Oo-de-lally, oo-de-lally, golly, what a day! - Princess Half Marathon 2019 TR

PJofNB

Earning My Ears
Joined
Feb 1, 2019
After reading and enjoying a number of trip reports from marathon weekend, I have decided to jump in and write my first trip report. I am still quite a novice with posting to these boards, so this will likely be a bit rough. First, a bit of background before getting to the trip itself...

Who: Me, my wife and our young-adult daughter, from Fredericton, NB, Canada. (We left our son at home with the pets!)
What: A trip to WDW for our first runDisney event, the Princess Half Marathon on Sunday, 24 February.
Where: Port Orleans French Quarter
When: 21-25 February for me. My wife and daughter stayed longer, returning home on 2 March.
Why: Motivation to get fit and participate in a runDisney event, run our first half marathons, excuse to visit Disney World, opportunity to escape winter for a short time,...
How: Read along to find out!

This was our third family trip to Disney World. The previous ones were in 2005 (our family of four plus my sister-in-law and her husband shared a cabin at Fort Wilderness) and in 2012 (just our family, Caribbean Beach Resort). My wife also visited as a girl in the 80's with her parents and siblings.

Further background / pre-trip
I started running off and on about eight years ago when my son was running cross country and track in high school. I did a few local 5k and 10k races, typically a couple per year, but nothing very much longer. I first read about the runDisney races a few years ago and thought they sounded like fun, but wasn't ready to commit to training for longer distances. Travel to other places, work commitments and aging children meant another trip to Disney World didn't seem to be in the cards. That changed last spring (May 2018) when we were having a family chat about travel and my daughter expressed an interest in returning to Disney World. I had just run a local 10k and was interested in trying a half marathon. I suggested another family trip to Disney was not likely, unless she was interested in starting to run and train for a half marathon, as I was interested in trying a runDisney event. I think the next day (certainly within a few days), my daughter reported back that she had done some research and thought that the Princess Half Marathon in February 2019 was the right event to aim for, considering time of year (weather), theming and the amount of training time that would allow. She wasn't sure if I had been serious in my offer of a runDisney trip and I admit to being a bit surprised by how quickly she came back with specific information and suggestions, but I was happy to confirm and the real planning began. My wife committed to training with my daughter and running as well. Neither did any real running prior to this point, although they both walked quite a bit and participated in some fitness classes. With some internet research, we put together a basic training plan for them and I found my own "first half marathon" plan to follow for people with moderate running experience at shorter distances. My daughter and wife also started planning where to stay, costumes, and other crucial pre-trip details.

Trip schedule (I will try linking each day's report here as I post them.)
Thursday, 21 Feb: Travel, run expo, (and part 2) Epcot
Friday, 22 Feb: Magic Kingdom (part 1), and part 2.
Saturday, 23 Feb: Hollywood Studios
Sunday, 24 Feb: Disney Princess Half Marathon (pre-race and first half), second half and post-race, Animal Kingdom
Monday, 25 Feb: Travel home


Off we go! (arf! arf! on y va!)
 
Last edited:

jphcoffeeboy

Earning My Ears
Joined
Feb 26, 2019
Great starting report. We were in town while the marathon was going on. Got to watch the fireworks from Top of the World on Sunday Night.
 
  • PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Thursday, 21 Feb: Travel, run expo, Epcot
    Great starting report. We were in town while the marathon was going on. Got to watch the fireworks from Top of the World on Sunday Night.
    Thanks! The only fireworks I saw on this trip were the ones at the start and during the race. Too many early mornings combined with a short trip meant the opportunity never arose. I have never been to Top of the World - the view must be fantastic. I would love to have the chance to watch the fireworks from there and just to check out the views of the Magic Kingdom and the resorts.
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Day 1. Thursday, 21 Feb: Travel, run expo, Epcot

    Travel
    Our alarm went off at 3:00 a.m. AST for our 5:10 flight out of Fredericton. First flight of the day! I didn't realize our airport had such early departures until I booked the flights for this trip. We decided to think of the early start as part of our training for race day! The good news is that the airport is not far from home and it is small, so there is no need to be there too early. We were out of the door by 3:30 and in the airport terminal before 4:00. I had been watching the weather forecast with some nervousness. Snow was expected for our departure day, but it was not forecast to start until near our departure time. However, the weather system was hitting southern Ontario and Quebec during the night. Our plane out in the morning was also the last flight in from Montreal Wednesday night, so if that flight was disrupted it could affect our departing flight. Thankfully, everything went smoothly and we had an on-time departure.

