Use these simple ideas to recreate your favorite Disney Halloween Time tricks and treats at home! A simple step by step guide for hosting your very own magical Disneyland Halloween Party with your friends and family at home!
Disneyland California Adventure Dresses Up for Halloween Time
Just a few weeks ago I had the chance to visit Disneyland during the Thor: Ragnarok Event for a number of firsts. My first time to Disneyland California Adventure, my first time to Disneyland during Halloween Time, my first time to Cars Land, my first time to see the Haunted Mansion Nightmare Before Christmas overlay, and my first time to ever have a plaid private tour guide, which was amazing! Pretty sure if I ever do Disneyland again, I’m going to look into the brand new MaxPass option, a way to maximize your Disneyland experience. You can setup your fast passes right in the Disneyland app, and it even includes a photo pass for the day (Disney photos are my favorite!). Find out more about MaxPass here.
This visit wasn’t just a first for me; this year is actually the first time that Disneyland California Adventure has been dressed up and themed for Halloween Time. I’m not sure what it looks like on a regular day, but the Halloween costuming on the park was incredible. I especially loved the use of cone pumpkins and spiders throughout Cars Land’s “Haul-O-Ween” decorations!
How to Host a Disneyland Halloween Party at Home
Since not everyone will be able to make it to Disneyland for Halloween Time this year, I thought it’d be fun to share some ways you can incorporate Disneyland’s Halloween celebration into your own Disneyland Halloween Party at home!
1 – Carve Disney themed pumpkins.
One of the decorations I saw through Disneyland was the use of pumpkins carved with popular Disney characters. I can’t decide if Buzz Lightyear or the Roger Rabbit pumpkin was my favorite, but these would be easy to recreate at home! I’ve even put together a list of some of my favorite Disney inspired pumpkin carvings (with free templates) so you can create your own at home!
- Cheshire Cat Pumpkin Template
- Tow Mater Pumpkin Template
- Stitch Pumpkin Template
- Hela (from Thor: Ragnarok) Pumpkin Template
- Wreck-It-Ralph Pumpkin Template
- Vampire Mickey Pumpkin Template
- Tinkerbell Pumpkin Template
- Simba Pumpkin Template (this is like the design I put on our matching Lion King shirts!)
2 – Create different themed sections in your party.
Just like Disneyland California Adventure has Cars Land, Bugs Land and Pleasure Pier, split your Halloween party into different sections and use decorations inspired by your favorite Disney movies and characters, kind of like I did with my son’s Disney World themed birthday party.
It’s amazing what a few decorations or a full overlay can do to a place. For example, the Monsters After Dark overlay on the Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout ride. Apparently the Monsters After Dark changes made it a totally different experience, and I’m already dying to go back and try out the regular version of the ride.
Disneyland California Adventure Cars Land “Haul-O-Ween” Time
We also had the chance to explore Cars Land see it all decked for Halloween for the very first time, and it was amazing! The best part is that most of these decorations would be simple to DIY at home with a few items you can find at your local hardware or automotive store. Since Cars 3 is out on digital today, you could even be playing the movie in your very own Halloween themed Cars Land during your party!
Make sure to scroll to the bottom of this post for everything you need to know about Cars 3 and its in-home release!
3 – Serve Halloween themed food and drinks.
It’s obvious you’re going to serve Halloween themed food and drinks at a Halloween party but go a step further and include some Disneyland Halloween favorites on your menu this year. Recreate the candy corn pies served in Cars Lands with pudding, whipped cream, and food coloring built into a mini graham cracker crust. Get a recipe to make them right at home here. Or skip the pies and make these candy corn parfaits instead.
And the spider pot pie also on the Cars Land menu is simple to make – just use a spider cookie cutter to cut out a piece of pie crust in the shape of a spider before you bake it. Place the spider piece right on top of your normal pie crust then bake all together. You could even skip the pot pie part and make mini hand pies or mini chocolate pies with gummy worms inside and the pie crust spider on top.
Or try out one of these other great Disneyland and Cars inspired recipes that would make for a spooktacular menu!
4 – Create a not so spooky Nightmare Before Christmas haunted house.
