It was a fun expo, and I wish I had more money to spend!
|Welcome to my world of running, life, and all things Disney :)|
We got to the ESPN right before it opened on Thursday. There was line out of the complex, but it was moving pretty quickly. In no time, we made it inside.
First stop was the official merchandise area. There were lots of I Did It shirts, but nothing really stroke my fancy (limited budget and all). The line was a little long, but did not take that much time to get to the front. (Hey, I can see Marty in line in this picture!)
We walked around the booths a bit before getting our packets. I ended up buying a 48.6 Dopey Magnet, but will of course not display it until January! I also got a STICK, which I have wanted to get for a while to help with my IT band.
I picked up my packet for the Happy Haunted Trails 5k first, and then got in line for the 10-miler. Then I headed over to Runner Relations so I could get my corral changed. I moved from corral G to corral E. Woot woot!
It was a fun expo, and I wish I had more money to spend!
One night we had reservations at Captain's Grill, which is at the Yacht Club. We took the bus to Epcot and then walked through to the International Gateway. It was my first time going through this entrance and my first time going to the boardwalk during the day hours. It was a pretty awesome view! We got to the restaurant which is obviously nautical themed. The chef came out to talk to us and said he could make a gluten free, vegetarian pasta dish. It ended up being pesto pasta (the same pesto the use at Tutto Italia at Epcot) with some carrots, broccoli, green beans, and cauliflower. It was pretty tasty. For dessert we got Baby Cakes Brownies and some lovely Rice Dream.
This meal was pretty good tasting as was pretty inexpensive. The restaurant was not crowded and it was fun walking on the beach and enjoying the view before and after dinner.
First stop after checking in was to get some breakfast. We decided to go to the hotel restaurant to check it out. The decor was quaint and the chef was nice enough but I was not overly impressed with the food. They had Mickey waffles that I could eat, and they were good, but nothing special. I was highly disappointed with the amount of potatoes they gave us. For the price of $9 there was not a lot of food and it was all starch. I will definitely stick to breakfast at the Art of Animation.
One of the character breakfasts that e really like is at Animal Kingdom's Tusker House. The characters are dressed up in safari gear and spend a pretty good amount of time with you. Mickey loved my runDisney shirt at was excited when I told him I was going to run Dopey.The food was yummy. I had waffles, potatoes, plantains, and rice.This buffet is a bit pricey but I was stuffed afterwards.
Nathan and I took a trip to Disney World earlier this July. We were to spend 5 nights at Old Key West for our first Disney Vacation Club trip. We then spent the next week at Hotel Tomlinson :)
After we finished our race and got our medals (and I took a trip to medical to get some ice!), we went back into Animal Kingdom for the After Party. It was about midnight! Animal Kingdom is so neat after dark! The Tree of Life is lit up, as well as Everest. Unfortunately, my phone camera does not do well in the dark.
The lines were really short, so we rode Expedition Everest twice. It is such a better ride in the dark. You don't see the drop coming at all, and the rush is more intense. We also went once Kali River Rapids and got wet, not soaked, which was refreshing. It was so not crowded, the other people in our tube got to stay on the ride for a second time.
We then went on Primeval Swirl (or something like that). I don't need to go on that one again. Too much spinning. There was a short wait before we started because someone had gotten sick. I can see why.
Then we got some pictures printed out at the New Balance Booth and visited some characters: Baloo and King Louie, Pluto and Goofy, and others.
It was a fun night and a great experience to be in Animal Kingdom after dark!
May 4. Heidi and I got to Animal Kingdom around 7:30 p.m. hoping to be able to exchange our shirts for a smaller size, but we had no luck. No smaller sizes were available.
We relaxed in the car for a while, put on our bibs, and then went to get some pictures taken. It was pretty crowded, but the energy level was high. There were two snow machines pumping out snow on everyone and the DJ was blasting music and talking to the crowd.
The race officially started at 10 p.m. but we were in corral C so we started at 10:12. The first mile was in the parking lot, but it was still exciting. They had speakers out with music and animal sounds. It was also amusing to see the other runners. One guy was dressed as Tarzan and had a stuffed monkey making tons of sounds. In this mile was the first obstacle - jumping over hay bales. Pretty easy.
The next mile was inside the park. We ran towards the Tree of Life which was lit up, and then through Asia, backstage for a bit, and then past Kali River Rapids and Everest. We then went backstage and ran past the back of Everest, coming to the second obstacle - tires. There was a short line for this but we got through it pretty fast.
The third mile was all backstage and not much excitement other than waiting for the finish line to come. My knee was hurting pretty bad by this point, but I kept running. We came to the last obstacle - crawling under a net. I passed by this one because of my knee and crossed the finish line.
We were handed a clue card and were back off to the front of the park to get our next clue. For the clues, each was a direction of the compass. We were running all around the park getting more clues until we finally had to use all the clues to figure out a puzzle giving us the final answer needed to cross the finish line. We had about 3/4 of a mile to run to the finish line, so we hobbled there and got our medals!
Final 5k split: 37:11
Total Time: 1:27:17
After the Expedition Everest Challenge Family Edition, we all went to Sanaa at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge. I love this restaurant! They had just changed the menu, and I wanted to check it out. I ordered a lot of food to give me fuel for the race that evening.
For appetizer I ordered the Papadum Service with Red Chile Sambul, Coconut Chutney, and Roasted Red Pepper Hummus. For my second (!) appetizer I ordered Chana Spinach something. Chef Trish discovered I could also eat the Chana Tikka, so she brought that out for me to have as well (my third appetizer!). They were both pretty tasty, but I think I liked the spinach version a little better.
For my meal I ordered the Vegetarian Combo with Chana Masala and Lentils. It was pretty hit and miss. The chana masala had potatoes in it, which threw me off a bit but wasn't a big deal. It did have a bunch of baby onion bulbs things in it, which was totally weird. I picked them all out, but they took up a lot of the bowl. The lentils were a bit al dente for me. Overall, I was not totally impressed with my entree. I liked the previous menu options better. Oh well.
For dessert I got mango sorbet with fresh berries. It was very refreshing. By the end of the meal I was stuffed and satisfied.
While we were waiting for our reservation we saw a couple of tortoises hanging out and eating lunch right outside the window!
Saturday morning everyone packed up and headed out to Disney's Wide World of Sports for the Expedition Everest Challenge Family Edition. Only Madre and Ellie were going to compete in the race, but I tagged along to help with the scavenger hunt clues. It was raining on and off that morning, so it was a lot of taking the ponchos on and off.
We got a map and had to run around the ESPN complex to get and solve clues. Some of the challenges involved running around bases to find letters, which had to be arranged in a certain order to find the answer. Most of the clues involved word challenges. After we got all of our clues we headed to the finish line by running around the track. Even though I wasn't officially registered for this event, I got a medallion when we finished.
This was a fun event, despite the rain. It took us a little while to figure out how the clues were going to go, but we finally got a hang of it and had a good time. We finished in a little under an hour