2021 After Hours holiday event announced for Disney World

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Red fireworks exploding above Cinderella Castle at Walt Disney World
Fireworks from the 2015 Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.

Disney World announced their hard ticket holiday event today and it’s no surprise that it’s branded as Disney Very Merriest After Hours and not Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

The four-hour event will see the return of a full parade to the Magic Kingdom for the first time since March 2020. Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade will run during each event along with Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks.

Additionally, ticket holders will be allowed early entry to the park and the ability to see both the holiday fireworks during the event as well as Magic Kingdom’s forthcoming nighttime spectacular, Disney Enchantment, before the event starts. The After Hours event officially starts at 9pm and ticket holders will be allowed entry to the park as early as 7pm.

There will be a couple of usual holiday party features like holiday overlays of Jingle Cruise and a holiday themed Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor show, snowfall on Main Street, a dance party in Tomorrowland, complimentary snacks (this sounds like it’s expanded as it lists ice cream novelties, popcorn, seasonal treats, and select bottled beverages instead of the usual cookies and cocoa), and characters in holiday attire.

The surprising thing with this event is the price. In 2019 Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party tickets started at $99. This year’s After Hours event will start at $169, yes, a 70% increase. And there are only four nights at that price. Other nights are $189, $209, $229, and even $249 for the dates closest to Christmas. I have enjoyed the party in years past, but at this price, I’m out unless reports start coming out of extremely limited capacity.

Annual Passholders and DVC members will be able to get $10 off select nights in November. Tickets go on sale to the general public on August 20. Guests of select Disney Resort hotels, the Swan and Dolphin Hotels, and Shades of Green can book their tickets starting August 17.