Over the years, Disney has had a number of absolutely amazing parades — from classics like Walt Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade and SpectroMagic to ones only found at hard-ticketed events like Mickey’s Boo-to-You Halloween Parade. Newer parades have also been a hit, like the Festival of Fantasy parade, which debuted at Walt Disney World Resort’s Magic Kingdom in 2014 and Magic Happens, which came to Disneyland Resort in 2020.
However, Disney has one parade that is heads and tails above the rest, but Disney has it sitting in storage. I’m talking about the fantastic Paint the Night Parade.
Paint the Night Parade was a parade designed for the 60th Anniversary of Disneyland Resort. The parade combined incredible floats, classic characters, bright and colorful lights, and a song that you can’t help but dance to (courtesy of Wreck-It Ralph). Paint the Night celebrated Disney characters new and old, as well as those from Pixar. There was a Mack truck from Cars, a giant drum that Peter Pan sat atop, and even dancing candelabras to honor the classic film Beauty and the Beast.
Paint the Night ran at Disneyland Park for over a year, until it was replaced by the — in this writer’s opinion — highly overrated Main Street Electrical Parade. Then, in 2018, Paint the Night was brought back, this time showing in Disney California Adventure. Even though the Frozen float was missing — due to the cable car wires throughout the Park — the parade was still as popular as it had been.
Sadly, Disney stopped the parade in late 2018, and it has been sitting in storage ever since. And that is a huge mistake on Disney’s part. Paint the Night embraced and honored all the magic Disney has created over the years. The floats were new and modern, which was symbolic of the progress that Disney has made over the years.
For some reason, Disney insists on repeatedly bringing back The Main Street Electrical Parade to Disneyland. Every time it “glows away”, it isn’t for long. I get it. It’s a nostalgic parade that evokes happy memories for a lot of people. However, it is far from Disney’s best. Sure, the new floats that were added to the MSEP were beautiful. But that doesn’t negate the fact that the parade moves at a glacial pace and the music gets a little grating after a few minutes because it just repeats.
Right now, there isn’t a nighttime parade at Disneyland, but it’s the perfect time to have one. The Walt Disney Company is celebrating its 100 anniversary, and there are two new shows — Wondrous Journeys at Disneyland Park and World of Color – ONE at Disney California Adventure. Even though Disney is known for its fantastic nighttime spectaculars, it’s even more known for its parades. So why not bring back the best U.S. parade it has ever created?
Dear Disney, please bring back Paint the Night!