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Disneyland Article
Dates For 2019 Candlelight Ceremony

Candlelight Procession
Orange County Register
Brady Macdonald
October 10, 2019
October 15, 2019
Disneyland has announced dates for the annual Candlelight Ceremony with a 600-member choir that always draws thousands of holiday fans anxious to get into the Christmas spirit.

The 2019 Candlelight Ceremony will be held at Disneyland on Saturday, Dec. 7 and Sunday, Dec. 8, according to Disney officials.

In past years, the candlelight choir has paraded down Main Street U.S.A. for two performances each night in Disneyland’s Town Square.

The Disneyland Candlelight Ceremony tradition began in 1958 as a way for Walt Disney to show his gratitude to the Orange County community that was home to his first theme park.

Each year, the singers include Disney employees and members of local community choirs performing along with a live orchestra, handbell players and fanfare trumpeters.

A celebrity narrator, kept a surprise until the first show, tells the story of the first Christmas between songs.

Past narrators have included Cary Grant, John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, Gregory Peck, Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda, Dick Van Dyke and James Earl Jones. “Guardians of the Galaxy” star Chris Pratt was the narrator in 2018. “Thor” star Chris Hemsworth did the honors in 2017.

Reserved seating is limited to a few hundred invited guests that include community members, civic leaders, media representatives and VIPs.

Holding a private event in the middle of a theme park during operating hours presents a number of challenges for Disneyland, from attraction operations to show scheduling to crowd management.

Crews set up the Candlelight stage beneath the Main Street train station and arrange hundreds of folding chairs in Town Square between Disneyland City Hall and the Opera House.

In years past, the Candlelight Ceremony has limited the attraction hours of the Disneyland Railroad, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, Jungle Cruise and the Main Street vehicles. Similarly, shop hours around Town Square, including the Mad Hatter and Disney Gallery, have been impacted by the ceremony.

Disneyland’s “A Christmas Fantasy” parade navigates around the sprawling setup of the Candlelight Ceremony. Backstage passageways behind the Main Street U.S.A. shops are typically opened during the Candlelight performances to ease congestion in the high-traffic area.

Disneyland does little to promote the Candlelight Ceremony to uninvited guests, but it is possible to catch the shows if you don’t have reserved tickets.

Candlelight fans have been known to wait all day for the limited standing room-only spots behind the seating area. For those not willing to wait, it’s possible to hear the ceremony along Main Street and see the choir arranged on risers in the shape of a Christmas tree.

Past choir processions down Main Street U.S.A. have begun around 5:20 p.m. and 7:35 p.m. each night.
Attractions Referenced

Disney Gallery (Main Street)

Disneyland Railroad

Disneyland Story Presenting Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln

Jungle Cruise

Parades Referenced

Candlelight Procession

Christmas Fantasy Parade

Shops Referenced

Mad Hatter Main Street U.S.A.

Lands Referenced

Main Street U.S.A.

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