As you all know, Disneyland has kicked-off it’s 60th Anniversary Diamond Celebration and let me just say…the party really starts after dark! With three all new nighttime shows, Disneyland is lighting up the night in a whole new (and super spectacular) way. My family and I had the opportunity to attend the premier of all 3 shows and we loved each one! We have been back to see them again multiple times and they’re just as amazing each time we see them! So, let’s jump right into the fun stuff, shall we!
In Disneyland park you can experience ‘Paint the Night’ Electrical Parade and ‘Disneyland Forever’ Fireworks. In Disney California Adventure Park you can experience the all new ‘World of Color-Celebrate!’ Celebrating the Wonderful World of Walt Disney.
Paint The Night Electrical Parade
If you’re an old school Disneyland fan like me then you are absolutely going to LOVE this all new electrical parade. I have fond childhood memories of watching the Main Street Electrical Parade and have been wishing for something like it for years. Disney really does make your wishes come true don’t they! With over 1.5 million individually controlled LED lights and screens “Paint the Night” is unlike anything you’ll ever see. Created by Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Creative Entertainment, “Paint the Night” is a state-of-the-art, vibrant wonder that immerses guests in the magical, luminescent worlds of many classic Disney and Disney-Pixar stories.
The parade tells eight different stories, each story represented by multiple floats, props and performers. “Paint the Night” is the first-ever parade lit almost entirely by LED lights! It is so bright and vibrant you may need your sunglasses! FUN FACT: Only very minimal incandescent lighting sources are used: at the tip of Tinker Bell’s wand (which is capped with the original rosette from the 1972 electrical parade) and in Rapunzel’s flickering lanterns. Each costume has its own sophisticated system of lighting controls. Some lights are sewn into the costume fabric and some are sculpted pieces worn by the performers.
My favorite thing about the Monsters inc. float was the animated doors. They stand over 9 feet tall and display some hilarious scenes from both movies. Fun Fact: This float is 21 feet long, 11 feet wide and has nearly 17,000 points of light.
Belle and Ariel have the most stunning sculpted LED costumes. Would you believe that King Triton stands over 12 feet tall and Belle’s gown has over 40 custom designed jewels! Talk about spectacular! But, in my opinion, the most spectacular part of this parade was the Cars segment. Just take a look at why…
AMAZING! Right? These photos really don’t do this segment justice at all. When Lightning McQueen led Mack and their crew down Main Street U.S.A. all of my 4 year old sons dreams came true. It was like seeing his beloved movies come to life, in a bright and exciting way! Seeing a 54 foot long LED lit semi-truck cruising down Main Street was completely out of this world! All I could say was “WOW! WOW! WOW! “
All of you Frozen fans don’t have to worry because Anna, Elsa and Olaf make their LED appearance in this giant ice float. FUN FACT: The Frozen float is almost 35 feet long and 30 feet tall. The central chandelier is made up of 72 individual “ice shards,” each lit by its own LED. There are 56 over-scale scenic snowflakes and 11 individual water jet cut swirls on the float. There are six unique etched window art panels on the float. Three depict happy memories of Anna and Elsa in childhood. The other three feature Kristoff, the Trolls and Sven.
The parade closes with the Sorcerer Mickey conducting the finale and his crew whirling down Main Street on their own colorful vehicles. This part totally reminded me of the little bugs that buzzed around in the original Electrical Parade. Which is probably why I love this part so much! Be sure to listen closely throughout the parade to the music because you may here a very familiar melody with a new modern remix.
This parade was truly amazing and my entire family loved it so much. Even my 15 month hold had a blast watching at waving at all of here favorite characters. If you go to the Disneyland Resort this summer and don’t watch this parade you’re making a big mistake! This is something you don’t want to miss!
“Disneyland Forever” Fireworks
To me, the best way to end a fun filled day at Disneyland is by watching an awesome firework show. Disneyland’s firework shows have always been a favorite of mine and this new show is at the top of the list (behind the Christmas show because nothing beats that in my book). “Disneyland Forever” is different then any other firework show presented in the park since their start in 1956. During this show guests will be surrounded by colorful and vibrant visual projections on Main Street U.S.A, Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Matterhorn Mountain, It’s a Small World and the Rivers of America.
The opening segment of this show is really beautiful and touching. While standing in the middle of Main Street we were suddenly surrounded by orange groves! To the place Walt Disney once stood and imagined his dream–Disneyland. We were then whisked off through some of our favorite Disney movies like: Mary Poppins, Tangled, The Little Mermaid, Finding Nemo and the Lion King. Dick Van Dyke even re-recorded “Step in Time” for the opening segment and he sounds just like he did many years ago in the original.
