The Main Street Electrical Parade is back!

Category: Activities, Performances, & Events
Category: Travel

 

It’s hard to believe it has been 50 years since Disneyland introduced The Main Street Electrical Parade. Over these last five decades the parade has come and gone various times. But every time it returns, it returns to cheers and love. For many of us, this is the ultimate Disney parade. Sure, there are others that are entertaining and as enjoyable, however the iconic Main Street Electrical Parade stands above all the others in its magic. It is the epitome of what we refer to as “Disney Magic.”

To celebrate the return of this beloved parade, there are many updates. The electronic music is still there, so take my word for it, days after you leave the park you will still have that upbeat tune dancing in your head. The electronic musical score based on “Baroque Hoedown” by Jean-Jacques Perrey and Gershon Kingsley is nothing short of mesmerizing. And that pairs perfectly with the colorful parade.

The iconic drum that leads off the parade has been updated to reflect the 50thAnniversary. And righty so. This parade is an attraction that, in days of old, would be referred to as an “E Ticket.” It is a must-see for park guests.

Maybe it is because the parade has been absent for awhile, but the lights and colors seem much brighter this time. The sights and sounds of all the floats, along with the human characters that also sport lights on their costumes, bring together an experience that is not only magical, but also memorable. It is, to put it bluntly, an electric experience.

So, what can guests expect when they watch this iconic spectacle? Plenty. As a matter of fact, the finale float is different on each side so to see it all you must view the parade from both sides of the street. And that is easy to do because the parade is scheduled to run twice a night. Check the times when you enter the park because schedules do vary.

The spinning bugs seem to get the most cheers. They are colorful and musical, and definitely have their own personalities. Elliott the dragon also has a large contingent of fans. The parade depicts scenes from Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, Peter Pan, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and Pinocchio.

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The large finale float has dolls done in the Mary Blair design. This is the woman who brought us the memorable dolls in “It’s a Small World” for the 1964 Fair.  The float is led by The Blue Fairy and depicted on this wonderful two-sided float are characters from Encanto (Mirabel and Antonio), The Jungle Book (Mowgli), Raya and the Last Dragon (Raya), Aladdin (Aladdin and Jasmin), Coco (Miguel), Mulan (Mulan), Brave (Merida), The Princess and the Frog (Tiana), Frozen (Anna and Elsa), Moana (Moana), Hercules (Baby Hercules), and Pocahontas(Pocahontas). Then following this amazing float is a colorful depiction of the castle. Mary Blair had such an influence on the Disney organization and her spirit is alive in this parade.

While the finale float passes by the folks at Disney have an added visual element. Let’s face it; they always pay attention to details. So projections on the buildings on Main Street add a little extra magic to this grand finale.

The Main Street Electrical Parade is a must-see for guests to Disneyland. In my opinion, it should be a staple in the park, but they don’t listen to me. At this time I cannot tell you how long the parade will remain.

There are also additional treats offered to celebrate the parade, including the parade macaron at the Jolly Holiday Bakery Café, two special churro flavors, celebratory popcorn mixes and more. And at several locations throughout the park, while supplies last, guests can snack in electrifying style with the all-new light-up Elliott dragon premium bucket and light- up turtle premium sipper. (Limit two per item per guest and availability may vary throughout the summer season.)

Clothing, adorable wishables, a special Loungefly backpack, commemorative ears headband, a beautiful mug, and more are available to purchase (remember it is Disney and they are tops at merching) to remember this wonderful event.

All I can say is, “hallelujah.” I am excited for the return of this magical, musical spectacular. And if the folks at Disney are reading this, I urge them to keep the parade. It is the embodiment of what Walt Disney had in mind when he created Disneyland. It is a spectacular for all ages and filled with everything that made Disneyland The Happiest Place on Earth.

 

About the Author

Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment industry for over 25 years. She also writes about products and travel. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as Internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, is the entertainment correspondent for Good Day Orange County, and has her own TV show, Beyond the Red Carpet, on Village Television in Orange County. She is a longstanding member of the Television Critics Association, was a longstanding member of the Los Angeles Press Club, and is accredited by the MPAA. Follow her on Twitter.