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Old 09-18-2012, 09:29 AM   #2851
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Originally Posted by bjmbr1223 View Post
Hello- I have been reading this thread and absolutely love it!!! Wanting to join if thats ok. We are heading to Disneyland the 1st week of Dec and can't wait. It's been 12 years since we have been for xmas. We try to visit every couple of yrs but finally are making down for the holidays. I just wish I had all the cool pics that everyone has, that is my goal this trip and seeing all the different views is giving me so much inspiration. I am getting more and more excited. My kids DS 8 almost 9 and DD 5 has no clue what an awesome experience this is going to be. The were 5 and 2 last time we were down.
Love, Love, Love the pics
Welcome! You sure came to the right place to get excited about Christmas time at DL! Your upcoming trip will be wonderful.

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Hi there. We are going to Disneyland the first week in December also. We have gone in November a few years ago and loved the Christmas decorations. A little concerned about the Candlelight Procession being there our whole visit. Hope all who want to enjoy it do so but it was not in our plans and hope it doesn't make it too crazy.
You'll have a wonderful time!
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Old 09-18-2012, 12:16 PM   #2852
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Did you all see, Al Lutz says they cancelled the cast parties for Christmas...

Doesn't affect me, but I bet some of you are pretty excited to not have short nights for cast parties!
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OMG--dare I say it? We went to the World!! Split Stay! CSR May 6-10 and AKL Savannah View May 10-13, 2014 (with a dash of the Darkside thrown in for good measure the 13th & 14th.)
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Old 09-18-2012, 12:45 PM   #2853
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Originally Posted by Mommy2PrincessAbby View Post
Did you all see, Al Lutz says they cancelled the cast parties for Christmas...

Doesn't affect me, but I bet some of you are pretty excited to not have short nights for cast parties!
Wow! Thank you so much for reporting that! I have not made my way over to read Al's latest article yet. I'm so glad you posted because I wondered what in the heck they were going to do with the CM parties since the Candlelight Processional is eating up a big chunk of the nights in December at Disneyland. It would be impossible to have the CM parties after the CP ends, and they wouldn't be held before the CP starts.

What I was truly thinking would happen is that the CM parties would take place in DCA this year - as sort of a celebration of the new BVS and Cars Land decorations. I am shocked that they have been cancelled and are not being held in DCA!
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Old 09-18-2012, 01:36 PM   #2854
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Two more very, very interesting quotes from Al Lutz's article on MiceAge today (pay close attention to the second one):


Quote:
...more AP price increases are coming this winter...

Quote:
Much like they’ve done with Halloween, the long term goal for 2013, or ’14 at the very latest, is to turn that menu of Christmas offerings into an extra-cost private party held after park hours. Going the way of Disney World’s Very Merry Christmas Party, Disneyland would bundle the existing Christmas Fantasy Parade and Believe In Holiday Magic fireworks with a performance of the Candlelight Ceremony into one big evening of entertainment.

I knew that Disney was up to something when they decided to hold the CP on 20 nights this year instead of 2! I thought that they were either priming people and gearing them up for a possible relocation of the CP to DCA next year, or that the CP would become part of an eventual ticketed event like a Christmas party. I actually thought that the CP becoming part of the party would be less likely.

This is exactly what they did with Halloween Screams fireworks - they made them available all through Halloween Time in 2009, so that the general public would get used to them. Then they made them part of a private event as of 2010. The CP is going to 'rope people in' this year, and then it will be used as part of a party package next year or 2014.

I still think that people will not be happy about suddenly having to pay even more money to see the holiday parade and fireworks at the party, though, even with the CP added in.


Of course, none of this is official - and Al Lutz has been incorrect before - but this does fit with what I and others have suspected for a while.
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Old 09-18-2012, 01:46 PM   #2855
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I actually like the Halloween party and would be willing to pay for a Christmas party if it meant less crowds. But since this is our first Christmas trip and we hopefully picked quieter days to go maybe we won't even have to worry.
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OMG--dare I say it? We went to the World!! Split Stay! CSR May 6-10 and AKL Savannah View May 10-13, 2014 (with a dash of the Darkside thrown in for good measure the 13th & 14th.)
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Old 09-18-2012, 02:21 PM   #2856
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I actually like the Halloween party and would be willing to pay for a Christmas party if it meant less crowds. But since this is our first Christmas trip and we hopefully picked quieter days to go maybe we won't even have to worry.
I like the Halloween party too. It's not about not liking the party for me.

