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Disneyland Park Special Events (holidays & other celebrations)

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Disneyland Park Special Events (holidays & other celebrations)

Disneyland Park has several special events throughout the year, many of which make this already charming park even more festive (and lovely!).

Some of the events require payment, whereas many others are free.

Take a look and see if any of the events interest you.

Holidays

Halloween Time

blinky mickey pumpkin disneyland halloween

Sept. 2-Oct. 31, 2022 (2023 dates TBD)

Starting in early September through the entire month of October, Disneyland Park celebrates Halloween.

There isn’t a special after-hours party, but there are still plenty of other ways to enjoy the holiday, including:

  • Costumed Characters: Meet classic Disney characters in their Halloween costumes, including Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto, and Goofy. Guests can also see Jack and Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas.
  • Haunted Mansion Holiday: The Haunted Mansion transforms into the Haunted Mansion Holiday with decorations and a story inspired by The Nightmare Before Christmas.
  • Main Street Pumpkin Festival: Encounter a variety of Disney-themed pumpkins on Main Street, U.S.A., including the giant Mickey pumpkin that is smiling on one side and winking on the other.
  • Halloween Screams: A fireworks and projection show featuring Jack Skellington, Zero, and Disney villains. You can watch the show at Sleeping Beauty Castle on Main Street (highly recommended), “it’s a small world” in Fantasyland, and Rivers of America in Frontierland. Fireworks only happen on weekend nights, so be sure to check the entertainment schedule.
  • Halloween Time Food & Beverage: There are many Halloween-themed food and beverage items across the park.

Día de los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos at Disneyland Park

Sept. 3-Nov. 2, 2022 (2023 dates TBD)

Also known as the Day of the Dead, this Mexican celebration happens daily in Frontierland in El Zócalo Park.

Experience bright decorations and flowers, a musical trio of skeleton figurines (aka “calacas”), and traditional Mexican cuisine at Rancho del Zócalo Restaurante. 

Christmastime

disneyland sleeping beauty castle dream lights

Nov. 11, 2021-Jan. 8, 2022 (2023-2024 dates TBD)

The holidays begin in early November and last through early January at Disneyland.

There are several fun holiday-themed events and activities to celebrate the festive season, including:

  • A Christmas Fantasy Parade: A parade featuring favorite Disney characters and Santa Claus.
  • “Believe…In Holiday Magic” Fireworks: Held nightly and lasts for 15 minutes over Sleeping Beauty Castle.
  • “it’s a small world” Holiday: The classic attraction is transformed with holiday decorations and traditional holiday tunes, in addition to “It’s A Small World (After All)”.
  • “it’s a small world” Holiday Lighting: Every night, the attraction’s façade lights up for the holidays and throughout the night a projection show occurs every 30 minutes on the exterior with holiday colors and images.
  • Wintertime Enchantment at Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle: The castle is covered in icicles, wreaths, and other décor for the duration of the holidays. Every night, the castle lights up accompanied with falling snow and music. 
  • Christmas Tree: Located on Main Street, U.S.A., the tree lights up daily around 4:55 p.m.

Valentine’s Month

Disneyland Valentine's Month

2023 Dates TBD

Valentine’s Month (usually starts in late January and runs through most of February) originated in 2018 and celebrates love across the park with special photo spots, food and beverage items, and Minnie’s Valentine’s Surprise scavenger hunt, in which Minnie has hidden secret valentines for Mickey throughout the park.

The scavenger hunt requires guests to purchase a commemorative map and stickers.

Once complete with stickers, participants can redeem the map at the listed location to receive a special Valentine’s surprise. 

Egg-stravaganza

Disneyland Egg-stravaganza

2023 Dates TBD

All you have to do is pick up a board game and stickers (around $7.99 plus tax) at select retail locations, as you hunt for hidden Disney-themed “eggs” and place the corresponding stickers on your game board.

Even if you choose not to hunt for the eggs, simply return your board game to either the designated location(s) for a prize, which is usually one of six collectible eggs.

New Year’s Eve

Disneyland Fireworks

Dec. 31, 2023

Disneyland usually has New Year’s Eve “Fantasy in the Sky” Fireworks at 9 p.m. and at midnight. Main Street makes for the best view.

Paid Special Events

Disneyland After Dark

disneyland after dark 2022

2023 dates TBD

Disneyland After Dark is a specially-ticketed event. Star Wars Nite and Sweethearts’ Nite are 2 past After Dark events that have occurred at Disneyland Park.

Events usually include special themed-entertainment, food, beverages, merchandise, character meet and greets, photo opportunities, and more.

