As someone who is maybe just a little obsessed with Disney (okay, maybe little is an understatement), “Hidden Mickeys” are not just a fun park activity, but an everyday challenge for me. What is a Hidden Mickey? Well, sometime in the 1980s when they were building Epcot, Imagineers began to place silhouettes of Mickey around the park in unapparent places since they were told the characters should be confined to Magic Kingdom. Technically, a Hidden Mickey can take many forms- side profiles, detail face images, full body, or even just his hands or shoes. But, my favorite Hidden Mickey (and usually the only one I can clearly spot) is the Classic Mickey consisting of a plain old tri-circle image.
These Hidden Mickeys can now be found everywhere- and I really mean everywhere- throughout the Disney parks and resorts. You can find them in queues, on rides, restaurants, in parking lots, and in your hotel room. Finding these images that are buried among architecture and aesthetics is a challenge that so many people partake in that someone has even written a book about it. Steven M. Barrett has created “Hidden Mickeys: A Field Guide to Walt Disney World’s Best Kept Secrets” and I just happened to receive a copy of the 7th Edition this past Christmas. Each chapter is essentially divided into 2 parts: The first are basic clues to hunt for Mickey along with point allotments based on the difficulty level if you want to challenge yourself or others. The second are more in depth hints to help you out if you can’t find the Mickey you are looking for. I’m really excited to bring this with me on my next trip and do a little bit more Hidden Mickey hunting myself! The author has also created an app, but I haven’t sprung for it yet since it is $7.99 and I already own the book. If you’ve used the app though, I would love to hear your feedback!
To get you started and help give you a better picture of how these Hidden Mickeys may appear to you, I wanted to share just a few of my favorites. The first one is a Hidden Mickey of grand proportions. Starting sometime early last year, you may have noticed a large 22-acre area of solar panels as you are heading to Epcot. Well, this solar farm is shaped like a classic Mickey!
Next is a scene from a favorite movie of mine- Oliver and Company. Now, this isn’t a “classic” Mickey that I normally look for- but still a favorite. You can find a full image of Mickey on Fagan’s watch. There are so many Hidden Mickeys in movies so if you can’t make it to the parks anytime soon, you can still challenge yourself in this way!
Soarin Around The World is home to not one, but two of my favorite Hidden Mickeys. This ride is one of my favorites to begin with and I always get excited to see these classic Mickeys, albeit how obvious they may be. One can be found for a brief moment during the hot air balloon scene and the other one is at the end during the Epcot fireworks.
One that holds a special place in my heart is the Grim Reaper Hidden Mickey right at the end of the graveyard scene in the Haunted Mansion. A little over a year ago I was on a trip to Disney with my mom and had just started reading up on Hidden Mickeys and how there were so many on each ride. I began to look out for them with no real rhyme or reason and caught a quick glimpse of the classic Hidden Mickey on the grim reaper’s sleeve. I was ecstatic and have been searching high and low for more Mickeys ever since! And considering Steven Barrett considers this a 5 pointer Hidden Mickey in his book, I was pretty impressed with myself.
To hold me over in between park visits, I enjoy looking for and creating Hidden Mickeys in my everyday life. For example, this bracelet that I’m in love with has it’s own Hidden Mickey! A fellow Disney lover that I know, Karolyn, created this set of bracelets for me from Keep Collective. These bracelets are fun because they are a twist on charm bracelets and you can customize them- so if you have a favorite character or movie she can probably create something special with that in mind.
This outfit was perfect for a day like today. Spring seems to be here but it is just a little too chilly still to be outside without a jacket. And the sweatshirt almost counts as it’s own Hidden Mickey since Mickey appears a bit bashful and is hiding behind his hand. I don’t blame him though- this is one of my favorite poses for pictures too!
Sweatshirt: Macys (Sorry, this one is sold out but this would look awesome with this outfit as well!)
Skirt: Old Navy (Similar)
Shoes: Target (Similar)
Bracelet: Keep Collective By Karolyn
Book: “Hidden Mickeys: A Field Guide To Walt Disney World’s Best Kept Secrets” by Steven M Barrett
Let me know where you have found some of your favorite Hidden Mickeys around the park or in your everyday adventures!