What my issue is, and what I feel will be the focus of the backlash I expect Disney to get if it goes through with a Christmas party, is that the separate ticketed event for Halloween made more sense because Disney took two things that were either only running for one year beforehand (Halloween Screams) or never available in the parks before (the Cavalcade) and made them signature events, along with trick or treating.

In the case of a separate ticket event for Christmas, they would be taking things that have been available to the general public for years, to which people have become attached - the holiday parade and the holiday fireworks - and making them suddenly have to pay even more money on top of what they already spend to see them. That is where there is going to be a lot of outrage from longtime holiday visitors, I suspect.

Now, IF there were a way to actually cut the crowds down substantially enough, people might be more up for it. The thing is that the attractions that people would be paying extra money to see in the first place - snow on Main Street, fireworks, parade, Candlelight Processional - will not attract light crowds. If people are attending that party, those highlights will be the reasons for it, and all of the parade people and fireworks people will still congregate in the parade and fireworks spots, so it won't seem uncrowded in those locations. For example, I haven't noticed a shortage of crowds gathered to see Halloween Screams. The only places where I have noticed lighter crowds during the MHP are the lines for rides - but the focal points of the party are not the lines for rides, as a rule.

But, I'm am 100% positive that Disney has thought about all of the things I'm mentioning for years. I'm sure those are all reasons they didn't want to have a party yet - and they wanted to fill out DCA a bit more first, before cutting off nighttime holiday activities in Disneyland to people who don't buy party tickets. I really thought that their best bet would be to have a Christmas party in DCA first - make the holiday World of Color and the holiday Toy Story Midway Mania (that have been rumored for a while) the signature attractions of the party, and get people warmed up to the idea of a party...before moving it over to Disneyland.

So it will be interesting to see if it all pans out and exactly how they do it. People react badly and prematurely to rumors even if they are just rumors, so I wouldn't be shocked if Guest Communications/Services starts getting bombarded with letters from people complaining about only being able to see the parade and fireworks at a Christmas party (which may or may not ever happen)!, just based on this Lutz article!
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Old 09-18-2012, 02:52 PM   #2857
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I understand what you are saying... We've done 2 Halloween parties, the first at DCA, the other at DL and I loved the non existent lines for the rides, that was our priority, more than the candy or meet and greets or the shows. We did grab a spot last minute for the cavalcade and did watch the fireworks which I loved. But for us having shorter ride lines was the draw. I know the locals would not want to lose something they've had all along, but as a vacation visitor I'd pay for the party.
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OMG--dare I say it? We went to the World!! Split Stay! CSR May 6-10 and AKL Savannah View May 10-13, 2014 (with a dash of the Darkside thrown in for good measure the 13th & 14th.)
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Old 09-18-2012, 03:26 PM   #2858
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Originally Posted by Mommy2PrincessAbby View Post
I understand what you are saying... We've done 2 Halloween parties, the first at DCA, the other at DL and I loved the non existent lines for the rides, that was our priority, more than the candy or meet and greets or the shows. We did grab a spot last minute for the cavalcade and did watch the fireworks which I loved. But for us having shorter ride lines was the draw. I know the locals would not want to lose something they've had all along, but as a vacation visitor I'd pay for the party.
I'm sure there will be people who feel like you feel and wouldn't mind paying extra for a party. But there will be a lot of backlash and complaints if the party idea happens with the current line-up of the standard holiday parade and fireworks.

I don't think it's a locals/non-locals issue at all. There are people who come to DLR every holiday season (or every other year) and they live in other states. Lots of people have become accustomed to those fireworks and that parade and the snow on Main Street, and many of them are from other places besides local areas. I am talking about the 'established tradition' aspect of it more than the geographical aspect.

One other option - and this is IF this party ever happens - is that Disney could put on a whole new holiday parade and a whole new holiday version of the fireworks. Now that would make more sense to me!! That way it wouldn't be 'taking away' what people had become accustomed to over the years, and it would be adding something exclusive to the party to draw people in.

