Halloween 2019 at the Theme Parks

Autumn in Central Florida comes with plenty of Halloween excitement at the theme parks. From friendly boo’s to frightful scares, people of all ages can find something to enjoy from September to November. We conjured up a list of EVERY Halloween-filled theme park festivity you can attend this Halloween season, so hold on to your headless horseman as we dive into what’s in store for Halloween 2019!

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

©Disney

One of the most popular events you CANNOT miss has to be Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party hosted inside of Magic Kingdom® Park. On select nights from August 16 to November 1, 2019, get dressed up in your best costume as you trick-or-treat your way down Main Street U.S.A®. Perfect for children and adults alike, this spooktacular event features Halloween-ified attractions, a Halloween parade, spell-binding fireworks, and more! Set your sights on the friendliest frights with the little ones this year and learn more about this exciting evening in our previous blog here!

Universal Studios® Halloween Horror Nights

Publicity, HHN Team Member Preview, HHN29, Universal Studios Florida, USF

With the hype around the 1980’s nostalgia, Universal Studios® Halloween Horror Nights is perfect for your classic 80’s scare. On select nights from September 6 to November 2, 2019, face your fears through Orlando’s most intense nighttime event. Experience 10 TERRIFYING haunted houses, 5 hair-raising scare zones, and thrilling entertainment throughout the night. This event is suited for those 13 and over as it may frighten the little ones. Ready to walk through the Upside Down, fight ghosts with the Ghostbusters, and take on some Killer Klowns from Outer Space? Then head over to #HHN29.

Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream 2019

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment Inc.

Get ready for Tampa’s premier Halloween event at Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream! On select nights from September 20 to November 2, 2019, prepare yourself for the endless haunts and thrills throughout your visit. Make your way through 6 haunted houses and 9 chilling scare zones as you are faced with murderous mutants, haunted asylums, and your worst nightmares. It’s also the perfect time to hop on one of your favorite roller coaster attractions! This event is suitable for adults as it may be frightening for children. Put on your brave face for the most horrifying attraction in the Tampa-area as it celebrates 20 years in the scare industry.

SeaWorld Orlando’s Halloween Spooktacular®

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc.

Get the kids ready for exciting dance parties, trick-or-treating, and more with their favorite friends from Sesame Street at SeaWorld Orlando’s Halloween Spooktacular®. On weekends from September 21 to October 27, 2019, this kid-friendly Halloween daytime event will be sure to bring joy and plenty of candy to everyone! Enjoy the all-new Sesame Street Halloween Parade with Elmo, Big Bird, The Count, and others as they dress up for the Halloween festivities. There’s so much to do and even more to see. So, what are you waiting for? Experience the autumn fun today!

LEGOLAND® Florida Resort Brick-or-Treat

© 2017 LOCK + LAND, Chip Litherland

On select nights from October 5 to 27, 2019, celebrate the spookiest time of the year with LEGOLAND® Florida Resort Brick-or-Treat! Collect piles of candy in your own Brick-or-Treat candy bag as you trail through the park. Take part in the exciting scavenger hunts, meet exclusive LEGO characters, and even watch the sky light up in fireworks at the end of the night with the tale of Pirate Cove. This event is ideal for children as they can dress up and enjoy all of the Halloween festivities, catered specifically to them.

There’s so much to do with so little time in Central Florida, so plan out your trip in advance to make the most of every Halloween festivity! Needing a place to stay while you prepare for scares? Check out some of our available Magical Vacation Homes to complete your ideal Halloween vacation.

 

Until next time, have a (frightfully) Magical day!

Best Instagram Photo Spots at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

BRIGHT SUNS! It’s blog five of our countdown and we’re here to show you the best Instagram photo spots at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge! This new addition to Disney’s Hollywood Studios® opens on August 29th, 2019, so read along to make the best out of capturing your visit!

(Haven’t read our last blog yet? Make sure you check that out here! Hint: A POV of a long-awaited attraction aboard the Millennium Falcon)

1 – The “Han & Leia” Booth

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Famous for the iconic first kiss between Han Solo and Princess Leia, this booth can be found inside of the queue for Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run. If you’re able to have a seat for a moment, take advantage of this stand-out photo spot. It has the perfect combination of cinematic history and photogenic aesthetic for any Star Wars fan!

2 – The Booths At Oga’s Cantina

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Booths are suddenly a running theme and for good reason. The ambient lighting of Oga’s Cantina sets a warmer mood than the previous mention. Gather around with everyone or just yourself, have some drinks from the bar in hand, and snap some shots!

