July 20, 2024

Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties Coming & Closing (Temporarily)


Walt Disney World is changing up its Tomorrowland Terrace Fireworks Dessert Parties for the triumphant return of the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular. Here are full details about the "new" Seats & Sweets Party, Pre-Party,

Walt Disney World is changing up its Tomorrowland Terrace Fireworks Dessert Parties for the triumphant return of the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular. Here are full details about the “new” Seats & Sweets Party, Pre-Party, and After-Party, plus booking dates, details, and pricing for the 3 dessert parties.

Online booking for these fireworks dessert parties is now available and the parties themselves will be offered beginning April 1, 2023. With this, the important caveat is offered that the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular returns April 3, 2023. Fireworks dessert parties on April 1 and April 2, 2023 will offer views of Disney Enchantment, instead. Oof!

Let’s start on a positive note, which is that there are no price increases! These Magic Kingdom dessert parties are a rarity in that regard, last increasing in price a few years ago when they added alcohol. Since then, the cost hasn’t gone up at all. This is surprising given the popularity of these parties–but you should still brace yourself for some sticker shock if you’ve never booked them. They were very expensive 2-3 years ago, and are still very expensive today!

Another thing to note is that Walt Disney World seems to be drawing a distinction between the current 50th Anniversary Dessert Parties and these “new” (or returning, I guess?) Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties starting on April 1, 2023. Based on the descriptions, the substantive details sound almost identical to me. The biggest difference is likely that you won’t have little “50s” on your chocolates…oh, and you’ll get to enjoy a significantly superior spectacular once the Happily Ever After fireworks return!

For all of these Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties, you delight in delicious desserts prepared by Magic Kingdom’s pastry chef, such as chocolate-dipped strawberries and chocolate silk tarts; a variety of cheeses; refreshing beverages, including an assortment of beer and wine for guests ages 21 and over. All of these spreads are at Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant; it’s the seating/standing and timing that vary among the parties.

Turning to the specifics, the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Pre-Party allows you to end your Disney day in a magical way—with tantalizing treats and fantastic fireworks. Shortly before the start of the nighttime spectacular, Cast Members will escort you from Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant to a prime standing area in the Plaza Garden. Here, you’ll see the skies come alive during the Happily Ever After fireworks extravaganza.

Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Pre-Party Price: Admission is $99 per adult (ages 10 and up); $59 per child (ages 3 to 9), tax included. Gratuity is not included or required.

Next, the Magic Kingdom Seats & Sweets Fireworks Dessert Party. The selling point of this one is that you never have to leave Tomorrowland Terrace. Arrive there, grab your sweets and such, and then take your seat on the restaurant’s patio—and see the skies come alive during the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular.

Price: Admission is $114 per adult (ages 10 and up); $69 per child (ages 3 to 9), tax included. Gratuity is not included or required.

Finally, the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert After-Party. First, check in at Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant starting 60 minutes prior to Happily Ever After. As showtime nears, Cast Members will escort you to a prime location in the Plaza Garden for priority fireworks viewing.

After the fireworks, you’ll be escorted back to Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant, where you will enjoy a host of desserts and drinks that were served up for the other two dessert parties. Some might call this one the “Leftovers Dessert Party.”

Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert After-Party Pricing: Admission is $99 per adult (ages 10 and up); $59 per child (ages 3 to 9), tax included. Gratuity is not included or required.

Here are other “Know Before You Go” details from Walt Disney World…

Reservations – Advance reservations are highly recommended. Same-day reservations can be made on a limited basis and are subject to availability.

(Our note: It’s highly unlikely that’ll be possible with this–between the current crowds and popularity of Happily Ever After fireworks, this should sell out well in advance on a nightly basis.)

Checking In – Please arrive at Tomorrowland Terrace Restaurant 60 to 90 minutes prior to Happily Ever After.

Showtimes – Please check the entertainment schedule on DisneyWorld.com or in the My Disney Experience mobile app for the night schedule of Happily Ever After.

Standing Only – Plaza Garden viewing is standing-room only.

