Florida’s theme parks are world-renowned, and they attract visitors from across the globe every year. Those of us lucky enough to live in the state, even part-time, can take advantage of the parks’ many annual events, and full-time residents may qualify for lower ticket prices. We have your guide to the 2020 special events at the main theme parks and how to save on admission.

Walt Disney World Resort

Consisting of four theme parks – Magic Kingdom Park, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Epcot, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Walt Disney World Resort may be the most well-known of all Florida attractions.

Mark your calendar for the following popular events at both Disney World and Epcot in 2020.

  • Epcot International Festival of the Arts: January 17-February 24
  • Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival: March 4-June 1
  • Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: August-October
  • Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: August-November
  • Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party: November-December

Florida residents can save money on three-day tickets and annual passes, among other ticket options.

Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure are the two main parks under the Universal Orlando Resort umbrella. Geared more toward older kids and adults than neighboring Walt Disney World Resort, it celebrates holidays with a grown-up vibe. Plan your visit around one of these two main events in 2020:

  • Mardi Gras: February 1-April 2
  • Halloween Horror Nights: September 10-November 1

If you’re a Florida resident, you can purchase annual passes and pay the cost over the year instead of one lump sum.

LEGOLAND Florida Resort

A relative newcomer to the Florida theme park landscape, LEGOLAND lets kids build with and trade LEGO figures and bricks, as well as go on rides and play in a water park.

The park, located between Orlando and Tampa in Winter Haven, has a few events planned in 2020, including a new pirate-themed one.   

  • PirateFest Weekends: April 18-19, April 25-26, May 2-3
  • Brick or Treat: Saturdays and Sundays in October
  • Holidays at LEGOLAND: November 27-29, December 5-6, December 12-13, December 19-20, December 24-31

Annual passes are available to everyone, with one exclusive to Florida residents for a discounted rate.

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay

Busch Gardens is home to more than 200 species of animals, safari tours, exciting and child-friendly roller coasters, and Adventure Island water park (open seasonally). It’s fun for the whole family, whether or not you have kids in tow.

If you want to enhance your visit to Busch Gardens, coordinate it with one of the park’s annual events.

  • Mardi Gras: February 22-23
  • Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival: February 29-April 26
  • Howl-O-Scream: Fall 2020
  • Busch Gardens Christmas Town: mid-November-early January
  • New Year’s Eve Celebration: December 31

You can attend multiple events with an annual pass, which you can purchase online. Florida residents may pay monthly for their passes, with no down payment required.

Check each theme park’s site for more details about the events, including any date changes, and information on how to buy tickets and passes. Most parks will require you bring your proof of Florida residency if you purchase an annual pass or ticket deal that’s exclusive to Floridians. Most importantly, have fun at Florida’s famous theme parks in 2020!

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