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Schedule of Universal Orlando Resort Events in 2021 and 2022

Schedule of Universal Studios Florida Events - PinterestWhen it comes to putting on spectacular events, Universal Orlando Resort doesn't hold back. Universal Studios Florida has long been home to one of the nation's premier events — Halloween Horror Nights (which was canceled in 2020, but is planning its epic return for 2021 — with a few extra screams and scares for its 30th anniversary!).

If scary isn't your style, you'll find other year-round, family-friendly Universal Orlando events such as Mardi Gras and Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter! Our frog family leaps at the chance to experience as many of the annual events as we can, and we know yours will too!

You'll find all of the Universal Orlando events listed on our Crowd Calendar, which is the easiest way to see the best times to visit. Note: These Universal Orlando Resort events appear in the order that they are held throughout the year. We don't yet have confirmed dates for all of the events, but we'll be adding them to this page as soon as they become available!

Complete Guide to Universal Orlando Resort Events in 2021 and Beyond


Running Universal (Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure) 

Universal Orlando Resort hosted its first-ever Epic Character Race 5K and 10K weekend in 2020. We ran through the theme parks, met our favorite characters along the way and earned a toadally awesome medal! Check out our review of the first race weekend at Universal Orlando. No future races have been announced quite yet, but we're hopful there are more to come in 2021!

Mardi Gras (Universal Studios Florida) — Feb. 6 to May 2, 2021

Universal Orlando Special Events 2021 - Family with Matching Outfits

This Universal Orlando rite of passage takes place each spring on select dates at Universal Studios. Highlights of this family-friendly event include the Mardi Gras parade through the park and live concerts. With flashy floats created by Kern Studios, the company that has created Mardi Gras floats in New Orleans since 1947, this event is as authentic as it gets (while still remaining kid-friendly)! You can check out authentic New Orleans bands. Plus there are Universal Studios concerts from big names in rock, pop, country and more! There is always plenty of Cajun food and drinks to fill you up too. Check out our tips for Mardi Gras at Universal Studios so you can start planning for next year's event (if you haven't already hopped there this year!). The 2021 event has been extended twice so that the good times can keep rollin'!

Mardi Gras at Universal Studios is included with regular park admission. See all of the partying for yourself!


Jurassic World VelociCoaster — June 10, 2021

Universal Orlando Events - VelociCoaster

OK, so it's not an event, per se, but the all-new VelociCoaster will open June 10! Enter the raptor paddock, if you dare, and join the hunt with Blue and the other velociraptors in this thrilling, high-speed coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure. You'll soar, twist and dive over the water — as Samuel L. Jackson would say, "hold onto your butts!" Annual Passholder previews are taking place now.

Fourth of July Celebration (Universal Studios Florida) — July 2021

Universal Orlando Events - Fourth of July Celebration

We celebrated Fourth of July at Universal Studios Florida with our favorite Universal characters in 2019. Festivities kicked off at the Music Plaza at 5 p.m. with DJ M-Squared spinning top tunes and live music from Raydio. Characters and stilt walkers joined the dance party and showed off their moves. The pyrotechnics display took place over the Music Plaza once the sun went down. We even got food and drinks delivered right to us on the lawn from the Classic Monster Cafe across the way! We ended the night by watching Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration in Central Park.

Universal Orlando has not announced its return for 2021 yet, but we've got our best red and blue garb at the ready.


Halloween Horror Nights 30 (Universal Studios Florida) — Select Dates Sept. 3 to Oct. 31, 2021

The biggest Universal Studios Florida event of the year is held on select nights every fall. For horror fans, and those of you who just like to be scared, Halloween Horror Nights is not to be missed! The park is transformed from a bubbly theme park into a place of terror. "Scare zones" are set up while creatures roam about. Think you're safe? Ha! You might just find a zombie breathing down your neck. The big lure of the night is the movie set-quality haunted houses themed around popular TV shows, classic and current films and sometimes even video games. Halloween Horror Nights is returning in 2021 in a big way for its 30th anniversary — we can't wait! The first house announced for 2021 is Beetlejuice ... Beetlejuice ... Beetlejuice!

This event is not intended for children and is a separately ticketed event. In fact, you'll probably need our Halloween Horror Nights guide just to make it through the night. Tickets go on sale a few months before the event begins, and we highly recommend buying tickets in advance!

Prepare yourself for Halloween Horror Nights with this video from the Revenge of the Tooth Fairy house, which appeared last fall as part of Universal Orlando's Halloween festivities.


