While Disney's theme parks remain largely shuttered due to the pandemic, one family has gone ahead and built their own.
Eight months after Disneyland California closed its gates to the public – the park's rides and attractions remain out of action, without any dates for reopening.
However, two brothers with a shared love of roller coasters have used their summer to build a little bit of Disneyland in their backyard. Architecture Student Sean LaRochelle from Napa California and his brother Michael have made a working replica of the Matterhorn roller coaster.
Dubbed "The Alpine Escape" it is 6 metres tall and runs on around 120 metres of track. Taking just under a minute to complete a full circuit, the amateur amusement was no small feet of engineering.
"Growing up, Disneyland was something I loved," said Sean told the Napa Valley Register. "I've always wanted to create a roller coaster."
Parents Jacques and Diane LaRochelle admitted that when their son said he wanted to build a roller coaster in their backyard, they thought he had something smaller in mind.
"We always encouraged our kids to do creative things," said Jacques.
Since the closure of Disney parks in March, the whole family got involved in the ambitious build.
The 8-month build involved welding metal rails, creating fake rocks and a sculpting a Yeti named Jarold.
With Sean, and his siblings studying from home due to the closure of university campuses around the US – the mini-Matterhorn gave them a project to dedicate their free time.
However the alpine-themed roller coaster soon snowballed into a massive project.
Eventually the family ended up co-opting around 30 people to help with welding and framing the roller coaster.
After trying to build it out of PVC piping and household items, eventually the LaRochelles decided that if they were going to build a roller coaster – it was worth doing properly.
Father Jacques estimates they spent around $15,000 (NZ$22,000), or the equivalent of "premiere" passes for seven people, granting unlimited access to Disney parks in California and Florida for a year.
Sean was not thinking about costs, he said. "It was really a labour of love."
While he hasn't heard officially from Disney, he says he has had some kind comments from workers in the theme park industry about his ride.
"The dream would be to get a job with Walt Disney Imagineering," says Sean who is in the third year of an architecture degree. However he's aware that Covid has caused chaos not only for his family holidays but for the theme park business.
"I'm hopeful that the industry will be stronger when I graduate and some doors open up."