Monday, October 4, 2010

Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland!

Aubrey's First Time to Disneyland
December 2008
Pretty exciting.
I'd like to start by saying: AHHH!!! So much fun! I've only been to Disneyland a few times. Once as a very young child in the 70s. Another time in 2001 when I first moved to Los Angeles. It was only a couple weeks after 9/11 and the park was like a ghost town so I got to ride EVERYTHING! Then I went again a couple years ago when my daughter was a toddler. I got to ride NOTHING, but Aubrey had a fun time sitting in a circle cut out on a wall by the rest rooms (see above) and eating a hot dog in Toon Town. I won't go into the story of how my family (6 people in a rental car) tried to drive to Disneyland from Arizona, circa 1976 and when we got there, it was closed. You think I'm kidding? When the movie National Lampoon's Vacation came out in 1983, we were thinking of suing for stealing our family story.

Needless to say, now that my daughter is three, we need a little more Magic Kingdom in our lives. From the time I was in 4th grade through college, I had a pen pal from Glendale, CA. His name was David Driskill and I'm still trying to find that guy. Anyway, we sent letters back and forth from Excelsior, MN to Glendale, CA for approximately 10 years and he used to tell me how he and his sister would go to Disneyland on the weekends! Like it was going to McDonald's or something. I grew up thinking Southern California must be some kind of magical kid paradise to live in where you can just go to Disneyland whenever you feel like it. Now that I live here, I can confirm that in many ways, it is! Phooey on "high standard of living" in the midwest! We are fortunate enough to live only 50 miles away from the Mouse, himself so I'm making a point to Disney indulge as much as I can and Aubrey and I are just beginning to explore and discover Disneyland together.
Disneyland at Halloween!!

This past Friday, I was lucky enough to attend a special event at Disneyland with Aubrey - Mickey's Halloween Party. While getting into the park was a bit of a hassle with long lines and crowded waiting areas, we knew we were in for something great. 

We started our evening on Main Street taking photos with Disney characters dressed up in Halloween costumes. Here's Aubrey with Minnie Mouse. In case you were wondering, Aubrey is dressed as a chef. She just didn't want to wear her matching hat. We also saw Pluto and Donald Duck!

Pretty darn cute, huh?

Then on to the rides and the Halloween decorations in New Orleans Square! We LOVED the Haunted Mansion (my three year old sat that one out with our nanny) and Pirates of the Caribbean which we stupidly took the three year old on, having forgotten how scary it was. Oops. I get to hear my daughter talk about pirates and skeletons for the next several months. Live and learn... but the grown ups still had fun.

Aubrey pretending not to be terrified. She's such a trooper.
Ahhh... The Teacups!!!

After accidentally horrifying my poor child, we hit the Mad Tea Party teacups and Dumbo the Flying Elephant rides for Aubrey and she still can't decide which one she liked best. I think the teacups! After a bite to eat at the Hungry Bear it was time to head to one of the highlights of Mickey's Halloween Party - the Halloween Screams Fireworks Spectacular. It really was one of the best fireworks displays I've ever seen even though it also scared my child. I'll spare you the photo on this one. Once again, the grown ups still had fun.

Shortly after that, we caught the end of the Character Cavalcade which was also scary for Aubrey... starting to sense a pattern here? Seriously though - it's just my kid - no one else's three year old seemed to be screaming and crying and it you ask my mother, there is a famous Anderson family story of a young girl named Amy who screamed her head off all the way through It's A Small World, so maybe it's genetic.

A ride on King Arthur's Carousel pepped her right back up and overall, the night was truly magical for us all. 
She stayed awake until park close at midnight!
The walk to the car was the end of an exciting night.

Some of the other highlights of Mickey's Halloween Party that DIDN'T make my daughter cry were the trick-or-treating throughout the park (both with candy AND healthy treats) and the dance parties (Aubrey LOVES dancing and jammed with some really groovy space ladies in Tomorrowland while we took turns going on Space Mountain.

Mickey's Halloween Party is a separate ticketed event with prices ranging from $49-$59 and children under age two are free. The party is happening every Tuesday and Friday night and Halloween night from now through October 31st and everyone is encouraged to dress up in a costume! Just remember, even though the scare factor is Disney-Mild, there are a few things that may be a little intense for preschool aged children. 

Just do as I say and not as I do and check before you go. There is a lot to do at Disneyland and you can't cover it all in one night. I think it's a great idea to research online and make a game plan for what you want to tackle in the amount of time you'll be there and what is age appropriate for your crew. You'll have a blast and make memories to last a lifetime!

To buy tickets now and print them at home 
CLICK HERE or call: (714) 781-4400 

Happy Halloween everyone and I hope you can make it to Disneyland soon! And if anyone knows my old pen pal, David Driskill formerly of Isabel Ln in Glendale, CA, a white guy with wavy hair and in his mid 30s, let him know I'm looking for him.


  1. Just heard from your brother and he remembered all that stuff from our 70's Disneyland /Knott's Berry Farm trip plus him getting lost! Yes,I remember a small child screaming thru Small World. Fun Times!

  2. Look him up on facebook! he's probably there with most of humanity. ;)

  3. Fun post, Amy. Makes me want to head to Mouseworld!