Every holiday season, the Disneyland Resort transforms into the Merriest Place on Earth. From thousands of twinkling lights, miles of ribbon and plenty of holiday cheer, this festive season is truly one of the most magical times of the year.
With so many amazing things taking place at Disneyland over the holidays, it’s challenging to do it all. I’ve put together a list of some of the can’t-miss traditions that our fall participants need to experience during their program:
Candlelight Processional and Ceremony – This popular Disneyland Park tradition started in 1958 by Walt Disney and has changed very little since its conception. It fills the air with holiday magic for two nights every December and it’s something that EVERY Disney College Program participant in California should witness.
This holiday spectacle under the stars allows cast members to be part of a Disney legacy and every year, we even have a few of our participants sing in the mass choir, which is something that they audition for. This is a huge part of Disneyland history and seeing this holiday tradition is something you’ll never forget!
Seasonal attractions – Many of our popular attractions get holiday makeovers and entertain guests in a whole new way. Two of my favorites are Haunted Mansion Holiday and “it’s a small world” Holiday.
Every holiday season, Jack Skellington takes over the mansion and decks it out with jack o’ lanterns and wreaths and it’s the perfect way to wish everyone a Season’s Screamings. As part of the Disney College Program, we also host a special event every season where our participants take a backstage tour of the mansion, walk the track and check up on the 999 happy haunts!
Everyone has probably caught themselves humming “it’s a small world” once or twice after visiting Disneyland, but if you haven’t experienced this attraction during the holidays, you’re missing out! Stop by at night because you’ll be amazed by the thousands of shimmering lights and all of the holiday cheer. And yes, experience the attraction! It’s filled with traditional holiday tunes and seasonal decorations that will for sure put a smile on your face.
Gather your roommates and experience these seasonal attractions together!
Stroll down Main Street, U.S.A. – One of my favorite things to do at Disneyland Park is walk down Main Street, U.S.A. and take in all of the sights and sounds. I picture Walt Disney walking down that very same path with his daughters and admiring his biggest dreams coming to life. If you feel the same way, imagine what it’s like during the holidays!
One of the most popular holiday photo spots at Disneyland is the 60-foot Christmas tree on Main Street, U.S.A. The tree is decorated with approximately 1,800 ornaments! Throughout Main Street, U.S.A., nearly 79,000 ornaments, more than 2,000 feet of garland and about 10,000 lights dazzle us every holiday season.
Main Street, U.S.A. is really an attraction in itself (especially during the holidays) and I’m not sure I’ve ever met a participant who didn’t get their photo taken in front of that Christmas tree during their program. That photo also looks great on Christmas cards.
Disney College Program Winter Celebration – One of our Disney College Program traditions each season is to host a final celebration for our participants to thank them for the incredible job they did during their program. Our winter celebration is always so much fun because the entire Disneyland Resort is decked out in holiday decorations and you can almost feel the spirit of the season everywhere you go.
This is a night for our participants to reflect on all of the magic they created for guests during the season and think about all of the lifelong memories and friendships they’ve created along the way. Plus, they even get to take a photo and celebrate with their boss. No, not me…Mickey Mouse! On the Disney College Program, you quickly learn that nobody throws a party like Disney and this winter tradition is definitely something you don’t want to miss.
Thank you so much for reading about our Disneyland adventures this year! From our castle to yours, we hope you have a wonderful holiday season! Who knows, maybe some of you will even join us in 2017!