Star Wars Weekends 2014 Tips & Info

Star Wars Weekends 2014 will occur May 16-18, May 23-25, May 30-June 1, June 6-8, and June 13-15, 2014 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World! Star Wars Weekends are geared towards all things Star Wars (including the animated TV show, Star Wars: The Clone Wars). Celebrities are in attendance, there’s a special parade, shows, and every day ends with fireworks! It’s a lot of fun whether you’re a hardcore Star Wars fan or just a fan of fun (we fall into the latter camp).

If you’ve been to Walt Disney World countless times (and it’s probably not a bad assumption that you have if you’re reading this blog), you might be looking for ways to see the place a-new. One way to to find new experiences is to visit during a seasonal festival or weekend event. One such weekend event is Star Wars Weekends, held in May and June at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

This post has been updated for 2014 to reflect changes to Star Wars Weekends, including the ‘retirement’ of Hyperspace Hoopla and the addition of the Symphony in the Stars fireworks, as well as new strategy and tips. We attended Star Wars Weekends the weekend of May 23, 2014. 

If you haven’t visited multiple times and are planning a trip to Walt Disney World, make sure to check out our Disney Tips & Tricks page for a lot of helpful tips to outsmart the masses. Also check out our dining reviews to find the best restaurants and our trip planning posts to figure out what to pack, which tickets to buy, which discounts to look for, and all the other ins and outs of a trip to Walt Disney World, including the “10 Steps to Planning a Walt Disney World trip!

If you’re more concerned with seeing photos of Star Wars Weekends to get a visual idea of what it’s like, check out our pages containing hundreds of photos from past Star Wars Weekends. If you’ve already made up your mind that you want to visit during Star Wars Weekends but don’t know which one to plan your trip around, consider the first weekend. It’s not significantly busier, and you benefit in having Star Wars Weekends overlap with Epcot’s International Flower & Garden Festival that first weekend. Two special events in one trip can make for a lot of fun!

Why Visit During Star Wars Weekends?

If you’re thinking, “I have no interest in being in a crowd of Trekkies dressed up as Chewbaccas,” fear not. Sarah and I are not big Star Wars fans, either, but we have had an absolute blast during Star Wars Weekends. We’ve now been multiple times, and hope to do Star Wars Weekends again in 2014.

Much like the name implies, Star Wars Weekends take place over Friday, Saturday, and Sundays–so no wacky schedules based on the Klingon Astro Calendar or anything like that. Although the Studios can get a little crowded during these events with Star Wars fans (and, I suppose, some Trekkies who end up in the wrong place) the energy these fans bring to the park is palpable. While events like Star Wars Celebration have no allure for me, Star Wars Weekends give me a chance to see those hardcore fans in their finest fan-made attire–and some of these costumes are quite impressive–without having to endure the geek-dom of the other events. No knock at geeky fan events, after all, we attend countless geeky Disney events and count ourselves as geeks. Much like Justin Timberlake brought back sexy, I think that wretched movie, Napoleon Dynamite, actually brought geeky back.

In addition to this guest “experience,” there are a lot of actors who portrayed characters in the Star Wars movies in attendance for autograph signings and for the daily parade. Mind you, unless you’re a huge Star Wars fan, most of these actors’ names won’t ring a bell. However, if you are a fan of the films, meeting these actors can be pretty cool. Just be warned, if you want anything signed, you will want to arrive to the park hours before it opens to wait in line to be guaranteed a meeting with them.

Disney uses a FastPass system for celebrity autographs during Star Wars Weekends. Each guest is allowed one such FastPass (per day–they are free), and how late you can show up and still get a FastPass depends upon the popularity of the celebrity you want to meet. We aren’t particularly interested in meeting Star Wars celebrities, so this is something we’ve never done. Based on what we’ve heard from friends, Ray Park is the most ‘in-demand’ celebrity, and if you want a FastPass for him, you should plan on showing up around 6 am. If you arrive late or want to meet more than one celebrity, standby is available, too. Obviously, it behooves you to get the FastPass for the most popular celebrity and rarest (so if they are popular but appear at every Star Wars Weekend, they aren’t going to be as in-demand for FastPasses) and do standby for less-popular and more common ones. StudiosCentral has a good summary of how this system works.

