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Why Is California Adventure Closing Early? | Simply Explained

Arriving at California Adventure to see the park is closing at 5PM or 6PM is definitely a shocker, and it's no surprise you might be curious why the park will be closing early.

In this article we'll explain the most common reasons why California Adventure might be closing early!

Questions We'll Answer About California Adventure:

  • Reasons California Adventure Is Closing Early

 Pixar Pier Landscape


While California Adventure is still one of the most popular theme parks in the world, it still sees a few million people less every year than Disneyland. 

While Disneyland is known for magic and happiness, at the end of the day these parks are still businesses and decisions need to be made on how to operate them most effectively.

California Adventure closing earlier than Disneyland is largely a business decision.

Mission Breakout Ride Building

It's more cost effective for Disney to close the less popular park, California Adventure, and drive the remaining guests to Disneyland. Because Disneyland is so much more popular there is generally a need for the park to stay open later each night and consolidating all guests into the more popular park is the easiest operational decision. 

While California Adventure could stay open just as late as Disneyland and see lower wait times and crowds, the park probably just isn't making enough money some nights to justify this decision.

Special Events

Special Events are another reason California Adventure will close its gates early to the general public. 

California Adventure is home to Oogie Boogie Bash which is occurs almost every evening during the months of September and October. 

Oogie Boogie Bash is a separately ticketed event, which means guests must purchase an additional ticket to access the event - just having ticket to California Adventure won't do the trick. 

Emotional Whirlwind Ride

California Adventure will close to the general public anytime between 5PM - 7PM on Oogie Boogie Bash event days.

After 5/6/7PM, California Adventure becomes accessible to only those with an Oogie Boogie Bash event ticket. 

If you're planning to visit California Adventure during September or October be sure to check park hours to see if you'll be visiting on an Oogie Boogie Bash night. If you are, then expect to see the park closing quite early! 

Private Buyouts

Private buyouts of California Adventure are another reason the park may be closing early.

A handful of times through the year large companies (or very, very wealthy individuals) will rent out all of California Adventure of their group to enjoy the park without anyone else! California Adventure sees this much more often than Disneyland as it's substantially cheaper to buyout. 

Grizzly River Run

These private buyouts are typically planned months in advance, so you won't need to worry about this happening to you last minute.

If you see California Adventure closing early in the day, but people still entering the park, usually guided by Disney cast members, a private buyout of the park is likely a reason. 

This is especially the case if you see no signs or other indications of a separately ticketed event like Oogie Boogie Bash taking place. 


Another, albeit less common, reason California Adventure might be closing early is because of filming and production needs. 

Disneyland and California Adventure typically try to capture any content they need for commercials, movies, or social media in the early morning hours or very late at night, but sometimes this schedule won't work.

World of Color at Night

This is especially true if content needs to be captured in a large area of the park or for a show like World of Color where a lot of time and manpower will go into the production. 

There isn't a definitive way to figure out if California Adventure is closing early because of filming just by looking at the Disney website, but if you see cameras and production crew setting up in California Adventure, then the park very well could be closing early for this reason. 



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