    We flew to Montreal, where we were catching a connecting flight to Orlando. Because the first flight was less than 90 minutes and with a one hour time difference, we were scheduled to arrive in Montreal at 5:30 EST. We landed on time, but were then delayed for a while because the ground crew were still clearing snow that fell during the night. The tarmac was partly plowed, leaving a snow bank blocking our path to our gate! After sitting for a while, some snowplows arrived and cleared our path. We taxied to the gate, deplaned, made our way to US customs pre-clearance and back through security and on to our gate for our scheduled 7:00 a.m. flight to MCO. Everything went smoothly, but because of the delay on the tarmac, we didn't have time to pick up breakfast in the terminal before our flight to Orlando started boarding. (We would have had time if my wife and daughter weren't behind a slow family in line at Starbuck's, who decided to wait until they were right up to the counter before discussing with the young children what they would like to eat. My wife and daughter abandoned the line when they saw that almost everyone had already gone through the gate for our flight.) Our departure from Montreal was delayed almost an hour because of the ongoing snow removal on the tarmac and a fairly long wait for de-icing. Eventually, we were airborne and heading south. We finally got some breakfast when the in-flight service got underway. For some reason, both my wife and I forgot to pack snacks in our carry-ons, something we normally remember to do.

    We ended up landing at MCO about an hour late. It didn't matter - we were in Orlando, it was sunny and warm, and it was still before noon.

    We made our way to the Magical Express and after a short wait were on our way. Our resort, Port Orleans French Quarter, was the first stop. We had never stayed there before, but were really looking forward to our stay based upon everything we had read. We were not disappointed! We really liked the relaxed ambiance and relatively compact size of the resort. We checked in and picked up our magic bands. We had a room only reservation and had purchased discounted Canadian resident tickets, which were linked to our magic bands but not yet active. We confirmed at check-in that we needed to visit a guest relations location, with our passports, to activate our tickets. We were pleased to be informed that our room was ready, so we made our way to our garden-view room on the ground floor of building 2. After a quick change into some light clothes and application of sun screen for the first time in months, we were ready to head to Wide World of Sports and the run expo.
    POFQ_1.jpg

    Run expo
    We headed out front for a bus to Wide World of Sports to pick up our race bibs and check out the expo. A bus pulled up as we arrived. (The transportation was great throughout our trip!) After a short wait, we were on our way. We were starting to get a bit excited as we got off the bus and made our way to our first stop, to pick up our bibs. There was a steady flow of people arriving, but we had almost no wait and appreciated the friendly and efficient help from all the volunteers.

    It was then off to the second building to check out the expo. We looked around a bit and picked up our race shirts. I was starting to feel the effects of our early start to the day and lack of lunch, so I got in line for some food while my wife and daughter browsed the booths. I had a rice bowl which hit the spot. As I walked around the expo with my lunch, people kept stopping to ask me where I got the food. My wife found a villain shirt that she liked (she and my daughter chose a villain theme for their race outfits, so this fit our trip plus it looked good). After a fairly thorough look around, we headed to building number three, which housed the runDisney merchandise. On the way, we stopped at the Wide World of Sports guest relations location to activate our park tickets. I wasn't sure if this would be possible here, as I had only seen mention of the Disney Springs location and the ones at the entrance of each park. It was worth checking since we had our passports with us (needed them to pick up our race bibs) and didn't want to carry them with us to the park later that afternooon if we didn't need to. There was no wait for a cast member and she was able to very quickly get this done. Yeah!

