As I posted yesterday, there are many ways to experience extra Disney magic in the parks during morning hours. Luckily, there are just as many opportunities to experience extra Disney magic late at night. My family and I always stay for evening extra magic hours but there’s more magic to be had even after park closing. But, what do you do while the masses are flooding toward the exit? Some of the ways to maximize your time include: rides, shopping, dining, and watching. And, one of the very best ways to experience extra Disney magic after park closing is by listening.
Many guests don’t know this but as long as you are in line for a ride before it closes, you will be allowed to ride no matter how long the wait. If you have tried to ride an attraction all day and the line has been terribly long, this is a great chance to ride.
Some shops remain open after closing time. In fact, many stay open for 30 minutes to an hour after park closing. This is a great time to buy souvenirs while the crowd of park guests head to the buses, boats and monorail. Plus, even late night purchases qualify for free delivery to your resort guest shop, as long as you still have enough days left on your stay.
Most restaurants in the parks will seat guests up to 30 minutes before park closing and allow them to stay for up to a half-hour after park closing. Even if you ate a full dinner, you may just want to have a late dessert. This gives you a chance to relax, talk about your day, and have each person in the family name their favorite memory from that day. It draws the family closer, while providing a great way to stay out of the mad rush. Take it slow, for your vacation will be over before you know it.
While you wait for the “mass exodus” from the park, it is fun to grab an out-of-the-way bench and just sit with an ice cream or a drink of choice (coffee for me) and people-watch. I always love to smile and say goodbye to all the families dragging their weary kids out of the park (many already sleeping on daddy’s shoulder). I feel like they are so happy when they get to the park but sad and tired when it’s time to leave. I give them a smile and a good wish to try to make the Disney love last a little longer. Whether you want to have interaction with others or not, it is fun to just people-watch while letting the crowd go out. When you are ready, you can take a leisurely stroll out of the park yourself.
If you know about the heart of Walt Disney (and it is something I truly treasure), then you know that he always wanted to give his guests more than they asked for, in every way. One of his favorite ways to give his guests a little something special is called the Kiss Goodnight.
About 20 minutes to an hour after the ending of “Wishes,” you may find yourself experience a heart-dropping, ugly-crying event. During the Kiss Goodnight, the entire Main Street USA area comes alive with Disney music performed by a chorus of singers. You will hear “When You Wish Upon a Star” and then you will hear a voice that, in true Disney fashion, will address all guests thanking them for coming and wishing them safe travels. You will hear the words Walt Disney used when describing his dreams of what the Magic Kingdom would mean to families. And at the end, you will hear Mickey say, “So long everybody! See you real soon!”
I must admit that by then I am drenched in tears at the thought of everything Disney World has meant to me and my family; and, most especially, the very high regard in which I hold Mr. Disney. If you can stay late, I hope it will be on a night when you can enjoy this wonderful “little something extra.”
These are a few of the great reasons to stay at the park for a little while after closing. The cast members will appreciate us not staying too long, but an hour or so should be fine. Transportation runs for up to 2 hours after the parks close so you don’t have to worry about being stranded. Plus, it really can be a very special time, if your family is up to it.
Thank you for reading. I wish you the happiest of travels to my Happy Place!
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Let me sprinkle some pixie dust on your next vacation by booking with me. You can contact me at Brenda@pixievacations.com.