Meet & greets are a popular thing to do during the 2023 Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. However, characters can be difficult to find and incredibly time-consuming experiences, with long lines for rare characters wasting (literally) hours of the event. This character hunting guide for MNSSHP covers where to find each spot, average wait times, priorities & strategy, and when to do high-demand M&Gs.
The first thing you need to know is that it’s important to plan ahead. That’s always the case with Walt Disney World, but it’s particularly important for characters at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. If you simply arrive at 7 pm when the event officially starts, grab a party map, and head to a meet & greet, you’re going to be at a distinct disadvantage.
This is because Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party actually starts before 7 pm, several characters meet prior to then, most lines form before then, and the party map doesn’t even list which characters appear where. That’s the bad news…for the average attendee of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. That’s good news for everyone who reads this, as you’ll have a few hours headstart, during which the main thing to do is meet characters at MNSSHP…
Before we get started, there’s more “bad” news. You cannot possibly meet every single character at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in a single night. You’re going to have to make difficult decisions when it comes meet & greets, because you simply cannot do them all. There are air quotes around bad above because this is a somewhat good problem to have–partly caused by there being so many characters.
But it’s also partly caused by long lines at several of the rare characters, which makes the time commitment too long to meet them all. So it’s somewhat of a mixed bag. In any case, we recommend skipping any characters that you could meet during a normal day in Magic Kingdom, or at one of the other Walt Disney World theme parks. (Speaking of which, for everything you need to know about this event–beyond characters–see our Ultimate Guide to the 2023 Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party!)
Now let’s talk strategy. You want to make sure you’re in Magic Kingdom with your costume as close to 4 p.m. as possible. That’s the earliest you’re allowed to enter Magic Kingdom for the pre-party “mix-in” with your event ticket, and the line to enter the park usually forms around 3 p.m. (We recommend arriving no later than 3:30 p.m.)
If you’re already in Magic Kingdom prior to this, we highly recommend going to one of the wristband stations in the park rather than exiting and re-entering. Not only will the line be shorter, but this will give you a distinct advantage if you’re planning on doing the most popular meet & greet at the very front of the park on Main Street.
Speaking of which, here’s a list of all the character locations since the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party map provided by Disney doesn’t list them…
Main Street USA
Sally & Jack Skellington – Town Square Theater (Tinker Bell Line)
Mickey Mouse – Town Square Theater
Ariel and Prince Eric – Prince Eric’s Village Market
Belle – Near Enchanted Tales with Belle
Tigger, Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore – The Thotful Spot near the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Alice & Mad Hatter – Mad Tea Party
Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum – Mad Tea Party
Queen of Hearts – Mad Tea Party
Drizella and Anastasia – Fantasyland (Roaming)
Seven Dwarfs – Pete’s Silly Sideshow
Witch Minnie, Princess Daisy & Pumpkin Donald – Dumbo
Pirate Goofy – Barnstormer
Abu and Aladdin – Agrabah
Genie and Jasmine – Agrabah
Jafar – Near Magic Carpets of Aladdin
Captain Jack Sparrow – Near Pirates of the Caribbean
Max Goof as Powerline – Across from Pirates of the Caribbean (Pop-Up Dance Party)
Country Bears – Walkway Near Country Bear Jamboree (Roaming)
Elvis Stitch – Stitch’s Great Escape (Near Entrance to Tomorrowland)
Max Goof as Powerline – Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe (Pop-Up Dance Party)
Longest Lines for Characters
Jack Skellington and Sally – 90 Minutes to 3 Hours
Seven Dwarfs – 90 Minutes to 2 Hours
Elvis Stitch – 45 t0 90 Minutes
Tigger, Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore – 45 to 60 Minutes
Witch Minnie, Princess Daisy & Pumpkin Donald – 45 to 60 Minutes
Mickey Mouse – 10 to 60 Minutes
We cannot stress enough the degree to which the above are estimates. Even the ones with huge ranges. For example, we’ve waited less than 10 minutes for Jack Skellington and Sally, as well as the Seven Dwarfs on Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party nights in the past. That’s an extreme example, as those were dates that were impacted by incredibly rainy nights and/or hurricane scares…but that’s becoming an increasingly common phenomenon, so don’t count it out.
On other occasions, we’ve waited less time than the ranges above thanks to extraordinary timing. Either we jumped in line at just the right time at the beginning of the night, or at the end of the night. But it’s not all good news. We’ve also avoided lines that were actually longer than 2-3 hours on the high end, with staffing shortages, particularly hot weather, or colossal crowds skewing the wait times for popular meet & greets above the aforementioned averages.
Characters That Meet Early
Jack Skellington and Sally – Approximately 4:30 p.m.
Seven Dwarfs – Approximately 6:20 p.m.
Elvis Stitch – Approximately 6:30 p.m.
Tigger, Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore – Approximately 6:30 p.m.
Again, these are approximations. Since they’re unofficial and unpublished, they’re also subject to change. Actually, it’s not just these characters who are subject to change. Every other character is supposed to come out at 7 p.m., but that doesn’t always happen.
One of our go-to meet & greets is Witch Minnie, Princess Daisy & Pumpkin Donald, and there have been times when they’ve come out at 6:45 p.m, and other occasions when they haven’t shown up until almost 7:15 p.m.
Obviously, we do not attend every single Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. That would quickly get ridiculously expensive! However, we’ve been doing this annually since 2007, and attended over a dozen parties in 2019 alone. From that, we’ve learned a ton…but there’s still a lot of inconsistency and variability.
