Kimi Yoshino of the Los Angeles Times takes a look at the Halloween-themed events at the Los Angeles/Orange County theme parks:
At Knott’s, Universal and Six Flags Magic Mountain, the nighttime events are billed as super-scary, with park employees in macabre costumes doing their best to frighten visitors. Six Flags and Knott’s also have more youth-oriented Halloween offerings during the day.
Disneyland said it would focus solely on its strength: family entertainment.
Disneyland Park has tried moving in to the market before, with Mickey’s Halloween Treat, the popular Nightmare Before Christmas Haunted Mansion overlay, and even a disastrous special event with a local radio station. If this year works out, look for the Disneyland seasons to be broken into: Rehab, Summer, Halloween, Christmas. If Disney really wants to go all-out every year, they should get Animation and Imagineering involved some more.
For extensive coverage of Knott’s Halloween Haunt, check out Theme Park Adventure.
Word of mouth here in SoCal is that most of the parks are a bit scary for young children. We have tickets to Disneyland’s Mickey’s Halloween Trick or Treat whatever it is called, even though it’s at DCA.
I read in my Backstage mailing that both parks will actually be decorated in way that they haven’t done before, supposedly equaling the festivities of Christmas. In addition to the Haunted Mansion and Mickey’s deal, there is a Woody -themed Fall/Halloween area and additional theming added to Hollywood Tower of Terror.
We will be there on Halloween night. I’ll let you know how it goes!
I went to see the new HalloweenTime decorations at Disneyland today and was underwhelmed. Other than the entry area, Main Street, the Woody / Halloween themed Big Thunder Ranch and, of course, the annual Haunted Mansion / Nightmare decorations, you’d be hard pressed to find anything Halloween related in the other themed areas. The new decorations that were there were pretty sparse. A fraction of what they do for Christmas. In their defense though, a gentler, unscary Halloween can’t be easy. After jack-o-lanterns and orange bunting, what else is there?