A special note for 2014: for the first time everMark Hamill will be appearing at Star Wars Weekends, for the June 6-8 weekend only. Based on what we have heard, he will be appearing in the motorcade and an afternoon talk show only, and will not be signing autographs. If our info is incorrect and he is signing, we anticipate demand for him being so high that people will start lining up before the park closes the day before to obtain FastPasses to meet him. At the very least, demand for the motorcade and his talk show will be significantly higher than normal. If you are not interested in Mark Hamill, we’d suggest avoiding these Star Wars Weekends dates, as these are the dates all serious Star Wars fans are going to target. Attendance could be significantly higher than normal, and waits for Star Wars events will certainly be much longer. (On the plus side, non-Star Wars attractions shouldn’t have longer than normal wait times–but you’ll still be dealing with high crowd levels.)

Star Wars Weekends Tips

This tips are based upon our Star Wars Weekends visits, and what we’ve learned works and doesn’t work based on our experiences. Regardless of whether you want these actors to sign anything, you should arrive at Disney’s Hollywood Studios prior to park opening, as one of the coolest experiences of the weekend is “Storming the Park,” which is guarded from on high by the Storm Troopers. The little skit they put on is hilarious, and not to be missed. It may seem like something minor and not worth arriving early to experience, but trust me, you will be thankful you dragged yourself out of bed early. Plus, you will need the time to experience as much as you possibly can in the day.

If you want autographs, arriving to Disney’s Hollywood Studios by 6 am is probably a good idea. If you don’t want autographs, you can sleep a little longer, but we still recommend arriving about an hour before the official park opening, which will usually be 8 am during Star Wars Weekends. This is because the turnstiles often open earlier than the official open time during Star Wars Weekends due to the crowds. In 2012, we got in the park at around 7:30 am, immediately got Toy Story Mania FastPasses, and then rode Toy Story Mania with only about a 5 minute wait. From there, we also quickly did Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster. Finishing the “Big 3″ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios before the Star Wars Weekends events even kick off will be huge, as there is a lot of waiting in lines for character photos and to secure show and parade seats that will likely prevent you from doing attractions AND experiencing all of the Star Wars Weekend festivities.

One of my favorite times of year to meet characters is at Star Wars Weekends. No, not because these character meetings are held outdoors during the most unbearable heat of the year, in some of the longest lines of the year, but because of the Disney characters’ costumes! These costumes are really cool, as are some of the backdrops for the meet and greets. Definitely plan on spending some serious time in line for these. I would recommend doing these in late afternoon as the lines aren’t so bad.

Once, we made the mistake of lining up first thing in the morning for Jedi Mickey (who rotates with a slew of other Disney characters). The lines ended up being shorter for him later in the day. Instead, we should have lined up for Darth Vader, who consistently had a line over an hour(!) later in the day. These character lines can be brutal, so if you’re not a fan of meeting characters, you’ll save a lot of time during Star Wars Weekends. If you do want to meet these characters, be prepared for long waits. Here are photos of some of the Disney and Star Wars characters you might see and be able to meet at Star Wars Weekends.

Another main attraction of the weekends is the daily Star Wars Legends of the Force Motorcade. This motorcade is cool for the costumes that you’ll see, but it’s a bit short (as is the parade route–making it tough to get good spots). We recommend staking out a spot an hour before this motorcade if you want an unobstructed view, perhaps an hour and a half. If you don’t mind having a few heads in your way, you don’t need to claim a spot quite as early, but still get to the motorcade area at least 40 minutes in advance (even that is cutting it close).

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There are various other events throughout the day, typically including a question and answer seminar and a trivia contest (called the Padawan Mind Challenge in past years) for kids. The exact names and details of these events change from year-to-year. There are several shows held throughout the day in a large theater in the Backlot. We’ve seen several of these, including Behind the Force, Stars of the Saga, Obi-Wan and Beyond, An Ewok’s Tale – My Short Story, and Visit to the Maul.

Walt Disney World May 2012 301

We really enjoy these shows because they usually combine three things: behind the scenes presentations, humor, and some sort of demonstration. In the case of Obi-Wan and Beyond, the ‘demonstration’ is James Arnold Taylor showcasing his impressive range of vocal talent, which in itself is funny. In Visit to the Maul, the demonstration is Ray Park’s impressive light saber action. In Ewok’s Tale, it’s Warwick Davis playing director and interacting with the audience, which is also incredibly funny. Actually, Ewok’s Tale is our favorite of these, so if you get a chance to go when Warwick Davis is visiting, definitely check out this show. We also consider Obi-Wan and Beyond to be a can’t miss, and this one is offered every weekend–at least as long as James Arnold Taylor is the host of Star Wars Weekends. People line up for these shows early for good seats, but the theater where these presentations take place is huge, so you can show up 5 minutes before showtime and typically still get a seat. It just won’t be a close seat.

