Television, Theme Parks

11 Interesting Facts About Halloween at the Disney Resorts from Freeform’s ‘Decorating Disney: Halloween Magic’ Special

On October 14, Freeform aired its “Decorating Disney: Halloween Magic” Special. The special, hosted by actress Cierra Ramirez,  gave a behind the scenes look at the work that goes into transforming Disneyland, Disney California Adventure, and Magic Kingdom parks as well as the Disney cruise ships for Halloween. I finally got around to watching the special and wanted to share 13 interesting facts you may not have known about the various resorts and Halloween.

1. Both Disneyland and The Magic Kingdom Are Transformed for Halloween Over the Course of a Single Night

For those of us who go to the parks regularly isn’t much of a surprise, but both Disneyland and The Magic Kingdom get their Halloween makeover in just a single night, starting at 11 pm the night before Halloween kicks off at the resorts.

2. The Disney Cruise Ships Get Their Halloween Makeover In Just Two Hours

If you thought transforming a theme park overnight was impressive, imagine having give an entire cruise ship a Halloween makeover in just two hours. Once in port cast members only have two hours to prep the Disney Cruise Line ships before guests arrive for Halloween on the High Seas.

3. Mickey Jack O’ Lantern at Disneyland Weights 3,400 Pounds

Standing at 12 feet tall and 14 feet wide this massive jack o’ lantern at the heart of the Main Street Pumpkin festival at Disneyland Park weighs 3,400 pounds and has to be transported by forklift the entire length of the Disneyland parade route to be installed.

Mickey Jack o' Lantern
(Photo: Disneyland)

4. The Mickey Jack O’ Lantern is one of the Most Instagrammed Places During Halloween Season

They didn’t share any specific numbers, but I believe it. A quick search of Disneyland as a location right now uncovers dozens upon dozens of photos featuring the iconic jack o’ lantern.

5. The Mickey Jack O’ Lantern Features Two Different Faces

Despite working at the Disneyland Resort for five years and visiting regularly for years since I somehow never realized that the Mickey jack o’ lantern on Main Street smiles at you when you come in the park and is winking at you as you leave.

6. The Same Team Has Worked on the Gingerbread House in Haunted Mansion Holiday Since the Tradition Began in 2001

This year we learned what goes into a gingerbread house inside Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion Holiday, but during the special, we learned that the same team has worked on the gingerbread house for the last 18 years.

7. There Has Been a Hidden Mickey in Every Haunted Mansion Holiday Gingerbread House

Since 2001, there has been a hidden Mickey somewhere on the gingerbread house inside Great Hall. The hidden Mickey was added by Karlos Siquieros, Manager of Food and Beverage Concept, for his children. Each year Siquieros comes to the park during Halloween time with his kids to see if they can find it. Each year, his oldest daughter finds it and now she is going to school in hopes of following in her father’s footsteps.

8. The Witch at Radiator Springs Curios in Cars Land is Named Lizzy, and She Developed a Coolant That Brings Cars Back to Life 

If you’ve ever wondered about the zombie car smashed into a tree outside of Radiator Springs Curios, we now have some backstory. According to Imagineers, the witch featured on the building is Lizzy and she developed a coolant that brings cars back from the dead. If you hang out outside the shop for a bit, you might even see the zombie car trying to come back to life.

9. The Blue Clown Wig Worn by Red, the Fire Engine in Cars Land is Actually 70 Different Wigs

The blue clown wig worn by red during Halloween was actually created by stitching 70 bright blue wigs together to create one giant blue wig.

10. The Spider Car in Cars Land Was Made With Parts from Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

If you’ever sat in the Spider Car in front of Flo’s during the Halloween season and it felt familiar, that might be because the car was built using one of the cars from Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.

11. The Grave Digger Dancers in the Mickey’s Boo To You Halloween Parade at The Magic Kingdom All Do Their Own Makeup

As part of being one of the grave digger dancers in Mickey’s Boo To You Halloween Parade, you have to do your own makeup. Each dancer is given their own makeup kit with basic guidelines for the foundation of their look, but then have to put their own unique character elements to the look.

Did you learn something from this list? I hope so! I know I learned a lot from this special, and I used to be a Cast Member! If you missed the original airing of the special you can stream it on Hulu, watch it on the Freeform website, or catch it during one of the times it re-airs on Freeform on October 24 and 25.

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