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A Guide to Disney Jollywood Nights

Jollywood Nights Lanyard and Map

Christmastime at Walt Disney World is my favorite season to visit the theme parks! You'll find Christmas decorations throughout the parks and resorts, holiday snacks and music to really get you in the mood for the holidays. This year, Disney announced a brand new, nighttime party at Disney's Hollywood Studios called Disney Jollywood Nights that is sure to add some Hollywood glamour and holiday cheer to the festive season. 

This separately ticketed event features glitz and glitter, merry mashups, attractions, characters, event-exclusive shows and themed entertainment. 

Know Before You Go

In its inaugural year of 2023, Disney Jollywood Nights took place on 10 select nights from November 11th through December 20th and ticket prices varied by date. In 2023, prices ranged from $159-$179 per ticket, plus tax. Note there is no separate pricing for children's tickets. If you're an Annual Passholder or Disney Vacation Club Member, you could save $10 per ticket, valid for all event nights.

It's very important to know before arriving at Disney's Hollywood Studios that this is a separately ticketed event which means that your general admission ticket does not include admission to this nighttime party. Each party night, Disney's Hollywood Studios will close at 8pm to day guests and the party officially takes place from 8:30pm to midnight. However, party ticket holders will be admitted to Disney's Hollywood Studios park as early as 7pm. That means party ticket holders get even more time to enjoy the park before the official party begins. It's also important to know that your Disney Jollywood Nights ticket does not require an additional theme park ticket or park pass reservation to attend. 

If you are planning to attend Disney Jollywood Nights in future years, you'll want to remember that tickets in 2023 went on sale in late June and some of the event dates did sell out. 

Now, let's review what you can expect at the event.
Christmas Tree on Echo Lake

Holly Jolly Entertainment

One of my favorite parts of Disney Jollywood Nights is the entertainment offerings! The event includes three event-exclusive shows and several themed entertainment offerings throughout the park. 

What's This? Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas Sing-Along is one of the event-exclusive shows located at the Hyperion Theater. The show is approximately 30 minutes long and shown once every hour during the event. This is a must-do experience at this event! I'm not even a Nightmare Before Christmas fan (blasphemy, I know!) and I really enjoyed this sing-along. The Jack Skellington puppet and Oogie Boogie scene were so well done. Make sure not to miss this one!
What's This? Tim Burton's
The Nightmare Before Christmas Sing-Along
Disney Holidays in Hollywood is another event-exclusive show that takes place at the Theater of the Stars (usually home to Beauty and the Beast - Live on Stage). This show is also around 30 minutes and is shown once every hour during the event. The show is filled with the glitz and glamour of a vintage Hollywood television Christmas special, complete with musical numbers and commercial breaks. It's a really cute show and in my opinion, is another must-see during Disney Jollywood Nights!
Disney Jollywood Nights concludes at 12:30am with Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!, a holiday nighttime show with stunning fireworks, lasers, lights, projections, music and clips from favorite Disney films. There's also snow on Hollywood Boulevard which adds a final touch of magic to a very festive evening. 
Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! Nighttime Firework Show
In addition to the three shows, there are additional entertainment offerings available intermittently throughout the night. You'll find the Twilight Soiree at the Tip Top Club located in the Courtyard of The Hollywood Tower Hotel with swoon worthy music from a live band. It's a very vintage vibe that fits perfectly with the Tower of Terror. The Courtyard was fairly congested when I visited so I didn't stay long but I did enjoy some of the holiday tunes before I continued on my way. 

If you're looking for a more lively vibe (see what I did there?!), look no further than Holiday Fiesta en la Calle on Commissary Lane. The Latin band brought a really fun energy that it was hard not to dance my way down Commissary Lane. 

Back on Sunset Boulevard is Sunset Seasons Greetings, a series of dazzling holiday projections and lasers on the Hollywood Tower Hotel. 
Twilight Soiree at the Tip Top Club

Specialty Dining and Snacks

Unlike Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, Disney Jollywood Nights doesn't offer any snacks or holiday treats included with your admission ticket. There are no free cookies or hot chocolate at this event which is a slight bummer. There are, however, plenty of holiday snacks and festive drinks available for purchase. 

I tried a few snacks and drinks at the event and some were better than others. I had read good reviews of the Beer Margarita from BaseLine Tap House so I was really looking forward to trying this drink. Sadly, I did not enjoy it and I usually love beer and margaritas. I guess I just don't love them combined. 
Beer Margarita from BaseLine Tap House
ABC Commissary had so many items to choose from that it was hard to decide on just one so I ordered three! The cuisine was Latin Fare and I ordered the Chicken Empanadas with Street Corn, Mexican Hot Cocoa Cheesecake and the Oaxaca Old Fashioned. The chicken empanadas were very enjoyable. The street corn was a very nice element and I thought it tasted best when eaten with the empanadas. The Mexican Cocoa Cheesecake was also very yummy. It was a really nice, light dessert. The Oaxaca Old Fashioned was where I chose poorly. It was a really strong drink, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but just wasn't my favorite. 
Chicken Empanadas with Street Corn, Mexican Hot Cocoa Cheesecake,
and Oaxaca Old Fashioned from ABC Commissary
The Market in Pixar Plaza had some super snacks that I couldn't resist ordering! I ordered the Frozone's Snowball Macaroons and the Buffalo Chicken Spring Rolls. These were both delicious and I would absolutely order them again! 
Frozone's Snowball Macaroons
Buffalo Chicken Spring Rolls
If you're looking for something more than quick service options, there is also Jazzy Holidays at The Hollywood Brown Derby. This specialty dining option is only available via a walk-up list in the My Disney Experience app. Jazzy Holidays serves up an exclusive menu of light bites and craft cocktails while you listen to jazzy holiday tunes. I'm bummed I didn't get to experience Jazzy Holidays but there just wasn't enough time to do everything. 
Jazzy Holidays at The Hollywood Brown Derby