Stay tuned for more details, including themes, tickets, and pricing.

Grad Nights

Disneyland Grad Night

2023 Dates are as follows (2024 Dates TBD)

May: 12, 14, 17, 19, 21, 24, 25, 30, 31
June: 2, 4, 7, 9, 14, 16

Grad Nights are a special event for high school seniors celebrating graduates at both Disney California Adventure and Disneyland. 

There are 3 ticket options:

  • Disneyland Grad Nite Private Party Experience at DCA (Tues-Thurs: $99 per person; Fri/Sun: $104 per person): After 9 p.m., Grads get exclusive access to DCA.
  • Full day at DCA plus admission to the Disneyland Grad Nite Private Party Experience (Tues-Thurs: $129 per person; Fri/Sun: $134 per person): Enjoy a full day at DCA, plus admission to Disneyland Resort Nite Private Party Experience at DCA beginning at 9 p.m.
  • Park Hopper experience to both parks plus admission to the exclusive Disneyland Grad Nite Private Party Experience at DCA ((Tues-Thurs: $199 per person; Fri/Sun: $219 per person)): Grads can access both Disneyland and DCA on the same day during normal operating hours, then wrap up the night at the exclusive private party experience with other Grads starting at 9 p.m.

Registration is now closed. For more information, contact Group Travel Operations 1-800-232-7980 or email [email protected].

CHOC Walk In the Park

Disneyland CHOC Walk

Aug. 27, 2022 (2023 dates TBD)

CHOC Walk in the Park benefits Children’s Hospital of Orange County and is presented by Disneyland Resort. Participants form teams to walk a 5K through Disneyland and DCA.

With every step, funds are raised for CHOC Children’s programs and services in need, including health care programs, education, and research. In order to register, each participant must pay a fee.

Those who raise the fundraising minimum also receive discounts, including specially priced park tickets.

Free Special Events

Bats Day

May 7, 2023 (2024 dates TBD)

Bats Day used to be an entire weekend, but this unofficial event now it occurs one day a year at Disneyland.

Participants do not need to purchase separate tickets in order to attend, but they do need a park ticket and park reservation to enter Disneyland.

Bats Day is a special day for the Dark Subculture community, including Deathrock, Goth, Industrial, Steampunk, Rockabilly, Psychobilly, and Halloween.

The community gathers to celebrate each other and have fun at the happiest place on earth. 

4th of July

Disneyland July 4th Fireworks

July 4, 2023

Disneyland celebrates the Fourth of July with “Disney’s Celebrate America! — A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky” featuring fireworks and patriotic songs.

Gay Days

Sept. 22-24, 2023 (2024 dates TBD)

Gay Days celebrates the LGBTQ community annually with several days of events. This is an unofficial Disneyland event and the park remains open to the general public.

A special ticket doesn’t need to be purchased to attend, but participants will need a ticket and park reservation to enter the park.

Gay Days participants are also encouraged to wear red shirts. Disneyland sometimes even releases limited-time Pride treats and merchandise around Gay Days as well.

Mini-Gay Day

2023 Dates TBD

In the spring, there is Mini-Gay Day, another unofficial Disneyland event that lasts only one day compared to an entire weekend and once again serves as a meet-up for the LGBTQ community.

Dapper Day Fall Outing 

Nov. 12, 2023 (2024 dates TBD)

Organized by the Dapper Day organization, individuals attend the unofficial Disneyland event in their best vintage “DisneyBound” and Sunday best to honor the way guests used to dress when Disneyland opened in 1955.

All participants need is a park ticket and park reservation to enter.

The Dapper Day Fall Outing is currently planned for Nov. 12, 2023. The Dapper Day Expo is also set to happen from Nov. 11-12 at the Disneyland Hotel. You can also book special hotel rates through Dapper Day.

Dapper Day at Disney

Dapper Day Spring Outing

April 16, 2023 (2024 dates TBD)

This event is similar to the fall outing, but takes place in the spring.

All participants need is a park ticket and park reservation to enter.

The Dapper Day Spring Outing is currently planned for April 16, 2023. The Dapper Day Expo is also set to happen from April 15-16 at the Disneyland Hotel. You can also book special hotel rates through Dapper Day.

Disneyland’s Birthday

Disneyland Birthday Celebration

July 17, 2023

Disneyland will turn 68 on July 17, 2023 (the park opened in 1955). The park is known for celebrating with the “Happiest March on Earth” down Main Street featuring a slew of characters and the Dapper Dans singing “Happy Birthday.”

Plus, as a special treat, part of Walt Disney’s opening day speech is usually played.

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