    We then finished making our way to the arena with the runDisney merchandise. We spent a while browsing here and picked up a few small things. My wife liked the finisher tops but unfortunately they did not have any in her size (XS). This was a bit disappointing as she was able to get an XS race shirt and they did have this size in finisher shirts for at least one of the shorter distances. Oh well, she found other worthwhile ways to spend her money later in the trip!


    expo_route_1.jpg

    We checked out the large race maps and saw the character meet and greats (several princesses, the Frozen sisters and one or two others, I think) but weren't interested in waiting in line. Cinderella's carriage was out front of the building as well, along with some footmen, but we decided to head back to the resort and then on to Epcot, where we had some fast passes for late afternoon.

    We enjoyed our efficient but relaxed visit to the run expo. All three of us started getting more excited about the race after picking up or bibs and shirts, browsing the merchandise, and moving around in the crowds with our fellow runners. It was a clear, sunny and hot afternoon, which we were finding a bit of an adjustment after the 0 F temperatures we had started the day with, so getting back onto the air conditioned bus for the drive back to the resort was a bit of a relief. Next up was the first park of our visit, Epcot. I will save that for the next installment of my report.
     
  • PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Great start. Love hearing about a different point of view!
    Thanks! I read about six or eight trip reports from this year's marathon weekend and one of the things I liked was the diversity of backgrounds, perspectives and experiences. It was also interesting reading trip reports from multiple people whose trips intersected with one another to see different people's takes on the same events.
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Day 1 (part 2). Thursday, 21 Feb: ..., Epcot

    After taking the bus back to POFQ from the run expo, we made a quick stop in our room to drop off our bibs, race shirts and purchases before catching the bus for Epcot. I had a four day base ticket, so this would be my one chance to visit Epcot during this trip. I really enjoy this park and would have liked more time there, but had to make some compromises because of the relatively short length of my stay. My wife and daughter would have opportunities to return later in the week as they were staying five days longer than me and also had park hopper tickets. We had fastpasses for Spaceship Earth, Soarin' and Mission Space. I had picked Soarin' as my first priority amongst the top tier attractions as I really enjoyed this ride during our previous visit in 2012 and knew that they had changed the film since then. In hindsight, it might have worked if we had picked Frozen Ever After for our FP, giving me a chance to see that new-to-me attraction, and ridden Soarin' on stand-by. In the end, we really enjoyed our day and had no complaints about our choices.

    The bus ride from POFQ to Epcot was quick, I think just over 10 minutes, and park entry was also very quick when we arrived late afternoon. This was our first time using magic bands and the current entry system - we found it very efficient and easy to use. (I realize this is very old news for almost anyone reading this!) After a tap and finger scan, Mickey turned green and we were in.:cheer2:

    When we made our fast passes, we weren't sure how much time to allow for race bib pick-up, the run expo and transportation between the various sites. Because of the one hour delay in the arrival of our flight and spending longer browsing the merchandise and shopping at the expo (which we really enjoyed!) than anticipated, we had missed the window for our Spaceship Earth FP and our window for Soarin' was already open. We quickly headed for the Land pavilion and our first attraction of the trip. In short order, we were seated and enjoying our flight around the world. I love the feeling of, well, soaring :), that this ride imparts and thought that most of the cinematography for the "new" film was beautiful.

    When we were done, the ladies declared that it wast time for some food. (I was still fine after my rice bowl at the run expo.) We knew there were food booths around the park for the International Festival of the Arts :artist:, so we decided to start strolling and check out the menus as we came to them. We also took fairly quick looks through the numerous art pavilions we passed. We headed right, towards Canada (although my daughter declared she was definitely not getting anything to eat there, because she could eat in Canada any day!). We passed a number of booths that I thought had interesting items on the menu, but others were fussier and wanted to keep moving. I did get an iced coffee just before the UK, which really hit the spot on a hot and sunny late afternoon. After meandering a bit aimlessly (but enjoying the general ambiance of the park - I love just "hanging out" in World Showcase), the ladies eventually decided on platters from the Tangerine Cafe in Morocco. They knew this was food they would like and I think their need for a meal was getting urgent! We find the platters there quite generous, so I ended up with a fair bit to eat myself helping them to finish things off. We found a table outside and enjoyed eating al fresco while we relaxed and soaked up the atmosphere.

