Legacy Content

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
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by Lee MacDonald and Lindsay Cave
November 12, 2003
A report on the 2003 version of this Walt Disney World favorite.

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When is a BOO! not a boo?


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This is a tale of two Halloweens. Now, one would expect that Halloween is Halloween wherever you go. This pagan pan-global festival has the same concept to everyone. However, you would be wrong. Two Magic Kingdoms, separated by the Atlantic Ocean have interpreted Halloween individually, and the results could not be more stark, like the comparison between day and night. This is a tale of a Floridian Halloween.....

Unlike its Parisian counterpart, there are few reminders of the season upon browsing the Magic Kingdom. Except for the odd orange floral wreath adorning the lamp posts of Main Street and Liberty Square, one could be forgiven for forgetting that All Hallow's Eve was approaching. However, the true celebration is reserved for visitors willing to pay  $31.90 for the privilege during the cool evenings, when cast members and guests alike indulge in the festivities of Mickey's Not-so-Scary Halloween Party. These special events have increased in popularity over the past few years, leading to Walt Disney World organising a total of 10 parties for 2003, culminating in the final presentation on October 31.

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The Magic Kingdom closes at 6pm on these days, giving cast members only one hour in order to prepare for the arrival of trick-or-treaters, many appropriately dressed-up for the event. The monorail to the park was packed with children dressed in Disney Store pret-a-porter princess costumes and their parents in the ironic plat-du-jour, an orange tee with the simple words "This is my costume" screenprinted across the chest.

As the monorail passed by the main gate, a giant inflatable could be seen covering the Walk Around the World centrepiece. Closer inspection of the piece yielded the green glow of Madame Leota, as the giant balloon was a three-dimensional advertisement for Walt Disney Pictures' The Haunted Mansion, opening at the end of November. The arrival of Jay Rasulo as Parks boss has heralded a new era of synergy between the Studio and the theme parks, as Haunted Mansion and Brother Bear marketing could be found throughout the resort this year. On entry to the Magic Kingdom, guests are presented with a day-glo candy sack and a park map and schedule, listing the myriad of entertainment on offer that evening.