One non-event that has become somewhat of an event is the purchase of merchandise. If you plan on buying anything unique to Star Wars Weekends, I highly recommend doing this early. Lines will get long, and limited edition items will sell out.

Prior to 2014, each day used to conclude with Hyperspace Hoopla. Hyperspace Hoopla has been retired for 2014, replaced with the “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks.  Hyperspace Hoopla was a hilarious, snarky, and well-orchestrated show. I run out of adjectives just trying to describe it. It was rife with pop culture references, a real hoot overall. I’m actually a bit surprised that Lucasfilm has allowed such an irreverent show (although maybe that’s why it was stopped).

For the first time in 2014, each day of Star Wars Weekend will conclude with “Symphony in the Stars” Fireworks show at 9:45 pm. This show debuted with the special “May the Fourth be With You” Limited Time Magic Event, and was so well-received that they’re doing it every night this year!

We saw the show for the first time at this year’s Star Wars Weekends, and it was absolutely amazing. The music and the pyro made it one of the best fireworks shows I’ve ever seen, and it really made me hope for an expanded Star Wars presence at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, with this fireworks show running on a nightly basis. If you are visiting during Star Wars Weekends, DO NOT MISS THIS FIREWORKS SHOW!

Symphony in the Stars has a stage show element before the fireworks starts, so the most coveted spots are directly in front of the Sorcerers Hat, with a clear view of the stage. However, this “stage show” is nothing more than the introduction of a few characters, and only lasts about 5 minutes. Sarah watched the fireworks from here so she could see the stage show, while I watched from back near Disney & Co (the store about halfway up Hollywood Boulevard). She was in an incredibly crowded area, and due to the perspective, her view of the fireworks was not the best. By contrast, I had a poor view of the character introductions on the stage (I could see them on the video screen above the stage), but I had an excellent view of the fireworks, and where I was standing was not crowded at all. I highly recommend standing farther back on Hollywood Boulevard, and not worrying about seeing the fireworks pre-show on the stage. It’s nothing special, anyway.

For another great view with lower crowds, head over to Echo Lake, right in front of 50s Prime Time Cafe. (The above photo was taken from this location.) Another unique option, especially if you don’t have park tickets, is actually outside Disney’s Hollywood Studios on the walkway to Epcot, near the Friendship Boat dock. Our friends over at Disney Photography Blog have a post showing what the fireworks look like from that spot.

Crowds are typically bad at Star Wars Weekend, with especially long lines for Star Tours: the Adventures Continue, and also for all of the special meet & greets. As a general rule I wouldn’t recommend doing Jedi Training Academy or Star Tours during Star Wars Weekends if you can experience them other times during the week. Jedi Training Academy has a better energy during Star Wars Weekends, but it’s just not worth the crowds. If someone in your party does want to do Jedi Training Academy, make sure to head to the sign-up first thing in the morning.

The special presentations also require waiting in line at least 30 minutes in advance of the presentation, with 45 minutes to an hour being the safer bet. We were able to get in two of the presentations last year after getting in line about 30 minutes before they started (the lines usually form in the MuppetVision 3D overflow queue or in areas around there–ask a Cast Member if you’re not sure what the lines you see are for), but our seats were not the greatest. If you want good spots for these shows, you’re going to have to pick and choose which matter most to you, and line up about an hour in advance for those ones (this will likely prevent you from seeing them all in a single day due to timing).

Star Wars Character Meals

For the first time ever, Walt Disney World will offer Star Wars character meals during the 2014 Star Wars Weekends. Prices are quite steep, but if you would otherwise be waiting in line for these characters in the hot, Florida sun, this could save you a ton of time and potentially be worth the money. These meals are available May 4, 2014 through June 15, 2014 any day of the week.

There are two meal options. The “Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine” is a dinner at Hollywood and Vine and features Disney characters in Star Wars outfits. Featured characters are Jedi Mickey, Princess Leia Minnie, Ewok Chip ‘n’ Dale, Stormtrooper Donald, and Darth Goofy. This character meal costs $55.99 for adults and $32.99 for kids. Do this as a Fantasmic! dining package for $59.99 (adults) and $36.99 (kids). Guests will receive a digital photo download of Ewok Chip ‘n’ Dale. The meal is served from 4:15 p.m. until park close daily.

