Yesterday, Disney premiered it's brand new 3:00 parade for the Magic Kingdom. This new parade, called Disney Festival of Fantasy is the first new parade that the Magic Kingdom has seen in over 12 years.
This new parade is a compete departure from the previous one. It has all new floats (bye bye Mirrored Castle float). The parade's theme is essentially a celebration of New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom. The parade brings beloved characters with innovative parade floats, stunning costumes, a new soundtrack featuring classic favorites from Disney films and an original theme song.
There are seven different units in the parade. They are themed after various beloved Disney stories that include:
- The Princess Garden Float
- The Tangled Float
- The Little Mermaid Float
- The Peter Pan Float
- The Brave Float
- The Sleeping Beauty Float
- The Finale and Mickey's Airship Float
Here is a video introduction of the parade for those who have maybe not seen it. (Which I mean, I'm sure you have...the footage has been everywhere. But just in case you haven't, you really should just catch a glimpse of what you have to look forward to.)
Now...let's get to my initial thoughts.
I have previously mentioned...I am absolutely not a parade person. Usually, I use the afternoon or evening parade as an excuse to go ride attractions, cause the lines are shorter. So, with that being said, I really, really liked this parade. I love that it's kinetic (so many pieces move!), love the costumes, the floats are like none other that have been in the park. (Which makes sense...it's been 12 years since new floats have been designed...so...things have changed in not only float building, but also Disney has changed and evolved.)
This new parade was most certainly, a much needed upgrade, especially when comparing it to the last one. There are some pieces that absolutely blew my mind! I couldn't believe I was being this entertained by a parade! It was incredible how big these floats were and how intricately designed the pieces are. (But, that's Disney for you. They always have an eye out for detail.)
My favorite float, is of course, Maleficent. I think it's incredible what they've done with this unit. I mean, she breathes FIRE! (PS: is it just me or does anyone else think that Disney was like...Universal's gonna have a fire breathing dragon...WE'RE gonna have a fire breathing dragon...likely not...but general random musings by me...). I love the detail that they've put into this float overall. I love her eyes, I love the spinning wheel, I love that her tail can sway back and forth. It's just a very well done float. It truly is a show stopper. I mean people were cheering every time Maleficent blew out fire. That's impressive.
My other favorite float was the Tangled one. I have no idea how that one made it off the drawing board. Those swing thugs ACTUALLY go by flying! How they don't get sick, I have absolutely no idea. I'd be so nauseous after that one. This one also has a lot of great detail to it. Another fantastic addition.
If I had one little criticism of the parade (of which it really is hard to criticize...and maybe it's just me...) It's that while I get that what ties this new parade together is New Fantasyland...I still feel like something is a tiny bit off. I think it's the fact that each of the floats seem to stand alone as their own pieces and aren't tied together as an whole unit strong enough. For example...we start with the beautifully ornate Princess float, then move to the sort of rough around the edges Tangled float, then transition to the colorful Little Mermaid float. There is nothing that ties these three floats together...minus the fact that they are all Disney movies. Each one feels too different from each other. I wondered about that as I saw the artwork coming out about the parade. Don't get me wrong...I feel as if all the floats are all incredibly well done...but seem to be missing an over-encompassing gel factor.
This is of course, just a minor thing. The parade is a spectacular beast that is a very welcome addition to the park. The floats are completely impressive and really, in ways, larger than life. Disney has done a great job and it's just more proof that Disney can take the ordinary (a parade) and make it something extraordinary.
The key question...would I stop to watch this parade? Yes. But I preface that with the fact that I will certainly not wait a half hour to see a parade. If I had 15 minute til the parade and didn't have any other attractions I'm headed towards, I would certainly stop and stake out a place. (Which is high praise from me, considering the fact that before even if I was walking past the afternoon parade, I would have never stopped.)
So, those are my thoughts, but what are your thoughts of this new parade? Which float is your favorite? Let me know in the comments section or on the Facebook page.
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