Holidays at Universal Orlando Resort — November to December 2021

Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure)

Universal Orlando Special Events 2021 - Hogsmeade at Night

Holiday wishes do come true! Muggles are able to experience Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley trimmed with festive holiday decorations. Even the shops of the Wizarding World are trimmed! There are holiday-themed food and drinks, as well as entertainment.

The highlight of Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a holiday show taking place on Hogwarts Castle. This incredible experience uses mapped-projection technology to "cast a spell" onto the castle and features iconic moments from the films. Check out our video of Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in 2020!

Universal's Holiday Parade featuring Macy's (Universal Studios Florida) 

Universal Orlando Special Events 2021 - Universal's Holiday Experience Featuring Macy's Balloons

Universal's Holiday Parade featuring Macy's debuted at Universal Studios Florida in 2017. A re-imagining of the park's long-running Macy's Holiday Parade, this extravaganza features Dreamworks favorites. During the parade, guests see the Minions, Shrek, "Madagascar" characters and more. Santa also attends so he can light up the New York Christmas tree! The experience was modified in 2020, offering a walk-through experience to get up close and personal with the famous Macy's balloons and floats rather than the traditional parade to maintain social distancing. Santa was there too! There was an all-new Holiday Character Celebration to catch a glimpse of your favorite characters getting in the holiday spirit in 2020, as well. We're looking forward to what Christmas 2021 will bring!

Grinchmas (Universal's Islands of Adventure) 

Universal Orlando Special Events 2021 - Whoville Citizens

For those of you who love the Grinch, there is no finer time to visit Universal's Islands of Adventure than during Grinchmas. Seuss Landing is transformed into the wonderful world of Grinchmas with the heartwarming live show, "Grinchmas Wholiday Spectacular." The show features some of your favorite Grinch characters. It's also set to music recorded by Mannheim Steamroller. While the show did not take place in 2020, the Grinch and various Whos were out and about in Seuss Landing to give holiday greetings from a safe distance!

During normal years, guests can get up close and personal with the Grinch himself for pictures or autographs. You can even have breakfast with him! The Grinch & Friends Character Breakfast occurs on select mornings and is a dining experience that requires a reservation booked in advance. Grinchmas, however, is included with regular park admission.


Rock the Universe (Universal Studios Florida) — January 2022

A separately ticketed special event, Rock the Universe is Florida's biggest Christian music festival. Universal moved the dates of this event from September to February for 2019, and it will once again return January 2022 (the 2021 event was canceled). Universal Studios Florida closes at 6 p.m. for the event, but guests with concert tickets are able to enter the park starting at 4 p.m. The 2020 Friday lineup included performances from Switchfoot, Newsboys United, Tenth Avenue North, Tauren Wells and Tedashii and The Afters, and the Saturday lineup included performances from Chris Tomlin, TobyMac, Bethel Music, We Are Messengers, Unspoken and I Am They.

We wanted to provide you this complete guide to Universal Orlando Events in 2021 and 2022 because the Universal Studios concerts, parties, festivals and events are some of the best reasons to visit! You will find more resources and tips for planning your Universal Orlando Resort trip inside our Orlando Planning Guide.

Are you planning on hopping to Universal Orlando Resort this year? Which Universal Orlando events in 2021 and beyond are you most looking forward to attending? Be sure to stop by the comments to tell us below!

Related: Halloween Horror Nights Orlando Survival Guide

Related: A ~Froggy~ Festive Guide to Christmas at Universal Orlando Resort

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
View Comments
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1501–1515 of 1515 comments
Dec 30, 2018 at 2:49 a.m. Ashe Says...

Do any of the Universal parks do New Year's Eve fireworks like Disney?

Dec 30, 2018 at 7:24 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ashe,

They typically do not!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 4, 2018 at 8:23 p.m. Mike Thomson Says...

Hi, an anyone say what's planned at Universal from 7-10h November please?

(So looking forward to getting there)

Nov 4, 2018 at 9:45 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mike!

You can always check out Universal's Entertainment Schedule to check out what's hoppening ;) Most Christmas decorations will be up for your visit, but probably not any holiday entertainment quite yet.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 3, 2018 at 5:19 p.m. Jannine Says...

Have any times been issued yet for parades etc around both parks?

Nov 4, 2018 at 9:52 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jannine!

You can always check out Universal's Entertainment Schedule to check out what's hoppening ;)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 22, 2018 at 5:29 a.m. Mary jo rose Says...

What entertainment will be at venues during nov 26 & 27, 2018? (Were all 21+) Also, will universal and epcot be decorated for christmas by then??

Oct 23, 2018 at 9:57 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

Universal and Epcot will both be decorated for the holidays during your visit. We recommend hopping around CityWalk if you're looking for some adult beverages and fun!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 13, 2018 at 7:16 p.m. Angela King Says...

