Many people believe the Disney parks are open 365 days a year regardless of what is going on. This busted mythconception stems mainly from the fact that the parks, at least the U.S. ones are scheduled to be open 365 days a year. Interestingly Disneyland when it first opened wasn’t even open seven days a week. In the early years, the park was often scheduled to be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays during the off-season. But, Walt Disney World and Disneyland have both closed in the past for some planned and some unplanned reasons. Disneyland has had four unplanned closures. In 1963 because of the assassination of President Kennedy, 1970 because of an anti-Vietnam riot, in 1994 because of the Northridge earthquake so the park could be inspected and in 2001 because of the 9-11 attacks. Walt Disney World has had six unplanned closures. The majority have been for hurricanes Floyd (1999), Frances, Charley, and Jeanne all in 2004 and Wilma (2005). The Florida parks also closed in 2001 for the 9-11 attacks. On March 11, 2011 an 0ffshore 9.0 earthquake caused Disneyland Tokyo to close mid-day. Obviously none of these events were planned for, but Disney did a great job in protecting the safety of guests by electing to close the parks.
Planned all day closures are rare and do not occur often. In 2005 a planned closure actually closed ALL at that time ten Disney parks on Earth May 4, 2005. The parks all closed to the public for the first planned closure in decades for a special media preview of Disneyland’s 50th Anniversary and the “Happiest Homecoming on Earth” event. The parks were open to the media and select resort guests but were closed to the general public.
So while yes it is rare, Disney Parks are not always open 365 days a year there are reasons the parks are closed, usually for the safety of guests, but that makes this mythconception busted.
Fall and Winter are big seasons at Walt Disney World, mainly because of the special ticket holiday parties at the Magic Kingdom park. But many park guests believe that the minute the last Halloween party is over ALL of the Christmas decor goes up over night at the parks and resorts. This my friends simply isn’t true. While it is true that the morning after the last Halloween party guests are welcomed to some Christmas decor, not all of it is up. Why is that? Many reasons, some being logistics, some being man power, others being much more involved. So when are the Christmas decorations up?
At the Magic Kingdom the MAJORITY are up by the first Christmas party. One key element though will not be installed until after the filming of ABC’s Christmas Parade as it would have to be taken down for the filming. The resorts promise to be ready by Thanksgiving. Epcot starts putting up decorations prior to Thanksgiving, but their Holidays Around the World and Candlelight Processional events don’t start until after Thanksgiving. At Hollywood Studios what we know as “normal” for holiday plans will probably be very different over the next few years because of the Star Wars inspired land and Toy Story Land being built there. This year we expect the park to be decorated completely for the holidays by the first night of the Osbourne Lights on November 6th. Animal Kingdom hasn’t really done much for the holidays outside of decorations since the closing of Camp Minnie Mickey, currently there have been no special holiday events or items announced for Animal Kingdom for this year.
Main Streeter Julie reminded us about this video the Disney Parks Blog released so we just had add it so you could see the Magic Kingdom change over in action.
At Disneyland the last Halloween party is on 10/31 this year, and they note that their holiday events will start on November 13th, giving them a bit more time to decorate 2 parks and 3 hotels versus 4 parks, 2 water parks, 2 mini-golf locations, and over 30 resorts.
So while yes Disney World does start decorating for Christmas as they take down their Halloween decor, everything doesn’t go up over night. But because at least the guests at Magic Kingdom starts to see Christmas decor on November 2nd this year, we will call this one plausible.
If you have missed any of our other TMSM Mythbuster articles and would like to catch up on what Disney Urban Myths are Busted, Plausible and Confirmed feel free to catch up by visiting our MythBuster’s archive.
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