Oogie Boogie Bash

This is Disney Halloween!
Today’s post is all about Disney California Adventure Park’s “Oogie Boogie Bash”! Read on to hear more about all the spooktacular fun!


After hours Halloweentime fun
The Disneyland Resort pulls out all the stops for the Halloween season. From characters in their most frightfully fun costumes, spooky decor and those delicious specialty treats, the resort offers tons of halloweentime options for everyone!
The highlight of the Disneyland resort halloween season? Their Halloween party! Previously held inside Disneyland Park, the party headed across the way this season to Disney California Adventure Park (DCA). The Halloween party this year is dubbed "Oogie Boogie Bash" and features a variety of new offerings for guests to enjoy. Oogie Boogie Bash is held on select nights throughout the Halloween season, starting mid September to the end of October. The event is a separate ticket to general admission meaning you pay extra to attend but there's lots of perks in store with the extra ticket cost.

What’s included you may ask? Well for starters, a ticket into DCA park for the event hours, plus an additional 3-4 hours before the party even beings. For example, on the Sunday we attended, our party ticket would have allowed us in in the park at 2pm, a whole 4 hours prior to the official start of the party at 6pm. And with the party ending at 11pm, when you count in the total overall hours, that's a pretty good park day ticket in one special event offering. We're annual pass holders, so it didn't really matter, but we were just happy to soak in the spooky party atmosphere.
We've attended multiple Disneyland Halloween parties in the past and love how it's a fun vibe the entire night with the numerous party enhancements. There's also a bunch of special entertainment options, rare and unique character meet and greets, and best of all? The chance to actually get into costume for a night of Disney fun!

Is it worth it?
I’m answering this first and foremost. YES! Yes it is totally worth it! Why do I think so? I'll break it down below:

Atmosphere:
Let’s start with the atmosphere! Since this is an after hours Disney party you’ll get to see the park in a different light. There’s spooky decor laid out around the park, Halloween music blasting everywhere, and overall it’s just a unique way to experience the parks. Since this is a special ticketed event, crowds are generally less than normal operating hours which means lower wait times for attractions, too! 
We basically walked onto all the rides we wanted to get on and it was so great!

Attractions:
A few of DCA's rides get a spooky Halloween overlay which adds to the fun. Guardians of the Galaxy, Luigi's and the Tow Mater ride in Carsland each get an enhancement. We didn't ride Guardians, but it's a totally new storyline with monsterrific new scenes added in!
The two Carsland attractions get a little twist with fun halloween soundtracks. We only got to check out Luigis, but loved it!

Entertainment:
Always a highlight at these special event parties are the exclusive entertainment options offered. While DCA didn't have a typical Halloween fireworks show, it did offer "Villainous" a water and light show (ala World of Color) but with a villainous twist! There's also the Halloween party favorite, the "Frightfully Fun Parade" which had previously been shown at Disneyland, but now crossed over to DCA for the bash! The parade is shown once during the night and Villainous has two shows presented each party night. Ben tuckered out before we could catch the second showing of of Villainous, so we missed out on it. We did hear from our friends that watched that it was a fun seasonal show. We did catch bits of the Frightfully Fun parade, as well as from having seen it in the past, we can confirm that its a fun must watch, epically if its your first party experience.

For anyone that likes to get their groove on, there was a fun little dance area called DescenDance over in the Hollywood area of the park, across from Monster's Inc. We walked by the area and the music was good and the whole area looked lively!

We did stop by to see the cute little Mickey Trick or Treat show over at the Disney Theater! Geared for the smaller set of party goers, and a personal top priority for us at he party. The show was super cute! Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy are featured in a not scary, but still halloween type of fun show. It'll be a crowd pleader with the littlest of your bunch and will be entertaining for the whole family for sure. We loved the show and appreciated that it wasn't super long, only about 10 minutes so it kept Ben's attention. Best of all? The sweet treats they handed out to us at the end! 