I can only see dates for the Grinch breakfast up until 25th Dec does it not run after this? Thanks

Oct 15, 2018 at 5 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Angela!

If you aren't seeing any dates listed beyond December 25, that is likely the last available day.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 22, 2017 at 1:02 a.m. Julie Dinkins-Borkowski Says...

I was trying to find out more about when Mannheim Steamroller is going to be at Universal. I went to the MS website and their touring schedule indicates they will not be anywhere near Florida on those dates. I am curious as to how this is going to work. Are they just broadcasting the concert from a separate location?

Dec 7, 2017 at 8 p.m. Dave Says...

Manheim Steamroller has several touring arms composed of different groups of musicians who perform under that name. They will be at Universal and a few other places. Think of it like Santa's "helpers" in the Malls. ;)

Nov 16, 2017 at 4:04 a.m. Carol Says...

We are wanting to go to do a Park-to-Park hop from Universal Studios to Islands of Adventure. Is it possible to see both parks in one day, what are your tips? We only have a couple of things we want to do in Islands of Adventure (Grinchmas show, and Hogsmeade lit up) so we would leave that park for last. The day we go parks open at 9:00a.m. and close at 8:00p.m.

Nov 17, 2017 at 2:16 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Carol,

Prioritize what you want to experience in both parks and make a plan. You can hop over to our 1-day park plans for Universal Orlando. If you're only wanting to see the two shows in Universal's Islands of Adventure, we think it's possible for you to see both parks in one day.

Keep hopping!


Nov 7, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. Janelle Says...

We are headed to Universal Studios on Christmas Day as a present for the kids. I have looked on the crowd calendar and it's going to be busy. Is there a plan that includes shows and rides? I'll be getting the 1 day park to park and adding on the fast pass. Kids ages are 17, 5 & 2. Please advise trying to plan this is overwhelming there is so much to see and do.

Nov 14, 2017 at 1:27 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Janelle,

You can check out our guide to holidays at Universal Orlando. Also, be sure to hop over and see our quick start planning guide for Universal Orlando!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 2, 2017 at 12:05 a.m. Terry Says...

Will the new Macy's Christmas parade happen each night during the holidays. We are going to Universal Florida during Christmas week. Any suggestions for Christmas dinner for five? We are ataying at the Sapphire Falls.

Nov 2, 2017 at 8:29 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Terry,

We expect that Universal's Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s will run daily. As for Christmas dinner, look into Toothsome's Chocolate Emporium and Savory Feast Kitchen.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 18, 2017 at 4:29 p.m. jen Says...

Are the Universal Christmas Parade and Mannhein Steamroller concert times (not dates) published yet? Trying to plan our day by times. Thanks!

Oct 19, 2017 at 8:15 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jen,

Normally, Universal does not post showtimes online. We're heading to Universal during opening weekend and will update our Universal Orlando Holidays post with the times.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 17, 2017 at 2:20 a.m. Bridgett Hernandez Says...

I plan on visiting the week before Christmas. It will be my first time experiencing Grinchmas which I am so excited for! Can you tell me if the Universal Macy's holiday parade goes through Islands of Adventures as well? Or do you have to be in Universal Studios to see the parade?

Oct 17, 2017 at 8:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Bridgett,

Universal's Holiday Parade Featuring Macy's is only at Universal Studios Florida. We hope you enjoy Grinchmas!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 4, 2017 at 6:40 p.m. Cassidi Townsend Says...

I plan on visiting the day after Christmas through January 4th. Will there still be holiday festivities?

Oct 5, 2017 at 8:18 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cassidi,

Holidays at Universal Studios will end Jan 6.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 1, 2017 at 1:52 a.m. melissa Says...

Any restaurants in the parks serving Thanksgiving lunch/dinner? Thanks!

Oct 2, 2017 at 8:19 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa,

In the past, the parks have not offered traditional Thanksgiving meals. Each of the hotels at Universal Orlando Resort offers various Thanksgiving meals.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Sep 26, 2017 at 6:55 a.m. Therese Says...

We're planning on visiting Monday-Friday after Thanksgiving. Will attractions be closed for Christmas preparations/decorating?

Sep 26, 2017 at 8:18 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Therese,

Typically, theme parks will do their Christmas preparations the first two weeks of November. Usually, everything is finished by Thanksgiving week.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Sep 20, 2017 at 3:05 p.m. Katherine Stevenson Says...

I've never done Universal for Christmas is this a seperate ticket with limited hours like Disney or regular hours and normal tickets? Thanks!

Sep 20, 2017 at 10:51 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Katherine,

The Universal Holiday events come with standard daily admission.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

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