3 – The First Order Wall

Photo-Spots-WallFor many visitors, finding colorful or simple walls has become a growing trend, so why not have one in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge? We found a wall under a flag for the First Order, and regardless on which side you’re on, it’s a pretty rustic photo spot. Take a close-up shot with just the wall! Or. have your photographer stand further to show your connection to the First Order.

4 – In Front of Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run

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Good morning with “Bright Suns” and good evening with “Rising Moons”. This is probably the best focal point in all of Batuu.

Whether during the daytime or later on in the evening, you’ll capture a beautiful picture with an out-of-this-world backdrop. It’s also a great spot to take photos with your newly-built droid or custom lightsaber!

5 – Savi’s Workshop

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We bet you didn’t think of this one! Venture into Savi’s Workshop to create your personalized lightsaber. Choose your side and pose with your finished product in this exclusive building, only accessible to lightsaber-builders. It’s a great room for pops of color, dim lighting, and presenting your newest creation.

6 – The Stairs by Ronto Roasters

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When we were traveling through Batuu, we noticed this set of stairs close to Ronto Roasters that no one was taking advantage of! This spot is AMAZING for its theming and the backdrop that seems to go on forever. The way its layout stands makes Batuu seem to go for miles. We absolutely loved it and think it’s definitely Instagram-worthy.

7 – The Market

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With the lights from above and the hint of sunlight shining through, the lighting here makes for beautiful photographs. There are so many possibilities for great photos here and with the details throughout, this lands in one of our top favorite spots! Wear your best outfit and get ready to pose at The Market.

8 – First Order TIE echelon

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And last (but certainly not least) we have the First Order TIE echelon. The closer you are to this ship, the cooler it looks. If you side with the first order, this will be your go-to place for stunning photos!

Til The Spire

The countdown is nearing its end! It’s time to purchase your Disney Theme Park tickets and get ready for the grand opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Book your Magical Vacation Home, pack your bags, and prepare for the galaxy NOT so far away.

 

Until then, Til the Spire, and have a Magical day!

 

 

*As to Disney artwork, logos, and properties: ©Disney*

Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run REVIEW | Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

BRIGHT SUNS and get ready to blast off to a galaxy far far away! It’s day 4 of our countdown to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and we’re here to review Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run! Get ready for the ride of your life in this entirely immersive experience, appearing August 29th, 2019 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios®.

(Haven’t read our last blog yet? Make sure you check that out here! Hint: Chewbacca, Stormtroopers, AND Kylo Ren?)

Overview

Chewbacca has landed and has decided to bring his Millennium Falcon to the Black Spire Outpost. In the midst of everything, he has decided to lend his ship to Hondo Ohnaka. This is where you come in to take on the ship and fulfill the duties needed across the galaxy.

To give you a quick rundown on what you’re about to experience, this ride brings you into the cockpit of Millennium Falcon. Once you’re in, you and your flight crew of six will go through hyperspace and take on the galaxy’s challenges, hurdles, and adventure. Keep reading and we’ll show you the step-by-step process for boarding this thrilling ride.

The Queue

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Upon entering the queue, you’ll walk past the Millennium Falcon, a popular sight in Batuu. Once in line, you will have the opportunity to get “on-the-job training” prior to your flight.

Play Disney Parks App

We’re pretty sure that you, just like us, have never flown a starship before. Not to worry! Open your Play Disney Parks App where you’ll learn everything you need to know before you take on your spacecraft.

Keep your eyes peeled for QR codes you’ll be asked to scan the further you walk into the queue. Toward the middle of the queue, you’ll even help the empire by finding out further details about the falcon. Once you’re nearing the end, you are asked various questions to show that you can prove yourself to be a spy.

This is a great way to pass time until you reach the attraction. Here are a couple of screenshots to give you an idea, but we will leave the rest to your imagination.

 

 

Reaching the Falcon

Shortly before we arrived at the attraction, we were greeted by Hondo Ohnaka, a Weequay male pirate who is the captain of the Ohnaka Gang.

 

Above, you’ll see how Ohnaka explains the concept of the flight and how your crew will control the ship, Millennium Falcon. With your crew of six, you’ll have:

  • Two pilots, to navigate the ship
  • Two engineers, to operate the ship AND
  • Two gunners, to defend the ship

This combination will either make or break your flight across the galaxy, (depending on how you fly, of course).

 

The cards pictured above are some samples of where you will be stationed. Once you receive these, your positions and duties are explained to you. You are then sent off to your ship (and the moment you’ve all been waiting for), the Millennium Falcon!