Just something of which you should be aware as you plan the characters you want to meet–and everything else you’ll do during MNSSHP. You may be able to accomplish far less–or much more–than is listed in our 1-Night Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party Plan! With that in mind, here’s our optimal approach to characters during the event…
What’s This? What’s This? There’s People Everywhere! – Jack Skellington and Sally meet in Town Square Theater starting around 4:30 p.m., which is why it’s incredibly advantageous to get your party wristband early and “beat” the party mix-in guests arriving via the front entrance. If you can be in the lobby of Town Square Theater right when the line opens at 4:00 p.m., you could be out of here by 5:30 p.m. or earlier.
If you don’t get into Magic Kingdom until 4:15 p.m. and line up then, it’s possible you won’t be out of line until around 7 p.m. if you get unlucky. Seriously, 15 minutes can be that much of a difference.
Heigh-ho, Heigh-ho It’s Off to Storybook Circus We Go – If you’re too slow for Jack Skellington and Sally, you’re really really fast and are out of there early, or you simply don’t care about Nightmare Before Christmas characters, the Seven Dwarfs are a good alternative first pick.
These characters meet in Pete’s Silly Sideshow, which is in the deepest corner of Magic Kingdom. As a result of that–and the meet & greet not starting quite as early–the line typically doesn’t form as fast. (If it’s a hot day, the line is also slower to form because the wait starts outdoors in the sun.) You can arrive here around 5 p.m. and still be fine–possibly even 5:30 p.m.
The one thing you absolutely do not want to do is line up for Jack Skellington and Sally or the Seven Dwarfs between 6 pm and 7 pm. That’s when the lines will be at their longest, and you’ll end up waiting in line for multiple hours of party time.
Pooh’s Posse – If you start with the Storybook Circus characters, it’s easy to then bounce over to the Pooh line by the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh in Fantasyland. This is also one of the most popular meet & greets at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party.
All four meet together, and they only take one photo per guest. It felt less like a meet & greet and more like a “photo assembly line.” On the plus side, the wait wasn’t nearly as long as it has been in the past.
Donald & Daisy and Minnie – Also back in Storybook Circus, you’ll find Donald & Daisy, and Minnie Mouse wearing special Halloween costumes for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in the Dumbo queue. This is another good option after you finish up with the Seven Dwarfs.
You can also find Pirate Goofy back here by the Barnstormer. As Goofy meets by himself, he tends to have a significantly shorter wait than the other characters in the middle of Storybook Circus.
Note that this is typically an either/or situation. You cannot typically meet Pooh’s Posse *and* Donald & Daisy, Minnie, and Pirate Goofy. Choose one of the two sets of the four, and either save the other for the end of the night, or skip them entirely.
Skip the Lines! – If you follow the above strategy, it’s probably going to be sometime between 7:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. when you’re finally finished. This is the point in the party when the character meet & greet lines are longest. So, unless you’re a hardcore hunter of characters, it’s time to do something else. (Or you can stick with characters, but you risk burnout.)
One option is to instead hit up the dance parties and areas of Frontierland and Fantasyland that have free-roaming characters to “skip” the lines and still get your character fix. If you do see free-roaming characters, go interact with them! They typically don’t get very long waits no matter when you go and they are, and can be tons of fun.
As for dance parties, there’s Max Goof’s Powerline “Stand Out” Pop-Up Party that happens in Tomorrowland and Adventureland, the Disney Junior Jam in Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe in Tomorrowland, and the Zom-Beatz Bash on the Rockettower Plaza Stage in Tomorrowland.
Post-Fireworks – We don’t recommend anyone skip Mickey’s Boo-to-You Halloween Parade or Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular Fireworks. If you watch both, that’s going to occupy you from around 8:45 p.m. (assuming you don’t wait until the last minute for a parade spot) until 10:45 p.m. After that, you can resume character hunting.
One good option here is making a beeline to Town Square Theater after the fireworks. If you watch from the end of Main Street near the Train Station and are fast, you can possibly catch the line for Jack Skellington and Sally when it’s shortest. This is also a good time for Mickey Mouse if you’ve already knocked out most of the more popular characters.
Now is also a good time for the Aladdin characters and Captain Jack Sparrow in Adventureland or the royalty in Fantasyland.
Last Call for Rare Characters – Unlike attractions, you cannot line up for characters until 11:59 pm. Most lines for rare characters get cut around 11 p.m., but it really varies based on crowds and demand (Disney’s goal is to have the last guests out of line as close to midnight as possible–but that often runs over).
Accordingly, you really want to be in line for any of the ‘longest lines’ list by 11 p.m. There have been times when we’ve had luck jumping into line as late as 11:15 p.m.; on other occasions, we were denied shortly before 11. We’re fans of doing Elvis Stitch as our “last call” character, and in our anecdotal experience, his line tends to die down later in the evening. Winnie the Pooh and his posse often have shorter lines–probably because those characters skew younger.
Before Midnight, Meet Mickey – After 11 pm is the best time to visit Mickey Mouse. If you opt to watch the second parade from Main Street, you can usually race here, beat the crowd, and still arrive before his line is cut. Regardless of when you do this, don’t do it as part of the ‘wave’ of guests exiting after the parades or fireworks–that’s when the line is longest. You either need to beat those exodus crowds, or avoid them entirely.
Final Countdown – The last performance of Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular starts at midnight, which gives you a “bonus” 20 minutes at the end of the event. This is a nice way to extend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, but even this final showing is crowded. Obviously, this is not a character meet & greet–just a piece of advice we’re adding because you’ll probably be done with characters by midnight and there’s a good chance you didn’t see this earlier if you were aggressive with the character hunting. Enjoy this satisfying end to your evening!
Have you attended the 2023 Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party? Which character meet & greets are your top priorities? Did you meet Jack Skellington & Sally or the Seven Dwarfs…or were those lines too long for you? What about Elvis Stitch, Pooh’s Posse, or other rare characters with more moderate lines? Do you disagree with anything in our 1-night MNSSHP character hunting plan? Any questions? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!