The second Star Wars/Disney character meal is the “Star Wars Dine-In Galactic Breakfast.” Standard Star Wars characters for this meal, consisting of Darth Vader, Stormtroopers, Boba Fett, Greedo and Jawas. In place of Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater’s standard sci-fi movie trailers, there will be Star Wars clips playing during the meal. This Star Wars character meal costs $47.99 for adults and $29.99 for kids. Reservations for this meal are accepted from 8:00 am until noon.

We attended both of the new for 2014 Star Wars Character Meals, and had a great time at both of them. Check out our comprehensive review of Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine at Hollywood & Vine. If you’d rather do breakfast with the Star Wars characters, read our Star Wars Dine-In Galactic Breakfast Review.

Despite the prices, these are sure to be incredibly popular, so if you want to book these meals, do so immediately. They are incredibly popular and availability is very limited.

If you’ve been to Walt Disney World more times than you can count, but have never visited the Studios during Star Wars Weekends, you owe it to yourself to plan a trip down during May or June to experience The Force, Disney-style. Even if you’re not a hardcore Star Wars fan, you’re sure to have a good time!

Your Thoughts

Have you visited during Star Wars Weekends? Do you think it’s worth braving the crowds to experience these special event weekends? Do you want to visit during Star Wars Weekends? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

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105 Responses to “Star Wars Weekends 2014 Tips & Info”

  1. Marilyn says:

    I didn’t know about “Stormin the Park” Sounds like a blast. Thanks for this well-written article. I admit I was more inclined to shy away from Hollywood Studios, but now I think I’d be more willing to try it. Love the pics.

  2. Adam Hansen says:

    Great article and tips Tom. I am looking forward to attending the first day of Star Wars Weekend this year. I am not a Star Wars fan at all but am sure I will enjoy everything that is going on – especially the opening of Star Tours 2!

  3. Rick says:

    Any word on which cast members will be present for the grand re-opening weekend this year?

  4. Deanna says:

    We went to Star Wars Weekend, May 2009. We surprised our son who was 8 1/2 at the time. We had so much fun! It was very hot and I will never go back to WDW that time of the year but for a one time thing that surprised my avid Star Wars Fan, it was well worth it.

  5. Tracy says:

    Is it worth it to visit during Star Wars weekends or would we have just as much fun any time at Hollywood Studios? I do have Star Wars fans. Is the only addition to the Star Wars part of the Studios the parades and autographs?

    • Tom Bricker says:

      Don’t under-estimate the fun you’ll have during Star Wars Weekends, especially if you have Star Wars fans in your group. Autographs don’t do much for me, but the parade, Hyperspace Hoopla, and various other events are a LOT of fun. There is a palpable energy in the air, and it’s definitely something worth seeing. Crowds can be higher at DHS during these weekends, but non-Star Wars stuff isn’t generally that busy. I’d go for it!

      • Jamie says:

        Tom, would you say that the Star Wars crowds spill over into the other parks? We are planning a day at EPCOT on Saturday May 17th to drink around the world (we’ll be on a family vacation in Daytona Beach but will make a day trip to Orlando) but this is the last weekend of the Flower and Garden Fest and the first Star Wars Weekend… we’re a little unsure how crowds will be but unfortunately it’s the only day that works for our whole group.

      • Tom Bricker says:

        I don’t think Star Wars Weekends crowds spill over into the other parks at all. That’s just based on what I’ve observed, I have no real stats to back this up. In general, I think SWW attracts a pretty unique crowd, much of which probably isn’t too concerned with the other parks.

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  7. Leah Bailly says:

    I wonder if there will be anything new this year, considering the recent LucasFilm acquisition!

  8. Liz says:

    Can you do Jedi training academy on a day other than during te star wars weekend? Is it offered on other days, weekdays? Thanks for all the info!

  9. Dis Savvy says:

    This is a great review of Star Wars Weekends! While I’ve been 67 times to WDW, this May will be my first Star Wars weekend! I appreciate the great information and pro/con analysis of the activities!

  10. Todd Breaux says:

    I’ll be there opening day this year on May 17th. Hope to see you there.

    • Tom Bricker says:

      We probably won’t be there for the opening weekend this year, but we’re hoping to make it at least one of the weekends. Enjoy your trip!

