The Happiest Birthdays on Earth
Many families take their young ones to Disneyland for their birthday, but did you know they can celebrate their birthday party Disney-style while there?
“We have done them at both Goofy’s Kitchen and Plaza Inn. The characters and servers go out of their way to celebrate your child’s birthday,” said Kelly McBride of Sacramento.
Besides those two popular spots, those wanting to celebrate can also go to Storyteller’s Café in the Grand Californian Hotel and Spa, or at the PCH Grill inside Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel for special birthday-themed events. All of the celebrations can take place for breakfast, so your birthday boy or girl can kick off their special day before entering the park, and some areas are available for dinner. But it does take a reservation ahead of time – up to 60 days ahead of that special day.
While at the birthday meal, visitors can enjoy a special Disney-themed birthday cake for dessert. There are a variety of themed Disney designs for the cakes, including “Star Wars,” “Frozen,” “Cars” and many others, along with a unique special message. Besides being available for the parties mentioned above, the cakes can also be delivered to many of the table service restaurants in the parks or at the resort’s hotels as a special dessert surprise.
Although it is not a guarantee, sometimes a Disney character will deliver the cake to the table.
“Minnie brought out her birthday cake and led everyone in singing happy birthday to her. She took so many photos with her new camera and talks about that birthday to this day,” said Stacey Rhodes of San Pedro about her daughter Claire’s eighth birthday.
For those staying at one of the Disneyland Resort’s three hotels, that special birthday celebration can start right in the hotel room. Imagine, walking into a Disney hotel room that looks like it was decorated by one of the Disney characters, including a banner on the entrance door wishing “Happy birthday” to the special birthday boy or girl.
“There were balloons and desserts waiting for them when we returned to our rooms from the parks, along with a gift,” said Perry Ford of Claremont.
Gifts are made to look like they’re from Disney characters and include things like a Mickey Mouse Happy Birthday Ear hat, Disney-themed beach towels, a beach ball for the swimming pool, a Goofy-themed over-the-door basketball net and ball, and more. Along with all of the presents and decorations, a number of sweet treats and confetti is provided to throw in the air while singing that special birthday song right in the hotel room – don’t worry, housekeeping will vacuum up the confetti!
This special treat can be set up ahead of time so that it’s there on the day of check-in, or on another date of stay, other than the day of check-out.
Another fun – and free! – way to help the birthday person celebrate their birthday while at one of the Disneyland Resort theme parks is to go to City Hall at Disneyland, or Guest Services at Disney California Adventure and ask for a complimentary birthday button, then have the birthday person wear it during their visit. They will find that Cast Members (Disney’s name for its employees) and many other visitors will wish them “Happy Birthday” all day long throughout the parks and the resort.
While the buttons are complimentary, the other items do cost money. How much?
For the cakes, costs start at $60 for a 6-inch round one, and up to $300 for a half-sheet. They have to be ordered at least three days prior to a visit, and seven days for those with special dietary needs. Sales tax is added to all cakes, and a 19 percent service charge is added for those delivered to hotel rooms.
Birthday celebrations at Goofy’s Kitchen, Storyteller’s Café, Plaza Inn or the PCH Grill just require reservations ahead of time. Both the cakes and meal reservations can be ordered or made by calling 714-781-3463. Calls must be made by someone at least 18 years of age, and can be made up to 60 days ahead of time.
In-room party decorations and gifts range in cost from $279.99 to $540, and even more, depending on additional presents and added decorations. Reservations for this should be made ahead of time by at least 24 hours before check-in so that it is in place when getting to the room on the day of your arrival. To make reservations call 714-781-4438.
All the information is also available online at: Disneyland.disney.go.com/events-tours/birthdays.
“We’ve celebrated all our kids’ birthdays there. They loved all of the various celebrations. Very surprised and had a great time,” McBride said.
And if your birthday celebration takes the family to Walt Disney World, all these offerings are available there too.
By Mark Eades
Top photo courtesy of the Disneyland Resort
Middle photo courtesy of Perry Ford