walking around with a hatchet in his hands, although details of the incident are still fairly sketchy.

Credit: Becky Burkett

Cast Members went into action, and security was notified. Cast Members also notified local authorities–namely the Orange County Sheriff’s department–before 6:00 p.m. on Saturday evening, and officers were on the scene at the island shortly thereafter.

Guests on the island at the time reported seeing a man with a hatchet, which was later determined to be a prop from the queue for the experience. It was also reported that the man had stolen the hatchet prop along with a lantern prop and other items, but it’s unclear why he took the items and what he did with them.

Credit: Becky Burkett

Tom Sawyer Island is popular with Guests, especially those with families and children. It is accessible only by log rafts that are operated by Cast Members. Once Guests are on the island, they can spend a few minutes or a few hours before heading back to the loading dock via raft.

There are a few Cast Members on the island throughout the day; however, visibility from one area of the island to another can be minimal since the area is very lush with trees, bushes, plants, and shrubs throughout the entire attraction area.

Credit: Becky Burkett

The attraction was closed at the time of the alleged incident and did not reopen to Guests for the remainder of the park’s operating hours. It was open on Sunday, and according to Disney World’s website, the Tom Sawyer attraction was open today from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. It will be open tomorrow from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

We will keep you updated on this story with more details as they become available.


About Becky

Rebekah ("Becky") lives in Dallas, Texas, with her family. She's a professional writer, journalist and children's author. She loves to write about all things Walt, Imagineering, Disney Parks news and events, parks history and architecture, Pixar and Disney animation. Between trips to Mickey's stomping grounds in Central Florida, Becky spends time with her four kids and her four shih-tsus and writes inspirational pieces, devotionals and children's books. Hey, if you dream it, you really can do it!