  11. Ashley Ritchie says:

    Great page! By far the most informative SWW site I have found! Love the photos, as well! I just had a quick question…We are a family of SW geeks, and will be experiencing our first SWW on May 26, 2013. I’m trying to plan our day, and want to make lunch reservations, but don’t want to miss the Legends of the Force parade. What time did the parade take place during previous years?

    • Tom Bricker says:

      Last year it was around 12:30. If you have *any* interest in meeting characters, I’d suggest doing counter service lunch instead of table service. If you meet characters, it’s tough to do everything at Star Wars Weekends in one day due to lines.

      • Ashley Ritchie says:

        Thanks Tom!
        We went ahead and made 11:00am lunch reservations at the Sci-Fi dine in theater. I think that should give us plenty of time to eat and get a good parade watching spot!

      • Brenda says:

        For Ashley R. – The crowd starts lining up for the parade as early as 2 hours before it starts. Best of luck in finding a good parade viewing site. We have been going the last three years and it is tough getting a good view of the parade, especially if you have younger children. MTFBWY!

  12. Danielle says:

    I’m really glad I stumbled upon your blog. I’m taking my son, 6 years old, down to Disney for his 3rd trip and my…well I have lost count at this point. He’s been SERIOUSLY into Star Wars for about 2 years now and I thought this was the perfect time to take him to Star Wars weekend which happens to also fall on my 31st birthday weekend. I’m super psyched to see his reaction to seeing some of his favorite Star Wars characters as well as some of his favorite Disney characters in Star Wars costumes. He lives and breaths Star Wars…sneakers, tshirts, lightsabers (4), bed tent, sheets, night light, calendar, legos, stuffed animals, vinylmations, playskool heros, clone wars figurines, books, hats, backpacks, sweatshirts…you name it, he has it. I think your blog was really helpful because it is just the information I am looking for. Everything else just tells you about Star Wars Weekends but not what we really want to know such as how long we can expect to wait, when we should get there, etc. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  13. Michelle says:

    how is the crowd level at the other parks during SW weekends? Is it lighter b/c everyone is at HS events or is the crowd level high in general across the board? We are planning a visit May 23-June 1. Trying to get a feel. Thanks for the info!

    • Tom Bricker says:

      You’re looking at the beginning of the summer season, so you’re looking at an across-the-board increase. I doubt the cause is Star Wars Weekends, but it’s still an increase as compared to the period before SWW.

  14. Samantha says:

    My husband and I love Star Wars Weekends! We will be going for our 5th time this May. Unfortunately we have almost always missed “storming the park” we will definitely peel ourselves out of bed early this time!!! Thanks for the additional information!

  15. Susan says:

    We are taking our boys to Disney for the first time and will be there for the final weekend of Star Wars Weekends. Would you recommend going both Saturday and Sunday or picking 1 weekend day and then a different day during the week?

    • Averie says:

      I would recommend going Saturday and Sunday because you can split your days in half.Example:1 day you meet some characters and watch some shows and the 2 day you meet more characters by merchandise and ride Star Tours.

  16. Jami says:

    What would you say is the best weekend to go for Star Wars days? We were thinking of taking our 5 and 2 yr old down the first weekend. Even though it’s the first weekend how does this compare to the others since schools will most likely still be on session when when we go.

  17. Linda says:

    This is a great blog! I am taking my son who will be 9 to Disney for the first time in May and will be there May 22-28. I was second-guessing my decision to go during Memorial Day weekend but now that I know about Star Wars weekend I am thrilled. Let’s put it this way, our Golden Retriever”s name is Princess Leia. These tips are very helpful as there is so much to do that it is hard to know where to begin. I haven’t been to Disney in almost 20 years.

    Does anyone have suggestions on the best places to eat at HS and if reservations are necessary? I’ll be looking for a schedule of events but please keep the tips coming. I’ll be sure to add to this after our trip to share our experience.

    • Brenda says:

      We always enjoy dinner at Mama Melrose’s Italian Restaurant and yes you do need reservations. Most of the nicer restaurants require reservations. But therer are places to get food without reservations. We enjoy lunch at the Backlot (not sure if name is correct) and watch the Jedi Trtaining academy show which is right next door. Enjoy your ttrip!! MTFBWY!

  18. Mike says:

    Any idea if they will bring the Carbon Freeze Me back this year?

    To meet Ray Park, you are advising to arrive around 5am?

