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Old 03-21-2012, 06:53 PM   #2236
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Hi Sherry,

We keep posting around each other today!! Hi there!!
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:57 PM   #2237
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Hi Sherry,

We keep posting around each other today!! Hi there!!
I know! Too funny. I was glad to see there was some activity happening here today. I only wish we all had some exciting news to discuss - like official dates, new holiday season stuff, etc. But Disneyland loves to take their time in giving out that info!
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:07 PM   #2238
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Originally Posted by Sherry E View Post
I know! Too funny. I was glad to see there was some activity happening here today. I only wish we all had some exciting news to discuss - like official dates, new holiday season stuff, etc. But Disneyland loves to take their time in giving out that info!

I know!! How early do they put that information out normally?
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:30 PM   #2239
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My family and I went to Disneyland this last Christmas from 12/20-12/26. I can't post a link to my trip report, but if you search under my name you'll find it (title is " Trip Report 12/20-12/26- Thank You Dis Boards"). Within it you will see that Christmas Eve the characters did their "goodnights" at the Main Street Train Station at 9:30pm/10:30pm/11:30pm and that the park closed at midnight on Christmas Eve & Christmas Day. Hope the info in my trip report helps you and feel free to ask any questions.
Thank you so much! I will definitely read this and let you know if I have questions! Like I said, I can handle busy summertime, but this whole Christmas thing has me nervous!

I love DISboards!!!
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:36 PM   #2240
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Wow this is a long thread. This year I'm planning on taking my wife to Disneyland. We've been there twice before, but this time specifically for the Christmas decorations. She had a rough childhood but she always tried to make the best of the holidays, so now I try to keep them special for her. I want to see the good info in this thread but not be see any spoiler pictures lol.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:40 PM   #2241
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I know there probably isn't an answer to this question but I'll ask anyway. My birthday is Dec 4th and I'd like to plan a birthday trip but I really want to avoid Candlelight Processional and Cast Member parties, Does anyone have any idea what weekend/weekends it will be this year???
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:14 PM   #2242
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Yay! Im so glad I found this thread! We are going to Disney Nov 21-23 and im so hoping that the Christmas decorations will be there by then...Christmas and Disney are my two favorite things in the world (besides family ) and it only makes sense that we go to Disney AT Christmas time!! We have gone in the summer (June and July) the last two years. Eeeeeks! I cant wait!! 8 more months!! I can wait...right??
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Old 03-22-2012, 12:57 AM   #2243
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I can not wait for the holiday season this year. We are on Spring break this week and our next break from Nursing School is in December in which we are planning to spend at Disneyland. Hotel booked, planning in the works. With 2 weeks to spend we are looking at eateries but not much else as with so much time even with the crowds we should do everything we want to at a fairly easy going pace. The beauty and magic of a playful holiday is what I am looking forward to the most. We have Christmas Eve and our Plan for Christmas day pretty much worked out going off the past reports for those days.

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Old 03-22-2012, 08:48 AM   #2244
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If people have their hotels booked, do I need to also book or are they just excited? I thought I'd wait until the jetBlue offered flights during those dates. When is the best time to book for early December?
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Old 03-22-2012, 09:08 AM   #2245
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jkh1978 -

I think it kind of depends on your situation and how many people are going. I have a family of six so it is a bit harder to book a close hotel during Christmas. You can always book the dates you are planning to go plus 2 -3 days on either side to account for plane tickets and then change the reservation later, depending on where you would like to stay. It looks like you are going earlier in December which is less crowded then when the kids are getting out of school for Christmas Vacation.

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Old 03-22-2012, 09:38 AM   #2246
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Smile yay! for this thread!

Hi all,

Soooo glad I found this thread. I was wondering when DL will start their Christmas decor.

I'm taking my first holiday trip to DL & LA area from Nov 9-17th. I've only been to DL once before for a few days before D23 Expo last year (and lost my memory card with all my pics!!! ).

Anyways, I'll be doing LA area from Nov 9th to 13th-ish..then DL from 13-16 (leaving 17th).

I'm thinking maybe another day at DL? Go from 12-16th? Especially if Carsland is open?

I'm waiting with bated breath to see if I can catch the holiday decor. I'm hoping against hope that I planned it decently. And hoping for the Holiday Tour, if they have it that early? *ernest look here*

I'm thinking the Disneyland Hotel, but I have to check that superthread to see if its the right hotel for me.

Yay for this thread!
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Old 03-22-2012, 10:44 AM   #2247
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I'm so excited for everyone going to DL at Christmas time. This will be the first Christmas holiday in more than 6 years that we aren't going to be at a Disney resort...