Ready For Hyperspace

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Step into the cockpit of the Millenium Falcon, where you will find a seat for each crew member (pilots in the front, gunners in the middle, and engineers in the back). When we stepped on board, our jaws dropped as we noticed all of the buttons, levers, and the view through the cockpit windows. Everything onboard is so perfectly themed, that you actually believe it’s all real. Design and accuracy to the movies are undoubtedly taken seriously, and it adds the extra spark to the experience.

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Once the ride begins, all of the cockpit overhead lights will shut off. Your only source of light is now your controls, the pilot screen, and whatever you can see through the cockpit windows. You’re ready to take flight and zoom through hyperspace on a journey entirely determined by your actions.

We were able to catch a quick video of our wild ride through the galaxy and how realistic it is once you’re in the middle of the action.

 

We have to be honest, this is one of the most immersive attractions in all of Walt Disney World® Resort. The illusion of flying through space beautifully mimicked reality, being computer-animated so well that it takes your imagination to the next level. While we had a short wait in line during the preview event, we would DEFINITELY wait hours to experience this again.

It’s a flight that changes with each time you take off, for you are the decision-makers creating your own galactic journey. We think that makes this ride a clear stand-out amongst many. It’s truly unlike anything we have ever expected!

TIP: Make your galactic journey a smooth and successful flight (this goes out to future pilots of the ride)! When flying left and right, focus on subtle motions rather than sharp turns. The controls to the ship are VERY sensitive. Turning left or right drastically can make for quite the bumpy ride for you and your crew.

Post-Travel

This tip actually comes to play upon exiting the cockpit. Once the ride comes to an end, you will walk through the exit hall that is said to be connected to the flight you just completed.

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See a bunch of flickering lights? It probably means you weren’t the best flyers. Don’t worry, though, this small detail is just a fun addition to the endlessly immersive experience. If the exit hall seems fine, however, that means your crew is the best in ALL of the galaxy, and that your flight skills are (quite literally) out-of-this-world!

Til The Spire

Have we convinced you yet? We’ve convinced ourselves to travel back to the galaxy, so it’s time for you all to take your first flight! Prepare for the journey that is unlike any other by booking your Disney Theme Park tickets. Land in the world of Batuu and discover what it’s like to take on the galaxy.

Once your travels through Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge comes to an end, head on back to your own vacation villa with Magical Vacation Homes! Our galactic getaways are located just minutes from Walt Disney World® Resort and are perfect for families of all sizes.

Stay tuned for tomorrow where we show you all of the best photo spots inside of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge!

Until next time, Til the Spire, and have a Magical day!

 

*As to Disney artwork, logos, and properties: ©Disney*

Where to Find Characters at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

BRIGHT SUNS! Welcome to blog three of our countdown to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, opening August 29th at Disney’s Hollywood Studios®! During our visit to the preview event on August 17th, we were lucky enough to find characters throughout our journey through Batuu.

Today, we’re going to show you WHO we saw and WHERE you may spot some of your favorite’s from the movies, here in real life!

(Haven’t read our last blog yet? Make sure you check that out here! Hint: Blue and Green Milk and a galactic bar, anyone?)

The Stormtroopers

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Credit: Magical Vacation Homes

Roaming around Batuu, you may bump into a Stormtrooper, or two, or five. During our visit, we noticed them throughout the land both walking and on rooftops. You have to make sure to look everywhere because they pop up from every nook and cranny.

And don’t be alarmed if they question you about your allegiance, just, make sure you have an answer for them.

Chewbacca

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©Disney

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Credit: Magical Vacation Homes

Well, it DEFINITELY wouldn’t be Batuu if you didn’t see Chewbacca around, and we saw a lot of him. Keep an eye out when you enter Batuu because you may find him most often at the entrance area. We noticed him around the Rebel Outpost interacting with travelers while checking on his landed ship.

Kylo Ren

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Credit: Magical Vacation Homes

Kylo Ren has arrived in Batuu in search of the Resistance. He’s entirely intimidating but we were in awe watching him walk with the Stormtroopers. When we spotted him, he was walking through the Black Spire Outpost just past Savi’s Workshop.

Rey

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©Disney

Famous for being in Episodes VII through IX, Rey makes many appearances throughout Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. One of our Magical members noticed her roaming around just as you enter Batuu, probably planning her recruitment efforts for the Resistance.

