Disney World has two kinds of parties each year-Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (referred to as MNSSHP for short) held in September and October and Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP for short) held in November and December. If you are looking at the calendar when planning your upcoming trip and see the Magic Kingdom closing at 7 pm during those 4 months, you can almost bet that will be a party night.
|Magic Kingdom decorated for Halloween|
Party events only allow a certain number of guests in the parks so tickets are usually purchased in advance to ensure they don't run out. Parties do sell out! Times for the parties are from 7 pm until 12 am according to the tickets and the CMs that sell them. In the past (and there's no indication this would change) if you get to the gate at 4 pm and have a party ticket, you will be able to get in then.
Upon entering for the party, you will receive a wrist band. At 7 pm, those without wrist bands are not allowed to be in attractions or be in the parks and are led out. If you are dining when it gets 7 pm, you will be led to the front upon finishing your meal. This sounds harsh, but when you are in the parks during these times with low crowds, you will greatly appreciate it!
Adult tickets for the parties vary depending on days you go with children's tickets slightly less. As a tip on conserving your park tickets, many people do not do the parks with a regular ticket on days they are doing a party, but will do other things like go to the resort pool, visit the Boardwalk or Downtown Disney, or even resort hop to check out other resorts you may not have seen before. The later is strongly suggested during these holiday times as each resort is so elaborately decorated.
MNSSHP special events are dance parties with the characters, Hallowishes fireworks (usually at 9:30), Boo-to-you Halloween parade (usually at 8:15 and 10:30-the later will be less crowded) with the headless horseman leading the way, special stage shows, free face painting, and trick or treating. Guests are also encouraged to dress in family friendly costumes and all guests are welcome to trick or treat-not just children. Trick or treat bags are given out when bracelets are received upon entering. In the past, the trick or treat bags have mostly come out very full! Many hard to find characters are out at this time, including all the dwarves.
|Haunted Mansion characters at Boo to You Parade|
MVMCP special events include the lighting of the castle with the Christmas lights (which is absolutely awesome!!), Once Upon a Christmastime parade with Santa and the reindeer (usually at 8:15 and 10:30), Holiday Wishes fireworks (usually at 9:30), special shows, dance parties with the characters, visits and pictures with Santa, free cookies and HOT chocolate ( get it before you want it because it is super hot!) and appearances of characthers not often seen.
|Christmas at Cinderella Castle|
Since my favorite time of the year, especially at Disney World is Christmas, we started with MVMCP. We have been to MVMCP many times and love it as much on the last time as the first. Later, we started doing the MNSSHP and found it to be one of the most fun times we could have at Disney World. With the reduced amount of people in the parks, it is super easy to get on attractions without waiting in lines. We have been on Space Mountain eight times in a row, just getting off and getting right back in line with no wait and riding Big Thunder Moutain Railroad without the CM stopping it and just keeping it going for us. We just rolled right on through!
It is often that we can do more on a party night than we can on a regular day in the park from opening to closing. Definitely a money saver and super fun!! With the parks all decorated for the holidays, these are definitely times to not miss and the parties add to the excitement and fun. I can tell you I recommend them highly, but even that can't describe the amount of fun that can be had at these parties!!
|Christmas lights on Cinderella Castle|