Change is good, right?

Still I will be living vicariously through the DIS boards up to and through the holidays (all of them as I love Halloween too).

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Old 03-22-2012, 11:29 AM   #2248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaoden39 View Post
One thought too, I believe that if you stay at the resort hotels you are guaranteed entry into the park. To me that is a big plus.
Not necessarily. If they are closed by the fire marshal they are closed until enough people have left and the fire marshall reopens. Staying onsite won't matter. Also if they are closed to all but re-entries and you haven't entered a park yet you may also be out of luck for a period of time.

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Originally Posted by Grumpy Grandma View Post
I know there probably isn't an answer to this question but I'll ask anyway. My birthday is Dec 4th and I'd like to plan a birthday trip but I really want to avoid Candlelight Processional and Cast Member parties, Does anyone have any idea what weekend/weekends it will be this year???
Candlelight is usually the first weekend of December (1st/2nd this year). Cast Parties will be a Monday & Tuesday, the last 2 years its been the 2nd week of December (around the 10th)
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Last edited by 3Minnies1Mickey; 03-22-2012 at 11:31 AM. Reason: I guess they changed the AP calendar since January....
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Old 03-22-2012, 12:11 PM   #2249
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Not necessarily. If they are closed by the fire marshal they are closed until enough people have left and the fire marshall reopens. Staying onsite won't matter. Also if they are closed to all but re-entries and you haven't entered a park yet you may also be out of luck for a period of time.


Candlelight is usually the first weekend of December (1st/2nd this year). Cast Parties will be a Monday & Tuesday, the last 2 years its been the 2nd week of December (around the 10th)
Thank you for the info .... pretty much what I thought. My birthday is Dec 4 so I hope to fit a trip in between the 2 events!
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Old 03-22-2012, 04:18 PM   #2250
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Originally Posted by kaoden39 View Post
I know!! How early do they put that information out normally?
Michele -

A couple of years ago, the holiday season dates were revealed in July - but not on the Disneyland website. They were in an e-mail that went out from "D News." Last year, fellow DIS'er jernysgirl (Kim) discovered the season dates (for both the holidays and Halloween Time) on the actual Disneyland website, and I think (can't recall 100%) the holiday dates were up in July. I will have to go back in this thread and find her post that announced the dates, just out of curiosity, to see when exactly it was.

I get the feeling - and I could be totally off base in this feeling - that the master planners and creative minds at TDA have a big strategic meeting at the beginning of the year to sort of map out how the year at Disneyland Resort is going to go, schedule-wise, and toss around ideas for any new things they plan to add for any given season. If my hunch is correct, they probably know the dates for all the seasons way, way in advance - or at least have a really good idea of what they will be - but in a year such as this, when all the changes at DCA are going to be in the spotlight for a while, they may not want to reveal the dates yet, especially if they think the dates could change.



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Originally Posted by jkh1978 View Post
Wow this is a long thread. This year I'm planning on taking my wife to Disneyland. We've been there twice before, but this time specifically for the Christmas decorations. She had a rough childhood but she always tried to make the best of the holidays, so now I try to keep them special for her. I want to see the good info in this thread but not be see any spoiler pictures lol.
jkh1978 -


Welcome! Yes, it's a long thread! Well, let's not look at it as long. That sounds so daunting! Lets look at it as "active," or "popular"!

I think it's amazing that you're going to take your wife to Disneyland for the holidays this year, and that you try to make that time of year special for her. If she is a fan of the Christmas season in general, she will absolutely love the way Disneyland celebrates it. It is really beautiful, and very detailed and thorough.

Be sure to stop in at the Grand Californian Hotel lobby and sit down in the comfortable chairs around the giant Christmas tree (preferably in the late afternoon/early evening time frame). It's a very festive environment. The pianist plays holiday tunes. There is a guitarist who plays holiday tunes when the pianist takes a break. Carolers perform and take requests in front of the tree here and there. Santa poses for photos on the other side of the tree. Everyone just kind of relaxes on the sofas (or even on the carpet!) with beverages and snacks, and chats with each other. It's a nice dose of holiday spirit!

There are a lot of photos in this thread, in between the bits of info - that is true. You may want to just scroll quickly past the pictures so you don't see too much! Or just look away if you see that someone has posted a photo!





Quote:
Originally Posted by Grumpy Grandma View Post
I know there probably isn't an answer to this question but I'll ask anyway. My birthday is Dec 4th and I'd like to plan a birthday trip but I really want to avoid Candlelight Processional and Cast Member parties, Does anyone have any idea what weekend/weekends it will be this year???
Linda/Grumpy Grandma -

Hello! I'm glad to see you over here! Last time I saw you was in the Newport Beach thread! (As I mentioned to you over there, I am planning to do a Catalina Island Superthread like this Christmas one and like my Halloween Superthread, so stay tuned for that when it comes to fruition in the SoCal section!)

