I have had an evolving hot and cold relationship with Halloween, but I think we have finally worked out our differences and our relationship is in a solid place. When I was young, I was the overly-imaginative and slightly high strung child who found the costumes and paraphernalia to be too realistic to be entertaining. While other kids were out snagging bags of treats, I was hiding behind the sofa in fear of the next masked figure at the door. Even after I had children, I only tolerated Halloween festivities for their sake. I just never have caught the Halloween fever.
Our first campsite Halloween (and one of the best memories of the entire trip.)
That is until we experienced Halloween campsite style.
Our 10,000 mile camping roadtrip occurred last year during October, which meant that we celebrated a full scale Trick or Treat extravaganza no less than four times. Apparently, it is the custom, particularly in the Northeast to have a Halloween weekend at the campsite with celebrations that rival any neighborhood party. When the camaraderie of the RV community is combined with the brouhaha of Halloween, the results are a party that will have even a skeptic like me joining in the fun.
The actual All Hallows Eve found us pulling into Fort Wilderness at DisneyWorld. Disney is certainly the reigning King of putting the magic into any celebration, so we were expecting something exciting for Halloween. Trick or Treat at Fort Wilderness did not disappoint and has forever raised the bar and the enjoyment for the delightfully creepy season.
Halloween is a big, big deal at the Fort. Many of our campsite neighbors told us that they return to the Fort every year to celebrate Halloween and that they make their reservations a year in advance. There is also a rumor that there are more decorations at the Fort during Halloween than anywhere else on Disney property during any other holiday. If you have ever seen Disney at Christmas, you know that they go all out for the holidays, so for the Halloween décor at Fort Wilderness to top that, it is pretty spectacular. If you are at Disney for Halloween, you have missed the best if you don’t visit Fort Wilderness.
The decorating of the campsites begins as early as September, but by October a staggering array of Disney inflatables, eerie graveyard scenes, and animated characters fill the campsites. Dedicated campers spend thousands of dollars and unlimited amounts of creativity to make their site the spookiest at the Fort.
Although the decorating begins early in the month and accelerate as Halloween draws closer, planned festivities at the Fort are the best way to enjoy Halloween at Disney. The official Halloween party kicks off with the Mummy Wrap Up on the morning before Halloween. Imagine a field full of families, hundreds of rolls of toilet paper, and a face to the finish line and you will have an idea of the hilarity of this event. Other ‘not-to-miss’ events include the Pet Costume Parade and the decorated Golf Cart Parade. Not only are the parades an amazing display of creativity and fun, but they are the only parade at Disney where guests are regularly allowed to participate.
For families, the best part of Halloween at Fort Wilderness is the Trick or Treat experience. Never has Trick or Treat been so easy or fun!
What to Expect Trick or Treating at Fort Wilderness
- The best part of Trick or Treat at the Fort is that there are no motorized vehicles allowed in the campsite loops. Kids can easily cross from one campsite to the next to gather their candy without any worry that they need to look both ways before crossing. Buses are available to get from one campsite loop to the next, or golf carts can also be used.
- Sites that want to hand out candy must register and receive a Camp or Treat sign to place on their campsite to indicate that they are open to Trick or Treaters. Families can pick up a map at the front entrance that will show which sites are ready and waiting with candy.
- Trick or Treat is hugely popular at Fort Wilderness and many, many campsites ran out of candy by the end of the night. Start early for the best chance to fill up your treat bag.
- You do not have to be a guest of Fort Wilderness to participate in any of the festivities. You can arrive by car and park at the front gate, take Disney buses from the park, or take the exclusive Fort Wilderness ferry from Magic Kingdom to the marina.
- If you are camping and want to hand out treats, they must be store bought in the original wrapping.