  19. Karyn says:

    We went to HS in 2010, not realizing it was a Star Wars weekend. We saw Billy Dee Williams/Lando Calrissian. There was a huge line, but we were able to walk up to the booth he was in and we were only about 4 feet away from where he was signing autographs and I got a great picture. The guy who played Darth Maul was there, as was the director of the Clone Wars movies. My son was 5 then, and is now 8 and a huge Star Wars fan, so hoping they have some good ones there this year!

    • Tom Bricker says:

      Darth Maul will be there again this year…he’s one of the “big” actors that typically appears every year. Have fun!!!

  20. Ty Miller says:

    HUM didn’t know it was a Star Wars Weekend when I planned this trip (May 6 thru 20, 2013) and not sure if this is a good thing or a bad one. I was told that May usually had smaller crowds but this sounds like the crowds might actually be larger.

  21. Lee says:

    Hi, We are heading to Star Wars weekend this year!! yeah!! Does anyone know, is the parade only Star Wars related or are other Disney type characters (Toy Story, Monster’s Inc etc) in the parade also?

    • Averie says:

      To answer your question,the characters in the parade are only star wars characters but they look awesome.You can watch videos of the Parade on YouTube.

  22. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Excellent and decent post. Pretty good post.

  23. Paul says:

    Do what now? I had no idea they had Star Wars weekends! I gotta get me one of those Storm Trooper suits! Off to have a look at your Disney Tips and Tricks Page. Thanks for the heads up.

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  25. Awesome sign me up. Wish I could bag a storm troopers outfit!

  26. Andrea Juncos says:

    I would like top know te dates forma 2014. We are traveling in febuary with muy kids and muy son os a number one fan!

  27. Lauren says:

    I know this post was from awhile back, but as this is a special event are annual passes still honored for park admission? I know for some events Disney uses their discretion and I was unsure if this was one of those times.

    • Tom Bricker says:

      This is an event that is included with park admission–it’s not a hard ticket event. You’ll be able to see everything with your Annual Pass!

      • Sonia says:

        I would like to know what time the hoopla starts and what would be a good time to start heading over there. We will have our six year old and we couldn’t see very well last year. I can’t book any dining reservations until we find out.

  28. John S says:

    Love it!

  29. Lauren2014 says:

    This is great info! I’ll be in WDW May 13-20 for the first time since 2000. I was going to avoid the Studios like the plague that weekend, but you’ve changed my mind! I’m thrilled to catch Flower & Garden, too.

    It’s fun planning my first trip as an adult/parent, but hard to wrap my mind around how much has changed in 14 years. I was in WDW countless times before I turned 20, but I feel like a first-timer. I’ve been reading all I can to prepare and plan, and your blog is the BEST. It’s so informative and it’s making me even more excited than I would be otherwise.

    In the extremely unlikely event that you guys are there that weekend and I spot you around the World, I will definitely run up and ask if I can shake hands with you both! Thank you so much, Tom & Sarah!

    • Tom Bricker says:

      While I love to go for the first weekend when Flower & Garden and Star Wars Weekends overlap, it looks like this year we’ll be there the following weekend due to prior committments the previous weekend. :(

  30. Laura says:

    Thank you so much for this review. We’re attending the last weekend of SWW and are planning to bring our 2 yr old to see the Hoopla. I hope we’ll be able to see with her and enjoy the festivities. You made it sound like so much fun…..

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  32. Lisa says:

    We had planned to do SWW on Saturday, May 24, but since Magic Kingdom will now be open 24 hours on Friday I’m wondering if we should change our days around and do SWW on Friday. Are Fridays exactly like Saturday as far as fireworks, parades, characters, etc? I have three major Star Wars fans and I don’t want them to miss any of it!

    • Connie says:

      Hi, Lisa: We are planning the same thing. We are going the same weekend as you, so are doing Hollywood Studios on Friday and Magic Kingdom on Thurs and Sat, and Epcot on Sunday. Really HOPING to avoid some of the crowds with this schedule.

  33. Kortney says:

    Hi Tom,

    My husband and I are taking our Star Wars crazed nephew to Disney this spring and I was curious if you could recommend which weekend to go. Is the first weekend less crowded because children are still in school, or is it really busy because.. well.. it’s the first weekend (lol). Any feedback would be great. Love your blogs by the way. Also a huge fan of your photography. Thanks!