    Our original plan for Epcot had us riding Mission Space with our fastpasses and then heading to the ampitheatre in front of the American pavilion for the 8 p.m. Disney on Broadway show. As we resumed our stroll around World Showcase, we realized it would be a lot less walking if we could attend the 6:45 p.m. broadway show and ride Mission Space on our way out of the park. It was around 6:30 when we reached the ampitheatre. We asked the cast member how long the show was (30 minutes!) and decided to grab seats for the 6:45 show when we confirmed we should still be able to make our fast pass window for Mission Space (which closed around 7:45 or 7:55). Seats in the front were starting to fill up, but there was still plenty of room. We settled in for the show, enjoying the gradual transition from twilight to dark and noticing the lights of the pavilions and walkways around World Showcase. Each Disney on Broadway show featured two singers supported by a small band. On our night, the performers were Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White. Kissy is short for Kissimmee, so she seemed a good choice considering the venue. More importantly, she played Nala in the Broadway production of The Lion King. Alton Fitzgerald White played Mufasa in the same production. Our daughter in particular was really looking forward to this show. :simba: She is a big Broadway fan and generally loves musical theatre. We loved the show! Both singers did a fantastic job, with high energy performances and fantastic vocal delivery. In the 30 minute show, they performed songs from a number of Disney on Broadway shows, starting with the "coming soon" Hercules. The musicians playing with them were also great. The songs were of course very familiar to most of the audience, so people were bopping and singing along. The attractions at WDW are great, but what impressed me from our first visit and continues to do so is the quality of live entertainment available throughout the parks. This show from two Broadway stars was a step above! We really enjoyed sitting in the open air ampitheatre on what felt like us to be a pleasant summer's evening, listening to great music.
    epcot21_show.jpg
    After the concert, we continued our stroll around World Showcase. We browsed through a few art pavilions and saw some really fantastic paintings, prints, paper art, and more. The variety of styles was quite diverse. I didn't love everything but that was more a matter of personal taste than quality. We also had a chance to put ourselves in the picture. Below is the most dramatic result...
    epcot21_festival.jpg
    We finally reached the far side of the lake and made our way past Test Track to Mission Space. We used our fast passes (very close to the end of our window) and quickly made our way into the attraction. It wasn't very busy and we probably would have been fine to ride stand by, but might as well take advantage of all our fastpasses. I think this attraction is a great example of the quality of Disney imagineering. As soon as I enter, I feel like I am walking into a space institute out of a Star Trek movie. The queue is great and the ride experience is very effective. The only thing that detracts for me is the repeated warnings about the ride intensity, although I certainly understand why these are there. Despite some nervous moments on entry, our team came through and we successfully landed on Mars! Mission accomplished!

    Once we finished with this attraction, we took a relaxed walk out of the park to catch our bus, pausing briefly to admire the beauty of Spaceship Earth illuminated at night. I am not sure what time we arrived back at our resort, but we were all exhausted after our very early start to the day. Our relaxed touring of Epcot was the right approach for us after a busy travel day. I think I was asleep sometime between 9 and 10 p.m. We were very pleased with how everything had gone and even more excited for our run on Sunday after getting our bibs and mixing with the other runners at the expo. Friday, our plan was an early start for morning extra magic hours at Magic Kingdom.:dumbo:

    (I promise more photos for the rest of the trip report. I am not much of a picture taker, but we have Photopass pictures the rest of the way, along with a few more of my own.)
     
    Last edited:
  • PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Following along. I hope to make Princess weekend my first Disney race experience in a few years!
    I definitely recommend it. All three of us had a great time and were really happy with our experiences, although from what I have read on these boards, all the WDW runDisney events sound great!
     

    TCB in FLA

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 3, 2006
    Enjoying your TR so far! Really looking forward to hearing about your first Run Disney races.
     

    erzses

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Dec 15, 2012
    Following along! I've never done a Disney race but I'd love to someday.
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Enjoying your TR so far! Really looking forward to hearing about your first Run Disney races.
    Thanks! Just a couple of park days to cover first...

