SpectroMagic vs Main Street Electrical Parade

As the name of my blog suggests, I LOVED the Walt Disney World nighttime parade SpectroMagic. It was the first nighttime parade I saw when I first visited Walt Disney World when I was 7, and it captured my imagination and heart in a way nothing had before. The opening bars of music would reduce me to the happiest of tears, and I’d get goosebumps all over. My parents, grandmother and I stood right at the start of the parade route, at the end of the Emporium opposite the fire station (that area is now a disabled viewing area). We waved at all of the characters and they all waved back because we were the only ones that they could see. It was perfect.

Then SpectroMagic was put to one side for a few years and along came Main Street Electrical Parade. It’s a classic, everyone said, this is what a Disney nighttime parade should be, they said.

It’s sparkly and colourful and the theme music is certainly catchy … but also repetitive. And a bit annoying.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I like MSEP. I do. Except maybe the massive ‘To honor America’ float at the end, that’s a bit OTT for a casual evening parade outside of 4th July. But I can’t escape but feeling that it contributed to SpectroMagic‘s death. MSEP came along for a bit, then it left again and we got SpectroMagic back. Hooray! But then, in 2010 MSEP came back again. And that was the last we saw of SpectroMagic. It was never given a send off, no farewell, no chance to say goodbye. It was treated as if this was the same as last time, as if MSEP was coming to usurp the place of nighttime parade for a little while but it’s okay, we’d get SpectroMagic back afterwards. Except we didn’t. The floats were left to decline and rot and decay until they were unusable and were destroyed.

I actually cried when I found this out, by the way. That’s how stupidly attached I was to SpectroMagic.

So now I’m in a bit of a rock and a hard place situation. I can’t help but blame MSEP for SpectroMagic‘s demise. After all, if it hadn’t come waltzing back in, taking over the parade route, SpectroMagic may still be alive even today.


Magic Kingdom doesn’t have a nighttime parade and I want it to have one. MSEP is done at Disneyland, with implications of its retirement, but do we believe them? If the Imagineers haven’t got some magical new nighttime parade up their sleeves for MK just yet, I wouldn’t mind having MSEP, just to keep us going until MK can get its own Paint the Night (maybe not the actual Paint the Night, but the new fun and snazzy nighttime parade that MK deserves).

Until then, you’ll find me skipping down Main Street USA around 9pm of an evening, humming the SpectroMagic theme as if no one is listening.


1 Comment

  1. chris swinehart
    19 December 2017 / 1:23am

    do you have photos from that year

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