As Shannon/3Minnies1Mickey told you, the Candlelight Processional is usually on the first weekend in December, although I think there have been some deviations in that schedule in the distant past. In 2011, the CP took place on 12/3 & 12/4. I was there on 12/4, but I didn't see the CP.

For some reason - and I don't know why - I keep having this feeling that the CP could possibly take place on December 8th and 9th this year, instead of 12/1 & 12/2. It is only a hunch. I certainly don't have any secret knowledge or inside scoop to support that (drat!). We will see.

The Cast Member parties used to be held on the Monday and Tuesday immediately following the Candlelight Processional. But in 2010 and 2011, they were moved to one week later. So, last year they took place on 12/12 & 12/13. In 2010, they took place on 12/13 & 12/14. I was at Disneyland over the CM party days in 2010, and when the park closed at 6 p.m.

You will definitely miss the Candlelight Processional dates, whether it takes place on 12/1 & 12/2 or 12/8 & 12/9.

I think you will probably miss the Cast Member party nights too - assuming they take place on 12/10 & 12/11.

The only possible scenario I see that would have you running into the CM party is if it, for some reason, were to happen on 12/3 & 12/4. Then you'd be at DLR on your birthday on 12/4, and Disneyland would close at 6 p.m. But I think that, more likely than not, the CM party nights will be 12/10 & 12/11.

Unfortunately, the dates of the CP and the CM parties won't come out for a long time, so we have a while to wait!



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Originally Posted by purplecrush View Post
Yay! Im so glad I found this thread! We are going to Disney Nov 21-23 and im so hoping that the Christmas decorations will be there by then...Christmas and Disney are my two favorite things in the world (besides family ) and it only makes sense that we go to Disney AT Christmas time!! We have gone in the summer (June and July) the last two years. Eeeeeks! I cant wait!! 8 more months!! I can wait...right??

Hello, purplecrush!

I am so glad you found us too! Welcome aboard! Christmas and Disney are my two favorite things as well (with Halloween being a close runner-up), so I can totally relate to you! (Hence, the reason I created this thread!)

Let me tell you - because you are a Christmas fan like I am, and because you love Disney - you will absolutely adore Disneyland at Christmas time. It is enchanting, beautiful, and a feast for the senses!

I don't know if you have had time to kind of scroll through this thread from beginning to end - and you may not want to spoil anything for yourself by seeing photos - but if you get time and have the interest, I think you will find it worthwhile because you do love Christmas and Disney so much. If anything, I think the wonderful photos and information in this thread (starting on Page 1) will give you a better idea of what not to miss, what to eat, what to buy, what to do, etc. I do have to update some of the information on the first page, but a lot of it is applicable to every year so it doesn't change much.

You will definitely get the full array of Disneyland Christmas wonderful-ness during your 11/21 & 11/23 trip. That is Thanksgiving time, correct? (I'm not looking at a calendar, but I think Thanksgiving is on 11/22 this year?)

The only things that may possibly not be in place until your very last day - 11/23 - are the Christmas trees at the 3 Disneyland Resort hotels. Those may not seem like a big deal to miss out on, but, being a fellow Christmas lover, I highly recommend a stop in the Grand Californian Hotel lobby, and even a walk across the street to the Paradise Pier Hotel to see the stunning, glowing blue-green lights on their Christmas tree. (And when I tell you the PPH tree is stunning, I am not joking - there were people just standing around, pointing at the tree, when I was there in December!)

Sometimes the hotels seem to be decorated by Thanksgiving and the trees are up, and sometimes the trees don't go up until the day after Thanksgiving.




Quote:
Originally Posted by 6Smiles View Post
I can not wait for the holiday season this year. We are on Spring break this week and our next break from Nursing School is in December in which we are planning to spend at Disneyland. Hotel booked, planning in the works. With 2 weeks to spend we are looking at eateries but not much else as with so much time even with the crowds we should do everything we want to at a fairly easy going pace. The beauty and magic of a playful holiday is what I am looking forward to the most. We have Christmas Eve and our Plan for Christmas day pretty much worked out going off the past reports for those days. Kris

Kris -

I said it before; I'll say it again - I am so glad you get to make that holiday trip this year! You will certainly get the full dose of beauty and Christmas magic!



