Christmas Happenings at WDW

Nobody decorates for the Christmas holiday season like Disney! 🙂

We’re making a list of all the things that we want to do and see this November:

Seeing the Christmas Decorations

The holiday decorating starts the first week in November and is mostly complete in time for the first night of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – November 7th this year!

On Main Street USA, all decorated for Christmas.
On Main Street USA, all decorated for Christmas.

The Disney resorts will be all decorated for the holidays too, along with the theme parks. Each theme park will have an enormous decorated Christmas tree, and so will all the Deluxe resort lobbies. 

Huge decorated Christmas tree at DAK.
Huge decorated Christmas tree at DAK.

Cinderella Castle Dream Lights

In front of Cinderella Castle with Dream Lights turned on.
In front of Cinderella Castle with Dream Lights turned on.

Starting November 7th, the Dream Lights will be turned on each evening.

Disney decorates Cinderella Castle for the holiday season with a “Dream Lights” effect that makes the Castle seem to be covered in ice. Over 200,000 lights are draped over the turrets and roofs of the Castle to create this beautiful effect. A short show called “Cinderella’s Holiday Wish” and a castle lighting ceremony is held each evening, usually around 6:15 pm, and the lights remain on, slowly changing colors, for the rest of the evening.

New this year:  Elsa turns the Cinderella Castle icy!

New for 2014:  Queen Elsa!
New for 2014: Queen Elsa!

Christmas Parade coming down Main Street USA:

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party parade!
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party parade!

We have tickets to see this on November 14th.   Admission to the event includes complimentary hot chocolate and cookies, “snow” on Main Street, holiday stage shows, carolers, two performances of the holiday parade, and a special holiday fireworks display. Plus, most of the major attractions will be open!  No lines!!

party1 (2)Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

Lights at Hollywood Studios
Dancing Lights at Hollywood Studios

Starting November 7th, the spectacle this year has been enhanced to include choreographed “dancing” lights that swirl and soar to an exhilarating medley of holiday music every 15 minutes, thanks to electronic wizardry featuring more than 400 dimmers. Every building façade, all the trees, wreaths, bells and holiday figures dance to classic tunes while “Florida snow” flurries fall from the skies.This elaborate holiday decoration display incorporates millions of Christmas lights, fake snow and various holiday vignettes.  Lovely.

The Jingle Cruise

The Jingle Cruise!
The Jingle Cruise!

Also starting November 7th, the Jungle Cruise at the Magic Kingdom will become the “Jingle Cruise” for the winter holiday season.

The Jungle Cruise boats will be renamed with holiday-themed names, the queue and the boathouse will be transformed with holiday decorations, and the Skipper’s jokes will take on a holiday theme as well.

Gingerbread Houses and other Edible Holiday Displays

Grand Floridian Gingerbread House.
Grand Floridian Gingerbread House.

Among the especially amazing holiday decorations are the edible holiday displays whipped up by pastry chefs throughout WDW.

The biggest edible production is a Gingerbread House at Grand Floridian that is so large that it also doubles as a real bake shop. Featuring real gingerbread made using a classic Austrian recipe, the bake shop offers freshly baked items such as cookies, ornaments and miniature gingerbread houses. Other homemade items for sale include Stollen Bread, chocolate peppermint bark, lollipops and special Grand Floridian logo boxes filled with truffles. Demonstrations on how to decorate a gingerbread house take place in front of the bake shop six days a week.

The Gingerbread Bake Shop in Epcot enchants guests of all ages. Guests can peer inside the life-sized gingerbread house filled with goodies galore. The giant structure, made entirely of gingerbread, cookies and icing, also features a bake shop that opens in late November as part of Epcot’s Holidays Around the World celebration.

The resorts at WDW also offer fantastic edible displays. The Beach Club Resort usually has a fully detailed, life-sized gingerbread carousel in the lobby. The lobby of Yacht Club Resort has yummy displays such as a miniature New England-style train racing through a sugary rock mountain surrounded by a candy-coated model village. The lobby of BoardWalk Resort always has an amazing gingerbread display, and the Contemporary Resort had a 17-foot gingerbread Christmas tree in 2013!  (Displays start November 13, 2014!)

Festival of the Seasons & Santa Claus at Downtown Disney

Santa at DTD
Santa outside his chalet at DTD

Starting on November 14th, Santa appears in his chalet at Downtown Disney Marketplace. Downtown Disney will be all decorated in Christmas cheer and special Christmas music will be playing for the “Festival of the Seasons.” The event includes special entertainment, including holiday carolers; Latin, jazz and pop performances of holiday songs; costumed stilt walkers and street performers; and a lively holiday dance party with deejay every weekend.


working together at DAK
Working together at DAK.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale


3 replies to “Christmas Happenings at WDW

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