Good gamble or bad: Will Disneyland be crowded on Thanksgiving Day?

Will Disneyland be crowded on Thanksgiving Day?

  • Yes, terribly crowded, worse than a summer day (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Yes, but better than a summer day or New Year's Day (0%, 0 Votes)
  • No, everybody will be at home stuffing themsevles and watching football (100%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 0

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I think that Thanksgiving Day is going to be a good day to visit Disneyland and here is why. My logic is that I think on Thanksgiving Day, unlike Christmas or New Years, people just want to sit at home, eat and watch football.

I know I could call the Disney PR people and ask them,  but I kind of don’t want to know now because our plans are set.

Michael and I went to Disneyland on Christmas Day in 1995 when we were both covering Penn State at the Rose Bowl. The park was downright empty. So I am hopeful. I can’t imagine it being more crowded on Thanksgiving than a regular summer day and I think it will be better.

One of the best Disney experiences we ever had was a fall break at Disney World. It was an odd week and not many school systems were out. The park was all decorated for Halloween and the crowds were so light we could jump on and off rides.

So what do you think: Good bet or bad bet? Have you been to either Disney park on Thanksgiving or Christmas? Is it better or worse than a weekend, spring break or a summer day?

68 comments Add your comment

Ostrich Racer

November 20th, 2012
12:43 pm

The crowds should be down on Thursday, but I’d definitely get a restaurant reservation. Friday will be wall-to-wall. Have fun!

ATL06

November 20th, 2012
12:51 pm

I think it should be less crowded. As I said in your other column my son went to DW about 4 years ago with his Grandparents and he said it was not as crowded as it had been when we went for springbreak prior to that. I would just try to get an early start and map out where you would like to start the day and end the day. Most of all enjoy every minute of it.

E

November 20th, 2012
12:52 pm

I can only speak from experience as to WDW. We went for Thanksgiving week a few years ago with our then 3 year old daughter. The park was pretty busy on Thanksgiving day itself, but not unmanageable. With Fast Passes, we still got to ride a lot of stuff. Friday was BANANAS! The crowds were unmanagemable, so we ended up going to Animal Kingdom, instead of Magic Kingdom. I’m with Ostrich Racer….definitely have a dinner reservation for Thursday. You will need it! Have fun!!!

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
12:56 pm

“Will Disneyland be crowded on Thanksgiving Day?”

Who cares? I’m not going to Disneyland/world and couldn’t care less if you get stuck in line to ride Dumbo.

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
12:57 pm

“Michael and I went to Disneyland on Christmas Day in 1995 when we were both covering Penn State at the Rose Bowl.”

Penn State. Isnt’ that the school that covered up child rape?

Suzie Q

November 20th, 2012
1:01 pm

Why would you go to Disneyland prior to having kids???

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
1:05 pm

“Why would you go to Disneyland prior to having kids???”

Creepy.

Techmom

November 20th, 2012
1:32 pm

I know lots of people who love Disney and go with or without children. Apparently it’s a super-popular honeymoon destination. Not for me. We took our son to Disneyland once while visiting So. California and have never bothered with Disney World. We are not stand-in-line, amusement park people. Occasionally we’ll visit Wild Adventures when we’re in S. Ga visiting family but that’s really b/c there’s nothing else to do down there!

Have fun TWG! I’m guessing Thanksgiving day won’t be so bad but the rest of the weekend will be nuts. And I do agree that experiences are much better gifts than toys. My parents have always done great things with our son and that’s exactly what he remembers (camping in Colorado, going to the beach, SeaWorld, riding the Duckboats and Incline Railway in Chattanooga, etc.) He couldn’t tell you what my in-laws have given him over the years other than the few times they gave him money and even then, he couldn’t tell you what he spent it on.

El Mongol

November 20th, 2012
1:36 pm

Yes, I think it will be crowded since California is a Godless State I doubt folks will be home thanking him for anything.

Dozer

November 20th, 2012
1:47 pm

This entire week is crazy in Disneyland, especially Thanksgiving. I have friends who visit every year as they have no family and are a family of 4. It’s crowded every year, just not as bad as New Years.

