Tips for the 3-park, round-the-clock Disney event on May 24th

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Have you ever wondered to yourself, “Man, I REALLY wish I could ride Space Mountain at 1AM!” If you have thought that, then you’ll get a chance on May 24, 2013.

Although this is not the first time the Disney parks stayed open for 24 hours straight, this is however the first time all three parks will be open on the same day (last year, Disney California Adventure did not open along with the others).

Our first-ever, three-park all-night party is happening at the Magic Kingdom Park in Florida and Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park in California. The parks will stay open from 6 a.m., May 24 to 6 a.m., May 25, 2013, local time. — DisneyParks Blog

There is a special Monsters theme to the event to announce the new Disney/Pixar movie “Monsters University” coming out June 21, 2013. In true Disney fashion, there will be special places in the park where they will inject a little more Monsters to promote the film and “celebrate the bi-coastal kick-off of our Disney Parks Monstrous Summer.” (see more details)

If you do plan on attending one of the parks on this day, there are several things I want you to keep in mind (because I care about you):

  • It is Memorial Day weekend — one of the most popular holiday weekends for tourism.
  • Disneyland Grad Night is May 9-31 (for those in California) (EDIT: Cars Land, Paradise Pier, Pacific Wharf and Twilight Zone Tower of Terror will be available exclusively to Grad Nite guests from as early as 10:15 p.m. (May 24) until 3:30 a.m. (May 25).
  • There was much discontent about last year’s all-nighter event, reporting long waits, overcrowding, no parking, etc.
  • Don’t get mad at Disney if you had to wait 45 minutes to get a cup of coffee or stand in line for almost 2 hours for a wimpy ride.
  • Ticket sales and entry for last year’s event stalled for almost 2 hours because there were simply too many people.

Still plan on going? Being a passholder myself, here are my tips for creating an easier time for your party on this long day:

  • Go with a small crowd, too many people in an already overcrowded place is stressful. You’ll spend more time looking for other members of the party than actually enjoying your day.
  • Bring your own water and snacks to the park. Long wait-times at eateries will no doubt make for an unpleasant experience.
  • Use a backpack to carry your stuff, not a messenger bag. It will be much easier to weave through crowds.
  • Use public transit or a cab to get to the park. Parking will be atrocious.
  • Be sure to GET THERE EARLY.
  • Plan out the rides you want to hit up and get those FASTPASS tickets before they run out (read more about Disney’s FASTPASS system).
  • Be well rested as people have slept on benches last year. Last thing you need is to be pick-pocketed while knocked out.
  • Download the “Disney Parks Mobile Magic” app or other apps like MouseWait onto your smartphone to get wait times, location details, and general park updates.
  • Alcohol is available at Disney California Adventure (EDIT: Alcohol is in fact available at the park, and will be served until 2am at Carthay Circle Lounge, Golden Vine Winery, Award Weiners and Taste Pilots’ Grill)
  • If you aren’t an annual passholder yet, now’s the time to get one. You’ll skip the ticket lines and can get discounts on most products and food. Otherwise, purchase your tickets in advance!
  • Follow these accounts on Twitter to stay up-to-date on announcements and special events throughout the day: @Disneyland@WaltDisneyWorld@DCAToday@DisneylandToday and follow #Disney24 (and I will be there too! @rockyvy).
  • And while you’re there, be sure to check the Iron Man exhibit presented at Innoventions inside Tomorrowland.

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Rocky Vy
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<a href="http://www.artofonline.com">Digital marketing consultant</a> by trade, a freelance writer by passion. Also, anything that involves innovative tech, fashion, entrepreneurialism, Pantone 021C and pandas are cool, too. Follow him <a href="http://www.twitter.com/rockyvy">@rockyvy</a>.