Magic Kingdom to Close at 6PM to Accommodate 2017 Christmas Party Events

This post may contain affiliate links; please read the disclosure for more information.

The Magic Kingdom will close one-hour before the beginning of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party on event nights in 2017, a change from years past.

Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Duffy wave to Magic Kingdom guests as snow falls on Main Street, U.S.A., during ” Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade” at Walt Disney World Resort. The festive processional is one of the happy highlights of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, a night of holiday splendor with lively stage shows, a unique holiday parade, Holiday Wishes: Celebrate the Spirit of the Season nighttime fireworks, and snow flurries on Main Street, U.S.A. The special-ticket event takes place on select nights in November and December at Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Ryan Wendler, photographer)

In previous years, the park would close at 7pm just as the party was beginning. To better accommodate guests arriving for the parties and to help clear out day-guests earlier, the Magic Kingdom will close to non-party guests at 6pm on each event night this year. Basically, attraction queues and the park entrance will no longer admit non-party guests starting at 6PM.

It is unclear at this time exactly how this will affect the usual park procedures in preparing for the party.

SaveSave

About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]

newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Veronica Shine
Guest
Veronica Shine

I am curious on how this will work? We reserved party tickets and plan to spend the afternoon at MK. We do have reservations for dinner at Be Our Guest at 5:30. I assume when we arrive at the park at 3PM, we will be able to just stay. Do they supply the bands at our hotel?

Jay
Guest
Jay

You can’t enter the park until 4pm. Not 3. You should do some research before you get there.

Veronica Shine
Guest
Veronica Shine

Why can’t I enter the park at 3 or 1 if I desire? I am staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge, have a 14 day pass and Disney Meal Plan with reservations at Be Our Guest at 5:30PM on the 14th of November.

I also already purchased my Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party for that same night. I will be in the midst of dinner at 6PM Are you saying I must interrupt my dinner, leave the park and then renter at 7?

Shelly
Guest
Shelly

Looks like you did do your research! You go girl.

RebeccaMcK
Guest
RebeccaMcK

You’ll already be in the park so you’d just go to one of the areas where you can get your party ticket scanned (or Magic Band if party ticket was added to that) and they’d give you the wristband for the party, closer to the party start time. Not all the way back at the park entrance but within the park itself. 3 pm is the early admission time for the Halloween parties at Disneyland, by the way. 4 pm at WDW. Also, I wonder if MK will close at 6 pm on Halloween party nights this year, too.

Veronica Shine
Guest
Veronica Shine

Thank you. That certainly makes sense. I appreciate your input
.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

Jay, why don’t you just remain mute unless you know the details?
You tried to be a jerk and ended up looking like a fool too.

Christina
Guest
Christina

With party tickets you will be able to enter the park at 4.

Kelly
Guest
Kelly

You can get into the park whenever you want to once it opens. At some point in the afternoon there are Cast Members giving out special wrist bands to those with VMCP tickets. The locations are throughout the park.

Veronica Shine
Guest
Veronica Shine

That’s what I thought Kelly. We did this about 10 years ago also and they went around to guests asking for tickets. Now with the wristband (which I am sure my party is embedded with, along with our other special events), they will just scan it and give out the party wristband.

Eileen
Guest
Eileen

So unfair to people that paid over $100+ fee to get into Magic Kingdom, which normally stays open till 9 PM, just so Disney can make another $100+ on top of that. I think perhaps some of the magic is leaving Disney!

Smiley
Guest
Smiley

You know in advance when you purchased your tickets if there would be an event going on. If you don’t like it go another time or stay home.

Jay
Guest
Jay

You know what I tell my kid when he whines about “not fair!”? I say that life isn’t fair and it’s up to you whether you choose to complain and pitch a fit or make the best of it.

They post the party dates 6 months in advance. If you can’t plan around it, that’s your fault.

Frank
Guest
Frank

Eileen,
Another angle to discuss is maybe the Kingdom is quieter on Not So Scary and Very Merry days, because many guests may stay away, knowing it closes early. Sooo, maybe one would have less competition for attractions, food, etc, etc… Just speculating here.
Frank

RebeccaMcK
Guest
RebeccaMcK

It does tend to be less crowded on those days. Also, non-party people who are at MK just hop over to another park (or somewhere else on or off property) when MK closes early like that.

Linda Jones
Guest
Linda Jones

I totally agree. If you buy season passes you should be able to stay. To much money.

Clay
Guest
Clay

If you have a Premium Annual Pass you are paying $2.38 a day to go to one of the four parks. Basing it off a 12-hour park operating day at the Magic Kingdom a Premium Annual Pass holder would be out a total of $0.60 for the early closure. Of course they could always go over to one of the three other parks for the rest of the day and not lose out on anything.

Jay
Guest
Jay

I find it interesting that AP holders seem to have a weird entitled attitude. You knew the black out dates and cost of the pass before buying, yet you still complain that you want more. Strange way to be.

ElBee
Guest
ElBee

If you have an annual pass you know well in advance that this is the way party days work, and there are 364 other days in the year you can go to MK.

Based on you calling it a “seasonal” pass, you probably don’t have one, so you’re just looking to complain about something that doesn’t even apply to you.

Tawni
Guest
Tawni

Is this only for WDW or Disneyland as well?

Ian
Guest
Ian

Tawni, MVMCP is at WDW only.

Susan
Guest
Susan

Just go to another park that day or if you have them park hop when it is time to leave. Buy a ticket for the extra event. Work around it they don’t have the Mickeys Christmas Party every night.