Villains Grove
While this should technically be under the entertainment section, this Oogie Boogie Bash offering was SO GOOD that it deserves its own little section on this recap. Villains Grove is over in the Redwood Creek Trail area of DCA park. In daylight, this little area is a calm and almost hidden gem like area featuring play areas for young kids. Its relaxing, quiet and serene, So imagine our surprise at how it completely transforms into a spooky good time for the party. At night the area literally transforms into a visually stunning Halloweentime walk through! Using special projections, a spooky soundtrack, visual effects and fun props, you're transported into mini worlds of Disney's most famous villains. There's an eerie sanctuary like set of reminiscent of Frollo from Hunchback of Notre Dame. A wickedly whimsical area based off the Cheshire Cat. A bed of thorns that creep up out of nowhere on the rocks surrounding you ala Maleficent. Voodoo portals from your friends from the other side with Dr. Facilier. Thunder claps in the midst of a wood with the wicked witch and my personal favorite? The roses from the Queen of Hearts! Not only was it stunning, but it also smelled like roses, too! Disney really hit it out of the park with this attraction and we absolutely loved it. It's such unique attraction and I'd say a do not miss if it returns next year!

**Villains Grove Tip**
If you're heading in with a little one, strollers aren't allowed on the walk through. You have to go up and down a set of stairs at one point and the trail is pretty dimly lit, so it's not possible to take a stroller in unless you have a special 'red tag" clearance (special needs or assistance). Ben was asleep the entire time we waited in line for this, so once we got to the front, we were able to park our stroller to the right of the entrance and just had to carry him in. I will also note that if you have a little one that might get spooked easily, the dark or sometimes slightly frightening themes of some of the portions may scare them. It's nothing too intense or scary, but Ben did get startled by the "thunder" in the woods portion, along with the Scar effects during the Lion King area.

Meet and Greets
One of the highlights of these Halloween parties are the special and rare characters that Disney will bring out for them! You get a chance to snap a photo with characters that only tend to come out at these parties. There was a plethora of Villains to meet, rare Disney Afternoon characters, classics like your standard mickey and Minnie and some fun sightings like Pinocchio and the Blue Fairy to name a few.
Surprisingly, for as much as we love characters, we didn't prioritize many of them for this party so I can't comment on the line wait times. We did spend a good chunk of time in Ben's favorite Carsland and did get to meet Lightning McQueen, Mater and Cruz Ramirez with little wait times!

Trick or Treat Trails
If character meet and greets are a party favorite then their trick or treat trails are the true star! I mean, who doesn't love FREE CANDY!!! Oogie Boogie Bash offered 10 trick or treat trails this year and half of them were what they called "interactive" trails. These 5 trails had a little twist to them. Aside from getting (lots) of sweet treats and snack, there were live actors portraying villains at certain points. There were trails featuring Dr. Facilier, Maleficent, the Evil Queen, the Mad Hatter and last but not least, Oogie Boogie himself! 
My personal favorite was the Oogie Boogie trail since it was inside our old wedding reception venue inside the Disney Animation Building. While we couldn't stop for pictured with him, it was still fun to see him walking about and talking to guests.


Overall thoughts 
So what did I think about Oogie Boogie Bash? I LOVED it! I have to admit that I was one of the skeptical ones that didn't know if I'd like the bash over at DCA. The price points for this years ticket were so much higher than in the past and with it being the inaugural year, you just didn't know what to go off of. But I'm happy to report that the bash was absolutely fun and completely worth checking out. 
How did it compare to Disneyland's parties of years past? As much as I missed the big Mickey pumpkin and getting a chance to ride Haunted Mansion while a the party, Oogie Boogie Bash definitely brought a new sense of fun!  Also, in a strange way, it felt like we were able to get so much more done at Oogie Boogie Bash than at the Disneyland Halloween parties. We didn't feel as rushed, walkways felt less crowded, it didn't feel as rushed. Maybe it was just me, but I just liked the whole atmosphere a lot better over at DCA.

Coast to coast thoughts? Since we kicked off the month with MNSSHP (read my recap here)  how did the bash stack up? Honestly, once again Oogie Boogie comes out on top. As much fun as it was to experience Walt Disney World's version, I just loved how different the bash was. I'll give props to MNSSHP over at the Magic Kingdom for their incredible fireworks and the event only food offerings, something that DCA's party didn't offer.

Overall though, its hard to compare the different parties because each offered something different in their own unique way. I'm happy that we got to experience Oogie Boogie Bash and I hope that Disney contuse to keep it at DCA in the years to come. If they do, it's going to be exciting to see what new surprises they'd have in store for guests for years to come! 💜

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