El Mongol, why are you judging people that don’t stay home? What ever happened to “Do not judge, or you too will be judged?” You don’t know everyone’s story. Yes, people shouldn’t go shopping on Thanksgiving if they can stay with family and spend time together. But you’re just as bad if you’re calling California a “Godless State.” California has the highest number of Mormons outside of Utah. Most Catholics in the US. And a large population of Protestants, Jewish, and Muslims. But non-religious people can be good people as well. Being religious doesn’t make you a good person. Being a good person makes you a good person.

Typical closed-minded judgmental ignorant person.

Mayhem

November 20th, 2012
1:58 pm

I am stunned by all the hatred on the last blog, and it’s already started here. Being miserable is a choice you have made. I choose to be happy (whether or not I spelled that right is not my concern right now…).

I guess some people are SO miserable they need to bring others down to their level. Not gonna happen over here. You can’t take my happiness away. You can’t take my smile. You can’t take my love of family and tradition, just because you are unhappy. I won’t allow it!!!

So do yourselves a favor and try to focus on the positive. I’m sure there is SOMETHING in your world that makes you somewhat happy. Find it, and focus on it and quit spewing your hatred.

Mayhem

November 20th, 2012
1:58 pm

@Dozer – you just judged someone for judging others….LOL.

ATL Born and Raised

November 20th, 2012
2:03 pm

@Dozer Thanksgiving is a secular holiday, just FYI.

ssidawg

November 20th, 2012
2:05 pm

Even if it’s crowded you’ll still have fun sharing the day with your family. Happy Thanksgiving!

MANGLER

November 20th, 2012
2:19 pm

I know people who work at Disney (and Universal). Each employee gets to “walk in” 2 guests at the gates. Just sayin …

kimmer

November 20th, 2012
2:26 pm

Crowd forecaster says…..Busy on Thanksgiving day and much worse the two days after.

Figures if you had that idea it had to occur to a lot of others too.

Should still be enjoyable though and like you said, the trip is already set so might as well not worry about it. Just be there when the gates open.

motherjanegoose

November 20th, 2012
2:35 pm

We went to MGM… YEARS ago on a pass from someone I knew who worked at the Disney Credit Union. Then, they got 3 passes per day to walk guests in. The day we went, over spring break, the park was AT CAPACITY and closed by mid afternoon. Oh the park was open but no one else could get in. That cured me from ever going again, during spring break. Luckily, we had three FREE passes and only paid for one. I do not like to pay for anything when I have to stand in line. The first few weeks of December and late January are typically good times to go. I have not been in years though. Perhaps if we ever have Grandkids…haha!

Mother of 2

November 20th, 2012
3:08 pm

We’ve been down there on both Thanksgiving and Christmas, both are very manageable days. But beware the days just prior and just after. It can be a mad house! Have fun.

malleesmom

November 20th, 2012
3:16 pm

from Mousesavers.com: “Thanksgiving weekend. Expect it to be horribly crowded (the week leading up to Thanksgiving is busy, too), though the decorations will be up and the weather is normally very pleasant.” My guess is there is an ebb/flow to the day. Early should be manageable. Later could be challenging. I agree with whoever said, get a meal reservation in advance.

motherjanegoose

November 20th, 2012
3:55 pm

Question …do you expect the same crowds in Disneyworld as Disneyland? I have been to both parks but Disneyland has not been as crowded, IMHO. Anyone else?

Jeffrey

November 20th, 2012
4:32 pm

I honestly hope it’s not crowded and you and your kids have fun. But for anyone who likes good food, especially on a holiday? Not Disney. Their food is so bad it made the chilis in Valdosta seem like bacchanalia.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

November 20th, 2012
5:20 pm

We are good for food on Thursday. We have meal with princess reservations for lunch and then have a picnic dinner already paid for that gives us a Fast Pass for the World of Color light/water show. We are doing Californialand on Thursday because it’s supposed to be more crowded than Disneyland and I think Friday will be worse than Thursday. The new Cars Land opened in Californialand so that’s why it’s crazier than Disneyland right now. I have heard that you should get there right when it opens so it doesn’t get to capacity and you get locked out. We are planning to be at the door when it opens.

