Throwback Thursday: The Osborne Family’s Spectacle of Dancing Lights

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It’s been just over two weeks since The Osborne Family’s Spectacle of Dancing Lights went dark forever at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  In case you haven’t heard, the Dancing Lights will not be returning next year due to the major construction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios for the future lands of Star Wars and Toy Story.  With that, Lights, Motors, Actions, Studio Catering Co. and it’s next door merchandise shop, the premiere theater, and all of Streets of America are closing this April.  Some find it sad, I find it exciting.  The park is on its way to becoming something marvelous.

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With that said, I figured it’d be nice to remember the Lights, so here is a trip report with details photos of the whole area on a night back in December.  It was rainy, but not cold yet.  The park was very busy, but not the worst I’ve seen it.  Due to the rain, many of the lights weren’t working as they should, unfortunately.  But we did manage to find the Black Cat!! Check it out below!

As you can see, it was pretty busy tonight, but hadn’t started raining yet.  If you have never had a chance to see the lights, it is always quite the shock to turn the corner and see all of the glorious colors!

I especially love the Jewish decorations for Hanukkah! They’re spread out among the streets.

The dessert party was in full swing.  I didn’t get a chance to partake, but it seemed very popular among Guests.

And then, of course the Nativity. I am Catholic myself and always enjoy seeing different manager scenes at Christmas time.  It makes me proud that Disney displays on at their parks.

There are always lots of hidden Mickeys throughout the Lights.  It’s fun to try and find them each year.

Mr. Gold’s Pawn shop was nicely decorated.  One of the newest additions to the Streets of America.  What a shame it didn’t last very long.

More pictures of the first half of the Streets of America.

Did anyone catch the Lady and the Tramp reference?  That was new this year.  It really seemed like they went all out with the details for its 20th anniversary!

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Heading down San Fransisco Street, there are many more details to be seen.

This year seemed to have more Disney characters worked into the display than ever! We found Roger Rabbit, Stitch, the Dalmatians (which were added last year), Jack, and the baby from Dinosaurs.

Checking out the main tree and the light switch located in the center of the Streets of America!  The switch was flipped every night by a lucky family or Guests.

Heading down the other side of the Streets of America.  The fireplace is homage to the Osborne family and their children.  Here’s where it really started to rain.

The Muppets and even Jack Skellington made an appearance! It was great seeing all of the new character additions this year.

I loved the Star Wars addition.  I never once thought I’d ever see light sabers in the Spectacle of Dancing Lights.

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There was a great homage to Jennings Osborne himself.  A shop window has been dedicated to him, named Osborne Electric Co. and a TV slideshow presented in the middle.  Sadly, he passed away in 2011, the year I began working for Disney. The display on the bottom of the pictures, describing how the Lights came to Disney is a year round display on Streets of America.

After looking around all night, in every back corner and alley, under every roof and window, we finally had to ask a Cast Member where the Black Cat was.  They gave us a hint, and we went to the tunnel that leads to the Muppets Courtyard, but we still couldn’t see it.  All of the lights in this area were off.  So upon asking again, they pointed it out to us with a flashlight.  We had been under it the whole time.  This night, many things weren’t working, including the cat. There was also a 20th Anniversary sign which had been put up, and I had seen a photo of, but was also off that night. It was disappointing to say the least.  More than half of the angels were off, and entire walls were dark.  It was the most outage I had ever seen in one night.

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Once we were finished exploring, which was for about an hour it seemed like, we were at the other end of the street and took one look back at it all. The rain had cleared out the crowds and we were very wet by now.  But it was time to leave for the night.

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As we were walking out, I saw one last thing which had never been done before. When ever you leave Disney, it’s never goodbye.  It’s always See you real soon because you can always return and it’ll always be there.  This year, the 20th anniversary of The Spectacle of Dancing Lights and its final year, they decided to add in this classic phrase at the exit of the street.  Even though the lights are said to be gone forever, perhaps there is hope. Perhaps, we’ll see them again, somewhere on property.  One never knows what Disney has up their sleeve.  DSCN8516

Hope you enjoyed this detailed remembrance of one of my favorite things at Walt Disney World.  Thanks for reading!

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About Chris DiPaula

Creator of DiPaula on Disney: entertainment website dedicated to Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, other Florida parks and activities, and other adventures. Co-creator and producer of Parks, Brews, and Geek News: an entertainment website dedicated to the Florida theme parks including Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando, movie & geek news, and food and brews. Chris DiPaula has been an avid theme park and amusement park goer since childhood and a die hard Disney fan for as long as he can remember. He is currently an active concierge Cast Member at Walt Disney World Resort and has worked for The Walt Disney Company since 2011. Previously, he worked for Busch Gardens Tampa and SeaWorld Orlando in the entertainment technician field as well.

Posted on January 21, 2016, in Walt Disney World and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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