Vi Moradi

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Credit: Polygon

Now we didn’t spot this character until the sun was set, but Vi Moradi is one you’ll want to keep an eye out for. A newer character to most, Vi Moradi was introduced to us in 2017 in the novel, Star Wars: Phasma, and can now be found in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

We were caught by surprise as she found us instead of the other way around. Usually, when wanting to meet characters you will go to them. This time around, we were unexpectedly approached, which was a one-of-a-kind experience.

When Vi Moradi found us, she was debating if we were those she could trust as she hid from the Stormtroopers, just before darting off. By the looks of it, you may bump into her just about anywhere as she keeps her guard up and presence hidden (or if you have our experience, she may just bump into you).

Til The Spire!

Ready to spot these characters? Get your Disney Theme Park tickets and get ready for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge! With exactly one week away until the grand opening, we’re thrilled for you all to experience what we witnessed in Batuu.

There’s still time to book your stay with Magical Vacation Homes. We have plenty of villas that are perfect for any party on your future galactic getaway.

We’ll be back tomorrow with our exciting experience on Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.

 

Until next time, Til the Spire, and have a Magical day!

 

 

*As to Disney artwork, logos, and properties: ©Disney*

Building A Droid and Droid Depot at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Preview

We can all hear the beep-beep-boop sounds in our heads when we think of the infamous BB-8. But, what if those sounds were even closer? What if you could choose the beeps and the boops and build it from the bottom up? Looks like the Droid Depot is here to fulfill your wildest dreams of droid-building and imaginative creation.

BRIGHT SUNS! We are VERY excited to share with you the first blog in our countdown to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, opening August 29th at Disney’s Hollywood Studios®. And we know, you’re probably wondering “The first blog? How much could there be to talk about?”

A lot, fellow readers. This remarkable land has many sights to see and MANY things to do, just like our first topic of many, the Droid Depot!

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Entering the Droid Depot

Droid parts, ASSEMBLE! Journey into Black Spire Outpost where you will find the assembly location. Here, you can immerse yourself into the world of many kinds of droids, droid parts, droid accessories, and just about anything droid-related.

From the moment you walk in, make sure you watch your step because there may be a fellow droid making his way around the depot! When we entered, we were greeted by this little guy and we couldn’t get enough of him.

Looking around the depot, we noticed much detail that was put into it. From the conveyor belt at the back of location to the droid parts hanging from the ceiling, the theming is genuinely “out of this world”.

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Building Your Droid

If you’re looking to create your own droid from scratch, this conveyor belt will be at your service! For $99.99, you can experience what it’s like to build your newest robotic friend. This includes the droid build, carrier box, and Bluetooth® technology. Carry your droid around the park to watch it interact with elements in Batuu!*

When deciding to create your droid, you are presented with two options being either the R-Series Astromech or the BB-Series Astromech. If we personally had to pick, it would definitely be the BB-Series with the Imperial Body and Imperial Dome. But, that’s the magic of creating your own! You can choose from 7 different body types and 10 different dome’s. And, if you’re sticking to the R-Series, yours will come with legs! Droid-Depot-Menu.jpg

Each series comes in a variety of colors which you will find on the conveyor belt (colors subject to availability). Once you choose your parts from the belt, now it’s time to build! Walk up to the building station and be greeted by one of the cast members of Batuu, where you will then begin the assembly process of your droid!

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It’s a fairly simple step-by-step process as you can see with the instruction above, and if you ever need help, someone is always close by to assist! After putting your droid together, you’re finally ready to bring it to life.

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When you’re ready to activate, you will place your droid into the activation station either to the left or right of your instruction board (in our case from this photo, it is the left). It only takes a moment to watch each level light up and entirely activate your very own droid. Your new friend is complete and ready to take home!

Droid Sounds and Accessories

However, let’s say you’re one to accessorize. After you finish your droid, it’s time to take a look around the walls to add some touches to your creation. One of the MOST essential add-ons in our opinion is the personality chips. Located by the conveyor belts, these chips are what will give your droid a bit of character and those beep-boop’s we talked about earlier! We caught a quick clip of what each sound effect sounds like based on color and how much personality it can add to your droid.

You can also further decorate your droid with plenty of other body add-ons and decals. Here’s a preview of some choices available, and we promise there’s plenty more to choose from once you’re inside of the store yourself!

And there you have it! Droid, complete. Experience, worth every penny. We loved the atmosphere and the concept behind creating your own droid, and we definitely plan on returning in the future to create our own. But for now, we will reminisce on what we saw and what we learned. Now for you all, it’s time to prepare for your future build. How you will make the droid your own? We can’t wait for everyone to experience this journey!