Banking on the Candlelight Processional as being a big party draw is a gamble - it is a religion-based ceremony, and there are folks who visit DLR for the holidays who enjoy the more 'superficial' offerings of the season, but who are not religious in the least bit. I think that's why Disney is testing the waters with the CP this year - they want to gauge how popular it is or is not before they make it a party exclusive.

Another possible outcome is that - if Disney keeps the exact same holiday parade and the exact same holiday fireworks - it could backfire. Many of the people who have grown accustomed to those offerings over the years could just decide, "Eh...I've seen the parade 10 times before. I'm not going to see it again and pay extra for it." This is yet another reason why it would make more sense to change the parade and fireworks and make them all-new.

It will be interesting and exciting to see what happens in 2013 or 2014 - we can be sure that Disney is thinking about all of these things and the best way to pull them off. IF the CP turns out to be a big hit this year, we know they will decide to stick it into the party offerings. If it is not a big hit, they will have to go back to the drawing board.
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Old 09-18-2012, 05:17 PM   #2859
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I think they will follow WDW. They do MVMCPs one select nights in November and December. In the week or so leading up to Christmas they just have holiday evenings. The holiday fireworks and parade are performed during regular evenings.

I can see them giving APs a select night to be "unblocked" to attend a holiday evening. Sort of like the APEEs.



Totally off topic, but....

I had lunch with a friend yesterday and we talked about going to DL for Christmas! I'm in charge of picking dates, etc. Last year I went to WDW for Christmas, but I did go to DL two Christmases ago. My biggest memory of that trip was CROWDS!

I'd really like to avoid that, but understand how evening activities happen on weekends. We are willing to take our daughters out of school for a couple of days.

I've spent the morning going over this wonderful thread! With the new 20 day CP I don't see a clear "best week" this year. We can go either Nov. or Dec. Any recommendations? Also...which is best...Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Saturday, Sunday, Monday?

Thanks so much for your help!!!
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Old 09-18-2012, 05:57 PM   #2860
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I think they will follow WDW. They do MVMCPs one select nights in November and December. In the week or so leading up to Christmas they just have holiday evenings. The holiday fireworks and parade are performed during regular evenings.

I can see them giving APs a select night to be "unblocked" to attend a holiday evening. Sort of like the APEEs.



Totally off topic, but....

I had lunch with a friend yesterday and we talked about going to DL for Christmas! I'm in charge of picking dates, etc. Last year I went to WDW for Christmas, but I did go to DL two Christmases ago. My biggest memory of that trip was CROWDS!

I'd really like to avoid that, but understand how evening activities happen on weekends. We are willing to take our daughters out of school for a couple of days.

I've spent the morning going over this wonderful thread! With the new 20 day CP I don't see a clear "best week" this year. We can go either Nov. or Dec. Any recommendations? Also...which is best...Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Saturday, Sunday, Monday?

Thanks so much for your help!!!
Hello, there, Halloweenqueen! I'm glad to see that you're planning another holiday trip - I remember when you went for the holidays a couple of years ago.

I agree - I think the CP is going to throw off the crowd dynamic and possibly change the patterns in DL. It's so hard to predict because that is uncharted territory for us - having that many nights for the CP. It's hard to tell how it will pan out. Will it be a smash success like Disney is obviously hoping, and bring in bigger crowds on all of the nights, or will it essentially spread the crowds out over all the nights so that no single night seems that congested?

Also, this year DCA will be in full decorations mode (which it has not been in a while), so that will attract people.

In any case, CP or no CP, I still tend to think that the period immediately after Thanksgiving weekend ends - but before the 3rd week in December - is probably the best option for lower crowds and the full-fledged holiday experience. Some folks have to go back to school and work on that Monday after Thanksgiving, and many will not begin to take their Christmas vacations until perhaps the 3rd week in December.

I think that the week immediately after Thanksgiving weekend ends is probably the best choice (and the CP will not have started yet), with the first week in December being the second best choice (that was when I went last year).

I don't think there will be too much difference in your choice of Thurs-Sat or Sat-Mon because Saturday will still be involved in either option and weekends are always busy during the holidays. I experienced an uncrowded Monday last year (first Monday in December), so maybe, possibly, I would go for Sat-Mon, but Thursday might not be terrible either.
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Pumpkins, Peppermint, Pastels and...Club 33!!! - (A new chapter begins... Many photos and wacky tales, coming soon to a Trip Report thread near you!)
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 & Highlights from 2013 & 2014

Last edited by Sherry E; 09-18-2012 at 06:58 PM. Reason: I accidentally typed "and Sunday..."!
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:24 PM   #2861
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Thanks, Sherry!

