Mice Age (November 9, 2010) - Pyro & Parades? Pay Up!

Taping of A Christmas Fantasy Parade for the Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade Special

Disney fans across the Internet have been all abuzz about Al Lutz's latest column on Team Disney Anaheim's discussion of having a extra-cost Holiday Party similar to the way it worked for Mickey's Halloween Party this year. The idea would be to make the popular "Believe" fireworks spectacular and "A Christmas Fantasy Parade" exclusive to the Holiday Party.

This leaves many people angered, disappointed or depressed about such news. I am actually torn about it.

I was one of the people who not only went to Mickey's Halloween Party once...but twice! And, despite some hiccups, I had a ball. But, I didn't really pay the extra money to get an exclusive viewing of Halloween Screams (although, it was a nice perk). I went for the things that were always exclusive to the Halloween Parties anyway -- meet-and-greets with some random characters and Mickey's Costume Party Calvacade.

There was part of me that wondered if the Halloween parties were a success if they'd think about doing an extra-cost Holiday Party. And, if they did, I would, in a heartbeat, buy tickets. But, not because I want to exclude people from the magic of the holidays at Disneyland.

On one hand, I don't agree with people that say Disney only makes things special for those who can pay. Halloween managed to happen and people were able to celebrate the season during the day without needing an extra ticket. I can imagine the same thing happening with the holidays.

But, for some reason, what's at stake for a proposed holiday party tends to pull at me. Perhaps its because there tends to be more emotional ties to the holidays. Halloween is fun, but Christmas hits people down to their souls. It conjurs up images of warmth, tradition and family. The idea that "A Christmas Fantasy Parade" would only be available to people who pay for the priviledge doesn't seem to sit well with me. I think of the little girl who sat next to me last year one time while viewing the parade. She was enchanted by the calvacade of stars passing by, but the thing that meant most to her was having Mrs. Claus and Santa Claus wave at her. I wonder if her family would be able to afford an extra ticket to bring her that holiday magic again.

Now, I wouldn't object to their being an exclusive parade during a Holiday Party...but, let everybody enjoy some kind of holiday parade. And, "A Christmas Fantasy Parade" is what people have the most emotional connection to. If anything, I would propose that a secondary parade -- a holiday calvacade -- be developed for this party.

Of course, Al notes in his column that none of this has been green lit. It's all just talk. But, I can see it happening. It seems too lucrative of a business decision to pass up. I can't fault the Walt Disney Company for that. As much as we Disney fans want to believe Disney is a lifestyle and wonder what Walt would have done, we have to remember that Disney is a business and has to survive in order for us to continue to enjoy the Disney things we all covet so much. The world is a much different place than when Walt Disney was around. That said, there are still many ways they can do this without taking away the holiday magic from people. After all, this is the season of giving...

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