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 Burkett

I'm an enthusiastic writer who finds joy in random things like cold weather, snow, "I Love Lucy," "The Andy Griffith Show," journals full of blank paper, countdowns to Christmas, the month of December, "Toy Story," "Sleeping Beauty," my 4 kids, my 4 shih tsus, Disney Parks history, Imagineering and visiting the parks. I think Walt Disney is the standard against which genius should be measured. I love to write about Disney Parks, Disney history, all things Imagineering and PIXAR. I adore the colors, story and art direction of Disney's "Sleeping Beauty" (Team Make it Blue!), and "Toy Story" is life (minus "Toy Story 4"). I believe Walt Disney was so much more than an entertainment and theme park tycoon; I believe he was a savant with a vision for life and how it could be if happiness and kindness are strived for. I love Biergarten at EPCOT and 1900 Park Fare at Disney's Grand Floridian. You can find me croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room, chillin' on the PeopleMover or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. I'm always looking for Imagineers in the parks, and I'd rather meet Joe Rohde and Tony Baxter than anyone in Hollywood! Hey, if you dream it, you really can do it!