    Following along! I've never done a Disney race but I'd love to someday.
    It was a great experience and is what motivated the three of us to train to the point we were able to complete a half marathon.
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Day 2. Friday, 22 February: Magic Kingdom

    I was up fairly early so took a short stroll around the grounds while the sun came up. It was quiet and peaceful, especially down near the river. It was a bit of a shock to my system when I opened the door of our room and stepped out into the humidity. It wasn't awful, I just noticed the heaviness of the air. I had the same experience each morning until my departure day, when it was a bit cooler. Overnight lows were around 21 C (70 F) each of the first few days of our stay.

    Our plan was to spend the day at Magic Kingdom, starting with EMH at 8:00 a.m. Much of the planning for this trip happened in conversations during training runs! This helped to pass the time during the longer runs and motivate us. For most of the lead-up, my wife and daughter trained together; they would let me know what they had come up with in their chats but were always careful to give me a chance to provide input. In early January, my wife developed a stress fracture in her foot and couldn't run for six weeks while it healed. (She did some aqua-fit classes and pool running to keep up her fitness.) During this time, I trained with our daughter - we talked about touring plans, attraction priorities, where we wanted to eat, and so on.

    Back to the day... In my stroll around the grounds, I confirmed that the cooked breakfast options in the food court didn't start until 7 a.m., but that the bakery and grab and go items were available earlier. I picked up a refillable mug (and coffee!), toasted a bagel and headed back to the room. My wife made some instant oatmeal in the room using the coffee maker to heat the water. This was a test run for her plan for the morning of the race, when we would be up very early but needed to eat enough to fuel our runs. We ate and were ready to go sooner than expected, so headed for the bus stop, I think shortly after 7:00. Some of the finishers from the 5k were arriving back at the resort. I was so focused on the half marathon on Sunday that I forgot there was a race Friday morning! It was neat to see runners in their race outfits and wearing their medals, heading for breakfast. Seeing this on Friday and Saturday definitely helped to further build our excitement for the half. It also caused me to regret a bit that I had not signed up for the Challenge (10k on Saturday + half on Sunday). Maybe next time!

    :tink:We didn't wait long for a bus and the ride to the Magic Kingdom was short, I think around 15 minutes. We were glad we ended up leaving the resort a bit earlier than planned, as we hadn't properly accounted for time for security and park entry. It all went quickly and smoothly and we were soon strolling up Main Street. When we got to the hub, they were directing people depending upon whether they were resort guests (there for EMH), people with dining reservations or off-site guests. We were directed to the bridge to Fantasyland, where we were held until 8 a.m. We had fastpasses for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Space Mountain in the morning and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in the late afternoon, so were planning to start with Peter Pan during EMH. When the rope dropped, we crossed the bridge then took a sharp left to go up past the castle and on to Peter Pan. The vast majority headed to 7DMT, so PP was essentially a walk-on. We were able to walk slowly and appreciate the queue, which is new since the last time we visited (a common refrain when trips are seven years apart!). The ride was wonderful as always.

    "New" fantasyland (is it still called that?) was under construction the last time we visited, in 2012, so this was our first opportunity to visit that area and experience the attractions there. We walked over after PP and enjoyed checking out the theming with minimal people around.
    MK_Gaston.jpg
    After a photo op in front of Gaston's Tavern, we rode the Little Mermaid ride (a complete walk-on). I really enjoyed this - I love the songs from this movie and enjoyed revisiting some of the key scenes.
    :dumbo:Next up was Dumbo. My daughter and I had never ridden this (although we have ridden the Magic Carpets of Aladdin and Triceratops Spin). My wife had fond memories of doing so as a child. There was a short wait and a fun ride. I liked the shifting scenes of the neigbouring areas of the park as we flew around in our personal flying elephant. We then rode teacups, with minimal wait. We then headed for Tomorrowland and rode Buzz. It was just a few minutes after regular park opening when we got there and there was no wait. I think this attraction is a lot of fun, but I am awful at it! If the galaxy needs defending, you are better off calling my wife and daughter!
    MK_Buzz1.jpg MK_Buzz2.jpg
    Our plan now was to make our way across the park as we had a FP for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad mid-morning. As we started to leave Tomorrowland, we saw the opportunity to meet Stitch with only a short wait (10 minutes?). We had not done any character meet & greats during our previous trips, but I guess decided it was time now that are children are adults! :stitch2: I enjoyed watching Stitch interact with the young children ahead of us in line almost as much as our own meeting. After my daughter's selfie. Stitch decided my wife's hat looked great and decided to try it on. It fell off in the ensuing antics and Stitch became a bit dismayed upon realizing it was no longer in place. It was great fun.
    MK_stitch_selfie.jpg MK_stitch_hat1.jpg MK_stitch_hat2.jpg
    We finally left Tomorrowland around 9:30 and headed to Adventureland, where we rode Pirates with minimal wait and then used our FP for Big Thunder Mountain. Everyone in the family loves this ride! We considered riding Splash Mountain on standby before BTMR, but the line was getting long and we were worried about missing our FP window for BTMR. It was a sunny day and starting to get pretty hot. The wait for Splash continued to grow and then stayed longer than we were willing to wait for the rest of the time we were in the park, so I didn't get to ride on this trip. My wife and daughter did later in the week (on a cooler and rainy day).

