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'Electrosynthomagnetic' sounds and sparkling lights


Last updated 12/28/2006 at Noon

It is dark. Crowds line the streets in anticipation; some have put down blankets and saved their places for over an hour. Finally, an announcement is made: “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, Disney proudly presents our spectacular festival pageant of nighttime magic and imagination in thousands of sparkling lights and electrosynthomagnetic musical sounds – Disney’s Electrical Parade!”

Those who have seen this parade know what comes next.

“Electrosynthomagnetic” music fills the air and then down the street trails a parade of sparkling characters led by an enormous blue fairy. The parade is a line of Disney characters such as Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, Peter Pan, Snow White and Elliot, a huge 40-foot-tall green dragon from the movie “Pete’s Dragon.”

Cinderella’s coach and the dancers at the ball are pure magic, but you won’t find Belle, Ariel or any of the newer Disney princesses because this parade made its debut in June of 1972. This “retro” parade takes spectators back to some of the earlier Disney films. The “Main Street Electrical Parade” (the parade’s initial name) lit up nights at Disneyland until November of 1996.

In 2001, when California Adventure opened in Anaheim just opposite Disneyland, the parade was taken out of mothballs, re-electrified and given its new name. It has run sporadically since then and recently, on December 15 of this year, the parade made a reappearance for the holiday season.

Other light shows are also making the dark skies glimmer. In Disneyland, “It’s a Small World” takes visitors to another realm with 300,000 blinking lights. It’s a Fantasyland fairyland! The interior of the attraction has also been redecorated with a holiday theme: snowflakes rimmed in white lights, a white tree glittering with white lights, mermaids shimmering in the sea and hundreds more. Everywhere you look there is something festive and sparkling.

Fireworks burst gold, green and red in the sky over Sleeping Beauty’s Castle; and then “Fantasmic!” lights up the Rivers of America with images projected on “screens” created by sheets of sprayed water. “Fantasmic!” is a treat for the senses as the show utilizes lights, music and even fire. Flames dance across the water in a dramatic conclusion that could only be born in the minds of Disney – a company that trademarked the word “Imagineer.”

According to the Disneyland Web site information, the park’s holiday events will run through January 7. As events are subject to change, please call (714) 781-7290 to verify the information.


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