The pair went in a group to Disneyland in 2007, and a romance broke out.
Now, James and Beth Silverman, recently married, are moving their relationship across the esplanade to join the staff launching the updated Disney California Adventure next month.
"When this opened up, it was amazing how many of the puzzle pieces just fit," said Beth Silverman, 36.
The Silvermans are among the 3,000 new employees added at the Disneyland Resort – 2,300 at California Adventure – in the biggest hiring spurt of any Orange County company in years. The additions make Disney the largest employer in the county with 23,000 workers, passing the previous No. 1 – UC Irvine (21,676 workers).
"What that is doing is clearly helping people in Orange County," said Mary Niven, vice president of Disney California Adventure.
On June 15, Disney California Adventure debuts the completion of its five-year, $1 billion makeover that includes the new 12-acre Cars Land and a new entrance, called Buena Vista Street, the park's version of Disneyland's Main Street, U.S.A.
That makeover created jobs as well: an average of 1,700 jobs annually over the project's half-decade.
Clark Construction Group got the bid as the general contractor for Cars Land, the largest chunk of Disney's project, in October 2008 as the economy was souring. Around the same time, just down Katella Avenue, major construction in Anaheim's Platinum Triangle, where a massive residential and commercial swath was to rise, went on an indefinite hold.
An average of 230 Clark employees have worked on site daily since the groundbreaking almost three years ago. Altogether, Clark employees logged 1.3 million hours on the 12-acre Cars Land performing jobs that included electrical and iron work.
"It was a fun one (project) to be involved in. It would have been good in a good market. It was particularly good in a bad market," said Gregory Zinberg, Clark's senior project manager for Cars Land.
More than 350 Southern California businesses, vendors and artisans worked on the project, from making neon signs to designing tile to providing sprinklers and sheet metal.
Last week, Disney was finishing the hiring of the last 40 or so permanent workers. Entry-level jobs start at $9 an hour. Managers and administrators will make up to $100,000 annually. For every position, Disney received a dozen applications.
"We were able to be very picky," said Niven, the California Adventure vice president.
About half of the 3,000 new jobs are full time.
"They are hiring people right off the street as full time, which means benefits," said Sandi Ecklund, president of Workers United Local 50, which represents 4,500 Disney food and beverage employees. "It's the first time they've done that in a few years."
The influx of jobs has helped Orange County attain one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state, said Lucy Dunn, president of the Orange County Business Council.
"No small part of that is because of the resort," she said.
The Silvermans are longtime annual passholders who live in Anaheim. Disney hired both as part-time bartenders at Carthay Circle Theatre, which will have a restaurant and private lounge in the key building of Buena Vista Street.
The Silvermans are making ends meet with a variety of jobs: Beth works as a makeup and mosaic artist. James has done work behind and in front of cameras on TV shows, having trouble at times finding jobs in recent years. Both had bartending experience.
James Silverman, 40, stumbled upon the bartending position in February while looking for other Disney production jobs on the company website. Both decided to apply.
"I've never felt more like I'm in the right place ever in my life," Beth Silverman said.