Next month Chris and I are heading down to Disney for our last visit before the baby arrives. What’s the occasion? Star Wars Weekends of course! Chris and I had gone every year since 2012 and it has gotten better and better each time we go. We are so excited to go back this year and take everything we’ve learned and apply it to get the most out of the event. And now I’m excited to share those tips with you!
This year Star Wars Weekends run every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from May 15th to June 14th. Each weekend the stars come out to celebrate all things Star Wars and fans/park-goers are able to buy themed merchandise, get autographs from their favorite characters, and enjoy special presentations and entertainment. Last year Disney added a ton of new items to the weekend celebrations, and I talked about them in my post from last year! All the fun celebrations from last year are making a reappearance for this years event, and Chris and I can not wait to experience them all a second time around!
Chris and I had no idea last year that you could get Fastpasses for the shows on the weekends and we ended up missing out on good seats and not having to wait in long lines in that Florida heat! Because Fastpasses become available 60 days in advance, they go pretty quickly so you have to be fast in order to grab a few for the more popular shows! If you aren’t able to grab a Fastpass at first continue checking back periodically to see if more somehow become available.
If you want to get an autograph from your favorite Star Wars actors, be prepared to get to the parks early to grab your wristband. Disney Cast Members hand them out on a first come first serve basis and sometimes the lines can start around 3am. If you’re a fan of camping out on that hard ground, I say go for it! Chris and I are more likely to try our luck by getting there around 6am and joining the lines that have already formed, but to each their own!
If you’re near the back of the line for the wristband distribution you’re “get in line” for an autograph time will definitely be later in the day. One thing you could do is grab your band and then head back to the resort for a nap, but if you have Fastpasses or are going to try to get in line to see some of the shows then you should be prepared to make a full day of it.
One thing Chris and I did last year that I loved was being able to eat at the Sci-fi dinner with our favorite Star Wars characters! It was fun to get up early to head to the park, eat a delicious breakfast (and it was allergy-friendly for me!), and take pictures with Darth Vader and some others from the Empire. The Hollywood and Vine restaurant also has a Star Wars themed meal (theirs is for dinner), and we’ve heard it was great to do with smaller children because they get to interact with Jedi Mickey, Stormtrooper Donald, Darth Goofy and others.
Chris and I made this mistake two years ago and regretted it so much! We knew we wanted to catch Warwick Davis’s show (a must-see in my opinion!) but forgot to check and see what time the show started. We ended up getting to the park twenty minutes before the show started and had to run towards the theater located by the Lights, Motor, Action! attraction, and got there with maybe five minutes to spare. Don’t be like us and feel rushed to get to the things you want to see! Because of my poor planning we also missed the parade of Stars last year (which I really regret now) as well as seeing one or two of the shows that Chris really wanted to see.
I loved Symphony in the Stars! Every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during the Star Wars Weekends Disney puts on a spectacular show in the sky that is timed to music from the Star Wars Saga. I made Chris stop and watch it every single night, and it was a great way to close our nights at Hollywood Studios. We definitely recommend putting time aside to watch it at least once while you’re there.
Have you ever been to Star Wars Weekends at Disney? What has been your favorite part of the event? Is there something you wish they’d add to the celebrations?