The Three O’Clock Parade At Walt Disney World Is Officially Changing Times And The Decades-Old Question

Anyone that is a true fan of Walt Disney World knows of many little nuances and intricacies that the casual park-goer may not be aware of, and one of those is the three o’clock parade. Sure, it has always had an official name yet people have simply referred to it as the “Three O’Clock Parade” for as long as anyone can remember, but that will soon be no more. The Magic Kingdom is soon changing the time of the Festival of Fantasy Parade which will put a longtime joke to rest.

Yes, for more than a decade and even further back in time, Magic Kingdom has had a daytime parade that has run at 3 p.m. No matter what parade it may be or what name it goes by, there are always going to be those who call it the “Three O’Clock Parade,” but that is all about to change.

By checking out the page for the Festival of Fantasy Parade on the official website of Walt Disney World, the start time for that parade will change at the end of the summer. Instead of beginning its run at 3 p.m., the parade is now going to start off an hour earlier and head from Frontierland to the front of Magic Kingdom beginning at 2 p.m.

As it currently stands, it looks as if that change will be in place at least through most of the rest of the year.

three o'clock parade time change walt disney world magic kingdom festival of fantasy
[Image by Disney]

As of now, the park hours and times can only be seen up to 180 days out which means that the Festival of Fantasy Parade is scheduled for 2 p.m. beginning on Aug. 20 and going at least through Nov. 23. It is not known if that will continue all the way through 2017, but it appears likely.

Of course, times are always subject to change, but why the altered scheduled now? Why have it there at all if it isn’t going to happen?

Many have asked themselves those questions and many others, but Disney hasn’t answered any of them. As a matter of fact, Disney has not given any kind of reason as to why they have changed the time of the famed “Three O’Clock Parade,” but an explanation will likely come soon.

The August 20th start date for the new daytime parade time is just about a month after the D23 Expo in California. From July 14-16, guests will learn all that Disney has in store as they reveal their upcoming plans for movies, music, merchandise, and their theme parks.

Going back many years, guests can remember there being a “Three O’Clock Parade” whether it was the Share A Dream Come True Parade, Festival of Fantasy, or something else. It is just what happened in the Magic Kingdom and then, in the evening, there would be a nighttime parade.

Ever since early October of last year, though, there has been no nighttime parade, and some feel that could be the reasoning for Disney moving up its daytime extravaganza.

three o'clock parade time change walt disney world magic kingdom festival of fantasy
[Image by Danny Cpx]

Ever since the Paint The Night Electrical Parade ended its run at Disneyland Park in California, there have been whispers of it heading to Florida. Size and logistics have killed most of those rumors as it would be hard for the parade to run the parade route in the Magic Kingdom, especially Mack the truck from the Cars franchise.

Still, some adjustments could be made, and Disney could have something in the works, but it is nothing more than speculation at this time. Ever since the Main Street Electrical Parade ended its Orlando run back in early October, many have wondered what would be taking its place.

As of now, social media whispers are all that exist, but this movement of the three o’clock parade could be a possible sign of things to come.

Walt Disney World has so much to offer guests as rides, shows, food, attractions, and so much more can fill up your vacation time. There are so many things that everyone can do during the day, but true and longtime fans are not always accepting of change. To move up the Festival of Fantasy Parade by an hour really isn’t that big of a deal, but it will not sit well with a lot of purists or those who simply love to ask then the “Three O’Clock Parade” is going to run.

[Featured Image by Danny Cox]