Walt Disney World LIVE! Guidebook
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Holidays at Disney
Holidays at Disney
Easter (April 1, 2018)
Spring crowds reach a peak during Easter week. Easter egg hunts and candy scrambles may be held at some of the resorts for their guests. Check with your resort for details. Some restaurants offer Easter meals, such as Chef Mickey’s (see page 255), ‘Ohana (see page 258), Whispering Canyon Cafe (see page 260), and Mickey’s Backyard BBQ (see page 264).
Independence Day (July 4, 2018)
The Magic Kingdom traditionally puts on a spectacular fireworks show, as does Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Epcot’s IllumiNations is enhanced with Fourth of July fun, too!
Halloween (October 31, 2018)
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party brings kid-friendly spookiness to the Magic Kingdom for 34 nights in 2018 (7:00 pm–midnight) in August, September, and October (usually Tuesdays, Fridays, and Sundays, plus Halloween night). You can expect the Halloween Party to return in 2019. Enjoy Mickey’s Boo to You Halloween Parade, a kids’ costume parade, trick-or-treating around the park, Halloween-themed fireworks ("Happy Hallo-Wishes"), storytellers, fortune tellers, and access to most rides. We recommend you make time for the Liberty Belle Riverboat, which offers Halloween cruises with storytellers and live entertainment—it was the highlight of our night! Tickets start at $84/adult (for advance tickets) and $93 for on-site ticket purchases. Call 407-934-7639 well in advance as tickets sell out, especially for Halloween night—tickets for 2018 are on sale now.
Thanksgiving (fourth Thursday in November)
Crowds take a bump up for this All-American holiday. Disney’s holiday decorations are already up, and a number of the full-service restaurants at the parks and almost all of the Disney resorts host special holiday dinners, with and without Disney characters.
Christmas is a very special time, with delightful decorations, holiday entertainment, and countless ways to enjoy the season. Decorations go up by early November, so there’s more than a month of merriment. Try to come during the first two weeks of December when the crowds are a little thinner, rates are a little lower, the party is in full swing, and the “World” is decked with holiday cheer. Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a big favorite. Packed full of special shows and special fun, the Magic Kingdom is open for five extra hours for 22 nights between November 8–December 22, 2018. Snow falls on Main Street, fireworks and music fill the air, and the big rides are open. And let’s not forget the castle lighting ceremony, holiday-themed entertainment, strolling carolers, and complimentary cookies and hot cocoa. Advance tickets start at $95/adult—2018 tickets are now on sale. Note that the Magic Kingdom will be closing at 6:00 pm on nights when the Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party is being held. Non-party guests will be asked to exit the park at 6:00 pm on party nights. Attraction queues will no longer allow non-party guests entrance to the rides beginning at 6:00 pm.
Elsewhere around the World, the Candlelight Processional at Epcot runs two to three times nightly. A celebrity narrator, chorus, and orchestra present the Christmas tale. No extra admission required, but a special dinner package (see page 266) offers reserved seating (call 407-WDW-DINE). Be sure to view the resort decorations (try the Yuletide Fantasy Tour—see page 273) and enjoy merriment at Disney Springs.
The Epcot International Festival of Holidays returns November 18–December 30, 2018. Holiday Kitchens (food booths) surround the World Showcase Lagoon during the festival, along with live entertainment, holiday storytellers, and more throughout the day.
New Year's Eve (December 31)
The Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Atlantic Dance at the BoardWalk all host big New Year’s celebrations. The theme parks overflow during the Christmas–New Year’s week, and reservations at resorts are extremely hard to get. Disney does not charge anything more than regular admission to the parks on New Year’s Eve. Four special events are available for guests on December 31, 2018. "Down in New Orleans: A Disney New Year's Eve Experience" at Disney's Contemporary Resort is lifted straight from the screen to the ballroom with "Princess & The Frog" inspired decor, food, and music. The "New Year's Eve Bash at Atlantic Dance Hall"at Disney's BoardWalk" is perfect for those who wish to dance the night away. "Dinner and Dancing Under the Sea" at Flying Fish at Disney's BoardWalk" will give guests the opportunity to enjoy a spectacular seafood menu as well as dancing. And for families, there is "Mickey's New Year's Eve BBQ" at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort." This family-friendly event features an all-you-can-eat BBQ menu and a special fireworks viewing area.
Top Photo Slice: Iced turrets on Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom (℗ 10632) Photo contributed by © JustLorri
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