We returned a few days ago from a nearly three week trip in Paris, beginning with the kickoff of the Disneyland Paris 25th anniversary on March 26th and ending with the official anniversary on April 12th, 2017. The big day was certainly the most grand event I have ever experienced in a Disney park over 40 years, with upwards of 150 characters (many very rare), a huge Disneyland Paris Cast Member flash mob and hundreds of performers – along with costumes created just for the day.
This was the second time I’ve been in Disneyland Paris during a big anniversary milestone. The first was for the 10th anniversary in 2002. It was really just a quick one-day event, which extended out to a week. Five years later, I was in Disneyland Paris a few weeks after the 15th kicked off, and I believe that celebration lasted a couple of years. I’m not sure how long the 25th will go on for, with the new Disney Stars on Parade, Disney Illuminations and other shows and decorations that were created for the anniversary.
I’ll have an article soon about what daily guests can expect, but here is a look at April 12th, 2017 with almost 150 photos and several videos. It was an exciting day, one of the most exciting I have certainly experienced in any Disney park and it was wonderful to share it with friends. The song “Everyday’s a Celebration” was played all day long, as the official song of the 25th day.
Almost everyone we knew planned to arrive to Disneyland Paris by 6:30 a.m. It was still dark out, and the line was longer than I expected.
Guests weren’t allowed into the first gates for quite some time, and there wasn’t really any crowd managing outside (fortunately it was much better inside the park).
Daylight broke while we waited.
A lot of guests ran into the park, but it was too pretty a view to not take a photo of.
Jeff had entered into the park with a friend through the Infinity (annual pass) entrance. I went through the usual entrance, and found a spot not far from Walt’s. Jeff was closer to the castle.
The park opened at 8:00 a.m., I went through the turnstiles at 8:02 a.m. From that point, it was an hour until showtime. While the crowd wasn’t as huge as what we’d see in Florida, it was tight quarters and I was glad to be early enough for a spot on the rope.
I could see a little of what was going on near Sleeping Beauty Castle. What I didn’t realize at the time was that there were show segments for every land happening there, which is shown not only on Jeff’s video, but on the official Disneyland Paris video (which is terrific and on YouTube).
Here is our video of the full Grand Celebration, and then there are plenty of photos below.
Mickey was dressed in his usual costume, but that didn’t last for too long.
There were twelve characters that were prominent through the day: Mickey, Minnie, Shellie May, Duffy, Daisy, Donald, Goofy, Max, Pluto, Chip, Dale and Clarice. They all received special costumes for the remainder of the day. Shellie May and Max are not characters normally found here, I don’t know if Shellie May has ever appeared. Duffy no longer does.
Clarice is quite popular at Disneyland Paris in some of the parades.
The Main Street group was up next, and that included Marie with other Aristocats, Olaf, Mary Poppins with Bert, and Main Street performers.
Bert stops to greet a young fan.
Toulouse from The Aristocats greets a guest.
Marie looked adorable with her hat and necklace.
Main Street performers.
The Main Street group stuck around my location for a while. At this time, I didn’t know the next show segment was on stage by the castle.
These performers reminded me of streetmosphere, but in Disneyland Paris that doesn’t seem to be a thing.
There were so many performers in the parade.
Marie and Toulouse were holding hands.
Mary Poppins and Bert arrived with a penguin.
Berlioz then showed up.
Panchito and Jose were in the next group.
This is the Frontierland segment, and included Brer Fox.
Gauchito and Burrito (not yet pictured) from The Three Cabelleros were part of the procession.
King Louie was part of the Adventureland segment.
King Louie with a performer.
Baloo greets a guest.
Jane has a moment with Rafiki.
King Louie hugs Jane.
Jane strikes a pose.
Baloo and King Louie.
Captain Jack Sparrow and pirate Angelica pose back to back. She has met at Walt Disney World previously, but I don’t think she’s been in Paris at all. There are a variety of characters that are rare to different parks, some are rare to all parks.
Captain Jack Sparrow and Angelica.
The main twelve characters returned on bikes and new costumes.
Clarice in her new outfit.
Confetti shoots from the buildings, but this show isn’t over yet.
Jose goes for a high five.
Jim and B.E.N. from Treasure Planet arrived, these characters are rare everywhere!
Jessica Rabbit in an interesting costume.
Elena of Avalor is new for Paris, as are Joy and Sadness.
Sofia the First goes back to back with Roger Rabbit.
Duffy wears his special costume.
Big Hero 6 was well represented, except there was no Baymax (it would be likely too difficult to walk the parade route).
Daisy Duck in her 25th day outfit.
Hercules and Meg.
Goofy and Max met guests on this day, as did many of the specially costumed characters. They were very popular!
Carl and Russell.
Bolt, Mittens and Oswald are next.
Dale arrives in fashion.
King Leonidas from Bedknobs and Broomsticks.
Remy and Emile.
One of my favorite parts of the show was the large Cast Member “flash mob” as they made their way down Main Street.
I think it was over 1000 Cast Members dancing to the song.
Cast Members from a wide variety of roles were often in their costumes.
Everyone seemed to be having a great time.
Cast Member Manuel is very popular at Disneyland Paris.
The Star Tours group seemed to have practiced their performance quite a bit.
It was fun to see all the Cast Members taking part.
This is the end of the Grand Celebration morning parade, but check out page 2 for MANY more characters in the 25th Anniversary cavalcade and the end of the night “Kiss Goodnight”!
On to Page 2!