because it's a halloween party, we wanted to wear costumes. i'm not typically big on halloween and haven't dressed up for it in i don't even know how long, so i was excited. of course, most adult costumes in the stores are either super cheesy or slutty. not a whole lot in between. but the bean found something to wear pretty quickly.
(if you can't tell, she's ariel from "the little mermaid." you're welcome)
as for me and the teen, we ended up wearing coordinating outfits. it wasn't completely intentional - she settled on her costume for its comfiness level and super cute factor, while mine came about because i couldn't decide between several different ones and thought this one was the best out of the bunch i tried on. plus, these were the least slutty costumes we could find that were still flattering and cute.
look at my girls. aren't they adorable?
the hub, unsurprisingly, chose not to dress up. i'd lobbied very unsuccessfully for things like captain hook, peter pan (okay, that one was a joke), a pirate - anything, really - but he wasn't having it. oh, well.
disneyland, as i've mentioned before, goes all out for the holidays. halloween is no exception. the decorations start on the tram ride from the parking garage to the park entrances and keeps going all through the parks. like, there are over a thousand pumpkins at this party.
the cast members even have specially-made uniforms to wear. these folks gave us wristbands to designate us as official party people and trick-or-treat bags to hold the gobs of candy we were about to receive.
just inside the gates, there were lots of characters available for photo opportunities. we spied villains like aladdin's jafar and 101 dalmatians' cruella de vil, plus a costumed mickey (that sounds redundant since mickey already IS a costume, but you get it) but the lines were really long. instead, we settled for this shot:
the first order of the evening was finding something for dinner. as we headed towards adventureland, we passed this real-looking scarecrow. and we found out why he was so authentic as he picked up his head and started talking to us. aaaaack.
unfortunately for us, our restaurant of choice had already closed for the evening. boo.
because we're dorks, the teen and i have read all sorts of "hidden things at disneyland"-type things on the internet and then love to look for them while we're there. there are lots of pieces of old attractions and rides that are still around if you know where to look. on the path between frontierland and fantasyland, you can see part of an old mining railroad ride. tonight, it was lit up and all foggy.
i love these. so cute.
back in the big thunder ranch area, we went on our first "treat trail." because it's so tucked away in the very back of the park, there weren't too many people waiting for it.
they don't mess around when it comes to candy here. every cast member greeted us with a smile and scooped the stuff into our bags with both hands. and it was the good stuff, too. sweeeeet.
dumbo the flying elephants was our first ride of the evening.
i had to take this. had to.
the bean always wants to eat macaroni & cheese for dinner here. i guess i can't blame her, because theirs is pretty yummy. so we headed to tomorrowland terrace and had some grub. as we ate, we were treated to an entertaining dance party, hosted by buzz lightyear and the green army men.
in the circular "innoventions" building, we found another treat trail and some friends from the disney channel.
alas, as we joined the line for a picture it was time for a character swap. bye, phineas and ferb.
luckily, they were replaced by someone just as fun.
as the teen chauffeured me through the autopia ride, i admired my super cute stockings.
it was getting pretty late - on a school night, no less - so we found a spot way down on main street near the exit and settled down to watch the fireworks show.
i love main street, especially at night and even more when it's decorated for the holidays.
for the best view, we plunked ourselves down right in the middle of the street. others followed suit, including this group. where's waldo?
it was a really fun show, using the characters from "nightmare before christmas" as the host/narrator. disneyland does fireworks right, and the show never disappoints.
a last look as we hustled outta there, trying to beat the crowds.
that is one tired little mermaid right thurrr.
i've had a bunch of people ask me if mickey's halloween party is worth it. my answer? a resounding YES! - particularly if you don't have a season pass. the ticket is about half the cost of a regular one-day, one-park pass and includes parking, saving you a solid $15. you can enter disneyland a full three hours before the party starts at 6:00, and then you've got till 11:00 to squeeze in as much fun as you can. you get a ridiculous amount of candy, great entertainment, and all while dressed in a costume of your choice (provided it's not super scary or features a full-face mask). plus, the lines for rides aren't as crazy as on a typical day at the park.
win-win-win-win-win-win-win situation, people. for real.