Terrific Tuesdays: Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

Few things say Christmas quite like a light display in front of a house.  In fact, many neighborhoods have competitions now – who can have the biggest or best display.  If you have a light display contest in your neighborhood, you can’t miss the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights – you’ll never quite see Christmas lights in the same way again!

The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights started as a display at a the home of Jennings Osborne and his family.  It grew to such a huge display that where else would he want to display it but at Walt Disney World, where it has resided since 1995!  This display has more than ten MILES of lights and 30 miles of extension cords!  Literally millions of lights.  There are lights covering every surface – from phone booths, to buildings, to power cords.  It takes 20,000 man hours to put up this display every year.  That would mean if you alone tried to put these lights up, putting in 8 hours a day, it would take you more than 6 YEARS to put it up!!!  And all the lights are synchronized to music.  It’s truly a sight to see. 

And for those who are environmentally conscious, you’ll be happy to learn that in 2011, there was a major overhaul and all the lights have been swapped out for LED lights. 

The lines get long, but trust me, you do NOT want to miss this display!  It is on display usually from early/mid November through early January, and is fun for all ages.

Question of the Day: The Osborne Lights are clearly an “after dark” Disney experience along with several other fabulous evening events like fireworks, shows, and parades. What is your favorite thing to see or do “after dark” in the Disney parks?

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Nicole is a more recent convert to Disney, and has her husband Corey to thank. As a kid, she went a couple of times and had fun, but didn’t really catch the “Disney bug” until her husband finally convinced her to go in March of 2003. Since then, she goes every opportunity she can, and every time finds something new to explore! She’s a proud Disney Vacation Club owner and mother of two Disneyphiles – ages 5 (Maggie) and 2 (Max). She helps friends and family to plan Disney vacations all year round, and when she can’t be at Disney, she surrounds herself with it. Her house and office have plenty of pictures and souvenirs covering them, so she’s never far away from the magic!

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37 Responses to Terrific Tuesdays: Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

  1. Sheree Simmons says:

    Entering the Christmas in July drawing, I hope!!!! :))))

  2. Joey Cain says:

    I will be going to Disney world for the first time this year. We will get there Thanksgiving day. I am looking forward to everything Disney after dark. Especially the Osborne lights. I sync lights to music at my house every Christmas but no where close to what Disney does. I had o er 11,000 last Christmas. I am looking forward to seeing that number of lights synced to music. Christmas is my favorite holiday of the year. 🙂

  3. Pam Kasper says:

    My favorite nighttime thing to do is see Wishes. I love it 🙂

  4. Jessica Ortiz says:

    Getting in rides like Aerosmith rocking rollercoaster, tower of terror , etc. watching fireworks and the castle lightening

  5. Missy DiDato says:

    We love to take a train ride at the MK and then sit at the top of the station in Main Street and watch the firework and parades.

  6. Leigh Anne Smart says:

    I can’t wait to see the castle all lit up and the fireworks! This will be my kids first time to see the fireworks!! Super excited!!

  7. Lynnette Runtic says:

    Watching the fireworks and walking around on Main Street taking it all in 🙂 Of course buying any last minute souvenirs at the Emporium!

  8. Liz says:


  9. AJ Schlicher says:

    So hard to pick 1 favorite Disney anything! I love all the nighttime shows, but I think Fantasmic is my favorite, followed by Wishes. The Electrical Parade is awesome too. If it counts I would also have to include The Hyperspace Hoopla during Star Wars Weekends.

  10. Kathy says:

    I would have to say Fantasmic …its much better at night…plus wishes as well!!!

  11. Ron Parry says:

    My favorite after dark thing to do is the Wishes desert party. What a better way to watch the fireworks than stuffing your belly full of yummy tasty deserts. You also get one of the greatest views of the fireworks. Tinkerbell literally flies right over your head.

  12. Leah says:

    My favorite nighttime show in Walt Disney World is Illuminations, I love the music, I love when the different countries light up and I love the unity I feel with people from around the world. I always feel at peace watching Illuminations and that feeling continues throughout my vacation.

  13. Tracey K says:

    My favorite nighttime show is Wishes fireworks!

