Easter Sunday is a holiday that falls anywhere on March and April, a day that began with originally pagan, then religious themes, but in modern times is more easily known for its secular and commercial facet. For a day, outside of commemorative masses celebrating the Resurrection, families with young children tend to get swept up in jubilant Easter events that are full of imagery concerning decorated eggs and bunnies. Merriment is had with bunny costumes, real rabbits, and games such as hunting for eggs or rolling them on the ground. All these funs things usually last for just one Sunday, but in Japan’s Tokyo Disney Resort they mean to make it last for so much longer.
Starting on April 4, the two theme parks that make up a significant portion of Tokyo Disney Resort, Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea, have begun celebrating an ultra-extended Easter extravaganza beginning near two weeks before Easter Sunday itself and lasting the better part of two months, up until June 14. This year’s iteration of the annual Disney’s Easter event is the first time it will be held in both Disneyland and DisneySea, the better for international tourists who will only be hanging out at one park or the other to get to experience this super-long holiday as only the House of Mouse can celebrate.
For Tokyo Disneyland, the main Easter event tying into the park involves an outbreak of a fusion between the two primarily commercial Easter symbols, bunny and egg. For the April-June duration the park will be playfully swamped with mischief-making critters called in Japanese as “Usa-tama”. Coined from “usagi/rabbit” and “tamago/egg”, the Usa-tamas are quite plainly anthropomorphic eggs with bunny ears, arms and legs that are running in frenzy all over Tokyo Disneyland and wreaking all sorts of havoc!
At least that’s the “background story” for Tokyo Disneyland’s new parade for Disney’s Easter. Entitled “Usa-tama on the Run!” this parade of seven floats and around 90 Disney characters will be making their way along the usual parade route two or three times a day, setting up the stage for a multitude of other themed events involving those crazy Usa-tama. Characters featured on the main parade are old standbys Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto and their close circle, accompanied by Disney’s stable of rabbit characters like Thumper from “Bambi”, White Rabbit from “Alice in Wonderland”, and for the latest attraction none other than Officer Judy Hopps from last year’s megahit “Zootopia”. In between the parades and the score of various atmospheric entertainments, guests may engage in the all-day Usa-tama hunt all over the park, with commemorative prizes at the end of it.
Over at Tokyo DisneySea, as fitting of its image as the older-demographic alternative to Disneyland, the Easter celebration is a bit classier. In their case, they’re welcoming a “Fashionable Easter”, where the Disney Friends will be assuming the role of fashion plates and advisors. Dressed in vibrantly colorful new costumes, they’ll be promenading all through the themed areas of American Waterfront, Mermaid Lagoon, Mysterious Island and Lost River Delta, to the accompaniment of numerous musical artists. While in Mediterranean Harbor, shops will be stocked with the hottest new fashion accessory “designed” by the Disney Friends to go with the months-long holiday: the Easter Bunny Bonnet!
Speaking of shops, they’ll also be carrying various other Easter-themed items for sale up until June, all for your enjoyment. The Usa-tamas are available in plush and badge forms, and will feature on shirts and tote bags too. Also for Disney’s Easter, restaurants at both parks will be offering their own respective bunny- or egg-themed menu items. Outside the parks, guests booking to stay at the Resorts two hotels will also receive special gift bags with Disney’s Easter giveaways.
So even if you’ve already celebrated the Easter holiday at home, you still have until June 14 to plan your trip to Tokyo Disney Resort and experience Easter party the Disney way. Happy Usa-tama hunting!
Photo courtesy of disneytouristblog.com