OpEd: Disney Is Bringing Back the Wrong Parade

Credit: Disney

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls,
Disneyland proudly presents
Our spectacular festival pageant
Of nighttime magic and imagination
In thousands of sparkling lights
And electro-syntho-magnetic musical sounds,
The Main Street Electrical Parade!

Beginning in 1972 and lasting for more than 25 years, the Main Street Electrical Parade lit up the streets of Disneyland almost every night. It is Disneyland’s most well-known parade and made return engagements in both 2017 and 2019. The Main Street Electrical Parade was so popular that it inspired other incredibly popular parades like SpectroMagic and Paint the Night. It gives people major nostalgia, and there were a number of Guests who were excited to learn that it appears Disney is prepping for the parade to once again return to Disneyland.

Main Street Electrical Parade

Credit: Disney

However, it’s not the parade that Disney should have chosen.

In 2015, Disneyland Resort introduced Guests to the magic that was the Paint the Night Parade. The lights were vibrant, the music was great to dance along to, and the costumes and floats were all incredible — who didn’t love the gorgeous candelabra ladies? Paint the Night remained at Disneyland Park for two years before it moved over to Disney California Adventure Park. It remained there before ending in 2018 and being replaced by none other than the Main Street Electrical Parade.

Main Street Electrical Parade

Credit: Disney

While the Main Street Electrical Parade was great in its heyday, the time has come for the parade to officially “glow away” and stay in the Disney vault. Disney technology has come so far and the parades — like Paint the Night — are such a step-up that Disney doesn’t really need to bring such an old-school parade back. If they wanted to give Disneyland Guests something new but classic, then they could maybe ship over the floats from SpectroMagic — the wildly popular nighttime lights parade that was performed at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom for over 10 years before it was also replaced by the Main Street Electrical Parade.


Credit: D23

There was also another parade that really never got the chance to shine at Disneyland — Magic Happens. Magic Happens premiered at Disneyland Park on February 27, 2020, as part of Disneyland’s 65th anniversary. Unfortunately, less than one month later, the theme parks were forced to shut down and remained closed for over a year. Granted, the show is a daytime one, but if Disney wants to bring back a parade, Magic Happens should definitely be one for major consideration.

Magic Happens

Credit: Disney

At the end of the day, the decision lies with Disney, but Walt Disney always believed that we should keep moving forward, looking towards the future and towards new ideas. That can’t happen if they keep deciding to bring back a parade that has not changed since the 1970s.

What Disney parade is your favorite? Do you love Main Street Electrical Parade or do you want to see something else come to the Park?

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!