Fall Things To Do As We Countdown To Halloween Day 175

Halloween Time At Disneyland Brings Out The Fall Fun

Disneyland is a fun place to be in September and October.  Hope these tips help you enjoy your day, night, or days in the bright California sun.  This was Walt Disney’s park and the genius of the man who walked the grounds is present throughout the park.

Halloween Time At Disneyland Is A Theme Change

The first two weeks of September are generally the slowest days at Disneyland.  Kids are into the back to school things so Disney uses the time to do maintenance on more rides than normal.  Also you will notice more construction and changes ongoing inside the park.  Beginning around September 15th the Halloween theme is present everywhere.

Tip #1:  Halloween Time At Disneyland is an actual event that runs every day from mid-September until early November.  This is the normal daytime Disney ticket.  My tip is to wait until Halloween Time actually starts and not go before the changeover and maintenance work is done.

During Halloween Time the folks at Disney throw an evening Mickey’s Halloween Party on 13 nights between late September until Halloween.  The park closes at 6 pm or 7 pm for day time guests and sells a “hard ticket” for Mickey’s Halloween Party.  Ticket prices for adults are from $59 – $74.  This is Disney folks so all the events and parties are “not so scary” and appropriate for most kids.

Tip #2:  Check the Disney calendars and choose a Halloween Time at Disneyland day in which Mickey’s Halloween Party is not happening.  This means you can stay late and enjoy all the evening activities.

Tip #3:  Choose to buy a ticket to either the Halloween Time at Disneyland event or the Mickey’s Halloween Party event but not both on the same date.  The party usually happens on Tuesday and Friday nights.

What Changes During Halloween Time At Disneyland?
The park becomes more of a Jack Skellington and less a Mickey Mouse themed park.  Disney brings out lots of villains from its movies plus the characters from the movie Nightmare Before Christmas.  Expect to see Mickey, Minnie, and other characters with some type of Halloween mask on.

Cinderella’s Castle is transformed with a covering of simulated snow and spider-webs.  The castle lighting at night takes on a more eerie black and orange Halloween coloring.

Space Mountain is themed as Ghost Galaxy.  The popular haunted house becomes Haunted Mansion Holiday which lasts for the Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas seasons until early January.

The park has a full decoration of hay bales, corn stalks, and lots and lots of pumpkins.  Main Street USA becomes a “pumpkin festival” with over 300 pumpkins displayed.  This is some of the best pumpkin carvings you will ever see anywhere.  The tops of the street lights on Main Street have a pumpkin fixture.  The music throughout the park comes from a variety of Disney’s Halloween type movies.  Liberty Square has a 12 foot Mickey Jack-O-Lantern with pumpkin ears.

Disney is famous for its evening fireworks displays.  This is a can’t miss attraction.  This is one of the primary reasons you want to go to Halloween Times at Disneyland on a night the park is open.  Do not miss either Tinkerbell or “Zero” riding a zip line across the castle during the fireworks show.

Recognize that Disneyland is located in the middle of a population center with about 20 million residents within a couple hour drive.  Many people visit Disneyland several times each year.  Halloween Time creates a new experience for these local visitors.

Tip #4:  Stay 2 nights in a hotel near Disneyland.  Traffic in the area is terrible.  Plan on spending the entire day at the park.  Get the kids up early, eat breakfast before entering the park, and walk maybe 10 minutes to get to the park’s entrance.  Yep, that’s right, get a hotel nearby and walk to Disneyland.  Give the kids a break mid-afternoon and come back to the park in the evening.  It makes for a very full day and your not starting the long drive home at 1 am.

Tip #5:  Consider a two day park-hopper ticket and see Disney’s California Adventure also.  It is so easy to walk the hundred yards from the Magic Kingdom to the California Adventure.  The park-hopper feature adds about $35 to the ticket prices.

Tip #6:  California weather can be hot and sunny.  You can bring water into the park.  Many of the ride wait lines are uncovered and in the sun.  Take a hat and sunscreen with you.

Tip #7:  If you are only there for one day then skip the daytime park and attend Mickey’s Halloween Party.  There are lots of other things to see and do in the Los Angeles area.  Spend your day sightseeing and plan to go to Disney at 3 pm.  This gives you 8 hours in the park.

Mickey’s Halloween Party On Select Nights
On 13 nights Mickey throws a Halloween party at the theme park.  This is the only time adults and older children can wear costumes inside the park.  (Note:  Disney character costumes and many other types are not permitted.  See Disney’s website for complete details.)  The party runs from 6 pm – 11 pm or from 7 pm – 12 am.  Actually your hard ticket allows you to enter the park 3 hours before the party begins.  This gives you about 8 hours of Disney fun.

Tip #8:  Get to the entrance to the park at 3 pm or 4 pm.

Tip #9:  Get your Mickey’s Halloween Party tickets in advance.  Disney does limit the number of tickets sold.  You do not want to risk not being able to get into the party.  Many nights sell out.

Mickey’s party is full of people wearing costumes.  Costumes take time to make or cost money.  You won’t feel out of place if you are not in costume.

You will see actual Disney employees in character costumes that you do not normally see at a Disney park.  You will see Disney villain characters and popular characters stationed for autographs and photo sessions throughout the park.  Everyone entering the park in costume is given a treating bag.  Disney has set up various treating trails for trick or treating your way throughout the park.  They give away more than a half million treats in total for this 13 night party.

At 8:30 and 10:30 Disney has a short Mickey’s Costume Party Calvacade.  It’s not a full Disney parade since it only has 3 floats but it features all the characters walking the route.

At 9:30 is the fireworks display.  The 12 minute show features Jack Skellington’s ghost dog reindeer “Zero” flying by the castle on a zip line.

Disney parks have lots of music on the concourses and inside the rides.  Mickey’s party also has a number of stage shows including Tomorrowlands Dance Party, and the Monsters U Dance Party.

People tend to go either for the party activities or because they love the Disney rides.  If you want photos, autographs, costume fun, and treats then there are lots of things to do.  If you want rides then most of the popular rides are running.  I suggest getting there 3 hours before the party starts so you can hit those few popular rides that are not open that night.  Mickey’s Halloween Party is a great night for hitting the rides.  The park is full of people but unlike during the day many are there for the other entertainment.  Therefore the wait times are generally less.

Do not miss the Enchanted Tiki room or Indiana Jones Adventure in Adventureland.  In Frontierland, ride the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Mark Twain Riverboat.  At New Orleans Square is the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean rides.  Splash Mountain and Winnie the Pooh are in Critter Country.  Fantasyland has It’s a Small World, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan’s Flight, and the Matterhorn Bobsleds.  Toontown has Goofy’s Playhouse and Roger Rabbit’s CarToon Space.  See Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, Space Mountain, Star Tours, Honey I Shrunk The Audience, and the Finding Nemo ride.  If rides are your thing then these are great nights to go to Disney.

Tip #10:  Bring a poncho in case of rain.  Disney goes on even during the rain.  Sometimes attractions are delayed or canceled but the park remains active.  Therefore I recommend visiting the dollar stores and stocking up on dollar ponchos you can wear and throw away.  I know it never rains in California but it might.  I was once in Las Vegas when it rained 5 inches one afternoon and Las Vegas Boulevard flooded with 4 feet of water in front of the Paris Casino.  So take a poncho.

Tip #11:  Bring lots of money.  Do not make this a day to sweat the money.  Of course it is expensive.  It is a once in a lifetime adventure.  Everything costs more inside a Disney park.  Plan your one or two day trip and have lots of fun during Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.

picture of the diseyland railroad station
Disneyland Railroad Station

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