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Mystery Of the Mysterious Black Ring Over Disney Has Been Solved!

black ring disneyland
Credit: UNILAD/Kyle Hawkins

Right around Valentine’s Day, Disneyland Guests were shocked to see an ominous black ring floating in the sky above The Happiest Place on Earth. For such a magical place, the black ring was anything but. Pictures of the black ring started circulating on social media, with many asking if there was a fire, if the ring was a UFO, or if someone had brought something illegal into the Parks that would cause the ring. Maybe some nefarious Disney villain had taken control, and things were about to go awry!

UFO? 😀
Black ring in the sky floating over Disneyland in California.

Well, after weeks of waiting, wondering, and looking for the black ring to reappear, we finally have an answer. We warn you, though, it’s probably not as exciting as you were hoping it would be. The Orange County Register spoke to Disney; here’s what they said:

The truth is far less dramatic — but uniquely Disney.

The quickly dissipating smoke rings are a standard side effect of the flame effects used during nighttime spectaculars above Main Street USA and during “World of Color,” according to Disneyland officials.

The return of nighttime spectaculars after the extended pandemic closures of Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have made the rings more noticeable — and popular fodder for social media postings.

The strange sightings above Sleeping Beauty Castle, Splash Mountain and the Incredicoaster aren’t new. Disneyland fans have noticed the smoke rings for years — particularly on dewy nights.

world of color one disneyland

World of Color — One Credit: Disney Parks Blog

Black rings are not the only rings that Guests may see floating in the sky when they visit Disneyland Resort. Disneyland is in the middle of a city, and the area is very dry. Because of that, Disney has to be very careful when it puts on its nighttime fireworks shows. If it is too windy at higher elevations, the show may be canceled in order to prevent possible fires if the embers from the fireworks are blown too far away. When Disneyland officials are trying to figure out if it is safe to show the fireworks, they will release a white cloud of smoke and track its movement.

Wondrous Journeys, Disneyland Resort

Credit: Disney

The Walt Disney Company is currently celebrating its 100th anniversary, and there are a number of exciting things happening at Disneyland Resort. Two nighttime spectaculars happening (weather permitting) — Wondrous Journeys at Disneyland Park and World of Color – ONE at Disney California Adventure. There are also new food offerings, fun merchandise, and characters wearing special outfits.

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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