Pixar Pals Take Over Disney Parks This Summer

By Julia Carr

“Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular” returns to Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif., with all-new scenes during Pixar Fest from April 26-Aug. 4, 2024, taking guests on an emotional journey of friendship with Pixar pals.(Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland Resort)


Kids love Pixar movies? Disney rolled out a special event at its California theme parks this summer to entice your family to visit.

While Disney California Adventure Park (DCA) already provides great experiences for fans of Cars, Toy Story, The Incredibles, and Monsters, Inc. PixarFest – now through Aug. 4 – takes those Pixar experiences to another level. These new experiences take place at both DCA and Disneyland, which also features a few classic Pixar experiences with Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage and Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters.

Disney representatives couldn’t say if PixarFest will return next year. The first PixarFest debuted in 2018 and hasn’t been back to California. Since then, new characters have been introduced from films Soul (2020), Luca (2021), Turning Red (2022), and Elemental (2023).

For mega Pixar fans, you definitely want to spend a day at DCA. Besides the rush you feel on the Incredicoaster and Radiator Springs Racers, you must check out the new “Better Together: A Pixar Celebration” parade. Catch some highlights on AZ Parenting’s Instagram page: instagram.com/az_parenting/

In the new “Better Together: A Pixar Pals Celebration!” parade, dynamic and colorful floats make their way through Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, Calif., during Pixar Fest from April 26-Aug. 4, 2024. The parade features high-energy dancing and appearances by more than two dozen Pixar characters, including friends from Disney and Pixar’s “Soul” celebrating the sweeter things in life. (Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland Resort)


Kristin Peterson, producer for Disney Live Entertainment, calls it a parade that celebrates friendships. “We wanted the parade to feel lively and heartwarming, like something you want to experience with a friend.”

See Red Panda Mei (Turning Red), Mr. G (Soul), and Miguel (Coco), as well as fan favorites Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl, Mike and Sully. Takes place twice daily.

Pixar also took over the Hollywood Backlot at DCA. During the day, you’ll get to interact with characters and take pics against new Pixar backgrounds, and at night the scene changes to Club Pixar with an interactive DJ dance party and games.

On the Disneyland side, don’t miss “Together Forever – A Pixar Nightime Spectacular” (catch highlights on our Instagram). Guests with MagicBands get an added experience with lights and vibrations synchronized to the music. This fireworks and projection show updates the original spectacular from 2018. This time, you’ll see Carl and Ellie’s house floating above Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, new emotions from Inside Out 2, updated projections throughout Main Street with custom animations, and moments from every single Pixar film.

Also, for little ones, catch the Pixar Pals Playtime Party – an upbeat dance celebration with several Pixar friends including Frozone, Edna Mode, Joy, Sadness, Jessie, and more – at Fantasyland Theatre.

At the Pixar Pals Playtime Party at Fantasyland Theatre at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif., guests can get into the groove at a high-energy show, enjoy interactive games, photo locations and activities inspired by Pixar feature films, and even watch a selection of iconic shorts on the big screen during Pixar Fest, from April 26-Aug. 4, 2024. (Christian Thompson/Disneyland Resort)


Both sides feature themed foods that aim to inspire joy – and look a little like art. Highlights include the Sea Monster Friends Parfait (Luca) at Jolly Holliday Bakery Café, Earth Pass Cake (Soul) at Café Orleans and Firetown Mac & Cheese Bites (Elemental) at the Troubadour Tavern. Love to go for the food, then check out the Pixar Fest Foodie Guide.

Sea monster friends parfait inspired by Disney and Pixar’s “Luca” will be at Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif. – layers of graham cracker crumbs, mascarpone cheesecake, berry blue gelatin and blue Chantilly topped with a Luca chocolate decoration. Available beginning April 26, 2024. (David Nguyen/Disneyland Resort)


Also, after May 10, DCA will open six food and beverage marketplaces highlighting Luca, Ratatouille, Turning Red, Soul, Elemental and Inside Out.

New character interactions include Wade and Ember from Elemental and Luca and Alberto from Luca.

The cost to check out this fun event isn’t cheap. Disney vacations are a bit of a splurge. But there are ways to save and make the most of your trip. Read “How to Avoid Going Broke at Disney.

Summer ticket prices (May – July) start at $119 for adults. Realistically, most single day tickets while the kids are out of school are $154-$194. Saturdays tend to be the most expensive day, while Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays tend to be least expensive. Tickets for children 9 and younger start at $112 and go as high as $183. A two-day ticket costs $310 for adults and $290 for children, and frankly is your best buy if planning to visit each park on weekends.

Julia Carr is a recent ASU grad who is back at school studying forensics. She’s been visiting Disneyland since she was 2 and recently celebrated her 24th birthday at the park.