Childhood best friends bring Disney magic to WPMD

Justyne Beccera and Cassie Salvidar talk about their Disney themed merchandise, as they point out their Disney-styled sneakers. The women created a show all about Disney, to reach their listener's inner kid. The women were born three weeks apart, and have been inseparable ever since. Photo credit: Karla Enriquez

Justyne Beccera and Cassie Salvidar talk about their Disney themed merchandise, as they point out their Disney-styled sneakers. The women created a show all about Disney, to reach their listener's inner kid. The women were born three weeks apart, and have been inseparable ever since. Photo credit: Karla Enriquez

Karla Enriquez

Cassie Saldivar and Justyne Becerra sit together at the Pennsylvania Hotel in New York, on March 5 for the Intercollegiate Broadcast System Awards.

The trip marked Becerra’s first time on a plane, which she was nervous about, coupled with the excitement of being a finalist under the most innovative category for their WPMD show, “Meet Me on Main Street.”

Their Disney-themed show captures the joyousness and nostalgia of days spent at Disneyland, providing Disney news and music.

The two could have never imagined that their life long friendship would turn into a shared journey.

Saldivar expressed, “What is nice about doing the show together is that we have that natural chemistry since we have been together for so long, so this has been so easy to do.”

Saldivar comes from a family of Disneyland cast members while Becerra’s parents happened to own the hair salon in Lakewood, which Saldivar’s parents frequented, cementing a childhood friendship.

Their love for Disney dates back to childhood, always having the Anaheim theme park present in their lives.

Saldivar’s father has worked at Disneyland for 42 years, attributing that to why she has always been immersed in the culture.

Becerra expressed that she doesn’t remember a time where Disney movies were not a part of her life.

“I think I started off with Mickey shorts, we were right next to like a rental movie place, so we had access to a lot of Disney movies and music and we were annual pass holders when I was younger.”

The two were sitting on a couch when they expressed to each other that it would be a good idea to have a radio show where they could talk about their shared Disney interest after seeing how much fun their friends had at WPMD.

The show is a different theme each week, but the focus was to remind people of their inner Disney kid.

Beccera stated, “[We] keep them updated with fun facts and events as well as information about what’s going on inside the Disney world.”

Saldivar chimed in, “It’s such a big part of people’s childhood. Childhood nostalgia, and a lot of that kind of belief that anything is possible and the magic, ‘If you can dream it, you can do it.’

“With that, we kind of strive to remind people of that part of themselves and really get back to that good ‘ol anything is possible mentality that we kind of forget as adults.”

Both quoted Walt Disney in their mission to keep the childhood nostalgia alive.

Saldivar expressed, “That was the whole point when he made Disneyland.”

She noted that they want to highlight to their listeners just how much Disney is a part of each person’s life.

“That’s the kind of thing that we think about when we do [the show] even if you’re not blatantly into Disney like we are you still wear your Mickey shirt, or bits of merchandise, like a little Mickey somewhere and that’s the kind of thing that we’re trying to highlight.

“Those are the people were trying to reach, the people who don’t even realize how much it is in their lives,” the two said while wearing merchandise with the iconic mouse.

Becerra attributes the popularity of the brand with people of this generation to the movies that were released in the nineties and early two thousands.

“I think that Disney is more popular now because our generation was so immersed in Disney things since we were little, like Hercules and Tarzan, all of the movies that came out then that introduced us to Disneyland and Disney stuff.”

She continued that this generation and the last now have Marvel and Star Wars to remind them that Disney is still present.

“People don’t realize that it is absolutely everywhere.”

“Meet Me on Main Street” was entered into several categories, but were notified during late-fall semester that they were finalists in the most innovative category.

Saldivar expressed, “We didn’t think we were going to get nominated at all.”

The pair insisted that this project was something they were doing for fun.

Saldivar said, “Meet Me on Main Street was never really, like we never saw it going anywhere[…] But getting nominated, and getting to go [to New York], and seeing the potential that we have kind of gives you that drive to do even better.

“The nomination has really gotten us to help focus, we’ve been researching more […] to make it even bigger and better and even taking it even more seriously than we previously were.”

Some of the things they would like to implement, depending on the success of the show, is a podcast, a blog, and a social media presence.

Saldivar stated, “As it is presently, we talk a little about whatever the topic is and we play a lot of music, and that got us nominated somehow, and that’s pretty much the bare minimum that we could possibly put into it.”

Their goal is to bring new fresh ideas adding that the new format may be more talk-based but still have some music.

For Saldivar, one of her favorite shows was during best friends, week in which they played cuts like Toy Story’s “You’ve Got A Friend in Me” and Fox and the Hound’s “Best Friend.”

“That was nice for us,” she continued adding, “We’re just lucky with that kind of connection, […] “It makes just doing this show so easy to do, […]we can just play off each other.”

Staying true to the roots of the park, every show ends with Walt Disney’s dedication to the amusement park.

Walt Disney opened a chapter with these words, “Here, age relives fond memories of the past, and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future.”

Saldivar and Becerra continue his legacy at WPMD.