A global pandemic, phased opening and a couple of days of rain could only hold off a triumphant return for so long. Today, Disneyland’s daytime parade, Magic Happens, finally returned to Main Street and Fantasyland. Debuting just a couple of weeks before Disneyland Resort closed due to the pandemic, the parade never had time to catch on. The company had been slow to bring it back over the last few years for a variety of reasons but now, finally, it’s here!
I’m not here to rehash our review of Magic Happens. I stand by what I wrote in there, the parade thrives because of the outrageous and joyous costuming, soundtrack and character. There are other parades I’ve seen with more of a ‘wow’ factor but Magic Happens has quirky charm and an exuberance that is fit for the streets of the original Disney Park.
Instead, I just wanted to share a few photos from the first showing of the parade as it came back. Magic Happens was supposed to return two days ago but Southern California has been hit with a good amount of rain that canceled the parade. There’s some dark humor in Magic Happens having to wait three years to have a proper theme park run after its initial debut, only to be canceled by rain in Anaheim.
But rain couldn’t stop the smiles and excitement today. People bounced along to the soundtrack while performers interacted with every person that they could. It was almost as if the parade never left, except it did.
We were there three years ago when Magic Happens debuted. It was my lasting memory of Disneyland during the closure. As vividly as I remember the debut, my memories of sitting in the living room with my closest (affectionately known in 2020 as ‘my bubble’) listening to the parade’s soundtrack are just as strong. The titular parade song became a hint of hope, therapeutic and sometimes a bit painful to listen to.
Magic Happens will always hold a special place in my heart because of that. Memories, a song and the smiles those things brought were a bit of escapism while the world was turned upside down. Now, the smiles on the Magic Happens performers are all the brighter. As long as the rain stays away, Lord willing.
Here are some photos of those smiles today, because they say a lot more than my words do. Welcome back, Magic Happens! Stick around a while.
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