What Happens When Disney World CANCELS a Parade Last-Minute?

Sometimes it’s just unavoidable.

Festival of Fantasy parade

While we’ve all celebrated the return of parades to the Disney parks, sometimes things can go awry causing the performance to be stalled. When this happens it can be frustrating for sure, but you can be there’s a good reason why Disney would need to cancel a parade at the last minute.

It happens from time to time but every so often Disney is forced to cancel a parade performance. Sometimes this can be due to minor occurrences and other times it can be for much larger obstacles.

Parade floats

Most of the time that Disney is forced to cancel a parade it’s likely due to an unforeseen circumstance. We’ve seen this happen with performances from parades down to stage shows. Unforeseen circumstances are pretty broad but it can encompass a whole slew of issues that may have become apparent while trying to start up the parade.

“Magic Happens” parade returns to Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif., Feb. 2, 2024. This parade celebrates the awe-inspiring moments of magic that are at the heart of so many Disney stories. This spectacular features stunning floats, artistic costumes and beloved Disney characters. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

This could be as minor as costume malfunctions (yes, even with characters), understaffing, and even electrical problems with mobility, lights, and sounds. Other times it could mean that the safety of the performers could have been in jeopardy if the performance were to start and continue (weather conditions for example). It’s also helpful to keep in mind that performances and schedules are subject to change without notice during your park day along with park hours.


When this happens, Disney does their best to make sure that everyone who is waiting on the parade or show knows that the performance will not be happening as scheduled. Oftentimes, if another performance is lined up, Disney will announce to anticipate another try for the next performance time. Should that not be possible or an option, Disney will usually apologize for the inconvenience and ask spectators to return to other attractions around the park in its place.

Moana Float (2020)

The important thing to know about why Disney cancels parades really comes down to two things: preserving the “magic” of the performance and safety. If either of those are compromised with running the “show” it can lead to a delay or cancellation.

We’re always keeping up with the latest Disney news, updates, and more so be sure to stay tuned with us for the latest!

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Have you ever waited on a Disney parade or show only to have it canceled? Tell us about your experience in the comments!

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