Welcome to Part Two of our Moonlight Magic guide, featuring an event recap and tips on attending the event! I’m going to take you, step-by-step, from making your reservation to what the event has to offer and what I experienced when attending. To find out more about what Moonlight Magic is, please see Part One of this post.
Moonlight Magic event wristband in front of Spaceship Earth | © Toni Gangi
When making a hotel reservation for my family’s most recent trip to Walt Disney World, my mom and I noticed that July 16th was booked solid in several Disney Vacation Club hotels. I thought this was odd and finally found out the reason was that there was an event called Moonlight Magic happening in Epcot while we would be on-property. I was shocked that I had no idea these events were going on and that, once I did, there was little information to be found about them, including on how to register for them. To remedy this, I bring you a Part Two!
Registration for the event is completed online on the DVC site on the same Moonlight Magic webpage that will have the most up to date information regarding any date changes as well as when the registration period will begin. Sometime after booking our resort reservation, an email was sent to my mom informing us about Moonlight Magic. It confirmed that we were eligible to participate in the initial registration period and that another email will be sent on the day the registration page is live. When registering, I highly suggest that you do not wait for the email with the link. Instead, have your event’s website page open (found under “Registration” and “Read more” on the DVC MM page), ready to be refreshed at the time registration begins. It began at 9 A.M. for the Epcot event I planned on attending but I did not receive that email until 11 A.M. By then, the event was at capacity! (If you don’t have a resort reservation, don’t lose hope! Check the page in case of cancellations).
I woke up bright and early the morning of registration and watched “Rapunzel’s Tangled Adventure” while I waited for the page to go live. The process is quick and the only information asked was to confirm you are staying on property and input your Member ID and resort confirmation number. However, the page kept freezing or kicking me off, likely due to the number of people online at once. I successfully reserved a spot after about 10 minutes of perseverance and refreshes!
Two panels from the inside of the Epcot Moonlight Magic event park map | © Disney
The next few weeks were spent half wishing for the summer to last forever, half for our Disney trip to get closer! The event officially began at 9:30 P.M. and would go on until 12:30 A.M. but my family arrived at 7 P.M., the earliest time guests could enter the park, and checked in. Check in was an easy process with several signs, tables, and cast members happy to assist. We were given our wristbands and food vouchers and the park map kiosks were already filled with event-specific maps featured Figment on the cover.
Since the park hadn’t yet closed, lines were still long and we had no way to make Fastpasses without an activated park ticket. We hadn’t yet been to Epcot and decided to ride Mission: Space. If I could have done something different, I might have taken this time to eat at one of the World Showcase counter services (Liberty Inn, Midnattssol Bakery, Yorkshire County Fish Shop) redeemable with the free meal voucher given to each guest during this time rather than eating at the Electric Umbrella later in the night. Though they are offered, you had to arrive early to get food at those locations because once the park closes, the only things opened in the World Showcase were Grand Fiesta Tour and Frozen and the food was limited to Electric Umbrella and Sunshine Seasons.
Wait time for Soarin’ the night of July 16th | © Toni Gangi
As closing time drew near, we watched Illuminations while waiting for the day guests to leave. Not really knowing where to start, our first stop was Frozen Ever After. The sign claimed nearly an hour wait but we didn’t wait more than 30 minutes. Over the course of the night, we made it on Test Track and Soarin’ in record time. The sign for Test Track read 90 minutes and a cast member told us it was really only 50 minutes but we ended up waiting only 25. With the new theater in operation, Soarin’ was nearly a walk-on attraction. It was truly amazing to see the wait time on Soarin’s sign read only 10 minutes.
A while into the night, my family decided to split up for a bit. I simply could not pass up the chance to meet Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable at International Gateway for the first time since I was seven years old. We had previously walked by the line for Kim and Ron and knew that it stretched quite a while down the walkway. My brother, sister, and dad decided to go and get food for us while my mom waited with me for the photo op. The longest line of the night, we waited a grand total of 53 minutes.
The chicken, burger, and fries at the Electric Umbrella were surprisingly good and and everyone also got a water bottle or fountain drink. There were a lot of people, but my family managed to find a table and people were kind enough to share chairs. Outside, there was a cart in Future World giving away free Mickey bars! The lines were unbelievably long at the start of the event but the cast members clearly kept restocking throughout the night and it died down towards the end of the night. Unfortunately, we missed the special fireworks show while we were eating but, having caught Illuminations, we were not very upset.
Overall, I’m glad we attended the event and I would recommend trying to reserve a spot but not being too upset if the event reaches capacity. I wish the parks simply were open later rather than requiring a wristband and DVC membership to stay past 9:30 P.M. Still, it is always fun to attend special events, see unusual characters, wait in shorter lines, and eat free Mickey bars!