  34. Jessica says:

    Love the tips!!!! I’m going this year. But just a little FYI to the author. The term “Trekkies” and “Klingons” are “Star TREK” references not “Star WARS”

  35. Alison says:

    I will be going to Disney World this June with my new husband for the first part of our honeymoon. We were going to miss Star Wars Weekend by one day, but now that it was extended for one more weekend, we will be able to go that last Friday. My fiance and i both love Star Wars (though he loves it more than I do). We have been looking at all kinds of info in order to help plan and maximize our time there as we will only have 5 days. We have a wonderful dinner planned at Victoria and Albert’s that will also be on my 30th birthday. Your blog has been a great help to us in planning!

  36. Rob says:

    Hi Tom,

    First time posting but have been really enjoying reading your posts for a little while!

    We’re going to be down for Star Wars Weekends this year and I’m wondering if the ‘storming the park’ takes place as soon as people are let into the park (before official opening time) or at the official opening time? Good to know how early to drag ourselves out of bed for it!


  37. Ashley says:

    Now I’m wishing we were going in May instead of April!

  38. Sandy says:

    What are the crowds like at the other parks on these weekends?

    • Lyn says:

      We went last year for Star Wars weekend,all the parks were packed. Most the rides had over an hour to 90 minute wait.

  39. FrugalKev says:

    One of my favorite things is waiting at the opening gates and seeing the storm troopers “patrolling” through the crowd and on top of the entrance. I don’t know why but I just loved that touch and really got you into the StarWars mood for the day!

  40. Eve says:

    A Trekkie is a fan of the Star Trek franchise, not Star Wars. There is a known rivalry of Trekkies and Star Wars fans, though there are many that are fans of both.

  41. sally says:

    I would like to know if I can purchase 2014 star wars autograph book before we attend star wars weekends

  42. James Craven says:

    Will there be any visits from the Phineas and Ferb cast and crew talking about the crossover they’ll be doing this summer?

  43. Marco says:

    i’ll be there on the weekend at 13-06-14. I’ve got a 5 day hopper ticket. Can I walk in for free? or do I have to pay extra?
    Bye the way, I love your blog! I’m from the Netherlands

    • Tom Bricker says:

      There’s no extra charge beyond your regular park ticket. Have a great time visiting the United States! :)

  44. Michelle says:

    I was wondering if you have any info on if you can use Fast Pass+ for autographs with the celebrities now that they have done away with the paper Fast Passes? Do you know how that will work out since the official schedule has not been published?

  45. Kelly says:

    Any news of anything going on May the 4th? We were last year and my boys loved it! We will be at Disney the same time this year and was hoping there was something going on.

  46. Angela says:

    I happened to stumble upon “May the 4th Be With You” last year and was hoping it was going to happen again this year so my hubby could go. Any word on that for 2014?

  47. Tara says:

    When do they generally announce who will be there to sign autographs on each weekend?

  48. Ro says:

    We got lucky and will stay at Disney for two weeks this year and have that many weekends for SWW, but not looking forward to the lovely Florida sunshine all day so want to maximize our character meets while minimizing line time. Do you know if the SW character meet areas stay the same every year, and if so, do you have a list? Thanks for all the great info in your blog!

  49. Jeannette says:

    Do you know if they have Star Wars weekends in Disneyland Paris?

  50. Michelle says:

    Do you know which characters sign autographs? Not the celebrtities, but the dressed up characters my 4 & 5 year olds will want to collect autographs of (will all the characters at the sci fi breakfast sign autographs)? Or, if it’s easier, do you know which ones do NOT sign autographs?

    • Tom Bricker says:

      To my knowledge, they all sign autographs. At least, I can’t recall meeting a character during Star Wars Weekends that couldn’t sign.

  51. Tiffany says:

    Is anyone aware if any discounts can be used with the character dining (TIW, DVC, AP, Visa)? I booked my reservation, but the cast member nor her supervisor could confirm if that was still available.

    • Tom Bricker says:

      That information has yet to be released. Many are speculating that it will be eligible for Tables in Wonderland, but my guess is that NO discounts will be available for it. That’s just a guess, though.

  52. Heather says:

    Thanks so much for all the info and tips. This will be our 1st Star Wars Weekend. I’m not a big Star Wars fan, but my husband is. I got very lucky and was able to book a Breakfast Character Meal on 6/7. Now hopefully that will be less time waiting in the hot sun for pictures. :)

  53. Diane says:

    Does anyone know the line up of Stars that will be there what weekend for 2014? I have been searching every where and can’t seem to find them…Any help would be greatly appreciated

  54. Ro says:

    Do you know the start and approximate finish times for the motorcade? Thanks!