  14. Beth M says:

    I love the Wishes fireworks, but I’ve never been at Epcot after dark. So for our upcoming trip, I am really looking forward to seeing Illuminations!

  15. nicole d says:

    im going next year and cant wait to check everything out. i havent been since i was a little girl and im taking my kid for th first time. from what i hear everything is the best.

  16. Teresa Mace says:

    Any fireworks in MK. Something so magical about them going off around the castle!! Do love Illumminations too

  17. Teresa Mace says:

    Love the fireworks in MK!! Love the castle as they are going off….magical

  18. Traci says:

    I love watching Tinkerbell fly out of the Castle and Wishes/fireworks.

  19. Olivia Robinson says:

    Hot chocolate, popcorn, Christmas cookies, and the snowy streets of America! Can’t wait to go back!

  20. Austyn says:

    I’ve never been to Disney World, but one of our favorite things to do at Disneyland is to watch Fantasmic and the fireworks. It’s like a replay of all the rides we went on through out the day. It makes me cry every time!

  21. amy byrd says:

    Normally by the evening I am to worn out to stay and we go to the pool at the resort but out of the few shows I have seen I like the fireworks at the castle the best.

  22. Lisa Commander says:

    to me, Disney comes to LIFE after Dark. It is hard to select precisely which event is more spectacular at night…from the electric street parade to the holiday lights …. from Wishes to Illuminations….. to just the way everything sparkles and twinkles just a little bit more when the sun goes down….. however I will say I cannot miss ever… no matter how many time I have seen it….FANTASMIC at Hollywood Studios. It is beyond magical, exciting, and beautiful. It is truly amazing what water, lights, and fireworks can become in the hands of the Disney imagineers.

  23. Debra dauwer says:

    Illuminations is my favorite ! It always makes me get emotional , it’s just so beautiful !

  24. Brent says:

    Walking around world showcase after illuminations (when the crowd leaves)

  25. Elizabeth says:

    I love to ride outdoor rides like Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain at night – Big Thunder especially looks really different at night, and at the top of the drops you get great views of the castle.

  26. Cathleen King says:

    I love seeing the fireworks at night in Disney.

  27. Cathy says:

    I love the fireworks!

  28. Amber says:

    I love the Fantasmic show in HS! In Epcot I like walking down the path that has twinkling sidewalks.

  29. Christina says:

    This will be my first visit with my 2 girls(12 and 4)so I think we are looking forward to seeing Fantasmic and Wishes the most. But my 4 yr old will probably like the mickey parade at Animal Kingdom.

  30. Jerri Vance says:

    I think Wishes has to be my favorite thing to do after dark. Ever since I was a CP there watching with my roommates our final night. We all seemed to just be in awe of what had transpired the past 8 months. I made best friends for life. Now when I hear the music to wishes I still tear up and think back to that night with friends. I even have the CD that I listen to in my car when I need a special pick me up.

  31. Rea says:

    We are going back to Disney World this Septmber and I think the thing I’m most excited to do “after dark” is show my 3yr old daughter that Rapunzel’s hair glows on her tower in Fantasyland 🙂

  32. Penni Long says:

    I love watching the fireworks. Hate the noise, but love the view!

  33. Sunny says:

    Spectromagic! It was the first parade I ever remember seeing at the parks, and I’ve loved it ever since. Also, although it’s not technically a “nighttime” ride/show, the Haunted Mansion! It’s my favorite ride anytime, but there’s something extra creepy about it at night.

  34. Amanda Adkins says:

    We did Pirates and Pals Cruise on our last trip. We LOVED it! This trip we are going to do the Tomorrowland Terrace Dessert Party. I can’t wait!

  35. wendy dunnigan says:

    I love Wishes but nothing beats watching the expression on my daughters face when she is watching FANTASMIC!!!

  36. Gaylin says:

    I love riding Splash Mountain after dark. The parts of the ride that are higher up and outside are a terrific way to see MK after the sun sets.

  37. Teresa Mace says:

    There are a million great photo shots..whether just the beauty of all the different parks or with characters. My favorite pic and I get one every time is at the partners statue in MK! My favorite…

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