Celebrating Christmas at Disney World!
It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year
Who's celebrating Christmas at Disney World? Boy doesn't that sound like fun?
Dad just love the Christmas season. It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, and Dads's favorite thing ever is celebrating Christmas at Walt Disney World.
Come on, let's see what all the hubbub is about.
Christmas at Disney World
Uncle Walt was a huge fan of Christmas. He really wanted Christmas at the parks to be something special. In fact, the first year Disneyland opened Walt insisted that they have a special Christmas parade even though they really didn't have the money to do a special parade.
Attendance during the Christmas season skyrocketed and the rest as they say is history.
Let's fast forward to the present and take a look at what happens during Christmas at Disney World.
Christmas in the Magic Kingdom
Christmas at Disney World shines in the Magic Kingdom. Literally. It shines. Every part of the park is decorated, every shop, every restaurant, every nook and every cranny. But the real star of the show at Christmas is Cinderella Castle.
Every day during the Christmas season, right as the sun goes down, the cast from Frozen gathers and Elsa uses her magical power to transform Cinderella Castle to a Winter Wonderland of dancing icycle lights with a Frozen Holiday Wish.
Christmas at Disney World is "the most wonderful time of the year." It truly is. And the most wonderful celebration during the most wonderful time of the year is Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.
What a great celebration. There are special shows including a very special parade. There is a special version of Wishes. It's just awesome.
And it really snows on Main Street. (Sorta.)
The Magic Kingdom Christmas Shows
The Magic Kingdom Christmas Shows are some of the best not only holiday shows, but they are some of the best shows of the year anywhere. These shows range from the funny and innovative Totally Tomorrowland Christmas.
You'll see the on the Castle Stage. You'll see them in Tomorrowland.
Wishes is one of the best fireworks shows in the world. It's great. But during the holiday season it gets even better.
The Magic Kingdom has a very special version of Wishes during the Christmas season. Holiday Wishes is performed every night of Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party and then every night after the last party through December 30.
It's really a fabulous, not to be missed Christmas at Disney World experience!
Christmas Day Parade
The Disney Christmas Day Parade doesn't actually happen on Christmas Day. It's actually shot early in the month. Actually Christmas Day at the Magic Kingdom is totally nuts (check out Dad's rant about it).
Having a parade on Christmas day just isn't possible so the film it earlier in the month.
You can watch it on ABC on Christmas Day.
Epcot, strangely enough, may be the most Christmasafied (yes, Dad's making up words again) of all the Theme Parks.
Epcot goes all out for Christmas. All around the park there are special decorations that highlight the special time of year. Just past the fountains there is a big Christmas Tree and every evening there is a Tree Lighting Ceremony complete with Mickey and friends (might be a little singing and dancing).
The fountains even get into the act. During Christmas at Disney World, the fountains in Future World dance the day and night away to great Christmas music.
Epcot calls their holiday celebration Holidays Around the World. It includes the Candlelight Processional, Joyful! A Celebration of the Season, the Holiday Storytellers, and Illuminations: Reflections of Earth.
The Candlelight Processional is the best Christmas at Disney World show. The best. It's the story of the birth of Christ told in scripture and song.
Each night, at the American Gardens Theater, a celebrity narrator reads the Gospel of Luke account of Jesus birth. Along with the story there are some of the best Christmas Songs ever written sung by a 500 voice choir with an orchestra accompaniment.
It's truly inspiring.
What could be better than a great show and a good meal? Duh! Reserve the Candlelight Processional Dinner Package and get both plus reserved seating for the show.
Holidays around the World
During the holidays, all of the countries around the World Showcase get all dolled up in their holiday finest. Not all of the countries around the world celebrate Christmas and if they do they don't always celebrate it the way we do here in America.
Holidays Around the World is a celebration of the holiday season in each of the countries. In most of the pavilions there are storytellers that tell how Christmas or their special holiday is celebrated. It's really neat.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney Hollywood Studios lights up at Christmas at Disney World with lot's and lots of Christmas lights. (I'm glad I don't have to pay that electric bill.)
Dad's Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights
Jennings Osborne was an Arkansas legend. He lived Christmas. He built one of the largest privately owned Christmas displays in the world.
In 1995, after complaints from the neighbors, the Osborne Family of Little Rock Arkansas sold their million light display to Disney who moved the whole thing to Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Disney has added to the Osborne display through the years. It's now up to over 5 million lights and the lights dance to some really great Christmas Music.
Disney has announced that 2015 is the last year for the Osborne Family of Lights display.
Don't miss this.
The Animal Kingdom closes pretty much at dark. But it still gets into the spirit of the season. The first thing you see when you arrive at the park is a giant Christmas tree.
All around the park there are decorations galore.
One thing that's fun to do is to tour the Disney Resorts at Christmas. All the Resorts, even the Value Resorts get all dressed up for the holidays. Each Resort has some special holiday tradition.
The Grand Floridian has a 1,000 square foot Gingerbread House. A real Gingerbread house that's made with over 1,000 pounds of honey. Go ahead, lick it and see what happens. (Not really.)
Big Christmas Trees decorate the lobbies of most of the resorts. Each Resorts decorations take on the personality of the theme of the Resort. At Coronado Springs the decorations are Southwest themed, at Port Orleans it's New Orleans decorations, at the Polynesian there are island decorations.
It's truly amazing.
Disney Springs celebrates Christmas at Disney World with carolers, shopping, Christmas lights, shopping, Santa Claus, shopping, holiday performers and shopping.
After you get your picture made, stroll around the shops. There is live entertainment throughout the day. Each shop goes all out with Christmas decorations and displays.
It truly is "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year..."
When is Christmas at Disney World?
Now that's a good question. The Christmas season at Walt Disney World starts the first week of November. It takes Disney about 3 or 4 days to get all the Christmas decorations up (it's an amazing transition) and they start putting up decorations a couple of days after Halloween. The first Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party usually starts the season on the first Friday of November.
The Candlelight Processional always starts the day after Thanksgiving and runs through December 30, which ironically enough is Dad's Birthday.
While the official beginning of Christmas at Disney World won't be until that first Friday in November, the first week of November decorations will be going up in the parks and the second week the hotels usually get their decorations up.
The Best Time to Visit WDW is...
Dad loves talking about the best time of the year to visit Walt Disney World. Hands down, Christmas time wins. Two of the five best weeks to visit Disney World are during the Christmas season and it really should be three. Check it out.
See it for Yourself
Do you want to see it for yourself? Sure you do. It's easy. Just hop over to Dad's Destinations to Travel page and let one of the great Disney Travel Planners get you started on a magical Christmas vacation. You won't be sorry. Trust Me!
Get more information
Just in case you don't know, Dad also runs WDW Magazine. We always celebrate Christmas with our best issue of the year and this year is no different. You can find out lots more about Christmas at WDW in our big issue.
Dad's Bottom Line
Christmas at Disney World, it's Dad's favorite thing. I think I could spend a week there and not ever ride a ride. I'd just walk around enjoying the decorations, in the parks, in the hotels, at Disney Springs and even checking out the Christmas Trees of WDW.
Mmmmm... Christmas at Disney World... Hey, Mrs. Mom, I've got an idea...