I've been enjoying the thread pictures the last hour or so. This thread just makes me smile!

I think I might steer clear of CP and book in November. Probably after Thanksgiving, but I'm now thinking of Veteran's week because the decorations are going up so earlier this year.

Need to decide soon because I need to book those flights. :
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:12 PM   #2862
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Thanks, Sherry!

I've been enjoying the thread pictures the last hour or so. This thread just makes me smile!

I think I might steer clear of CP and book in November. Probably after Thanksgiving, but I'm now thinking of Veteran's week because the decorations are going up so earlier this year.

Need to decide soon because I need to book those flights. :
It is a fun thread! It makes me smile too.

I'm thinking through your options...

If you were to go during the Thanksgiving break, that would be very crowded, I think. Bad idea.

You could go November 29 (Thurs) to December 1 (Saturday). Of course, December 1st will be the first day of the CP (one of the invitation-only days) but you may either already be gone by then, or you could just pop over to DCA to avoid big crowds in DL that day.

You could do Veterans Day weekend - Thursday, November 8 - Saturday, November 10 - but the holiday season will not have officially begun yet so there is some question as to what will be open. I am pretty sure that It's a Small World Holiday will open a couple of days early, and the holiday parade may even start a day or so early - but it's not guaranteed. The Winter Castle won't be lit up in icicle lights at night until 11/12, and the holiday fireworks and snow on Main Street should not begin until 11/12. Also, the Reindeer Round-Up won't open until 11/12.

But, if you were to go from Sat., November 10 - Mon., November 12, you'd at least be there for one official day of the season. However, because it's a holiday weekend, it will be crowded.

If you don't care about any of those holiday entertainment options or the Winter Castle and just want to see some decorations as they go up, you could go before the season starts - and before Veteran's Day weekend - like maybe Thurs., November 1 - Sat., Nov. 3. You'd probably get there in time to see some of the leftover Halloween decorations coming down (which I know you love). Or, you could go from Nov. 3 - Nov. 5. I bet the parks would be really manageable, crowd-wise, at that point.

Personally, I think would take the 11/29 - 12/1 option and just plan around the CP being on 12/1. That way there would be full holiday offerings - even the hotels would be decorated by then - and it would be in that golden period of time post-Thanksgiving/pre-Christmas that so many people have said is a great time, crowd-wise.
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:47 PM   #2863
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Thanks, Sherry! I actually just got off the phone with my friend and we agreed on the 30th to the 4th! We will get in late on Friday. Full days, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, with a half day on Tuesday!

I appreciate your insight! Thanks again!
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Old 09-18-2012, 10:19 PM   #2864
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Thanks, Sherry! I actually just got off the phone with my friend and we agreed on the 30th to the 4th! We will get in late on Friday. Full days, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, with a half day on Tuesday!

I appreciate your insight! Thanks again!

That's great! I'm glad it was decided so quickly so you can get your plans underway. Maybe Friday night can be a good time to see the hotel decorations if it's too late to go into the parks? Saturday and Sunday will be busy (because all weekends are) but I would bet that on Monday and Tuesday, a lot of the people will have cleared out and gone back home!

One of my trip days last year was Mon. December 5th and it was delightful in both DL and DCA. Tuesday, 12/6 was more crowded but still not horrific. We have no clue how the CP will change things crowd-wise this year, but at least you'll know that a lot of folks have gone home after Thanksgiving break and have not yet gotten out of work/school for Christmas break.
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Old 09-18-2012, 11:30 PM   #2865
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I was just at DL this weekend but the extreme heat was a BIG bummer, so now I'm looking into planning another visit already. It would be great to visit in "cold" weather, so I was originally looking at January dates to avoid the Christmas rush, but then I realized that I would love to see the parks done up for the holidays after all.

I have a deluxe AP so the last date I could do a weekend trip would be on December 15th. I checked the DLH rates and I noticed that the night of the 15th is about $30 cheaper than the other four Saturdays in the month. Is there a reason for this?
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