REVIEW: Happily Ever After Fireworks Dessert Party at the Magic Kingdom – Is It Worth It?
This past weekend, we tried something that we haven’t before: The Happily Ever After Fireworks Dessert Party. This event is available every night that Happily Ever After is performed. There are two categories for the event: Terrace Viewing ($79/adult, $47/child) and Garden Viewing ($59/adult, $35/child). These prices already include tax and gratuity. We elected for the Garden Viewing after being told by numerous people that the garden was an awesome place to see the show. Check-in was a very easy process. Our reservation stated to arrive at 6:45PM for the 7:55PM show, giving us just over an hour for desserts. We were given wristbands to allow us access between the gardens and the terrace area and a Cast Member showed us to our reserved table.
The dessert lineup was varied and rather large. Everything from hand-scooped ice cream, ‘decorate your own cookie’, cheese, fresh fruit, tarts, and dark chocolate dipped strawberries. Drinks included (non-alcoholic) sparkling cider, bottled water, coffee, hot cocoa, strawberry lemonade, and the famous Passionfruit Orange Guava (POG) Juice. Being setup as a buffet we were allowed unlimited trips to the lineup, which was good because many of the desserts are just a few bites.
Hand-scooped ice cream. This Cast Member was hard at work all evening making sure everyone got a scoop. Fudge and whipped cream were available along with cherries, sprinkles, and white chocolate shavings.
Those piping bags down the end were there to assist with designing your own cookie, brownie, or rice crispy treat. A nice touch.
These are the same macarons available at Gaston’s Tavern. We reviewed them positively back in 2017. Nothing has changed, they’re still a really good macaron, and even better when you’re not paying $2 per piece. Load up a plate, we did.
That’s a pineapple flavored whipped dairy product on top, unexpected to say the least. It’s pineapple, upon pineapple, upon pineapple.
The villains brownies were fun, albeit poorly printed.
The strawberries are dipped in dark chocolate and were quite good. Probably the best bang for your buck on the dessert spread.
Passionfruit, Orange, Guave Juice (POG) is the same you’ll find at Animal Kingdom and Fort Wilderness and Polynesian and virtually every resort, with a different name at each location. Basic lemonade, strawberry lemonade, unsweetened tea, milk, and bottles of water rounded out the cold beverage stand.
Hot beverages included hot cocoa, teas, coffee and decaf.
A Cast Member handed us each a flute of the sparkling apple cider when we walked in. There was plenty more available.
While nothing particularly stood out as being an item that ‘we’re obsessed with’ or ‘don’t miss’, we felt the entire spread was diverse enough for even the pickiest eaters. One very pleasant surprise was the attention put into making sure dietary restrictions and allergies were adhered to. One person in our party is vegan and after a quick chat with a supervisor he presented us with a large plate of vegan-friendly options. Granted there are allergy options on the buffet line, but the effort put into ensuring food safety was wonderful.
With fireworks beginning at 7:55, we wandered down around 7:40 to ensure there was a spot to lounge in. The dessert party has the Plaza Gardens East area reserved, you may know it as ‘The Hub Grass’. There were plenty of people inside of the gardens, but nowhere near the point where we couldn’t move. Main Street was a very different picture. Fireworks began and without anyone moving around we were able to stay sitting on the ground the entire time with an excellent view. Happily Ever After is an amazing fireworks show and we absolutely recommend seeing it at least once (if not more) during your vacation. Once fireworks ended we waited about 10 minutes and were able to avoid all of the crowding around Main Street.
Our reserved area for the fireworks viewing right before showtime. Still plenty of space to walk and find a spot.
Main Street filled-up with 15 minutes before fireworks. Here was our view:
Was it worth it?
We feel our money spent was validated. Sure, $59/adult seems expensive, but let’s put the cards on the table. Fireworks shows in the world’s busiest theme park are always going to be popular and crowded. Getting a decent spot for Happily Ever After requires at *least* an hour investment before the show even begins (on most nights). With the dessert party, we strolled up just minutes before and had an amazing spot. We didn’t have to deal with the crowds around us during the show and exiting the kingdom. It was a stress-free experience, a rare commodity at The Magic Kingdom. The desserts were good and having multiple beverage options was great. The Cast Members even offered us to go cups to take drinks down to the gardens. We walked into the dessert party wondering how we were going to fill ourselves with $59 worth of sugary snacks, but at the end of the evening feel the overall experience of being able to view one of the best fireworks shows in the United States without worrying about crowd issues was alone worth the money.