  55. Sean says:

    Tom are you sure those character meals are offered during the week? I phoned and they only said it was being offered on the Star Wars weekends. I booked an appt on line anyway during the week just in case. There was no issued doing it on line.

  56. Tom Phelps says:

    We booked the first weekend as you suggested. Taking my sigma F1.4 and about one million gb’s of camera cards (or slightly less). I will be taking the hypersonic leap to RAW images. We have a full day planned at DHS on that Sunday including the Storming of the Park. Along with a “Jedi Mickey” Fantasmic dinner package later in the week. But we were wondering…if we are checked into POFQ on Saturday by 10:30 a.m., should we head to DHS for a late morning arrival? ( 1.5 days of Star Wars) Or should we just go straight to MK for the new Festival of Fantasy parade & the new mine train ride? We don’t want autographs, or collectible merchandise (except the 2014 “Join the Rebellion” T shirt if there is one). No rides, just oodles and oodles of character pictures.

    Some of my best WDW daytime shots were taken with a (Kodachrome slide film) Nikon f 1.4 in the very bright Disney sun at f22-f32 with very high shutter speeds. The depth of field was unbelievable. Everything was super sharp. Do you think I can replicate that with the Sigma F 1.4?

  57. Lee says:

    We will be arriving later to the parks (12ish). What are the chances of us getting in? Do they usually turn guests away for Star Wars weekend due to max capacity? Thanks!

  58. Rachel says:

    We are going to the park midweek and made a dining reservation for the Sci-Fi dine-in breakfast. The website made it seem like a Star Wars character breakfast. Am I wrong? We told our 3-year old he might have breakfast with Darth Vader and he is psyched! Don’t want to use 2 table service creds each if this isn’t the case! Also is the breakfast a buffet?

    • Tom Bricker says:

      It’s absolutely a Star Wars character breakfast. Sci-Fi doesn’t normally do breakfast, so what will be offered food-wise is unknown, although I personally don’t have my hopes up too high. I think this will be about the characters, not the food.

  59. Mike says:

    We are coming for 2 days, Saturday May 31 & Sunday June 1. We are planning to do HS one day and MK one day. Is one day better for SW weekend or are all three days pretty much the same?

  60. Craig says:

    Just as a FYI, I made reservations for both character meals during the week online.

  61. daniel says:

    Hi everyone, I’m doing a survey for my thesis and it’s about the Star Wars Weekend.
    I would be so appreciated if you can fill the survey for me.
    Thanks to all

  62. Linda says:

    Any idea how long the stormtroopers Storm the Park at the beginning of the day? Are they up there for like an hour after the park opens? Two? Any guesses? Thanks! :-)

  63. Kristy G says:

    So we lucked out. I made dinner reservations at Hollywood and Vine before they announced the character dinner there. When I made the reservations, the lady on the phone told me that for some reason, they could only reserve it as the Fantasmic package, which I agreed to. I got a call a couple of weeks ago that because we reserved it before they made the announcement, they are not charging us 2 meals on the dining plan (thank goodness) and that yes indeed, we are doing the character dinner (we are SO, SO happy…I have a husband and son who are Star Wars fans, so this worked out tremendously). But, now I find out that they are doing the Symphony in the Stars every night. How is that going to work if we have VIP seating for Fantasmic at the early show (9 pm). Will we have enough time to get somewhere within viewing for the Symphony in the Stars after Fantasmic ends?

  64. Alison says:

    Hi! Great article! However, be aware if you want an autograph for Ray Park or another big actor, do not show up at 6am thinking you will get a fast pass, you probably will not. The line last year was at the boat dock at that point. :/

    • Tom Bricker says:

      You’re absolutely right. Same goes for Mark Hamill this year. I can only imagine how long that line will be. It will probably start before the park closes the prior night. (Seriously.)

      • Kevin says:

        Skywalker will not be signing autographs – they know how crazy/out of control that would bet, I suppose!

      • Tom Bricker says:

        Ah, thanks for the heads up! That makes sense!

  65. Stephen says:

    I am looking at going this weekend and kinda of torn on which or even both Cameras to bring. I have the Sony CyberShoot DSC-RX100\M2 and the Nikon D3100 (18-55mm VR Lens & 55-200mm VR Lens). Big Star Wars fan and this will be my first time attending this

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