Edge
Guest
Edge

You shouldn’t lose an hour , if it’s that important extend the xmas party another hour , it’s crap like like this and clowns like smiley that makes the place suck anymore. And yes once the kids are old enough I won’t be going anymore.

DJ
Guest
DJ

You won’t be missed.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

Folks, prior to 2005/2006, Magic Kingdom would close to non-party guests on Halloween and Christmas Party nights an hour before the start of the parties to better clear all the regular guests out of the park. This is just return to that older and much better practice.

Let’s hope the Halloween Parties return to that practice soon as well.

Frank
Guest
Frank

From those that complain about the unfairness of early closure, how would they feel if they are the ones that have spent $74 to $115 for adults and $69 to $110 for children for tickets only to have someone who hasn’t purchased the tickets enjoying the festivities for free.

Melissa D Brown
Guest
Melissa D Brown

Yes, please do this for the Halloween party as well. We went a couple years ago and it was more crowded at the Halloween party than it was on Christmas day in 2002. Crazy.

John
Guest
John

So glad to see this process being brought back to WDW. This is the way it was many years ago, and it worked out GREAT. Guest that were in the park at 6pm that had actually purchased Party Tickets got to move into Tomorrowland until the start of the Party at 7pm. Guest that did not purchase an event ticket were ushered out of the park at official park closing time. It really reduced the crowd levels for those who paid admission for the party event.

Catherine
Guest
Catherine

Personal experience has been that party days normally have lower crowds on party days. We plan most of our MK days on party days then 1 on a non-party day to enjoy the evening shows.

David
Guest
David

A lot of holier-than-thou attitudes towards people complaining. Sure there are two sides but it’s undeniable that every year people who don’t shell out A LOT of extra money lose more and more flexibility to be able to get into MK after dark to see fireworks, lights, etc. And the nights they can go are getting more and more crowded. I understand about the parties – but over the years it’s morphed from a nice reasonably priced add-on event to a ridiculously priced upcharge that takes more and more MK time away from non-party guests. How long until MK doesn’t… Read more »

DJ
Guest
DJ

Inflation is a fact of life. Have you been to a movie recently? Back in the 1970s, a movie used to cost $1.25, it costs as much as $24.00 per ticket now (3D IMAX, etc.) A new Nissan Sentra sold for $3999 back in the 80’s. Now they start at $17,000. See the pattern here? What makes you, or anyone else, believe that Disney’s prices should remain stagnant? And before say that prices have outpaced wages…the average household income in 1980 was $12,513.49, today it is $55,775.00. That is 4.46 times greater. That’s how inflation works.

ElBee
Guest
ElBee

How about the other side of the coin? I am going to shell out “A LOT” of extra money to go to a party this year, and booohoooo I want to get in before 4pm.

Edge
Guest
Edge

So for the price of regular admission I cannot enjoy the festival portion , I need to leave so the people that paid for the festival can enjoy there time. Thing is there taking away time from my visit to entertain other people and labeling something else. For all the clowns trying to explain economics or shoveling the “take it or leave attitude down our throats” this pay extra so you can enjoy Christmas is pure greed. I’m renting that park for that day , I’m required to give a ticket but non the less it’s mine for the day.… Read more »

ElBee
Guest
ElBee

Have you ever rented a car, Edge? You DO have to have it back by a certain time or they will charge you extra. If you say you’re going to bring it back by noon and return it at 2pm instead, you will get charged for 2 hours additional. That’s how life works.

If you buy a ticket today for MK and plan to use it on one of the December party days, your ticket is good until 6pm when the park closes to the general public. If you don’t like it, go a different day.

DJ
Guest
DJ

For the record, I own a Porsche and a Mercedes. Perhaps if you learn more about economics, paltry things like theme park ticket prices won’t upset you so much. One last economics lesson for you…google Price Inflexibility Curve, you sound like you need to educate yourself on it.

Edge
Guest
Edge

Lol your such a knob. Words like paltry and inflexibility curve, this is how I know this. Congratulations on the ownership of two fine vehicles ,you’ve officially conquered the universe.

Edge
Guest
Edge

What’s amazing is I’ll write things that make sense to myself and other like me but this shitty web page won’t post it because it burns wdw.

Edge
Guest
Edge

Ty for clarifying the process of renting a car and applying to how life works. You really opened my eyes and made me realize that I’m wrong. So now I have a economist blabbering and a philosopher with fetish for car rental trivia ,defending a company who will sell you , me ,and everyone else down the river for a extra half a buck..

Megan
Guest
Megan

We are planning our first trip to Magic Kingdom and were planning on going Tuesday 11/28. Do they actually kick people out who do not have tickets to the evening event or are you no longer able to ride rides or do any of the character greets? My daughter is 4 so I can’t imagine we would be staying much past 7 pm. However, I would like her to be able to see the Castle lightening ceremony that takes place at 6:15 and maybe shop around on Main Street?

mayeli trevino
Guest
mayeli trevino

we are planning on going this sunday 12/17 and I am thinking the same, I want my daughter to see the 615 castle lightening, so how was it? did you get to see it?

Althea
Guest
Althea

So I can just purchase the VMCP ticket and go in at 4pm, I don’t need another ticket on top of that one? Like that one ticket counts as my admission ticket for the evening

Mike
Guest
Mike

We’re going to Disney World in December and a few of the days there is the MVMCP at night. We did not buy party tickets (have a 5 year old that would be a terror at 11 pm!) but I somehow was just able to get a 6:50 PM dinner reservation at Tony’s. Given the new policy that the park closes to the public at 6 PM and the MVMCP officially starts at 7 PM, I thought I read that making this type of reservation would not be possible. My question is… Is it a Disney Dining glitch or since… Read more »