September Halloween Questions

First time visiting during Halloween.

Where I’m from, Halloween isn’t really anything special or celebrated, so we really don’t care much for it. Our trip schedule won’t fall into the dates of Mickey’s Not So Scary nights, so we can count that out.

I want to know if any of the fairytale magic is diluted because of the park theming during this season?

The theming is just “fall-centric” which tends to be Halloween oriented. It’s not over the top Halloween though, but lots of pumpkins and things like that. Here are a few examples from 2012 in the Magic Kingdom:

The biggest issue is likely with so many party nights there are fewer chances to hit MK at night on a non-party night. That’s definitely manageable but takes a little more work in planning…

We don’t participate in Halloween at all. (In fact, we go to lengths to avoid it.)

Having said that, our last trip to Disney was in an October when they had it decorated. I was pleasantly surprised to see that it really isn’t Halloween, but more autumn harvest (pumpkins and such). The only time we had exposure to anything Halloweenish was when we were still in the park on a day that was having the MNSSHP, during the “overlap” period when the guests for the party were arriving, but the park hadn’t yet closed to normal guests. And in that case, it was just seeing a bunch of people dressed up in costumes (mostly Disney-themed). We left within an hour of that.

So, we didn’t find it an issue despite our distaste for Halloween.

Is you question for DLR or WDW?

Oops - the pics I responded with are for DisneyWorld - my bad, missed which forum I was in. I believe the advice is much the same though - more Fall-centric decorations, parties are an issue, although I think Disneyland offers more Halloween overlays on rides than WDW so that might change the equation a little…

You’ll see a lot of pumpkins… that’s about it @yungy24. I don’t remeber anything specifically Halloweeny. No monsters or ghosts or anything. Nothing will spoil your Disney magic really. But if you notice it and you mind it, then I’d suggest avoiding the date if you can.

Two things come to mind: Haunted Mansion Holiday where Jack Skellington of The Nightmare Before Christmas takes over the Haunted Mansion, and Space Mountain: Ghost Galaxy which is the overlay on Space Mountain.

Not that I’ve ever had the chance to do either of these attraction overlays (keep missing on my less-frequent trips), but they are somewhat halloweeny, from what I understand. Still, I’m not the expert on them, as I’ve never seen them firsthand.

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Oh that’s right!!! I’ve never seen either so I forgot all about them!
I wish I could see them some day.

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This is the main reason I’m visiting next month :grin:


Hey carthy15, this is for DLR and DCA.

Thanks for sharing your awesome photos. Will definitely keep that in mind.

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Okay, then I am in a good position to answer. If it was WDW, no so much… I am not a huge Halloween fan, but definitely enjoy aspects of it. As for the the parks and the atmosphere, I would say it is far more subdued than at Christmas time. If it is simply that you do not celebrate Halloween, but don’t seriously object to the holiday, then I would say you are fine. If you have a serious objection to all things Halloween, then you are most likely going to “seeing” it more and it may take away from your trip.

The holiday overlays are on Space Mountain (which I love, but I personally think it may be too scary for littles under 10), Haunted Mansion (the overlay is Nightmare before Christmas and stays up until mid Jan for both Halloween and Christmas seasons. My DH and I prefer the traditional HM ride) and Guardians of the Galaxy switches after 5 I think to Guardians after Dark (very fun! Last year was able to ride the traditional ride and after dark version. Both are very fun and not to be missed!)

My take on the decor is that is a very toned down Halloween-ish style mixed with fall festival. You can google all the decor pics and youtube walk throughs to get a better idea. I love seeing the way Disney decorates for each holiday and it is very magical for ME, but that may not be the case for you. I would do the research and see if it is something you can enjoy despite not being one who celebrates it, otherwise I would go ahead and book another time.

The decor in Disneyland is very beautiful autumn/harvest festival & doesn’t at all take away from the magic.

The only time you might feel the decor being more Halloween-y than fall is on Buena Vista St in DCA. They added a statue of the Headless Horseman last year & at night they would have CMs holding these bat puppets & waving them around with Halloween music & lighting.

As for the overlays, we’ve never done Ghost Galaxy but we’ve avoided it because we don’t much care for ghosts in our face like it appears are on there.

We do though LOVE the Haunted Mansion Holiday which is just as much Christmas as it is Halloween & is a brilliant overlay with the characters from that story. If Nightmare before Christmas isn’t your style then you may not care for it at all, but to me it is no more Halloween-y than the original Haunted Mansion.

Also, they have overlays for both Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree & Luigi’s both of which are very cutesy Halloween that has zero creep factor.

And then lastly, Monsters After Dark on Guardians wasn’t specifically Halloween but did have some scariness to it.


The story of Monsters After Dark is that it takes place after you have helped Rocket break out the Guardians but have to go back in to rescue Baby Groot who got separated but now because you’ve disrupted the security system of the Tower, it’s utter chaos with monsters/creatures running about & all the systems down/in turmoil. This is very well reflected beginning in the queue with the normal video footage cutting in & out with clips of a chaotic scene in the hallways with some static/white noise & sometimes darkness/subdued lighting. Then of course on the ride itself you encounter (via video footage) the monsters that are loose in the tower. It was VERY well done but nothing about it was specifically Halloween all more following the IP of the Guardians & the Collector.


Wow, thanks for this. I’m a nut for no-spoilers, so thank you for the warning. I’ll definitely read it when I get back from my trip!

Thanks for this carthy15! From your experience, would you know if there are fireworks on the night of 11th, 12th, or 13th? And if they don’t how does the night usually come to a close?

From my experience, unfortunately not. Once summer season is over, they usually only have fireworks Fri, Sat, & Sun, unless it is for something like the Halloween party or high level times such as Thanksgiving week or Winter break.

So how does the night usually end when there’s no fireworks?

We usually try to beat the crowds out and leave about 30 minutes early, so not sure. I think they do the “kiss goodnight.”

No kiss goodnight in DL! :frowning:
They do play a closing announcement but nothing so magical as the kiss goodnight at MK.