For the past couple of years, Sunset Seasons Greetings at Disney’s Hollywood Studios has been one of my favorite things about the holidays at Walt Disney World. The Candlelight Processional has a slight edge, but I am in awe of both. I guess it doesn’t really matter which one I like better, because neither is taking place this year. The Candlelight Processional was totally canceled for 2020, but we have a scaled back version of Sunset Seasons Greetings, and I am still in awe.
The name this year is The Hollywood Holiday Tower Hotel. I appreciate the fact that Disney is not calling it Sunset Seasons Greetings, because it is not the same thing. Sunset Seasons Greetings was more of a show. There were lasers, music, and snow, and the change of the scenes was dramatic. The main part, though, was the projections on the Hollywood Tower Hotel. Those are back.
The four scenes this year are Muppets, Frozen, Mickey’s Christmas Carol, and Toy Story. There is more movement with these scenes than the projections on Cinderella Castle.
The ball still bounces down the building in the Toy Story scene, and Miss Piggy and Kermit keep switching places in the Muppets scene. I love it. Each scene lasts for five minutes, then there’s a quick transition and the next one will take over.
I think that Mickey’s Christmas Carol was probably my favorite because it feels so Christmas-y. At times it snows during the scene! I am not a fan of real snow (which is one reason why we live in Florida), but this I don’t mind.
The Christmas tree at Disney’s Hollywood Studios used to be outside of the park, but a couple of years ago they moved it to Echo Lake. I loved this idea back then and I love it even more now. It is beautiful during the day, but even more so at night. There are also giant Christmas ornaments in the water, and they are lit after dark. It’s stunning.
Dinosaur Gertie becomes Santa Gertie, which is one of the things that I look forward to the most each time the holidays grow closer. I prefer seeing Santa Gertie during the day, she’s kind of intimidating at night.
The decorations are found on Hollywood Boulevard, Sunset Boulevard, and Echo Lake. In the past there were some enhancements added to Toy Story Land, but those weren’t there when I was at the park.
Lines have grown very long at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, so keep that in mind if you go. If you’re looking for a break from the lines, watch For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration. There’s a special seasonal ending, and we need to support the live shows.
I’ll end with Santa. He’s not letting the kids get to close this year (at his age he must be high risk!) but he’s still at the parks. Like at the Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Santa has his own cavalcade. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, he is preceded by a group of dancing elves and rides in a red convertible. It’s a fairly short cavalcade, but it’s still fun.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios is my favorite of the four Walt Disney World theme parks, and the holidays are my favorite time of year. Put the two together, and I’m happy. We may be living the lite version of the Christmas season right now, but I’ll take any extra cheer that I can find! I found plenty at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.