Wednesday, September 26, 2012

[INFOPOST] Reasons Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party is Worth the Money.

Disney World's prices are not cheap. Sure there are some affordable options, but generally when people plan their vacations they don't look for special events that cost extra. Park tickets and hotel are expensive enough. This is understandable, and for the most part you're not missing much. Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party was a bit of a disappointment for me but I'm glad I'm able to say I've been. With the Christmas Party they give you free unlimited cocoa and cookies, but the cookies and cocoa are heavy after a while (though they do warm you up when you need it). The parade is beautiful, but if you go to the park closer to Christmas you can see it (and Holiday Wishes) during regular park hours. So, the only exclusive things you're paying for when you attend the Christmas Party are the character meet and greets and the castle show.

This is not the case with Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party.

If you're like me and don't do well with Universal's Halloween Horror Nights then this party is the perfect spooky celebration for you. There's free candy (no matter what you're age), tons of rare characters, an amazing parade that you can only see at the party, and a castle show full of villains that are very rarely seen. Plus, there's dance parties, attractions that are decked out to look extra creepy, and special photo ops (last year they had Cinderella's Carriage out for special photo op) that more than pay for the price of the ticket. Not to mention the cast members look and act like their having a blast and so many other guests turn up in outstanding costumes.

There's much fun to be had and many memories to be made. Now how can you best enjoy all of these perks?

First of all, your party ticket will get you into the Magic Kingdom at 4 PM. Use that time to ride attractions or eat dinner. The attractions are open during regular park hours so I would skip those from the hours of 7 to midnight. The one exception I would make is The Haunted Mansion because there is something extra special about sitting in a Doom Buggy on an extra spooky night at the Magic Kingdom. Plus, there's Madame Leota's sisters who entertain guests from the lawn of the Mansion while they wait in line. They're absolutely delightful.

Second of all, go to the second parade. The crowds are smaller and it's easier to find a spot to sit down. If you want a really good view (for you or your little ones) expect to be there at least 45 minutes before the parade. Use this time to regroup or eat, if you didn't earlier and I suggest finding a spot in Frontierland. The parade ends there first so you can move on to the next activity sooner. The same concept applies to the Villains Mix and Mingle. The later the show the easier it is to find a spot. There's usually one last show after 11 o'clock, that's the one you should go to.

And finally, meet the characters you can't find any other time. For instance, if you're a fan of the princesses or have a little one with a favorite Disney couple, the Disney Princes are out with the Princesses every night. The interaction between the Princesses and their true loves is not something you'll want to miss. There's also characters like Jack Sparrow, Gaston, Jafar, The Seven Dwarves, Mad Hatter and characters you'll find in other parks (but here they're in their very special Halloween Costumes.) Some of these characters require getting in line before the party starts (the Seven Dwarves can be a monstrous wait) and some of these it's best to wait until the party has been under way for a while (the Princesses and Princes won't be out until all the regular day time guests have gotten out of line so more than like these characters won't be out until 7:30 or so.) The best suggestion if you're a character hunter like me is to start in the back of the park and work your way forward.

Something you can't miss at the Halloween Party is meeting at least one major villain. After the Castle Show, Villains Mix and Mingle, the Villains have their own special meet and greet. These characters (with the exception of The Tremaines) are almost never out. Here you'll find Maleficent, The Evil Queen, Frollo, Dr. Facillier, Cruella DeVille, Captain Hook, and the Queen of Hearts. They don't have time to do autographs or talk very much but it's a can't miss photo op that you'll talk about for years to come. Get in line as soon as the shows over. The line's build up fast and the Character Attendants will cut them off when the meet and greet time is over. No exceptions.

And the very last thing that we can't forget, is HalloWishes. Now, first off, I'm not a fireworks enthusiast. I love them and I think they look amazing, but I don't go out of my way to view them. So I decided to skip HalloWishes at my first party and then I caught it later on the beach at Polynesian Resort (where they pipe in the music. They also do this at the Contemporary.) I enjoyed much better at a distance than I did up close, but that's not to say HalloWishes isn't an amazing fireworks display. If you're going to catch it make sure you find a spot with a quick exit to make it through the crowds and get to your next activity. But I definitely suggest skipping the massive crowd as it's uncomfortable and more than like your view will be obscured. If you can work it out catch the fireworks another night at the Contemporary or the Polynesian.

Anyway, those are my tips and suggestions for enjoying the Halloween Party as well as my reasons why the party as a whole is worth the price of the ticket. It's definitely one of my favorite Disney events, and I'm getting ready to attend for my third year in a row. I absolutely love it.

Because, as Uncle Walt said, "Adults are only kids grown up, anyway."

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