Reedy Creek: The Launching Point of Book Two

My next book focuses on a crime that occurs south of the Reedy Creek Improvement District (RCID). This is an area of old world Florida that was raped to create Disney World. I say raped, although Disney’s RCID works hard to maintain the district now, because it has seen some dramatic changes over the past forty years that have totally disrupted the natural ecosystem.

Disney called on his friends to lead the way in turning the marshes, swamps and wetlands of Central Florida into what would become the Walt Disney World Resort.

The headwaters of Reedy Creek are not natural. An effort to demolish a stand of low rent housing unearthed the waters. The low-lying swamps were essentially drained into what became Reedy Creek. It is now in what is one of the busiest parts of the world. But there is some effort to maintain the beauty and cleanliness of it.

Walt Disney World sits on of 25,000 acres in Central Florida governed and managed by an essentially “private” government—the Reedy Creek Improvement District (RCID). RCID levies taxes on its residents, devises and enforces building codes, handles waste management and fire protection, issues bonds to finance infrastructure projects, and performs many other functions ordinarily performed by local governments.

With its headwaters in what is now Walt Disney World, Reedy Creek flows sluggishly southward through cypress swamps into pristine Lake Russell, and is one of the northernmost sources of water for the Everglades.

The Osceola County Schools Environmental Study Center has a nineteen acre area of Reedy Creek where you can walk out through the swamp.

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The cypress with its air-pine bromeliads growing on the trunks and the water fowl are powerfully breathtaking. I always think of the Indians who made this their homeland long before we came along. What we see as inhospitable, they made their homes and learned to work within the environment to survive.

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This nineteen-acre segment of the Reedy Creek Swamp offers elevated observation boardwalks, three hiking trails and indoor educational displays. You can see alligators sunning on turtles and turtles sunning on alligators.

The Reedy Creek Elementary school is an earth-bermed structure designed to be obscure in the natural habitat. Many Indian artifacts were unearthed when the school was built, including full-sized dugout canoes, which are on display inside the school.

Book Two of the Naked Eye Series begins as one of the private investigator’s former investment partners plans to work with the Seminole Indians to build a casino near the RCID and another one plans to build condos. One former partner ends up dead.

21 thoughts on “Reedy Creek: The Launching Point of Book Two

    • Bad to have spoiled the natural area, but good that there is some management to preserve and maintain what’s there. I suppose if there must be “progress” it is at least good to know that there is an effort not to totally destroy the environment. Even though Disney World is a huge complex, there are tens of thousands of acres undisturbed which they contracted to leave alone. Some people call it greenwashing. We’re going to desecrate this land over here, but we’re going to protect that land over there. If they didn’t own it though…who knows what might have happened to it?

    • I did read it. Disney came around Florida long before Walmart, but people laughed at him and he became the bud of jokes all over California. We have another area where the Transportation Authority is promoting getting a toll road finished around Orlando. The Wekiva River Keepers aren’t having it. So we have 417 around the east side and nothing around the west.

  1. I live about as far from the Everglades as possible within the US. I’m glad to have a glimpse of that watery world. The setting for a novel always adds a lot.

  2. That’s a great setting for a crime novel. Lots of strange things can happen to a body when snapping turtles and alligators are in the mix. I hope you don’t run into any problems with the Disney attorneys.

  3. I am looking forward to reading this. I have some knowledge of Reedy Creek from having visited WDW so often and having read a lot about the Disney Company. This is very interesting to me.

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