Thinking about going to Disneyland’s Pixar Fest this spring or summer? This guide will tell you everything you need to know! The best Pixar Fest food, the best Pixar fest merchandise, and even annual passholder perks for Pixar Fest! And don’t miss out on the brand new Pixar parade floats, Pixar fireworks, and of course – Pixar character meet and greets a Disney’s California Adventure.
I received an all-inclusive trip to Pixar and a sneak peek at what’s coming for Pixar Fest as part of the Incredibles 2 event in exchange for my honest opinions. This post also contains affiliate links.
The Pixar Dream
When I was little, I always said that when I grew up I wanted to work at McDonald’s so I could eat all of the french fries while I worked. Thank goodness that job didn’t actually pan out.
Now when I grow up, I have a new dream job.
I want to be on the Pixar in the Parks team. I’m putting it out into the universe now so that I can somehow make it happen because you guys, they’re job is seriously my dream job.
They taste test the themed food.
They decide what merchandise to sell.
They plan out the park spaces.
They try out the rides (and help design them).
They figure out how to incorporate Pixar movies into the Disney Parks.
I’m just putting it out there that I would be amazing at that job. I love food. I love shopping. I love planning things. I love rides (hello spreadsheet of roller coasters). I love movies. And I love Disney.
I know there’s so much more to it but holy cow, if I wasn’t blogging – that’s what I would want to do with my life.
Why in the world am I telling you about my new dream job? Because when we went to the Pixar Animation Studios a few weeks ago, we had the chance to meet with three people on said dream team, and they gave us a sneak peek into everything Pixar coming to the parks in the next year or two. And it’s incredible!
Pixar Fest at Disneyland Resort
Pixar Fest begins today and will incorporate delicious food, fun, and festivities throughout both Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure!
Pixar Fest will be a celebration of friendship that incorporates parades, fireworks, food, and more! I’m headed to Disneyland in May to check it out and will come back and share my personal experience then but for now, here’s everything you need to know about visiting Disneyland Resort during Pixar Fest.
Pixar Fest Dates & Tickets
Pixar Fest starts April 13th and will run through September 3rd! And after reading this post, you’re going to want to plan a trip right away so you don’t miss out on all of the limited time fun!
Right now through April 17th, you can get adult tickets for kids prices when you purchase a 3-day park hopper or more through Get Away Today! They’ve got some other great specials going on as well so buy your tickets now to take advantage of this great deal!
Pixar Fest Parade Changes
When we were at Disneyland in January, there were no parades going on and now with Pixar Fest opening, there are two great ones! Here are the changes to the parades starting April 13th!
First off, the Play Parade will be moving from DCA to Disneyland. Grab one of these top Disneyland snacks and settle in to watch all the fun! It will be getting three new floats – a new Pixar lamp + Luxo ball float that will lead the parade, a Wilderness Explorer Russell (from Up) themed float, and an Inside Out float featuring Joy, Sadness, and Bing Bong.
And it doesn’t stop with the Play Parade. The beloved Paint the Night Parade will be coming back to Disney’s California Adventure with your favorite Pixar characters lighting up the night sky with millions of lights! I’ve never seen this parade, but I’ve heard from others that it’s amazing. I can’t wait to watch it when we visit in May!
Pixar Fest Fireworks & Shows
There will be a brand new fireworks show for Pixar Fest! The new Pixar + friendship themed fireworks show called “Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular” and will incorporate Cars, Wall-E, Inside Out, Incredibles, and more Pixar favorites and will light up the sky.
Projections for the show will also be shown on It’s a Small World facade, Main Street U.S.A, the Sleeping Beauty castle, and Rivers of America water screens. I’ve heard from friends who went to the soft opening that this show is sensational!
Kids and adults both will love the Pixar themed band, The Pixarmonic Orchestra. The new 7-piece band will including a toy playing percussionist and will play a melody of Pixar themed songs at DCA’s Paradise Gardens.
And last but not least, we can’t forget the movies. It is Pixar after all. Watch a collection of your favorite Pixar shorts at DCA’s Sunset Showcase Theater.
