Tonight marks the very first Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party of the season. While Magic Kingdom® Park is always magical, it’s especially so this time of year as the Christmas decorations come out and everyone gets into the holiday spirit! The magic begins with a “snowfall” on Main Street. Tad and Lily especially lovvvveeee to stuff their bellies with the cookies and hot chocolate that are given out around the park for free.
The party is similar to, in many ways, Mickey’s Not So Very Scary Halloween Party, and thus many of the same tips apply. If you are thinking about attending the party, keep in mind that early December is generally the least busy time to attend, and the mid-weekday parties will be less crowded than those held on Friday and Sunday nights. Tonight’s party is sold out.
Here’s what you need to know about this event!
First off, this is a separate ticket from regular theme park admission, and the parties are held on select nights in November and December. We recommend you buy these tickets directly from Disney World. While you can buy tickets at the gate, the parties do sell out, as is the case tonight.
The party doesn’t officially start until 7 p.m. (and runs through 12 a.m.), but you can get into the park starting at 4 p.m. with your Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party ticket. We recommend doing this, as you will find fewer crowds waiting to get in than if you wait until later in the evening AND this will you give you more time to ride a few rides and have an early dinner. Starting today, the Jungle Cruise becomes the Jingle Cruise for the holidays, with the skippers sharing plenty of holiday cheer — and laughs. Most of the attractions do stay open throughout the party, but since there are so many wondrous happenings that you don’t normally see at Magic Kingdom, we try to ride as many rides as we can before the party starts.
Because these parties can get very crowded and are packed with special activities, including meet-and-greets with rare characters (some in fancy holiday attire), we recommend that you have a plan before you go and start by identifying your family’s not-to-miss activities and then fill in the gaps when you get to the park with some unexpected surprises. There are more fun things to see and do than a typical family could probably accomplish in one night, so set your expectations in advance!
The most in-demand characters include Santa Claus, who will be on Town Square on Main Street, the Seven Dwarfs who are expected to take up camp at entrance to New Fantasyland near Pinocchio Village Haus, and the princesses with their princes. Do note that characters don’t come out until their special locations until the party officially starts, but you can (and should) get in line early for the most in-demand characters.
Since you cannot use Fastpasses (or Fastpass+ for those of you resort guests testing MyMagic+), it’s most crucial to make a plan if you want to meet the most in-demand characters.
A note about the princesses: They have now moved from Town Square Theater to Princess Fairytale Hall in New Fantasyland. Near 7 p.m., cast members will create a second line just for party guests (yes, you will have to show your party wristband) so they can line up early to meet the princes with the princesses. Verify with the cast member that you are in the correct line.
Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade
One of the big highlights of the night is Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade, which runs twice each evening of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, once at 8:15 p.m. then again at 10:30 p.m. This is your chance to catch dancing gingerbread men and reindeer, and the big man himself — Santa — aboard his sleigh, along with plenty of your favorite Disney characters
The parade steps off in Frontierland® Area, follows the waterway until it reaches Liberty Square, crosses the Liberty Square Bridge, circles Central Plaza in front of Cinderella Castle, heads down Main Street, U.S.A.®, circles Town Square in front of the Walt Disney World Railroad Station and ends next to Harmony Barbershop.
We like to watch the parade in front of Cinderella Castle facing the bridge from Liberty Square, but just know that if you want to watch the first parade from this location, you’ll need to get a spot at least 30 minutes in advance. You’ll be able to watch the “Celebrate the Season” Castle Stage Show while you wait, and you can catch the fireworks from the same spot afterwards.
The second show is always much less crowded if you’re OK with the kiddos staying up so late.
Here are a few of the other big events:
“Holiday Wishes – Celebrate the Spirit of the Season” Fireworks
Jiminy Cricket narrates this amazing Disney fireworks show, which begins at 9:30 p.m. We like the spot in the middle of Main Street U.S.A. next to Casey’s Corner, but the show can be seen all around the park. For the first time in Magic Kingdom history, guests can wear light up “Glow With the Show” ear hats in sync with the show during this year’s “Holiday Wishes!”
“Celebrate the Magic”
The castle becomes a swirl of lights and colors as it takes on other forms in this projection show that blends clips from Disney film favorites — making it one of the Frog Family’s must-sees! The show will get a dusting of seasonal fairy magic for the holidays and guests will be able to wear their Glow Ears.
“Celebrate the Season” Show
Mickey presents Minnie with her present with a little help from Goofy, Donald and the gang in this twist on The Nutcracker, which takes place on the Castle Forecourt Stage at 7:45, 10:05 and 11:20 p.m.
“A Totally Tomorrowland® Area Christmas” Show
A Totally Tomorrowland® Area Christmas” takes place on the Rockettower Plaza Stage in Tomorrowland® Area at 7:45, 8:45, 9:55, 10:50 and 11:45 p.m. and features Buzz Lightyear, Mike Wazowski and Stitch in this musical review. Tad and Lily especially love this show as it’s suited for the younger audience and even has a kids-only area at the front of the stage. With five performances, this is one that you can fit in as you have time.
For us, we love all the holiday hoopla surrounding Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party and savor our time (and the cocoa!) at this annual event. We’d love to hear your thoughts about the party, and especially for those of you have never attended, we’d love to answer any questions you have about it!
— Mommy Frog