Wednesday, January 20, 2010

WDW Marathon Weekend 2010

WDW Marathon weekend 2010...what can I say about it?

First of all, it will forever be known to those who participated either by running or by being apart of the, as I've dubbed it the "chEAR squad", as the WDW Marathon on Ice.

The weekend, as a whole will be forever etched in my mind as one of the most memorable trip experiences I'll ever have. It was an absolute blast. So many great things happened that it's hard to put it all into words.

Let's start with Day 1. I arrived on Wednesday and already I could tell, it was going to be a great trip. I got to the Magic Kingdom and was pleasantly surprised to see it was still Christmas. (Granted, I would grow to hate Christmas! We do not need Christmas music January 10th! Turn it off!!!)

I arrived by myself and just wandered around the park, trying to soak it all up. I was there...I had made it...and I was doing it alone. I was so proud of myself for taking this step in my life. It was a long time coming.

I wouldn't be alone for too much longer, as the masses would soon be swarming on me! Soon, I would add Danette and Jake, Mike and Paige, and Pam and her family and we would all have a BLAST together! We would see the Castle all "iced out" still, experience a great showing of the Pirate Tutorial (which was a first for me and a great show!) and have an impromptu Bowl of Meat Meet! (At Pecos Bills, not at the originator, El Pirata y el Perico.) Oh, and we crashed on the TTA...that's always fun, although I wished we got the chance to evacuate! It was the beginning of what would be a great trip, surrounded by friends. And for someone who was solo, I never felt alone once the whole trip. (And truthfully, besides sleeping, I was only alone about 3 or so hours of my trip!)

The next day would be Animal Kingdom day. This was the first day of the cold, although, it wasn't nearly as cold as it was going to be! On tap today would be a ride on Everest, which is a great idea in the cold, by the way, with the cold wind whipping on my face, a trip to Find Nemo, where I picked up the joke of yelling Mine at random times with Danette's husband Jake, and of course, our first live show taping. We did this at Flame Tree BBQ back in the back where you can see Everest. It was a great show, although Mike made me do the interviewing. (When did I become the whooping girl?!) We had a ton of people show up, 24 in all!

By the way, for the record, I HATE Mike. He made me ride Dinosaur for the first time ever. I was absolutely terrified! I think he thought I was going to throw up on him, I was so white. I survived, but barely. You'll be able to hear the evidence of my terror by listening to an upcoming episode of the show. And I'm happy to say, that my fear managed to raise at least $60 for Give Kids The World.

After that, we took a tour of Kidani Village with Pam. Kidani is FABULOUS! Almost made me want to buy into DVC. Look for the video of a 1 bedroom coming soon on Facebook. We spent some good time here relaxing and working on getting signs made to cheer on the runners on Saturday.

Once we were warmed up a bit, we headed to Epcot, where we ate Fish and Chips in the darkest place in the world, no lights at the seating area for the restaurant and then had an Illuminations meet. (Hot chocolate was my friend for this meet!)

On Friday, we headed over to DHS and I had the opportunity to try and better my score at TSMM...even got a FastPass, which never happens for me! We all met up and went to see American Idol, which was a blast with the group. (And this one girl was MAD she lost too! Storming past us on her way out of the building.) We also had our second Be Our Guest Podcast show taping at Backlot Express. Another good time was had by all!

We were going to sit down and do the animation academy, but we just missed the cut off, so we met the characters and for the record, Mike looks nothing like Mr. Incredible. And I bested my score on TSMM! So, that made me feel happy. Proof that practice makes perfect and the more you play, even with breaks in between, the better you do.

This night, I had a fun dinner with Jay, Margaret and Tucker at Beaches and Cream! No Way Jose for the Win....and their chili dog is fabulous too! BTW, Margaret claims that I am correct and that Beaches and Cream does have the best burgers on property too! Yay! I win! El Yay! (As Jay, or as I like to now call him, thanks to the guy at the Poly, Mr Yay, would say!)

Saturday, Half Marathon day and I was up bright and early...5 am! Which for me, well, that's unheard of. Thank god for Danette and Jake! They brought me coffee and we headed towards the MK to see the race. Once I realized that buses weren't running from the hotels, I hopped in the car with the two of them and Jackie and we were off to the TTC. Also, for those living under a rock, this was the coldest day in Florida! It actually sleeted during the race! It was just a yucky, yucky day. By the time we got to the MK though, we had JUST missed seeing Mike. We headed to the Epcot bus parking lot after and had a great spot, despite how COLD it was. (And I mean bitter cold!!! My hands were FROZEN by the time we were done with the whole thing, on the monorail back. I had trouble typing on my BlackBerry.) It was great seeing Mike, Katie, and Ed though, completing their mission of the half! They all did fabulous! Also, it was really fun shouting and trying to get high fives from runners...although that could have been the coffee talking. It was still early in the morning. For those thinking about running a half at Disney, I say go for it! It couldn't be any worse than it was this year...the year it snowed! lol! Anything's better than that.

The rest of this day, despite the freezer like temps was a blast. We had our own meet, we went to Lou Mongello's meet, and we went to the WDWToday meet! Lots of great meet ups of great Disney people that day! Also got the chance to meet Deb Wills of AllEars, which was fabulous too! She is such a super nice lady. Oh, and we had a fun meet up (which was originally hosted by All About the Mouse, but we had sort of our own little Be Our Guest Podcast version) on the Jungle Cruise. Kinda weird having Steve Barrett of Hidden Mickey's fame sitting across from me and Matt Hotchberg of WDW Today fame sitting right next to me. (Yeah, that's how I roll! lol! Just kidding!) In addition, I got to see the sweep water art that's being created by the custodial staff being made in person, got to see the new Muppet pre-parade, and we got a "private" meet with Daisy Duck!

That night, I got to experience something I never had before and boy was it a BLAST!!! We had a Be Our Guest Meet at Yee Haa Bob's at Port Orleans Riverside. Seriously the most fun ever! A group of 23 of us, at one point was there, hooting and hollering like something awful! It was crazy and something I can't believe I've never done before. Something I will definitely be doing again!

From there, Brian, who had now joined me the night before, and I spent a glorious (cold) few days in the Orlando area, checking out the I Drive area and enjoying our favorite Wilderness Lodge before we left the area and Tampa, going to Clearwater and visiting the beach, not that we could really enjoy the beach all that much.

This trip, despite the fact that I still wonder who turned off the heater in Florida, was a fabulous one.

For those who want more on this trip, please, check out my Facebook page which will have photos and videos available for viewing.


WDW Tweets said...

Thanks so much for the trip report! I love reading these. I wish so much that I could have been there this year to meet all of you guys. I was there last year for marathon weekend. I guess I was just too early.

I love your nickname for the marathon. When you said you spent some time at the beach afterward, I was picturing you building snowman in the sand!

It's crazy that you crashed on the TTA. I didn't know that could happen! Talk about a low speed crash. lol

I have to get over to Yee Haw Bob's one of these times. It's not in the cards for our upcoming trip but maybe a future one.

Once again, thanks so much!

Amanda said...

Were you there at the All About the Mouse Jungle Cruise Meet? I was there in the first boat with Bryan Ripper.

I'm glad that you had a good first solo experience.

I did the Half and it was worse than cold...I thought I was going to freeze to death.

Unknown said...

Yes, I was at the All About the Mouse JC meet! I was in the second boat. We just missed the first boat, since we had like 9 extra people. Sorry I missed you. :(