Til The Spire!

That’s all (for now) for day 1 of our Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge countdown! Keep an eye out as tomorrow (August 21), we will give you the inside scoop on our visit to Oga’s Cantina and the Milk Stand.

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will make its long-awaited grand opening on August 29th, 2019 in Disney’s Hollywood Studios®. Make sure you’re prepared for your galactic getaway to Batuu by booking your galactic stay and purchasing your Disney Theme Park tickets today!

Until tomorrow, Til the Spire, and have a Magical day!

 

-CHECK OUT THE NEXT BLOG, WE VISIT OGA’S CANTINA AND TASTE BLUE AND GREEN MILK, HERE

 

 

*Experience may require a reservation. Droid parts and accessories subject to availability.  Prices subject to change. View more information and FAQ here

Let’s Boo This! Get Ready for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party 2019

 

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©Disney

It’s hard to believe that Halloween is less than 90 days away, but for those of you who CANNOT wait any longer, the Magic Kingdom® Park is here to help. On select nights from August 16 – November 1, 2019, get ready to boo your way through Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!

Set your sights on the friendliest frights this Halloween season with spells from the Sanderson Sisters, lurking pirates, and an all-new fireworks display from your favorite skeleton. The yearly tradition is bringing back its fan favorites, however, you will be in for some new boo’s around the park. Trick or treating is a must, and getting decorated in your favorite costume is essential. But, what other fun things will be happening on these all-hallows-nights?

Keep reading to find out what you’re in for at this exciting nighttime spectacular.

SPOOK-tacular Shows

Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular

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©Disney

The Sanderson Sisters are BACK, and they are ready to put a spell on you at their Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular show! Meet the three witches and plenty of other villains, like Dr. Faciliar, Maleficent, and Oogie Boogie, just to name a few. Fall under the spell of the on-stage entertainment.

And we promise, you didn’t drink a potion, this show is just THAT alluring.

Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular

Get ready for the NEW fireworks spectacular, exclusive to the event! Watch the sky light up as your friendly skeleton, Jack Skellington, hosts the show.

Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy have been spirited away to a mysterious haunted house. What they may encounter is a mystery,  but expect a sinister gathering of familiar villains during the performance.

Mickey’s “Boo-To-You” Halloween Parade

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©Disney

There are spirits, villains, and other frightening spooks haunting Main Street U.S.A® at Mickey’s “Boo-To-You” Halloween Parade. This spellbinding parade will include a visit from the spectral Bride, the haunting Hitchhiking Ghosts, and many other frightful friends. You do not want to miss this exclusive parade, we promise you that!

Halloween-Themed Rides

Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor®

Cackle your way into Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor® this year with the all-new attraction segment! Gather around and interact with your favorite monsters as they learn about the traditions of Halloween. It will surely be a ghoulish time.

Mad Tea Party

“We’re all mad here”, especially during Halloween! Hop into your teacup for the Mad Tea Party, and you’ll be in for exciting spin through special lighting and music effects, exclusively designed for the nighttime event.

Space Mountain®

Zoom through complete darkness as a new, “hard-rockin'” soundtrack blasts at this wild indoor coaster! Space Mountain® will also be themed for the select-night events, giving thrill-seekers an eerie adventure of a star-less galaxy.

Pirates of the Caribbean®

Beware of what may be lurking around the corner, you may bump into a pirate, or two. These live pirates will be searching for their treasure as you cruise through in your boat. Look out for some possible scares and some skeletons here and there, you’re in for quite the adventure!

 

Trick-Or-TREAT Your Tummy!

Of course, your night isn’t complete without a treat bucket full of your favorite goodies! Travel around the different lands throughout the park and build your own yummy collection.

However, if you’re ready to feast your fangs into more than just the candy, try out one of the exciting, themed dessert parties! There are two to choose from that offer stunning views of Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular (which can be found here and here).

If you’re looking to dine with a certain villain, the infamous Cruella De Vil has ghoulish dishes and mouth-watering desserts that will enhance your evening of scares and sweets! It’s a dinner party that will be a must-visit for guests!

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The Spooky Evenings Are Quickly Approaching…..

And we promise that they will be worth attending. Admission for this separately-ticketed event is available now, so get yours while you can! Space for each select night is limited, so we suggest planning out your trip in advance!

If you’re needing a place to stay for your next spooky visit, check out our Magical Vacation Homes and book your perfect vacation villa today!

Until next time, have a magical day (and a frightful night)!

 

 

*As to Disney artwork, logos, and properties: ©Disney*