Judge Smails

November 20th, 2012
5:28 pm

I’m not usually as mean as Phil from Athens, but seriously, you get a paycheck to write about this stuff???

I could see if you were talking about some very compelling social matters, but lines at Disney World???

I guess I’m just jealous because I have to actually work for my money!

Dozer

November 20th, 2012
5:43 pm

@ Mayhem – I never claimed to be Christian or anything, so I’m not saying that I have to follow God’s word like El Mongol did blasting California as a Godless state. I’m tired of people who only do as I say, but not as I do. If they truly follow the word of God, then don’t contradict his word if it’s supposed to be truth.

@ATL Born and Raised – Thanksgiving has roots as a religious and cultural tradition, but became a secular holiday just like Halloween.

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
5:58 pm

Enter your comments here

Krys

November 20th, 2012
5:58 pm

HELL no it won’t be empty!!! I went last christmas thinking that everyone was gonna be home and it reached maximum capacity!!! We were like sardines on main street. DO NOT go on thanksgiving, unless you enjoy not doing a damn thing

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
5:59 pm

Judge Smails

I’m not a mean person. I just can’t fathom how someone can ask asinine questions and think that people take them seriously.

Phil from Athens

November 20th, 2012
6:01 pm

“Typical closed-minded judgmental ignorant person.”

I love irony.

Judge Smails

November 20th, 2012
6:11 pm

@ Phil from Athens – Great minds think alike. I wish I could get paid to write about this stuff.

The best time to do ANY major amusement park...

November 20th, 2012
6:12 pm

…is the first week of December, if you can get the kids out of school…

DB

November 20th, 2012
6:47 pm

It will be busy, but not NEARLY as busy as the day before and the day after!

http://www.isitpacked.com/disneyland-crowd-forecast-predictor-calendar/

It will be like a typical summer day — busy, but not the insane lines of the day before and the day/weekend after.

Don’t worry about it. Use the FastPass service to hit the rides that are a MUST. Don’t feel like the entire crowd must go together to each attraction. Split up to hit rides that have height limits, etc. vs. rides that younger ones can enjoy, and plan to meet back at a restaurant for lunch. Go to a show together, then hit some more rides, etc. Don’t try to do everything in one day — pick the MUSTS and if the other ones fit in, good, and if they don’t — hey, next time!

Check out these hints from L.A. natives:

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/feb/28/news/la-trb-disneyland-in-a-day-02201228

And, of course, there’s the Disneyland App, which shows wait times. :-)

http://touringplans.com/disneyland-app

Have a great time!

Me

November 20th, 2012
8:00 pm

I stated in a previous post that Thanksgiving Day is busy – not THE busiest but still busy. Been there, done that.
The week after, however, is historically the slowest.

El Mongol

November 20th, 2012
11:55 pm

Dozer said, “Being a good person makes you a good person.”

Exactly it makes you a good person, but not necessarily a Godly person there is indeed a difference.

As for my original post it was meant as a joke which I assumed this entire thread was.

Bill

November 21st, 2012
12:58 am

What Judge said. Momania has to be in denial about our men and women getting their limbs blown off in Afghanistan? So instead she is wondering about lines at Disneyland? What a joke. And why would a Georgia newspaper “writer” be asking about Disneyland anyhow? We are much closer to Disney World. Who the hell from Georgia goes to Disneyland? I guess Momania is living a charmed life and can fly out there on a whim. Seriously, get rid of this “writer.”

Bill

November 21st, 2012
1:14 am

I have to add, also, that I detest “mom” columns. Ever heard of motherly instinct? Real moms don’t need columns about being a mom. They automatically know how to be a mom.

El Mongol

November 21st, 2012
1:41 am

I think she is actually based out west which explains Anaheim instead of Orlando.

Jeff

November 21st, 2012
7:23 am

TWG, even if it is crowded, turn that into one of those life expereinces. Go have fun. You already know what the day will be like if you stay home. You’ve done that one before.

For the record, I’m done for the day. Anyone stealing my name after this isn’t me. But I suspect the nromal crowd on here would know that based on the comment anyway.

