On this week’s episode, Kelli gives a rundown of all of the yummy May 4th treats hitting Disney parks this week and Chris gives an overview of Disney parades.
For more details and a transcript of this week’s episode, visit https://scfadp.com/season-7/disney-news-4-30-may-the-4th-treats-at-disney-parks-and-walt-disney-world-parades/
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All music for this episode is available through a creative commons license. The background music for the News segment was created by Kevin Macleod: Fuzzball Parade by Kevin MacLeodLink: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/5044-fuzzball-parade
May the 4th Star Wars Food: https://disneyparks.disney.go.com/blog/2023/04/disney-eats-foodie-guide-to-may-the-4th-galactic-goodies/
- Disney General
- Disney General
- Magic Kingdom
- Hollywood Studios
- D23 Expo
- World Showcase ©
- The Parades of WDW
- SO we got our latest edition of the WDW magazine recently and one of the articles focuses on the Parades of WDW. And I thought – ok then, let’s talk about Parades at WDW.
- And if we haven’t said so recently, WDW magazine – or DLR – the DL version – are really great and would highly recommend.
- Full disclosure: For most of my life as a Disney Parks fan, I never really cared all that much about the daytime parades. They just took time away from opportunities to ride things.
- The nighttime parades: Main Street Electrical Parade or Spectromagic were exceptions. That was appointment viewing.
- That has changed for me in recent years, partly because I appreciate the effort and coordination required to pull these things off.
- Partly because the Festival of Fantasy parade is just so great and I’ve been won over.
- So, how did the parades start at WDW:
- DL has been running parades since the day the park opened in 1955. That first one was simply called: The Opening Day Parade
- And through the years prior to the opening of the Magic Kingdom in 1971, they ran 17 different parades – some for very specific moments or launches (like the Zorro Days Parade that ran in 1958 – 59)
- But also seasonal parades: at DL the Candlelight Processional was effectively a parade.
- At the MK, the first parade was held on opening day, Oct. 1 1971, and was just called the Character Parade
- We didn’t have the amazing colorful floats of today, but many of the same characters we see today were there, along with talented musicians (like the Dapper Dans), and antique cars.
- It included characters from Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs, Dumbo, Alice in Wonderland, Bambi, and the Jungle Book among others
- Mickey is usually the grand finale of the parades but he kicked off the Character Parade.
- MK has been home to 19 different themed parades – FOF being the latest.
- After re-opening following the pandemic Disney launched Cavalcades, or mini-parades. These run throughout the day and were effectively small parades focusing on one, usually very elaborate themed float that celebrated a number of characters related to the theme.
- For example: The Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade featured Miguel (Coco), The Incredibles, Moana, Mirabel.
- These evolutions of the parade were kind of ingenious at a time when the park wanted to provide entertainment but thought it best not to create a scenario in which half the park was standing in close proximity for the duration of a 20 minute parade.
- These ran more often, so the chance of seeing it increased, smaller crowds at one viewing, and they only took up few minutes.
- The Rainy Day Cavalcade is a treat if you can catch it. And it’s just what it sounds like: Cast members wearing rain gear lead Mickey and Minnie, who sit in a covered antique car and other fantastic characters ride some of the Omnibuses provided by the Main Street Transportation Company.
- The Festival of Fantasy parade is currently the biggest parade running at MK.
- It launched in 2014 to celebrate the addition of New Fantasyland
- It (typically) includes characters and floats from over a dozen Disney films – ranging from Snow White to the Frozen movies.
- The show stopper here though is the enormous Steampunk version of the Maleficent Dragon.
- She is 53 feet long, and she slowly meanders through the parade route, and during normal operation only stops to literally breathe fire!
- It’s all pretty ridiculous.
- This parade is glorious and beautiful. The Tangled float of characters on big swinging battle axes.
- MK also hosts seasonal parades, which can usually only be seen during the special ticketted evens (MNSSHP or MVMCP) like the:
- Boo To You Parade or Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas Parade
- These parades features over the top costuming and performances.
- The grave diggers and ghostly ballroom dancers, and often even the bride from the Haunted Mansion in movie quality makeup to look zombiefield – and costumes that emit a ghostly glow
- All I can say is google the grave diggers… the choreography of their routine is just so so creapy and cool.
- And the Tin Soldiers in the Christmas parade are just so delightful.
- The Once Upon a Christmastime parade can be seen in late December around the holidays without attending a ticketed event.
- What kind of blows me away is that these parades are legit spectacles.
- Cast members prep the streets. With tape and ropes.
- They play traffic controllers.
- The performers travel all the way from Frontierland, through Liberty Square, around the Hub, and down Main Street through Town Square.
- And if you attend MK during the holidays you might witness this 4 times as FOF runs usually twice per day, and the Special Parade will often run twice at night.
- The Parades and Cavalcades are great because they provide such proximity and interaction with the characters at the heart of the Disney experience.
- Somehow every guest comes away feeling like they had a personal interaction with characters – without having to wait in line for a meet/greet.
- And this is the best place to see rare characters I think.
- It’s also fun to interact with the cast members some of whom are Photopass team members who carry props and signs that make for PERFECT vacation pictures.
- My favorite place to watch the parades are in Town Square.
- My favorite parade moment ever – and one of the reasons I’ve come to love the parades – one of our more recent trips post covid we were having ice cream from the plaza when a cavalcade suddenly started coming around the hub.
- Naturally I ran to get pics – which cavalcades allow you to do without your ice cream melting.
- This was a Princess Cavalcade and Tiana was on the float along with a bunch of the other princesses.
- Three little girls of color were standing beside me – their reaction to seeing Tiana and being acknowledged by her – people it was rapturous. They were beside themselves. I can still hear “OMG IT’S TIANA!!!!” like it was 5 minutes ago.
- They will never forget it.
Transcript: Coming Soon!