This past weekend my family and I were fortunate enough to spend the day at the Happiest Place on Earth: Disneyland! We were invited to be a part of the Family Media Day event which included Park Hopper tickets for the day as well as a private reception and some very special treats (and Halloweentime tricks!)
We started off the day at Disney’s California Adventure. While the big kids and my husband were enjoying the Radiator Springs Racers, my little guy and I visited with Lightning McQueen and Mater in Carsland.
There were plenty of Photo Pass photographers around all day to hand my camera to. They captured some wonderful shots of my family enjoying our special day!
My kids were able to get me on California Screamin’, even though fast coasters aren’t really my “thing”. This ride is so smooth that the motion doesn’t bother me at all. You can see though that I was nervously anticipating the take-off during the ride countdown!
After a spin on King Triton’s Carousel and Toy Story Mania, we headed over to Stage 17 for the Family Media Day reception. Wow, this event completely blew me away! The colorful room was set up so dramatically with lighting, tables, balloons and huge floral arrangements.
There were silhouette artists, spray-tattoo art and a few games for the little ones. The Master of Ceremonies was playing dance music and also hosted a hula-hooping contest and name-that-tune game.
There were three meet-and-greet spots with rotating characters so we were able to take photos with Minnie, Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Jack and Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas. I’ve never seen Jack or Sally in the Parks before so getting a photo with them was fantastic! Dillon wasn’t so crazy about it, though…he was clinging to me for dear life! Sally set him at ease by saying, “It’s okay, Jack only scares on Saturdays” (Ahem…it was Saturday!)
The snacks were plentiful and delicious including Mickey pretzels with various mustards, cheesy garlic twists, candy corn cotton candy, pumpkin twists, fresh apples with caramel, apple cider, Mickey pumpkin cupcakes and popcorn. My kids were in heaven because frankly, we never buy those things! It was a special treat, for sure!
We received Fast Passes for specific times to ride Twilight Zone Tower of Terror as well as Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy. Disney also gifted us a souvenir popcorn bucket in a Haunted Mansion theme and four tombstone drink coasters. We were honored to be a part of this special event and had such a wonderful time enjoying the treats, games and offerings.
We reluctantly dragged ourselves from the air-conditioned comfort inside the reception area and out into the blazing sun for more rides and adventures!
Over at Disneyland, Main Street USA was beautifully decorated for fall with hundreds of hand-carved pumpkins, fall leaves and candy-corn striped banners on the buildings and lamp posts.
While the big kids took advantage of the thrill rides like Star Tours and Indiana Jones Adventure my little guy took a nap (on a pillow of cotton candy…only at Disneyland!) They said they didn’t care for the Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy. They thought that the “ghost” was a bit too creepy and devilish rather than spooky and ghost-like.
Unfortunately Disneyland was teeming with guests in the late afternoon so we didn’t get to ride as many things I would have liked. Plus the little one was taking a long nap. We totally missed going into Frontierland for the Halloween Carnival event! The only rides we did in Fantasyland was The Matterhorn and Mad Tea Party.
Once Dillon woke up we did enjoy The Finding Nemo Subs before the parade and dinner. We staked out a great spot on Main Street for Mickey’s Soundsational Parade and the Frozen pre-parade float. On our last visit Dillon had slept through the parade so I was happy he was able to watch the entire show this time; he loved it!
Dinner at The Plaza Inn with fried chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans and biscuits hit the spot. We ordered 2 platters and shared between the five of us…plenty of food to go around!
Our magical day ended with a reserved fireworks spot in the center of Main Street USA, directly in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle! In all my years I’ve never witnessed a Disneyland fireworks show from such an amazing location and this didn’t disappoint. We were all goosebumpy and teary-eyed watching this incredible show.
It was the perfect end to a perfectly Disney day!
Thank you to Disney for the invitation to this Family Media Event. We were given free Park Hopper tickets for the day as well as an invitation to the private reception. All opinions and thoughts are my own.
Click the link for more information about Disney’s Halloweentime events.