Fireworks – Fireworks are not guaranteed as part of this experience; on rare occasions, evening fireworks may be rescheduled or cancelled. Please refer to the entertainment schedule or call (407) WDW-DINE or (407) 939-3463 to confirm showtimes 2 weeks prior to your reservation, and check again the day of your reservation. Guests under 18 years of age must have parent or guardian permission to call.

On a related note, Walt Disney World has announced that from March 30 through July 5, 2023, the Ferrytale Fireworks: A Sparkling Dessert Cruise will be closed for refurbishment.

I’m honestly a bit surprised by the timing of this, taking the Magic Kingdom fireworks cruise out of commission right as Happily Ever After returns and through Independence Day. If you asked me the exact worst 3-month stretch for closure of the cruise, that would probably be it. The only conceivable explanation I can come up with is that Disney has somehow found a more lucrative option during that window. Perhaps they’re going to be releasing a VIP fireworks cruise package for 10x the cost?!

In terms of commentary about the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties, the obvious starting place is pricing. These are all very expensive, especially for families with small children, adults who don’t drink, etc. Even as other prices have spiked all around Walt Disney World, at least in part “inflating” away the premium pricing of this particular splurge, these dessert parties are difficult to justify.

As has been mentioned here many times, we still remember back when Tomorrowland Terrace offered free first-come seating. When the Fireworks Dessert Party debuted as a test offering roughly a decade ago, we opted not to do it. Given that we didn’t love the view from the Noodle Station seating area, the $25 price tag seemed steep for desserts. Now, the idea of unlimited desserts for $25 at Walt Disney World seems so quaint!

Our thinking was that the mirror image view of what Tomorrowland Terrace offers is free and often uncrowded. (See our Best Magic Kingdom Fireworks Viewing Locations for our recommendations, plus a color-coded map of where to watch—and where to avoid.)

Walt Disney World’s dessert parties are incredibly popular with regular guests. There’s something about the mix of exclusivity, a private event space, all you can eat sweets and alcohol, and a stress-free viewing location for nighttime spectaculars that’s a winning formula. Add the return of Happily Ever After to the mix, and Magic Kingdom’s fireworks parties will likely become more popular than ever.

I’ve said repeatedly in the past that I’m not a fan of Magic Kingdom’s dessert parties, as none of them seemed “worth it.” They’re fun, no doubt, but the cost is really steep and they’re just not a splurge that has generally been appealing to us. Our perspective was that we could stake out spots for the fireworks and buy our own desserts for considerably less money, about the same time commitment, and with equivalent views.

All of that is past tense because we’re starting to come around on the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties, at least partially. 

To be sure, I still think the value proposition is not favorable, and these likely won’t rank highly on our list of splurges at Walt Disney World. However, after encountering crazy crowds for Disney Enchantment even in the off-season, and viewing areas taped off in the crowd bypass corridor behind Main Street, I’m starting to rethink that assessment.

I’m also concerned that these crowds are only going to get worse with Happily Ever After. I know Disney Enchantment has its fans (there are dozens of you…DOZENS!), but nothing like Happily Ever After. That increase in crowds coupled with getting to watch the superior spectacular might just move the needle enough to justify doing one of these.

Even then, the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties are probably something I’d file alongside Club Level at Walt Disney World. As with that, there’s really no way to contend this is “worth it” from an objective perspective. Rather, there are ways to (internally) rationalize it as a TREAT YO SELF splurge.

That’s kind of where we are with this, wanting a low-stress and fun way to welcome back Happily Ever After and reluctantly willing to pay a premium price for that. It also helps that we can justify this from a “research” perspective, as it’s been ages since we did one of these and want to determine whether our preconceptions are right or wrong, and also need to figure out some of the actual mechanics of the party in practice.

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Will you be booking any of the Magic Kingdom Fireworks Dessert Parties for the return of Happily Ever After? Which of the trio sounds most appealing to you? Are you a fan of Walt Disney World’s nighttime spectacular dessert parties? If so, which is your favorite? Do you agree or disagree with my ‘review’ of WDW’s dessert parties? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!

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