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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Mickey's Halloween Party - Is It Worth $65?

Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland
A Disney Parks Blog Phoo

I have an oil well. Three of them actually. Thanks to some good fortune and a good deal of foresight by my mom's family 100 years ago or so to retain mineral rights on the family farm in North Dakota, the Disneyland Traveler is an oil tycoon (or oil baron, I'm trying to decide which label sounds better). Yep.... I get 0.00042206% of every barrel this baby below pulls out of the ground.

Continental Resources Akron 1-27H Oil Well
McKenzie County, North Dakota
Satellite Image Google Maps
On the other two wells (no pictures, but I think they kind of all look alike) I receive a whopping 0.00009722% of the production. Woo-Hoo. I'm rolling in it. How much is this worth? Depending on the price per barrel when the oil is sold, about $350 - $450 a month. Sweet. 

My story about being an oil tycoon does have a purpose as it is getting to the point at Disneyland where you almost need to be an oil magnate, or a doctor, or a lawyer to really be able to afford the place. The price of annual passes and park hopper tickets skyrocketed before the opening of Cars Land last summer. Food and drink prices are continuing to get bumped up. Disney is really following an economic principal which says to raise prices as far as you can take them before your business begins suffering negatively. We are probably at that point right about now.

So in addition park admission, Disney is now featuring some separate admission events and right now is the Mickey Halloween parties which take place on Tuesdays and Fridays along with Halloween weekend. While there are some small opportunities for discounts, the general price is about $65 for adults and a bit less for kids who get the opportunity to trick or treat in Disneyland in costume. For a family of four let's say, that is one expensive Halloween experience. Come on oil well.

it's a small world gets the Halloween treatment
A Disney Parks Blog Photo

So what does that $65 buy you? Well, first of all, they chase all the regular paying park guests out of the park around 6 pm as the special admission Halloween event guests are required to wear a special wrist band to remain. The special admission event allows you to enter the park at 4 pm. With a lot of people chased out, lines for attractions (the ones that remain open) shrink to almost walk-on status. You also get the special Halloween Screams firework display which is only featured to during the nights of the Halloween events.

The Halloween Castle - A Disney Parks Blog Photo

And then there are the special Disney touches which all add up to a very special (but expensive) night including trick or treating for the kids. Is it worth it? It all comes down to "can you afford it?" Disney admission pricing is a hot button issue as a hard economy has forced many people away from Disneyland while some hard-liners insist that Disneyland is a luxury, not a necessity, and its always been that way. 

Mark Twain sails away on the mist covered Rivers of America.
A Disney Parks Blog Photo

So does Disneyland Traveler oil tycoon with his millions stashed away (HA!) want to lay down the extra cash to attend Mickey's Halloween Party? Well, as of now, it is an event I still cannot afford, at least not without a year of planning ahead maybe. And even if I was flushed with cash, I'm still not so sure. Disney has temporarily priced me out of its park but that will probably all change by next year when I know I will be going back. But you know, I'm kind of angry about Disney jacking up prices when many people are financially hurting and by creating special paid "events" that relatively few can afford.  I'm going back to Disneyland alright, and I may go back with pockets full of cash (six more oil wells are currently in the drilling process on the family property) but my plan is to look for every conceivable way to cut corners and not give Disney my money. They didn't seem to cut cash strapped fans a break when things looked bleak so now the shoe is going to be on the other foot. I don't need special events. I don't need souvenirs. I don't need to stay in a hotel on Disney property. I don't need to eat all my meals inside the parks when there are perfectly good places to eat in Downtown Disney. Petty? Spiteful? Yeah - a little bit.

A performance by the Cadavor Dans
A Disney Parks Blog Photo

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