One of my absolute favorite things about Disneyland Halloween is the Nightmare Before Christmas overlay on Haunted Mansion. I had no idea Haunted Mansion could be so fun until it was reimagined with Jack Skellington, Sally, the Oogie Boogie Monster, and more! Seriously one of my favorite things we did during our visit to Disneyland Halloween Time!
One of the best things about Nightmare Before Christmas is that it’s spooky, not scary, which works perfectly for a Disneyland Halloween party. Here are jut a few fun ideas you could incorporate into your Nightmare Before Christmas haunted house.
- Jack Skellington spider snowflakes
- DIY Halloween Town themed graveyard
- Nightmare Before Christmas Candle Wrappers (to light the haunted house)
- Jack Skellington flower pots filled with pokey trees
- Jack Skellington wreath (for the haunted house door)
- Nightmare Before Christmas Gift Wrap (print and wrap some gifts for the house)
- Hanging Zero the Dog tutorial (complete with a glowing red nose)
5 – Hide a game in Your Disneyland Halloween Decorations.
One of the coolest things about the Disneyland Halloween Time decorations in Cars Land was trying to find all of the spiders. They actually created 30 different “car-achnids” in Cars Land, and you could actively try and find them all. This would be so easy to re-create at your Disneyland Halloween Party.
You could set it up with spiders, with Disney cars (these Disney Racers are my son’s favorites to collect) or even Hidden Mickeys! Put them around the house and make a game of it to see who can find all of them first.
6 – Create a photo backdrop inspired by Disneyland Halloween Time.
Everywhere in Disneyland seems like a perfect photo opp, especially during Halloween Time. There’s the Mater Trunk or Treat sign, the Halloween Time decorated Welcome to Cars Land sign, and even just the Oogie Boogie Man decorations on top of the Disneyland California Adventure entrance. Everything is designed to be a great photo backdrop, and we took full advantage!
Make photo opps at your Disneyland Halloween Party with a Halloween themed sheet (you could even add vinyl to re-create the Trunk or Treat sign), wood nailed together, or even just a Halloween themed tablecloth (the cheapest option). You could use any of these other Halloween backdrop ideas as well!
7 – Transform your favorite Disneyland Halloween rides into activites.
There are so many different ways you could incorporate Disneyland rides into activities, so I’ll just touch on a couple. If these don’t work for you, just think of your favorite Disneyland ride and why you love it. Take what you love about it, and turn it into a game or activity, like I mentioned with the Nightmare Before Christmas haunted house!
- Mater’s Graveyard JamBOORee – Have someone dress up with a white sheet with ghost eyes cut out over their head and play a Halloween version of shark and minnows – ghosts and humans. Mater’s Graveyard JamBOORee is a little crazy and this game will be too!
- Luigi’s Honkin’ Haul-O-Ween – Recreate the cars dancing on this ride at home with a dance party including teaching steps to a Halloween song like Thriller!
- Mickey’s Fun Wheel – Turn this into a wheel of fate type game where they spin the wheel and have to follow the instructions on the space they land on. Make them silly Halloween tasks or Disney ones like having to sing an entire Disney song.
8 – Make sure everyone has a magical time.
Honestly, the number one way to make your Disneyland Halloween Party a success is to make sure that everyone has a great time. There’s just something about being at Disneyland, especially during Halloween, that makes a person happy. It’s a feeling that honestly you probably can’t re-create at home but you can try! These are just a few more things you could do to make sure everyone has a magical time!
Play Disney themed Halloween songs like the ones on Mickey’s Monster Bash soundtrack!
Have Disney movies playing in the background. These are some of our favorites for Halloween time this year!
Encourage everyone to wear Disney themed costumes to the party – nothing scary, just good Disney fun. If they need ideas, there are tons of costume ideas here!
Send everyone home with a Disney themed souvenirs. I’m sure guests would love any of these:
- A treat filled Jack Skellington mug
- A bag full of Halloween Hidden Mickey cookies
- These darling gummy worm filled Oogie Boogie favors
- A Mickey Mouse + Friends Halloween trick or treat bag
- A copy of the Mickey’s Spooky Night book
About Cars 3
Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo), with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!
Cars 3 is now available on digital and will be released to DVD and BluRay on November 7, 2017. Make sure to check back in November for my full review of the BluRay and all its extras!