We have a second post for the Happiest Place on Earth, but this time, it's a part of the return of #FlashbackFrightday, which we haven't really done in a month or so. Today, we take a tour of Mickey's Halloween Party, Disneyland's separate admission, family-friendly Halloween event offering. Available select evenings in September and October, Mickey's Halloween Party offers guests trick-or-treating, dress-up opportunities (well, last year anyway; new security policies this year complicate this), less crowded access to the park rides, viewing of the fantastic Halloween Screams fireworks show, and exclusive entertainment options around the park.
It's really become a pretty fun event for people who want to have a spooky and not terrifying activity for Halloween, or people watch, or just photograph. Lets take a look at what Mickey's Halloween Party entails. As you'll see, it's quite photogenic!
New last year and pretty unadvertised was the use of the Disneyland Forever main street projections for use as ambient show lighting and visuals for Mickey's Halloween Party! Imagine my surprise and joy when I strolled down Main Street and saw the facades bathed in eerie green, with spiderwebs, creepy crawlies, and shifty spooks materializing across the storefronts. This was a logical move and great plus for the event, adding an extra and beautiful layer of theatrical presentation to the event. Of course, Main Street in general is beautiful to photograph at night, especially after all the guests have left (though unfortunately, the projections stopped at midnight).
Once upon a time, Halloween Screams was the standard fireworks show throughout HalloweenTime. But then some park executives or company accountants realized that the this Walt Disney World adaptation was really good, and it could be leveraged to entice people to the separate admission Halloween Party if it was made exclusive to that. And so it is... much to my chagrin. But just the fireworks by itself represents a lot of the value of the ticket. With Jack Skellington as host, the show offers cameo's by some of Disney's most iconic villains, like Maleficent, Ursula, Jafar, and Oogie Boogie. Last year, the show was further improved with the 3D projections onto the castle utilizing the same technology from Disneyland Forever. Another example of synergy!
There's not much here that isn't also available during regular park hours, other than some trick or treating spots. But still, the Halloween decorations in Frontierland, though reused, are cute and colorful. Plus, there's the Halloween Tree, in honor of Ray Bradbury, which happens to be one of things that we at Westcoaster love for the serendipity of it all.
Of course, for a lot of people, the fun in Halloween is dressing up, and Mickey's Halloween Party has traditionally allowed children of all ages to do just that. Guests can get pretty elaborate with this as evidenced above, or they can be quite creative too. Costume mash-ups, Disney park attraction cosplays, and Disney Bounding create for some great sights. And of course, there are plenty of actual Disney characters--mostly villains--out and about too.
Haunted Mansion Holiday
The Haunted Mansion Holiday isn't exclusive to Mickey's Halloween Party, of course. Heck, it's not even exclusive to HalloweenTime, since it runs through the winter holidays. But it's a great overlay that I enjoy seeing return every year. Part of this is just to see the new ginger bread house that the Imagineers design every year. And part of this is because Nightmare Before Christmas is magical, and if you didn't get to experience this Tim Burton classic as a child, then I pity your poor poor soul. And if you don't think it's a great movie, well, please move yourself to that yuge wall over there, ya terrorist.
The Rivers of America
Finally, the Rivers of America takes on a deliciously eerie atmosphere during the Halloween Party. Fog mysteriously inundates the waterfront, shrouding Tom Sawyer Island in a veil of eerieness, while the Columbia, docked at Frontierland Landing, seems to float mysteriously like a ghost ship.
That's it for today! It's been quite a busy week on the site, with two Knott's Berry Farm updates on Ghost Town, including the incredible Ghost Town Alive! event that ends this Monday, Labor Day. Then Jim hijacked a Disneyland construction update and laced it with explicit absurdity. And yesterday, we had a nifty little feature on the L.A. Derby Dolls, a Southern California all-female, banked track roller derby league. That should hopefully saturate you with Westcoaster goodness/terribleness after the relative silence earlier this month.
Enjoy a nice holiday weekend, and then look forward to the fog. Because it's September, and that means Halloween season starts in earnest!
Architect. Photographer. Disney nerd. Haunt enthusiast. Travel bugged. Concert fiend. Asian.