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Thursday, 13 December 2018

An evening at the Mickey 90 Mouse Party at Disneyland Paris

This is the first time I had been to an annual pass holders party at Disneyland Paris and the first time they had held the annual pass parties in the main park. I was travelling on my own and I really didn't know what to expect, I'd decided I'd dress for the occasion of Mickey's 90th in the style of the 1950s Mickey Mouse Club- the weather was dry and fairly mild so I even went without my coat- not bad going for France in December!  Anyway, the gates to the Disneyland Park opened at 8.30 p.m., exactly on time and as we went under the train station arches we were all given a limited edition print and a card programme of events for the evening. The programme was beautifully presented but it was all in French so a bit of a challenge for me and my other issue was that there was no map included. The programme listed characters to meet and great and which land they were in but no indication of whereabouts.

Most people started the evening gathered in the central plaza for the opening ceremony at 9 p.m. with Mickey and Minnie. I was lucky to have arrived in time to get a good view on the edge of the pavement but the stage had been placed in the middle of the plaza which meant that most people had quite a limited view. The main characters greeted us and the evening was underway...

After the opening ceremony I wandered into Discoveryland but the queues for the characters looked massive and I didn't want to miss out on any of the entertainment in the plaza. At this point I was feeling quite skeptical about the event, the queues were so big I wondered if I would mange to meet any characters at all. I wandered back to the plaza to see the 'Preparations for the Birthday Surprise's' which involved Goofy and the dancers leading the crowd through the dance moves of the Mickey's 90th dance. This was ok but still hadn't quite persuaded me that the night was yet worth it.

I then wandered around through Adventureland and ended up meeting Terk, the gorilla from Tarzan. This was fun and thankfully I only waited about 20 minutes, Photopass photographers were there to take photos too. 

I returned to the plaza in time to see the second half of the first showing of 'The Follys of Mickey and Minnie' with a large cast of Disney characters who began and ended by parading down Main Street. It reminded me of a smaller version of the 25th Anniversary  parade, with the music too. The video is below.

At 11.00 they showed a special surprise- Disney Dreams- the much loved night time show which was replaced a couple of years ago by Illuminations. I watched some of it before deciding to use the chance to meet another character and so queued to meet the father bear, Kenai from Brother Bear. Lots more furry hugs later!...

I returned to the Plaza again to catch all of the second performance of 'The Follys of Mickey and Minnie' and I am so glad I did! The characters were just fantastic- each set of characters from each land did their own performance, I remember the music from the 25th Anniversary day when they did the same but this time the unexpected highlight of the night for me was the Country Bears who appeared in every section of the performance. Usually considered more of a main stay at parks like Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World, their dancing was just hilarious throughout!

I couldn't believe how quickly the night flew by, I made a second journey to Fantasyland to see if I could meet Friar Tuck. It was quite a journey as all routes around the castle were shut so it was only possible to get to the meet and greet by going around the back of Discoveryland. My walk was rewarded as only two other groups were there to meet him.

I was so pleased that I met three characters who I had never met before. As I returned back via Discoveryland I checked out Vanelloppe who was making her Disneyland Paris debut. Her queue had been unsurprisingly long all evening so she will have to stay on my list of characters to meet one day.

It was then time for the Birthday Surprise party at 12.15. They showed the beautiful castle projection show 'Celebrate: 90 Years of Mickey' which is currently running before Illuminations in the evening. Then the dancing began and it was fun to see some of the fans who had also learnt the moves joining in too. I hadn't been well planned enough to learn the dance and join in but clearly some others had! A decorated car drove by and the evening concluded with fireworks.

I am glad I didn't bring the kids to this one- it was a very late night and the walking I had to do was far greater than when we went to FanDaze in the Disney Studios. Plus they would have struggled to see anything on the stage. Disney still have a few things to get right for future Annual Pass Parties and other ticketed events, I just didn't feel there was enough other things going on. The next day Disney sent me a survey and one question asked what I would change about the evening. It needed more- perhaps a dance party going on, some specialty food, a few more meet and greets or maybe something a bit more specific to Mickey's Birthday, the one person that it wasn't possible to meet at the party was Mickey himself!

However, overall I felt glad I went and got a good dose of Disney. The music and dancing had been great fun and those Country Bears- so very very funny and a fab connection to our Florida holiday last summer. All those furry characters really made it for me- between the dancing and the cuddles they were fab!

P.S. I decided to combine a quick trip over for the party with spending a couple of days checking our this years Christmas celebrations. Check out my next blog post which will be all about Christmas at Disneyland Paris 2018. 

1 comment:

  1. It's great that you get to give feedback at least! Love your videos - and the bears! x