The visual projections down Main Street were unlike anything I’d ever seen or experienced. It was like we were fully immersed into the show and were surrounded by eye popping visual effects and Disney magic! One of my favorite parts was when lightning, thunder and huge waves transported us to the “Under the Sea” world of the Little Mermaid. There was even giant inflatable sea weed that popped up on top of the buildings. I was pretty much speechless at that point, until they did something no one saw coming…
Bubbles float up and suddenly you see Nemo flying over the castle attempting to swim through the infamous “ring of fire” on top of Mount Wannahockaloogie (A.K.A. Matterhorn Mountain). Yes, they sure do turn the Matterhorn into Mount Wannahockaloogie and it’s AWESOME! My daughter is in LOVE with Nemo and was chanting along with Nemo and his friends. Wah he ha ha ho ho ! Wah he ha ha ho ho ! Then the bubbles magically turn into snowflakes and the entire crowd is prepared to belt out the ballad of the century. LET IT GO!! LET IT GO!! Yes, of course there is a Frozen segment in the show, it’s everywhere and we all need to embrace it. What is awesome about this segment is that it actually snows along Main Street, It’s a Small World and The Rivers of America and everyone loves it!
There is so much detail in the visual projections it truly is a one of a kind show. From the floating lanterns from Tangled, to the animals of Africa marching to Pride Rock, it is so entertaining and exciting to watch.
Of course it wouldn’t be a good firework show if I didn’t cry at some point and that totally happened for me at the end. All of the bright projections fade and you see Walt and Mickey walking hand in hand through the castle and the voice over says ” See all of this can be yours, FOREVER!”. This moment still gives me goosebumps when I think about it. Walt Disney himself said “Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” Hence the name “Disneyland Forever” because as long as our imaginations thrive and our children dream, Disneyland will be around forever.
“World of Color-Celebrate!” Celebrating the Wonderful World of Walt Disney
Last, but certainly not least is “World of Color-Celebrate!” over at Disney California Adventure Park. To help commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the Disneyland Resort, Disney Imagineers decided to created a special edition of World of Color. The show is hosted by Tony and Emmy Award winning actor Neil Patrick Harris and of course, Mickey Mouse.
Now, I’ve seen the “World of Color” many times over the last few years and have always loved it. It’s my favorite (non firework) show at the Disneyland Resort so I was a little worried about what to expect for this show. I was so incredibly impressed by it and was really moved by the way they included Walt Disney. Yes there were many tear jerking moments when Walt appeared on the 350 foot water screen and told us all about his dream–Disneyland.
This show took us on a journey through the incredible imagination of Walt Disney and how he made his dreams comes true. And it was all started by a mouse, Mickey Mouse that is! More then five minutes of new animation was created to allow Mickey Mouse to step from the big screen to the water screen.
I loved the mix of old Disney nostalgia with the new and upcoming Disney features. Like scenes from Snow White, old black and white Mickey Mouse cartoons, to Elsa belting out Let It Go. Of course I have to talk about the BLAST (literally the special effects at this moment are on fire!) off into a galaxy far far away; with a sneak peek of the new Star Wars movie. oh yea, it was amazing and the crowd went WILD! All of these moments were huge crowd favorites and were made even more memorable by the new and exciting media effects including: pyrotechnics, laser lights, fog, steam blasts and over 30 million pixels of beautiful, vibrant COLOR!
This show is truly incredible and will be enjoyed by everyone in your family. I know mine sure loved every second of it! Make sure to get your fast pass for the show early so you can enjoy all the spectacular colors from a great spot.
Now, I highly recommend spending more then one day in the parks so that you and your family can enjoy the spectacular new shows. Whether you stay at a Disneyland Resort Hotel or one of their good neighbor hotels a multi-day experience is really the best way to go. The parks are going to be crowded this summer and seating for the shows are going to fill up early so be sure to plan your day ahead of time in order to get the full nighttime experience. Check out more of my tips and tricks to enjoying the Disneyland Resort Nighttime spectaculars in a post coming soon! Stay Tuned!
Tell us what your favorite moments were from any of these awesome night time spectaculars in the comments!! Come on and live the magic!!
*I am a Disneyland Annual Passholder but did receive complimentary park tickets to attend the media premier events. Any and all opinions shared are my own.*