FCM, MJG, cat, shaggy, et al, you all have a safe holiday.

Mayhem

November 21st, 2012
7:33 am

Wow, thank you Bill for that insightful comment. I had no idea I didn’t need a blog to be a mom. Wow, thank you so much for clarifying that. My mom instinct NEVER kicked in until I started reading this blog.

And BTW – if you Detest Mom columns, why are you here?????

motherjanegoose

November 21st, 2012
7:36 am

Bill…I live in GA and I go to Disneyland. I have also been to Alaska. I have also seen people from Japan at Disneyworld. Seems like that is closer to Disneyland? New Yorkers go to Hawaii too. Do you get out much or just criticize?

I have been a Mom for almost 26 years and I often check in with other Moms. Some people also use a map and GPS instead of instinct, when traveling. Educate yourself and leanr from others.

El Mongol…don’t think…read.. YES SHE IS IN AZ. She moved there from GA, a while back. This has already been covered. You people come to the movie late and and are just now asking about the beginning?

@ Jeff…thanks you too. Not sure WHERE the kooks came from.

Blog friends…be safe and enjoy your Thanksgiving!

motherjanegoose

November 21st, 2012
7:37 am

oops learn…sorry!

Chaos

November 21st, 2012
7:54 am

I wish Six Flags was open on Thanksgiving….

BOOM!!! whole blog explodes….

Phil from Athens

November 21st, 2012
8:27 am

@Judge Smails

All you have to do is go over to the AJC, pledge allegiance to the Democrat Party and they’ll give you a job. Pretty easy. Just ask Jay Bookman.

demon

November 21st, 2012
8:42 am

With the Chicago syle gangsterism tactics the LAX airport unions have planned for the holidays, you will be lucky to get out of the airport. Seriously, the actually stated they intentionally chose this time to cause as much as mayhem as possible and inflict the most damage. LAX should return the favor and inform the striking workers on Christmas Eve that they are terminated. With the sendoff that the timing was intentional to inflict the most damage- after they had run up debt buying presents. Merry Chrsitmas! You can now have every day at home. This should not be a problem for any of you since you stated several times during your poutfest at Thanksgiving that family was more impotant than money- time to back that up, buttercup. Smooches.

DB

November 21st, 2012
9:12 am

@Bill: TWG was a Georgia resident for many, many years until recently, when she followed her husband to Arizona with a job change. She still has a lot of connections and family in Georgia. Her musings on Disneyland could just as easily apply to Disneyworld, so unless you’re just making an effort to be obnoxious, you owe her an apology for your rudeness. Not that you will — you are having way too much fun with your supercilious ranting. If you don’t like mom columns — then DON’T READ THEM. Seems easy enough. I don’t care for sports columns, but that doesn’t mean that I go over to the sports blogs and bitch about meaninglessness of football when compared to Afghanistan. Get over yourself and go get some coffee — you definitely need it. .

SJ

November 21st, 2012
9:29 am

I wish there were a way to “like” posts on here. DB’s post above is perfect!

catmom

November 21st, 2012
10:46 am

Great way to have your house robbed, Theresa. Advertising all over a public blog that your family will be out of the state over Thanksgiving. Oh, well…have fun not cooking!

Mayhem

November 21st, 2012
10:59 am

The freaks are out today. Oh that’s right, school is out. Got bored kids at home with nothing to do, but sit on Mommie’s couch and post nastiness……go play a video game.

FCM

November 21st, 2012
12:35 pm

I have a flight at 7:30AM tomorrow…Live OTP in East Cobb. If I leave at 5:30 will that work to get through to the gate on time? I do think that the actual holiday is supposed to be less crowded then today.

Anyone know?

FCM

November 21st, 2012
12:43 pm

@ Jeff, thanks you too….Also MJG, DB, TWG, Mayhem and the other “regulars” a happy thanksgiving to you and yours!

Mayhem

November 21st, 2012
1:21 pm

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO EVERYONE!!!!

Safe travels if you are headed out. Enjoy your holidays. I have a 4 day weekend!!!!