Disney World Inexplicably Removes Christmas Characters

in Walt Disney World

Mickey & Minnie Mouse on a Christmas tree-themed float in Disney's Once Upon a Christmastime Parade.

Credit: Jess Colopy, Inside the Magic

Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade is one of Walt Disney World Resort’s most beloved holiday traditions. The festive celebration performs twice during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, which takes over Magic Kingdom Park on select nights throughout November and December.

An elf rides an oversized toy horse in front of Cinderella Castle.
Credit: Jess Colopy, Inside the Magic

Inside the Magic attended the sold-out event on Sunday, December 3, and viewed the second performance of Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade. (The first parade starts in Frontierland at 8:30 p.m., and the second kicks off at 11:00 p.m.) While most floats and dancers appeared normally, the iconic marching Toy Soldiers inspired by Babes in Toyland (1961) were missing.

The Toy Soldier float that normally leads the Toy Soldiers in Mickey's Once Upon A Christmastime Parade.

Like the Headless Horseman at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, the Toy Soldiers can’t perform in rainy, slippery weather. But besides two twenty-minute rain showers around 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., the weather was clear on Sunday evening.

Santa waves to guests on his sleigh in Mickey's Once Upon A Christmastime Parade.
Credit: Jess Colopy, Inside the Magic

Luckily, we had the chance to meet two of the towering toys on Market Street at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party’s welcome area. The Toy Soldiers appeared as meet & greet characters exclusive to the special event for the first time in 2023.

A woman poses with two Toy Soldiers at Magic Kingdom.
Credit: Jess Colopy, Inside the Magic

The Toy Soldiers also appear in A Christmas Fantasy Parade at Disneyland Park at Disneyland Resort.

If you’d like to see Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade and other holiday entertainment at Magic Kingdom Park but didn’t snag Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party tickets, you’re in luck! From December 25 to December 31, the holiday parade and other festive entertainment are scheduled during regular Disney Park hours.

Have you ever noticed characters missing from a Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort parade? Share your experience with Inside the Magic in the comments. 

Please note that the story outlined in this article is based on a personal Disney Parks guest experience. No two guest experiences are alike, and this article does not necessarily align with Inside the Magic’s personal views on Disney Park operations.

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