Guide to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party 2018

Tampa Bay Moms Blog Guide to Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

“Ladies and gentlemen, bats and ghouls…” So begins another Halloween season at Walt Disney World, as Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party takes over the Magic Kingdom!

Halloween at the Magic Kingdom Park is a festival of fall colors, with leafy garland, Mickey-shaped pumpkins and lots of spooky fun. With so much to do, you might find yourself feeling overwhelmed. But never fear! Let your friends at Tampa Bay Moms Blog be your “ghost hosts” for all the not-so-scary delights.

When to Go to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party kicked off the spooky season on August 17, the earliest start ever for the event. With the party creeping more and more into summer, we Floridians have an opportunity to check it out early and save a little money in the process.

The parties take place after the Magic Kingdom closes for the day, so you need a specific ticket to attend. That means your annual passes and other regular Disney tickets won’t get you in. But here’s where you can save some coin by taking advantage of the earlier dates. Tickets for those parties in August and early September cost less than the ones later in the season. Plus, if you order online in advance versus buying them day-of, you can save $10 per ticket.

The closer you get to Halloween, the more expensive the tickets. As always, it pays to plan ahead.

Get the lowdown on ticket prices and dates for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

Spooky (But Not-So-Scary) Things to Do

With exclusive parades, fireworks, character meet-and-greets, and lots more, you’ll have to prioritize your party time. Here’s what this Disney Mom recommends:

  • Mickey’s Boo-to-You Halloween Parade

Costumed characters and ghouls of all kinds promenade through the park twice each party night. If your kids can stay up late enough, try to catch the second showing. Crowds are lighter as young families tend to leave after the fireworks. Also, be sure to claim your spot in time to see the Headless Horseman ride the route to kick off the parade.

Gazebo float in Mickey's Boo-to-You Parade
One of the big events of the night is Mickey’s Boo-to-You Parade. Try to catch the second showing if you can!
  • Happy HalloWishes Fireworks

Some of my Disney friends say Happy HalloWishes is the best fireworks show of the year. Honestly, I can’t say I disagree. The show usually starts around 10 p.m., with the best viewing location in the hub area near the front of Cinderella Castle. If you can swing the extra cost, the Happy HalloWishes Dessert Party gets you a prime spot in the Plaza Garden for the fireworks, along with some exclusive tasty treats to try.

Jack Skellington push pops at the Happy HalloWishes Dessert Party
Jack Skellington-themed push pops at the Happy HalloWishes Dessert Party. These were also available for purchase at various locations in the park.
  • Trick-or-Treat

Follow the glowing balloons to the trick-or-treat trails and scare up some great candy. Lines will be shorter as the night goes on – if you can convince your little ghouls and goblins to be patient! Plus, you may also find shorter lines near the back of the park if you want to get your candy fix earlier.

Of course, every guest gets their own trick-or-treat bag, too. And you know what that means – Mom and Dad don’t have to raid the kids’ candy!

Trick-or-treating at Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
Follow the balloons to the candy. They serve up the good stuff!
  • Character Greetings

The Halloween party is often your only chance to meet characters like Jack Skellington and Sally from A Nightmare Before Christmas, all seven Dwarfs, or Moana.

The drawback is that lines for these characters can be killer. At a five-hour party, spending half the time in line for characters is not my thing. If you really want that character interaction, I’d choose one favorite and get in line as early as possible. In fact, Disney usually lets party guests enter the park as early as 4 p.m., so get there early, find the location of that must-meet character, and park yourself there. Hopefully, you’ll get that meet done soon after the party starts, and you won’t have to miss the other fun.

  • Gear Up

Now for the truly burning question – should you wear a costume? My answer is a resounding YES! Just remember that if you take my advice and go to a party in August or September, you’re going to be very hot. With that in mind, choose costumes for your family that aren’t too heavy or cumbersome. Actually, it sounds like a perfect time to dress as Tinker Bell, doesn’t it?

In addition, you’ll need to stick to Disney’s costume guidelines, so be sure to check them out ahead of time.

Dress up for Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
Beat the heat by wearing light clothing inspired by your favorite characters, rather than donning a full costume.
  • New To-Do

This year’s party sports some new things to do! First, take a spin on the Mad Tea Party with new lights and effects. Then, hop on Space Mountain and rock out to a new soundtrack and an even-darker ride through space. After that, drop in on those scurvy scalawags at Pirates of the Caribbean and help them search for Gunpowder Pete! And that’s just the beginning – there are plenty more new frights in store.

That’s your Disney Mom’s look at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. My last piece of advice? Above all, relax, have fun, and watch out for hitchhiking ghosts!

Kathy’s family moved to Tampa when she was 5, and aside from a few years at the University of Florida (Go Gators!), she’s never lived anywhere else. She’s Irish by heritage, Greek by marriage, and mom to one brilliant little boy. She’s an avid sports fan and lived her Disney-geek dream as a member of the 2015 Disney Parks Moms Panel. A former TV producer and PR pro, Kathy now proudly sports the title of stay-at-home mom. Follow her sports-loving, Disneyfied, Tampa-centric antics on Twitter @kathyk671.