Dis­ney’s Hal­loween at­trac­tion grows up with Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash

The Korea Times - - LIFESTYLE - By Pam Kra­gen

With witch­ing sea­son right around the corner, South­ern Cal­i­for­nia theme parks are rolling out their sep­a­rate-ticket sea­sonal Hal­loween haunts.

Since Knott’s Berry Farm launched its Knott’s Scary Farm event in 1973 — mak­ing it the first, largest and long­est-run­ning Hal­loween event at a U.S. theme park — other re­gional theme parks have be­gun cash­ing in with mostly pos­i­tive re­sults.

Among the events are Hal­loween Hor­ror Nights at Univer­sal Stu­dios, Fright Fest at Six Flags Magic Moun­tain, Brick-or-Treat at Le­goland Cal­i­for­nia and Hal­loween Spook­tac­u­lar at SeaWorld San Diego.

The Dis­ney­land Re­sort en­tered the Hal­loween party stakes in 2006 with a “not-too-scary” Mickey’s Hal­loween Party event that in­cluded tod­dler-friendly shows, trick-or-treat sta­tions and spe­cial mer­chan­dise and food. It started at Dis­ney Cal­i­for­nia Ad­ven­ture park, then moved to Dis­ney­land park in 2010 be­fore tak­ing a break this year to in­tro­duce a new themed event that’s so suc­cess­ful it has al­ready sold out for the sea­son.

The new Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash, which pre­miered Sept. 17 and con­tin­ues on se­lect nights through Hal­loween, takes place at Dis­ney Cal­i­for­nia Ad­ven­ture. The Dis­ney vil­lain-themed event was de­signed to take a big­ger bite out of the theme park haunt mar­ket by aim­ing for a slightly broader age de­mo­graphic than the old event.

No, the Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash doesn’t have scary adult-themed walk­through mon­ster mazes like those at Knott’s, Magic Moun­tain and Univer­sal Stu­dios, but the new pro­gram­ming is just eerie, eye-pop­ping and mys­te­ri­ous enough that it ex­pands its ap­peal to pre-teens and young-at­heart adults.

Named for the bois­ter­ous bag-of­bugs vil­lain in Dis­ney’s “The Night­mare Be­fore Christ­mas,” the Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash in­cludes a fresh­ened-up Hal­loween pa­rade, an all-new World of Color show on the Pixar Pier lake, walk-through at­trac­tions, a dance party for all ages, char­ac­ter en­coun­ters and enough trick-or-treat sta­tions to fill a full-size back­pack with candy, if that’s what you re­ally want to do.

Tick­ets are $110, which may sound steep un­til you rec­og­nize the great se­cret of spe­cial-ticket events. It’s vir­tu­ally the same price as a day­time ad­mis­sion ticket but it comes with all-you-want free trick-or-treat candy. And ticket sales are strictly lim­ited, so wait lines for rides range from nonex­is­tent to 10 or 15 min­utes. Ticket-hold­ers can also en­ter the park three hours early, so that’s nine hours in the park, which is plenty of time to ride every ride and see every show with plenty of time left over for trick-or-treat­ing.

Dis­ney parks don’t al­low adults to dress in cos­tume dur­ing reg­u­lar day­time hours, but they’re OK at the Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash. Dur­ing open­ing week of the event, many of the cos­tumed party-go­ers were adults in elab­o­rate home­made cos­tumes of Dis­ney char­ac­ters from “Toy Story,” “In­side Out,” “Hocus Pocus,” “Night­mare Be­fore Christ­mas” and many more.

Af­ter dark, much of the magic of the Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash is in the com­put­er­ized video pro­jec­tion tech­nol­ogy that has trans­formed the nightly fire­works show next door on Dis­ney­land’s Main Street U.S.A. The Carthay Cir­cle build­ing, near the en­trance to Dis­ney Cal­i­for­nia Ad­ven­ture, is an over­size can­vas for a mes­mer­iz­ing and fast-chang­ing mix of pro­jec­tion de­signs of snaking vines, fly­ing bats and other spooky crea­tures.

(San Diego Union-Tri­bune/Tri­bune News)

San Diego Union-Tri­bune-Tri­bune News Ser­vice

The “Fright­fully Fun Pa­rade” at Dis­ney Cal­i­for­nia Ad­ven­ture Park is one of the fea­tures of the new sep­a­rate-ticket Oo­gie Boo­gie Bash be­ing of­fered on se­lect nights through Oct. 31.

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