    My daughter suggested food should be our next priority, as we were now several hours removed from our fairly light breakfasts. We wandered into Pecos Bill's only to learn it wasn't open yet. Rather than wait, we decided to walk back to Gaston's Tavern. My wife had the ham & brie sandwich, my daughter ordered the picnic platter and I had the cinammon role (which I did share - it was huge!). The ham & brie sandwich was disappointing - we spent a year in France and enjoyed the fresh baguette sandwiches you could get from just about every bakery. Good quality bread and better cheese would have improved this significantly. We did enjoy the ambience of the eating area and were pleased to be able to find a table near the fireplace. And, we now were refreshed and refueled for further touring!

    Our next FP was for Space Mountain, although we still had a bit of time so we did the Monster's Inc. Laugh Floor first (a fun show!) and had some photopass pictures taken in front of Space Mountain. It was then onto our ride. I find Space Mountain a bit intense but a lot of fun. It is probably different for those who have ridden many times, but because I have not, the darkness makes all the moves unexpected so I have this constant anticipation during the ride.
    MK_sm.jpg
    It was now noon and the park was hot and crowded. Our third FP, for 7DMT, was not until around 5 p.m. so we decided to focus on low wait time attractions and shows for the afternoon. We did Carousel of Progress (corny but still fun - we sang along but most in our small crowd were pretty quiet) and rode the People Mover. We waited a bit for the People Mover, maybe 20 minutes? I don't remember riding this previously. I enjoyed the alternative view of Tomorrowland.

    We started to head back to Adventureland only to stumble unexpectedly on a crowd gathered for a stage show in front of the castle. It was Mickey's Royal Friendship Faire ::MickeyMo and must have just started as I am pretty sure they were in the opening number. We stopped to watch and enjoy the show. I thought the dancers were great and I enjoyed the music as well. It was also fun watching the many young children in the crowd react to the characters on stage and sing along to the songs. It was clear who the big stars are these days as there was an audible gasp of excitement from the children as Olaf and then Anna & Elsa came out.
    MK_show2.jpg
    We eventually reached Adventureland, where we enjoyed the Tikki Room show, followed by Dole whips for my wife and daughter and an iced coffee for me. As we finished, we noticed that a Country Bear Jamboree show was about to start so quickly made our way inside. Another new-to-us attraction, we thought it was corny but fun. I think my daughter was somewhat less impressed with some of the dialogue, but still enjoyed it overall.

    :donald:We decided on Mickey's Philharmagic next, but ran into the parade crowd en route. We stopped in the hub to enjoy the parade before taking in the show (that is really Donald's show, as I am sure he would agree!).
    MK_parade.jpg
    After Philharmagic, we rode It's a Small World after a moderate wait. While on Small World, we got a notice that our 7DMT fastpass had been converted to an any-attraction pass because the ride was down. After our boat ride finished, we decided to head to 7DMT anyway to see what the status was. Tune in to the next installment to find out what happened next and how we finished off our day, as I have apparently reached the limit for file uploads!
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Day 2 (part 2). Magic Kingdom continued.

