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Tokyo Disney Resort’s 30th Anniversary “Happiness Year” Celebration!

Me at Tokyo Disneyland’s Mickey Mouse flower bed
Tokyo Disney Resort is celebrating their 30th anniversary. They’ve dubbed it “The Happiness Year.” So what does that mean for park guests? Here’s what I noticed during my visit.

Happiness Sharing Spots

“A magical trash can?” I asked my friend incredulously.

Along a rocky wall in Mysterious Island, the Jules Verne-inspired Tokyo DisneySea “land,” were Mickey-shaped balloons, white streamers that turned gold at their tips, colorful little bubbles, silver sparkles, and, yes, it was definitely a trash can.

Trash can Happiness Sharing Spot at Tokyo DisneySea
A little girl, who had been walking by with her mother, stopped to press a button below the trash can that had an image of Mickey’s hand on it. Tiny lights within the streamers began to glow and the display made a happy sound. This was my first experience with the Happiness Sharing Spots offered at the Tokyo Disney Resort theme parks during the 30th anniversary celebration.

I soon discovered more of these spots at Tokyo DisneySea. Each spot featured a different mundane-turned-magical item.

There was a magical lamp post…

Lamp post Happiness Sharing Spot at Tokyo DisneySea
… magical drinking fountains ...

Drinking fountain Happiness Sharing Spot at Tokyo DisneySea
 ... a magical pot of flowers ...

Flower pot Happiness Sharing Spot at Tokyo DisneySea
... and a magical bench.

Bench Happiness Sharing Spot at Tokyo DisneySea
At Tokyo Disneyland, I found only two Happiness Sharing Spots, a matching pair of magical cannons.

One of two cannon Happiness Sharing Spots at Tokyo Disneyland
There were medallions, called Happiness Sharing Pendants, available for purchase at many of the gift shops for 2,500 Yen. When inserted into a shaped well near the Happiness Sharing Spots, the pendants caused the displays to light up even more and sound even happier than when the Mickey’s hand button was pushed.

Medallion inserted into well
Festive Decorations

The DisneySea AquaSphere, at the entrance to Tokyo DisneySea, was decorated with Disney characters and Mickey-shaped Happiness Balloons…

Entrance to Tokyo DisneySea
…and so was Tokyo Disneyland’s Mickey Mouse flower bed.

Tokyo Disneyland’s Mickey Mouse flower bed
Cinderella Castle, inside Tokyo Disneyland, was decorated as well.

Tokyo Disneyland’s Cinderella Castle
And Happiness Year murals graced the interior of at least one of the resort monorails.

Monorail interior
Anniversary-themed Merchandise

There were 30th-anniversary-themed items everywhere I looked. I saw cups, towels, figurines, key chains, postcards, magnets, pillows, bags, tissue box covers, plush toys, and many other items.

Tokyo Disney Resort 30th-anniversary-themed merchandise
Anniversary-themed Entertainment

Both the night-time fireworks show and Tokyo Disneyland’s parade had a Happiness Year theme.

The fireworks show, called “Happiness on High,” was visible from both theme parks. Having witnessed the spectacular fireworks shows at Disneyland in California and the Magic Kingdom in Florida, I found the short, small-scale Tokyo show underwhelming.

Tokyo Disneyland’s parade, called “Happiness is Here,” was one of my favorite parts of the 30th anniversary celebration.  
“Happiness is Here” parade float at Tokyo Disneyland
I will never forget standing in the rain (that seemed to get harder by the minute) enjoying the parade along with my fellow Disneyland guests. People young and old smiled and clapped, watching the Disney characters (who subtly sported clear raincoats) ride their floats through the park while the catchy “Happiness is Here” 30th anniversary theme song played. Even in the rain, we were happy. Tokyo Disney Resort lived up to its promise!
Tokyo Disneyland opened on April 15th, 1983. The 30th anniversary celebration began April 15th, 2013 and runs through March 20th, 2014.

~Jen (California, USA)

P.S. Read the novel inspired by my trip to Japan. Get your copy of Lost in Tokyo at!

Jen is also known as J.W. Lynne, a bestselling author of twelve novels. Click on any of the titles below to see the book on Amazon!

THE UNKNOWN: Eight kids learn the shocking reason why they were kidnapped.

ABOVE THE SKY: A girl and boy fall in love in a dangerous world filled with secrets.

: Ten families are locked in a bunker to take a simulated trip to the moon.

KID DOCS: An experimental program transforms kids into doctors.

WILD ANIMAL SCHOOL: A girl falls in love at an exotic animal ranch.

WHAT HE DIDN'T TELL ME: A traumatized girl meets a boy with a horrible secret.

IF I TELL: A teen wonders if her father is a serial killer.

Besides reading books and dreaming up stories to write, Jen's favorite activities are singing along to musical theater soundtracks and hiking in California's beautiful parks.

**Jen's books are available on Kindle Unlimited.**

Find more reviews of Jen's adventures in Japan here.