Walt Disney World will dazzle during its holiday season, and that includes the spectacular sparkle of Christmas lights. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, more than five millions such lights illuminate the park’s Streets of American for its Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights.
The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights (Osborne Lights) is a seasonal display made up of millions of lights holiday-themed displays, 3-D effects. Add in synchronized holiday music, an occasional “snowfall” and wintery food and drink, and seeing the Osborne Lights has become an annual tradition for frequent Walt Disney World (WDW) guests and Orlando locals.
The Osborne Family Spectacle of Spectacle of Lights display takes place every evening from Friday, Nov. 6, 2015 through Sunday, Jan. 3, 2015. The Osborne Lights generally at approximately 6:00 p.m. with a short opening ceremony. The Christmas holiday display is free with admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
The Osborne Lights began as a personal Christmas Lights display. Arkansas businessman and philanthropist Jennings Osborne created the lights in 1986 for his daughter Breezy, building upon it every year. Eventually, Jennings’s home display grew too big and elaborate for the neighborhood. Walt Disney World brought the Christmas display to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 1995 (originally on Residential Street, when the park as Disney-MGM Studios, before moving to what is now named Streets of America). Now this experience is enjoyed by millions of Disney guests.
The Osborne Lights are filled with special touches, from the canopy of lights that guests walk under as they walk through the Streets of America, an immersive touch conceived of by Jennings, to hidden Mickeys and other tributes. As the “Spectacle of Dancing Lights” suggests, the displays do indeed “dance” throughout the evening, at periodic intervals, to the holiday music.
The Osborne Lights includes holiday figures and light sculptures, including Santa and his reindeer, toy soldiers, a spinning “Peace on Earth,” a chorus of angels and Hanukkah decorations. Holiday tunes fill the air, featuring both classic and contemporary music.
The Osborne Spectacle of Lights display includes things that remember Jennings Osborne, who passed away in 2011. Disney pays tribute to the man who started it all by hiding three unusual light displays among the more conventional decorations: a black cat, part of Jennings’s Halloween display that found its way to Disney; a kite, which represents the first date between Jennings and his wife; and a Razorbacks hog in tribute to the family’s hometown team.
It is such details, along with the hidden Mickeys and other Disney details, that make seeing the Osborne Lights something of a scavenger hunt, adding yet another fun touch to the experience. A white angel among the chorus also nods to Jennings and his long history of philanthropic work and the stocking hung with care represent the Osborne family.
All these holiday elements make Streets of America a particularly picturesque setting to enjoy Christmas at Walt Disney World. Making time to tour Disney’s Hollywood Studios just for the Osborne Dancing Spectacle of Dancing Lights is highly recommended: stroll along the Streets of America, take some pictures while humming along to holiday music, and, enjoy the colorful spirit of the season.