I don't believe it was closed at all, since I didn't arrive until around 7 Thursday night coming from work and had no problem getting in, it was still extremely crowded, but many people went to watch the ceremony in the morning and left.
I don't think so, it never seemed to be all that full, I would even venture to say that it was more full when I went the friday before Easter. People may have stayed away because of the rain in the forecast.
the park did not hit capacity...in fact, attendance was fairly normal (on the high side, but not altogether rediculous). What made it so uncomfortable was all the media risers and limitations on guest movement. Also, the fact that EVERYONE wanted to be there before 10am to see the event itself didn't help...
-"We can see a new horizon...built on all that we have done..and our dreams begin another thousand circles 'round the sun!"
-- Epcot: Illuminations "Reflections of Earth"
-"...Each dream that you chase, each wish you embrace can lead to a fabulous faraway place...!"
--DCA: World Of Color
Disneyland had to close on the last day of the MSEP.....
This was way before they brought it back to DCA a few years back.
Originally, they said it was going to glow away forever....or somthing quirky to that extent. I think it was back in 97 or 98.
Anyways, to answer the original question. So many people came to see it on it's final nights performance that they had to close the park and deny any more people from going in.
It was in October/November of 1996. That was a dark time for me (no pun intended), so I remember it well, and the closure of MSEP just put the icing on that cake. Folks sat for the parade as early as 8am, over 12 hours in advance. And there wasn't a dry eye in the house.