Pixar Fest Merchandise
Of course Pixar Fest comes with an entire line of brand new Pixar inspired merchandise. I knew it was coming but even I am blown away by all the cuteness to be had! I’ve seen pretty much all of my favorite Pixar characters from Mike & Sully to Wall-E.
Here are some of the merchandise highlights that I’ve seen so far. And I want all the things!
Pixar Apparel – all kinds of shirts, sweatshirts, and socks. Oh the socks! They come in character sets of best friends and are absolutely adorable.
Pixar Accessories – this is where my entire month of April’s paycheck will be going. Bags, backpacks, Pixar ears (so many new designs!), charm bracelets, and more. Have I mentioned I want all the things?
Other Fun Pixar Collectibles – We can’t stop there because Pixar never does anything just 100%, they always go to infinity and beyond! Some of my other favorite things I’ve seen so far are all of the cups, mugs, glasses, popcorn buckets, and more. There are so many to collect!
And the alien tumbler, oh my. They better have some left in May because my son would die to drink out of that baby!
Pixar Fest Food
What’s a festival without great food? During our conversation with the Pixar in the Parks team, I asked them what foods you have to try during Pixar Fest (and beyond) and for Pixar Fest, they said you for sure have to try the fried bologna sandwich from Carnation Cafe. It’s nothing like what you imagine a bologna sandwich to be; it’s made with artisan bologna and apparently delicious. They both immediately came up with the same answer with no prompting when I asked, so I’m going to trust them on this one! If you try it, let me know.
Here are all of the Pixar Fest specific food options I’ve seen offered so far. After I visit in May, I’ll write a post about my favorite things to eat while you’re there!
Pixar Fest Savory Food
- The Fried Bologna sandwich at Carnation Cafe in Disney’s California Adventure. It’s a pan-seared bologna sandwich on toasted bread with an aioli, pickles, and tomato. The Pixar girls said it was good, so I highly recommend trying ti!
- Harry Hausen’s Magic Noodles that change colors when you add the dressing – these were another thing the Pixar team said were a must try!
- Coco menu at Paradise Garden Grill with with mole verde con pollo, tacos, and more!
- Ratatouille themed three-course meal at Cafe Orleans featuring a charcuterie starter, shrimp dish entree, and berry and cheese beignets.
- Pork Chop Dinner inspired by Russell’s TV dinners in Up at Carnation Cafe
- Mike Wazowski sourdough bread at Pacific Wharf Cafe
- New food in Cars Land including a habanero meatball and a new menu at Flo’s
- Green Pesto Pasta at Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta
Pixar Fest Desserts
- Pixar character cake pops – everything from the Luxo Ball to Dory and Mike Wazowski
- Toy Story Alien Macarons
- Pixar themed candy apples
- Coco inspired Tres Leches dessert at Paradise Garden Grill featuring Dante the dog
- Mint Chip Smoothie and Whoopie Pie at Schmoozies
- Toy Story Luxo Ball Cake – layers of yellow vanilla cake, blue raspberry cake, and red velvet cake available at Disneyland’s Plaza Inn and DCA’s Boardwalk Pizza & Planet
- Jessie’s Berry Jubilee Funnel Cake
- Speciality Grape Soda Eclair at Jolly Holiday Bakery
- Cinnamon pretzels at Frontierland Pretzel Cart
Pixar Fest Drinks
- Jamaican slush at Paradise Garden Grill
- Frozen Grape Soda at Cappo Cart
- Mexican cinnamon-spiced hot chocolate served in a souvenir “Coco” jarrita at Paradise Garden Grill
- Root (or is it Boot) Beer Float in a Woody boot cup served at Golden Horseshoe Saloon
Pixar Fest Churros
And of course, churros. Pixar Fest is featuring all the churros, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be trying every one when I go in a few weeks. Here’s a quick guide to Pixar Fest Churros.