    Our fastpass window for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train opened not long before we arrived after walking over from Small World. We had decided that we would ride Splash Mountain if it looked like 7DMT would be down for a while. But, good news, it was operating normally when we arrived!
    MK_7Da.jpg MK_7db.jpg
    This was our first time experiencing this attraction. I thought it was a good ride - the fast bits were similar to BTMRR and the mine was well done. However, I enjoyed BTMRR and Space Mountain more (and Splash on previous trips, as I recall). It would therefore not be a priority for us in future and I certainly wouldn't wait 2+ hours in line for it. I can also understand that for some, Space or some of the other rides I like would have no appeal but they might love this. I do think it is a good addition to the park as a broadly accessible roller coaster and attraction. My wife and daughter had another FP for this later in their stay, but decided to change it out for another attraction, I think Big Thunder Mountain.

    It was around 5 p.m. when we got off the ride, but we were quite tired after our early start to the day and even earlier start on our travel day on Thursday. We decided to make our way out of the park and back to our resort. We happened upon a photopass photographer laying on the ground near a corner of the castle. Intrigued, we waited a few minutes and ended up with some pictures we really like. Cudos to the photographer!
    MK_castle.jpg

    When we got back to the resort, we headed straight to the food court for dinner. It wasn't very busy as most people were presumably still in the parks. I had the jambalaya, which I thought was ok. Filling and fairly tasty, but very heavy on the rice and light on the other ingredients. We then returned to our room. The ladies were ready to relax and get to sleep early, especially with the run only a day and a half away. I still had some energy, so decided to go for an easy run up to Port Orleans Riverside. I wanted to stretch out my legs, check out the other resort, and see how much my running was affected by the humidity. I ended up doing just over 5k, POFQ to POR and return plus a couple of loops around POR. It was a nice evening but still humid. My pace was fairly slow, but I think that was as much due to the large serving of jambalaya as the humidity. I took a pause mid-way through the run to check out the Riverside gift shop (it seemed much larger than the one at POFQ) and stroll through the pool area. I liked the landscaping and theming of the resort, but think I would stick with POFQ for a future visit because of the much more compact layout. I knew the resorts were close to one another, but was still surprised how short the distance was along the riverside path from the last building at POFQ and the main building at Riverside.

    When I got back to POFQ, I grabbed my refillable mug for some water and then Powerade and sat outside and watched a bit of the Little Mermaid in the courtyard. After Sebastian's attempts to encourage Prince Eric to "kiss the girl" were foiled by Ursula's minions, I headed to our room for some sleep. Our pre-race day on Saturday would be spent at Hollywood Studios, including an ADR at Mama Melrose's for our carb-loading pre-race meal.
     
    Last edited:

    disneydaydreamer33

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 26, 2015
    Fun report so far! I ran the Fairy Tale Challenge and really enjoyed the Princesses races this year. It was definitely hot and humid though! I was at Magic Kingdom on the same day you guys were, but left early to do the expo. :)
     

    JAMIESMITH

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 26, 2011
    It looks like you had a great day in MK! I agree that 7DMT is not a great ride. It's just too short. BTMRR and Splash are my favorites in MK!
     

    PJofNB

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2019
    Fun report so far! I ran the Fairy Tale Challenge and really enjoyed the Princesses races this year. It was definitely hot and humid though! I was at Magic Kingdom on the same day you guys were, but left early to do the expo. :)
    Thanks! I am glad you are enjoying the report. We were a bit nervous about how the weather conditions might affect our run, but (spoiler!) in the end were pretty happy with how things went. Congratulations on completing the Challenge! I would definitely look at doing this if we return another year. I felt a bit of regret for not signing up when I was having breakfast Saturday morning and saw 10k runners returning to the resort with their medals. When we registered in August, I had yet to run my first half marathon so the idea of going beyond that was a bit too daunting.

    It looks like you had a great day in MK! I agree that 7DMT is not a great ride. It's just too short. BTMRR and Splash are my favorites in MK!
    We were very satisfied with our day at the Magic Kingdom. We had a full day while keeping it relaxed and not rushing anywhere. The random (to us) unexpected events we happened upon (castle stage show, parade) really added to the day.
     



    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates


    Top