Quote:
Originally Posted by jkh1978 View Post
If people have their hotels booked, do I need to also book or are they just excited? I thought I'd wait until the jetBlue offered flights during those dates. When is the best time to book for early December?
jkh1978 -

What Kris said is accurate - I think it may depend on certain things for certain people. But some of the early bookings could be excitement too!




Quote:
Originally Posted by MyMuse View Post
Hi all,

Soooo glad I found this thread. I was wondering when DL will start their Christmas decor.

I'm taking my first holiday trip to DL & LA area from Nov 9-17th. I've only been to DL once before for a few days before D23 Expo last year (and lost my memory card with all my pics!!! ).

Anyways, I'll be doing LA area from Nov 9th to 13th-ish..then DL from 13-16 (leaving 17th).

I'm thinking maybe another day at DL? Go from 12-16th? Especially if Carsland is open?

I'm waiting with bated breath to see if I can catch the holiday decor. I'm hoping against hope that I planned it decently. And hoping for the Holiday Tour, if they have it that early? *ernest look here*

I'm thinking the Disneyland Hotel, but I have to check that superthread to see if its the right hotel for me.

Yay for this thread!

Hello, MyMuse!!

I am so glad you found us! Welcome!

Well, never fear - you will definitely get the Disneyland holiday experience during your dates.

Here's how it kind of breaks down, in 3 phases:

Phase 1 - The Christmas decorations begin to go up around both parks as soon as Halloween ends - even before that, actually. So even if you were to get to Disneyland on, for example, November 4th or something, you would see decorations in certain places around the parks. The decor goes up a little bit at a time, all the way up until the season officially begins, so there may be new things popping up every day. New Orleans Square is one of the first places to get its holiday makeover. ToonTown is not far behind. A Bug's Land is not far behind that. And it is just a gradual process.


Phase 2 - Then we have the "official" season start date. As of now, we don't yet know what it will be this year. It will likely either be 11/9, 11/12 or 11/16. The only reason why the official start date is important is because that is when most of the holiday-specific entertainment begins, such as the Winter Castle's icicle lightings at night, the snow falling on Main Street, the holiday parade, the holiday fireworks, Santa's Reindeer Round-Up opening, Santa appearing in both Disneyland and California Adventure, etc. If those things matter to you, then you will want to get there when the season has officially begun. It is possible that It's a Small World Holiday could open a couple of days before the official start date, depending on when the start date it. Haunted Mansion Holiday will be open in September, so you will definitely get to see that.


Finally, Phase 3 - The hotels. This is the final part of the decorating process. Also, Downtown Disney has some extra holiday stuff at this point, too. Typically, the hotels get their decorations either right before or right after Thanksgiving. Also, Santa begins appearing at all 3 hotels at this time.


If you are leaving on Saturday, 11/17, you may want to pop into the hotels before you go to see if the decorations are up yet. I think that the Paradise Pier Hotel tree may go up first, and it is gorgeous.


In any case, with the exception of possibly the hotels and some extra Downtown Disney stuff, if you take your trip from 11/12 to 11/16 or 11/13 to 11/16, you will still be there for at least one day of the "official" season's entertainment if the season starts on 11/16, and possibly more than that if the season begins on 11/12 or 11/9. And you will definitely see decorations in the parks, no matter what.

The holiday tour should begin on the day the season officially begins.





Quote:
Originally Posted by tksbaskets View Post
I'm so excited for everyone going to DL at Christmas time. This will be the first Christmas holiday in more than 6 years that we aren't going to be at a Disney resort...

Change is good, right?

Still I will be living vicariously through the DIS boards up to and through the holidays (all of them as I love Halloween too).

TK

TK -

What? No holiday trip to either WDW or DLR this year? Nooooooooooo! Stop the madness!

Yes, change is good, but I know it will be hard not going to either place for the holidays. However, by the time you return for your next DLR holiday season, it should be interesting to see all the changes and (hopefully) new Christmas decor in DCA.











Anyway, thank you, everyone, for keeping this little thread hoppin' and alive! I hope you are all able to find the info and photos you need to help you plan your trips. We have some great contributors here, who have visited DLR for the holidays and can share their experiences with us!

It's so interesting how there is a burst of activity in certain threads during unexpected months - like March - and then it will quiet down for months. The "Countdown to the Holiday Season/Theme Weeks" last year really worked in terms of generating activity and building anticipation, so we will do that again this year (starting sometime in late August, and lasting all the way up to the official kick-off date of the season!).
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And for some non-holiday seaside fun in the sun ~~ 2012 Catalina Island/Avalon Trip Report - My Solo Day Trip, in Photos (LOTS of Photos!)- 7/21/12
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