Character Greetings

Character meet and greets is another area where Disney Jollywood Nights really shines. (The lines for the characters weren't so wonderful but the characters that were available to meet were awesome!) Echo Lake Holiday Celebration is a throwback of Disney Channel favorites Chip 'n' Dale Rescue Rangers, Phineas & Ferb and Max as Powerline. I was SO excited to see Max as Powerline! I absolutely loved A Goofy Movie and the Powerline songs are STILL my jam. 
Mickey and Friends Holiday Greetings at Animation Courtyard is where you'll find Goofy, Pluto, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck and the main mice, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in festive photo opps. We didn't make it over to this holiday greeting which is another regret of mine from the evening. 

Holidays a la Mode at Pixar Plaza is home to Edna Mode and Frozone meet and greets. This was by far the shortest lines we saw for characters all evening and it's probably because these characters aren't exclusive to the party or in festive holiday attire. 
There were several other characters that made appearances at Disney Jollywood Night that weren't included on the event map such as Santa Duffy, Jiminy Cricket, Mary Poppins and more. 

Event Photos

Your admission ticket to Disney Jollywood Nights includes complimentary downloads of your Disney PhotoPass digital photos and videos from the event. It was really nice that something complimentary was included with our admission tickets. I love photos so I was very happy to be able to get our PhotoPass photos and other videos from the evening. My regret was that we didn't take more photos however, I did get some good ones that I used on my family's Christmas card this year. 
In addition to the regular PhotoPass photos, there are also Magic Shots throughout the park and a Robotic Arm and Camera Array in Animation Courtyard. We did the special photo experience located inside the Disney Junior Play and Dance. We had the choice between doing Slo-Glo, a slo-mo video, or Celebration, a chance to dance in the video. My family out voted me and picked Slo-Glo so that's what we went with. The end result was actually really cute! 
Photo of our Slo-Glo video
As you may have noticed from our photos, we dressed up for the event. Disney encourages guests to get glammed up or show off their unique style, as long as they follow their dress code. I wasn't sure if many people would dress up but I was pleasantly surprised to see so many people in their holiday best. We saw a range of outfits, from people dressed up to the nines in vintage dresses and suits to people in a holiday shirt or sweater. The majority of people we saw were dressed up in some capacity for the event so no matter how dressed up you want to get, you shouldn't feel out of place.

Tips & Tricks

There's simply not enough time at the event to see and do everything in one night so make sure to read our tips and tricks to help you in your event planning:
  • The event is way too short to fit everything in so have everyone in your party pick their top "must-do" activities to help you prioritize your evening. 
  • Arrive at the turnstiles prior to 7pm so you can enter the park before the party officially begins at 8:30pm. This will give you an hour and a half to ride some attractions, eat dinner and finalize your game plan to maximize your time at the event.
  • If the event exclusive shows are at the top of your "must-do" list, then make sure to see those shows earlier in the evening so you don't miss them. That way if timing doesn't work out for one of the earlier shows, you will still have time to see one of the later showings. 
  • Take advantage of the complimentary photos included with your admission and make time for Disney PhotoPass photos. 
  • Embrace the holiday spirit and dress up! Whether you want to go full glitz in an old Hollywood evening gown or just put on your favorite holiday sweatshirt, have some fun and dress up for the event. 

Review

Overall, we really enjoyed Disney Jollywood Nights! This was the first year of the event so we weren't sure what to expect and after a not so stellar first night, I was worried. I kept reading reviews and tried to lower my expectations so I wouldn't be disappointed. Luckily, Disney made some small changes to help alleviate some of the issues with that first night of the party. I also made sure to prioritize what things I wanted to do the most and had my family do the same so we all could enjoy the party. 

For my children, their priority was riding some of the attractions and the event really came through with low wait times! We rode Slinky Dog Dash with about a 20 minute wait around 11pm and all of the other attractions were a 5 minute wait or walk on for most of the evening. The event was mainly advertised as a more adult focused event but my 7 and 4 year old had lots of fun. 

One issue that Disney couldn't fix this year was that the event was just too short. I knew going in that we wouldn't be able to see and do everything but those 4 hours really flew by! Especially with 1 hour of our night being spent watching the shows. The shows were really great though so I wouldn't have wanted to skip them. 

Although complimentary cookies and hot chocolate weren't included in the event, Disney did hand out beverage coasters as you exited the party. It was a nice, unexpected treat at the end of the evening!

I'm hopeful that Disney will bring Disney Jollywood Nights back next year with some additional improvements. 
Disney Jollywood Nights Coasters

Did you attend Disney Jollywood Nights this year? And if not, is attending this special event on your must-do list? Let us know in the comments. 

Ashley has been a Disney Parks fan from an early age and loves anything vintage Disney. You can email Ashley at ashley@kingdomkonsultant.com.

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