- Lemon Snipe churro with Fruity Cereal in the churro cart by Pirates of the Caribbean
- Carrot Cake churro with cream cheese dipping sauce by Haunted Mansion
- Strawberry Churros by the Buzz Lightyear ride in Tomorrowland
- Red, Yellow, and Blue Racer churros by the Cozy Cone in Carsland
- “Coco” cocoa Churros at the churros cart in Frontierland by Golden Horseshoe with a Mexican chocolate dipping sauce
- An iced speciality churro at the churro cart in Bugs Land.
One other big announcement – Red Rocket’s Pizza in Tomorrowland has been transformed to Alien’s Pizza Planet with two brand new speciality pizzas – a pepperoni one and a cheeseburger one! Not sure if this transformation is a permanent one, but I think it should be!
Pixar Fest Annual Passholder (AP Perks)
Like with every other event, Disneyland annual pass holders have some special perks and the chance to buy speciality merchandise. These are just a few of the perks I’ve seen so far!
- An AP Pixar themed Tervis mug (I love mine from the Disneyland food and wine festival) – photo via @serflosangeles)
- An AP Pixar Fest Corner with a fun photo opp to the left of Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta
- Exclusive AP limited edition Pixar trading pins
- Other AP exclusive merchandise like cute shirts and hats
Pixar Themed Attractions and Activities
While Pixar Fest may not including the opening of any new rides or attractions, that doesn’t mean there isn’t still going to plenty of Pixar fun to be had! There are even whole lands of fun dedicated to your favorite Pixar characters like A Bug’s Life and Cars Land!
Let’s start with the things new to Pixar Fest or just happening during Pixar Fest!
- Pixar inspired monorails featuring Finding Dory and Incredibles
- Learn to drawn your favorite Pixar characters at DCA’s Animation Academy
- Pixar character meet and greets in a Pixar Pals section near DCA’s Paradise Gardens
- Pixar inspired topiaries throughout Downtown Disney!
And finish up your Pixar day with the complete list of Pixar themed rides and attractions in the parks to make your Pixar day complete!
- Toy Story Midway Mania (one of our favorites!) on Paradise Pier
- Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters (so much better than the WDW version) in Tomorrowland
- Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage in Tomorrowland
- Turtle Talk with Crush in DCA’s Hollywood Land
- Mike & Sully’s Rescue in DCA’s Hollywood Land
- All of Cars Land attractions in DCA
- All of the Bug’s Life attractions in DCA
Other Pixar Fun Coming Soon
Pixar Fest is just the start of a whole new chapter of Pixar fun coming starting this summer! It all starts with the release of Incredibles 2 on June 15th and just continues on from there!
About Incredibles 2
Everyone’s favorite family of superheroes is back in “Incredibles 2” – but this time Helen (voice of Holly Hunter) is in the spotlight, leaving Bob (voice of Craig T. Nelson) at home with Violet (voice of Sarah Vowell) and Dash (voice of Huck Milner) to navigate the day-to-day heroics of “normal” life. It’s a tough transition for everyone, made tougher by the fact that the family is still unaware of baby Jack-Jack’s emerging superpowers.
When a new villain hatches a brilliant and dangerous plot, the family and Frozone (voice of Samuel L. Jackson) must find a way to work together again—which is easier said than done, even when they’re all Incredible.
Check out the Incredibles 2 poster and the brand new trailer below! And check back over the next few weeks as I share all things Incredibles 2!
Release Date: June 15, 2018
Like INCREDIBLES 2 on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PixarTheIncredibles/
Follow Disney/Pixar on Twitter: https://twitter.com/disneypixar
Follow Disney/Pixar on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/pixar/
Visit the official INCREDIBLES 2 website here: http://disney.com/incredibles2
Pixar Pier Opening June 23 at Disney’s California Adventure
The next Pixar fun happening soon is the opening of Disney’s California Adventure on June 23rd. Pixar Pier deserves an entire post all on its own, so I’ll keep this short and sweet. It’s going to be incredible! California Screamin’ gets an Incredibles update, brand new restaurants and food coming, and so much more! Here are some sneak peek shots of what’s coming. I promise to write up a full post on this later!