Finding Florida

12 Tips for an Amazing Time at MNSSHP!

mickeys not so scary photo collage

One of my favorite nights of the year is right around the corner! Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World! The night is pure magic! If you ever get the chance to attend I highly recommend it. It is fun for all ages! This will be our 5th year attending MNSSHP and we have learned some really valuable tips and tricks that have helped us along the way so I wanted to share them with YOU!

  1. GET THERE EARLY– The party technically goes from 7pm- midnight…but they will begin admitting MNSSHP ticket holders at 4pm. Getting there early not only allows you to have some extra time in the park before the party begins but it helps avoid the large rush of people entering just before 7pm. In years past they have had a special entrance line for MNSSHP ticket holders to enter and get their wristbands. Like most things at Disney it runs like a well oiled machine!
  2. DRESS UP– Get the whole family involved in the party fun! This is one of the only times at Disney where adults can wear costumes!! I promise you wont be the only adult dressed up! We have noticed a pretty even split between those in costumes and those without. Have some fun with it! We do a family theme every year and it has been a blast! Even my mother-in-law gets in on the action!! It just adds an extra layer of magic to your evening! Just be sure to follow the rules that Disney lays out for costumes…for complete dressing guidelines click here
  3. FLORIDA IS HOT– This goes along with the costuming. I can’t stress to you how hot and humid it is in Florida in early fall. I have seen so many people dressed in full costumes and just melting into a puddle. It does get a little better once the sun goes down…but usually the humidity doesnt die down very much. HOT!
  4. TAKE A NAP– Trust me on this one…especially if you have kids! Have a low key day…hang by the pool, relax, and take a nap!! This is a MNSSHP tradition for us. My kids are well past the age of napping, but we still always take one before the party. We usually get to the party right at 4 and go till about 11:30 or so…so to avoid meltdowns and sleepy kiddos just take it easy!
  5. BOOK FASTPASSES FOR 4pm– While you can’t book fastpasses during the party, you can still schedule some for the hours prior to the party. If you plan to get there for 4pm you can definitely schedule in a couple of rides before the party even starts! Hit a few rides before the party festivities start and then you will have more time for the party extras!
  6. PHOTO OPS– During the party there will be LOTS of places to stop and get special MNSSHP photos taken. Totally worth it!! These are photos that you can only get during the Halloween party so I totally recommend doing it. One of our favorites is just outside of the gates to Magic Kingdom…the Headless Horseman makes an appearance!
  7. PLAN BEFORE YOU GO– Make sure you check out a schedule of party events and map of the event before you go…for reals! There is SO much to see and do and EAT that you dont want to miss anything! We like to take a few minutes and plan out what is most important for us to see and do…for example…which parade do you want to see, where will you eat dinner, what rides are most important, do you want to see any of the extra shows or characters! Go with a plan and the night will be so much smoother!
  8. DON’T MISS THE PARADE– MNSSHP Parade is among the BEST parades that Disney puts on…and Disney does a good parade! Stake out your spot early and make sure you get your little ones up front so they can see. If you have little ones I recommend the earlier parade…it is usually busier but you dont run the risk of your kiddo zonking out in the stroller and missing the whole she-bang! I will warn you…the song to the parade will be stuck in your head until the following year…but thats OK because it is awesome 😉
  9. TRICK-OR-TREATING– It isn’t just for the kids at Disney. Grown ups are totally allowed and encouraged to go trick-or-treat. Disney isn’t shy when it comes to giving out fistfulls of candy either…be prepared for some serious sugar. If you or your kids have food allergies…don’t worry…Disney has you covered. You can exchange your trick-or-treating loot for some treats that you can enjoy!
  10. TAKE A RIGHT– When you entered Magic Kingdom…bang a right! You can enter through a special passageway and here you can get a candy bag and a special goodie bag! There are also a couple of photo spots here!!
  11. SPECIAL CHARACTER MEET AND GREETS– All the villains come out to play at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party! This is an awesome chance to catch up with some characters that aren’t usually out and about in the parks. Certain characters like Jack and Sally are hugely popular though, so if they are on your must-meet list…be prepared for a loooong wait! The 7 Dwarfs are also a hot commodity…the line will typically last a couple of hours. There are a lot of meet and greets with shorter lines however…Mickey and friends are available to meet in their full Halloween attire! Pooh and Friends are also dressed in super adorable Halloween costumes and their lines are not bad at all! Halloween is also a good chance to meet the Princes along with their Princesses!
  12. PLAN YOUR EXIT– Now, if you have been to Magic Kingdom you will know that getting IN and OUT of Magic Kingdom isnt always easy. You basically have a monorail, a boat, or a bus if you are staying on property. Exiting the party at midnight with EVERYONE ELSE is no fun…none at all. I have two pieces of advice…if you are like us, bust out a little early…before the second parade gets out. You avoid the rush and and can pretty easily grab a boat or monorail. If you don’t have exhausted children and don’t mind waiting, I say hang back and take your time exiting. Hang toward the back of the park and wait for the mad rush of people to get out before you do! You might even be able to snag some half empty Main St pics!

 

Be prepared for a great time. Be prepared for a TON of candy. Be prepared to want to go back again!!

For more information or to purchase tickets click here

 

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Homeschooling

Visiting 6 Countries in 1 Day!!

disney, epcot, homeschool

 

Have you ever wished you could visit 6 countries in 1 day? Yesterday we visited Mexico, Norway, Germany, Italy, China, and the USA…all in one day!!! Impossible you say? Not if you live in the great state of Florida…and have an Annual Pass to Walt Disney World! Yesterday we visited one of my favorite places on the planet…Epcot! Our goal was to visit all 11 of the countries featured in The World Showcase at Epcot…but it was HOT, and crowded, and HOT…so our goal fell short! BUT, we did get to visit 6 countries and it was a blast!

For those of you who have never visited Epcot, it is just the best experience. When you travel through each of the 11 countries, you truly feel like you are a part of that country. The sights, the smells, the sounds, the tastes…amazing. It is one of the most beautifully themed places in all of Walt Disney World…and that is saying something! It is even more magical after dark…everything is so beautifully lit…I just love it.

Yesterday our goal was to finally get stamps in the Epcot Passports our kids got for Christmas! If you haven’t seen these, they are fantastic! Each country has its own page and the goal is to visit each country and earn a stamp. These feel like actual passports…my kids loved it! In addition to getting stamps at each country, the passport also comes with various stickers that the child can decorate each page with, The stickers show different parts of the country in Epcot as well as the flag of the country.  To earn your stamps all you have to do is visit the Kidcot stops located in each country. These are great places for the kids to stop and catch their breath, even if you aren’t collecting stamps for your passport. The Cast Member that works at the station will help the child put the stamp in their book and will usually add a drawing or the child’s name or a saying in the language of their country. We had so much fun! Many of the Cast Member’s will teach the kids a word or phrase from their country as well. Such an awesome learning experience! If you don’t have a passport, don’t worry!! You can either purchase one right at Epcot, OR each Kidcot stop has a paper version that you can get for FREE to put stamps in!!!

epcot, homeschool, disney

 

We can’t wait to return in a couple of weeks to collect the remaining 5 passport stamps! This is such an awesome addition to any world geography unit! Each country has an opportunity to learn about the culture, hear the music, meet the people, see art, try the food, and so much more! I may have had to taste a hibiscus margarita in Mexico…for educational purposes of course!! Two thumbs way up! I am looking forward to many more visits to Epcot in the future…especially as we begin to study all of the countries! If you have ever been to Epcot, which is your favorite country to visit?

 

epcot, homeschool, disney

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