2017 Mickeys Halloween Party
As someone that’s been attending the Mickey’s Halloween parties for the past decade, I was pretty stunned by last nights party. It was my birthday, and it was the first party of the year. I had to go.
I started going to the parties when they were still at California Adventure and the tickets were about $35. I have so much to say and so much to let you know. I am experiencing the party from a different perspective versus the write-up from last month because tonight‘s party was a game changer
I understand that for a lot of people this is the only way you can take your kids to Disneyland. They let you in three hours before the party starts and I’m so excited this year because now they’re allowing you to go into California Adventure before the party. For several years this party was the only way we were able to visit the parks. It sucked not being able to visit California Adventure.
Your ticket also entitles you to free pictures! You get free PhotoPass this year! Give the PhotoPass photographer your party ticket, not your annual pass.
If you have small children, do not waste your time waiting in any extra lines if you can. You will be waiting in a lot of lines at the party. Most kids are expected to sit in the stroller for a good portion of the night. I highly suggest getting here between 1:30-2:00 pm.
It is less stressful overall if you arrive early, at least an hour before you plan on entering the parks. There is less traffic on the freeway, and you can get through security and then take your kids to eat. Naples is good, and they have a quick service restaurant called Napolini that sells pizza by the slice, and they are large slices. Ryan K. is my favorite and the best server they have. Ask for him.
Eat a big meal beforehand. Time is limited in the parks, and dinner can take an hour easily. I suggest filling up before you even enter the parks.
I recommend getting corn dogs or another quick service for dinner and sitting down where you want to watch the parade to claim your spot; this is a huge time saver. If you go to California Adventure before the party, I noticed that Smoke jumpers Grill wasn’t even busy; they serve hamburgers and chicken nuggets.
Take your kids to Carsland; it doesn’t take that long to do most of the rides. Tow Mater‘s Junkyard Jamboree and Luigi‘s Rollickin Roadsters are fun and have Halloween themes. The kids can participate in DJ's Dance and Drive, which is a cute dance party for kids. Enjoy the decorations and visit Lighting McQueen. You can get a beer or a glass of wine too.
Then go Disneyland; you can enter the special events queue with no line and get your wristband. Do not waste the three hours before the party starts. I did not care about getting my wristband at three this year, and it was a game changer. It made things so much less stressful. Nothing makes a fun event worse than waiting in a lot of lines.
I spent a good amount of time last night interacting with other pass holders on social media, and a lot of them were mad about waiting in line in front of the Starcade to get their wristband. This line is where the pass holders stand in line is a waste of time.
It's more for the pass holders that were already in the park. Think of it this way. You have a pass, and you're already here. They don't boot out people who do not have event tickets until six, so you have plenty of time to come back and get a wristband.
If you want to go to the Toontown Pre-Party, you have until 5. Now here’s the thing; the line is insanly long. Every year they sell more tickets, and the line gets longer. I stood there and observed people who were lining up about half an hour before the party. It took them forty-five minutes to an hour to get in, versus my party, who lined up after people were getting in and got in quickly.
Toontown is a great place to get a lot of candy. It closes at 7, and the treat trail lines are long. It gets crowded, but there are great photo ops like Mickey and Minnie in costume. Once you leave Toontown, the real party begins. The guests that do not have party wristbands are told to leave.
If you want to enjoy this party, you have to start out right; it can get so stressful at these events. If you've been the Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party, this one can be underwhelming and frustrating. The Magic Kingdom is 107 acres versus the 85 at Disneyland.
Walt Disney World starts their parties in August. Disney World has more parties than Disneyland. The Disneyland parties are not only smaller, but they sell out. With such a smaller park it can make for long lines, and that can be stressful, especially for the kids who are tired of riding in a stroller or waiting in lines.
Thankfully, there is a dance party at Tomorrowland Terrace. Different Pixar characters make appearances. One of the longest and slowest treat trails is in the Innovations building.
Fantasyland no longer has the Village Haus trail, which, in my opinion, was one of the best ones. There are a few treat trails on Big Thunder Thunder Trail this year. You can get to them through the Fantasyland side easily. There is a little crowding in Frontierland. There are a few treat trails that are near the trail that kind of slow down traffic.
If you see a white glowing Mickey light on a treat trail, that station has candy alternatives. The downside is they are handing out apples and carrots at a lot of the stations. You get more than you need, so you’re probably not going to eat them all in one night.
The reason why these parties can be such a pain and so stressful is Disneyland is so small, and it gets crowded so easy. People do line up for the parades early. It's not as bad as a typical parade though. You can easily find a spot about half an hour before.
I was pretty shocked that there was a 15-minute wait for Big Thunder Mountain and 20 for Space Mountain. Usually, most wait times during the party are 5-10 minutes. Some rides you can walk right on.
The parade was a fail to me because early on a float broke and nothing happened for quite some time. The music played, and no one said anything. After hearing the same song for over 15 minutes, I was about to lose my mind. They did make a few small tweaks to the parade this year. It was nice; they added Ichabod Crane to the pre-parade. Some floats had some minor changes that made them a little more enjoyable.
Pro tip; be careful what costume you wear. I was Mary Poppins this year, and people kept thinking I was a cast member. I was mistaken for one at least five times, and people kept asking me questions all night. I was told a few times I did, in fact, look like I was a character performer they thought I was a Mary Poppins face character. Why would I be hanging out on Main Street drinking a diet Coke though?
I hope that the powers that be over at Disney read this because I know they do read my stuff from time to time. There was no AP gift there was a special photo op with just the background. They used to give us a special rice crispy treat and a little bag.
They should’ve given us a present like they normally do. I think they should’ve given us a free trick-or-treat bag that was a nice reusable one or small bag with some extra candy.
Honestly, I don’t understand why they don’t start giving us a small trick-or-treat bag and a button only for pass holders like they do during AP days.
Overall, the party this year was fun. I still think some changes are needed. It's stupid that you have to stand in line for 30 minutes for some apples and a Yoo-hoo chocolate bar. They need to work it out, so the line is not as long and runs more efficiently. It would also be pretty amazing if they could have the party at California Adventure once or twice a week. California Adventure compared to Disneyland has wider walkways, and more places to put efficient treat trails. I know it is likely that will never happen, but when the party was there, it was so much fun. It was not as crowded. I think this year was a lot better than the last few. It just gets crowded on those treat trails.
Head on over to Tribe on a Quest. Marquita wrote a detailed article on what not to do at Walt Disney Worlds Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party. Tribe on a Quest is a great blog that writes excellent ASD/Autism/ADHD, family-friendly travel reviews of accommodations, activities, and foodie inspired destinations. They also have a YouTube channel. Check them out.