Saturday, September 5, 2015

2015 Disneyland Half Marathon Expo

It's nearing Labor Day, which means it's the time of year for the Disneyland Half Marathon!
The actual race will be on Sunday September 6th, but first it's time to visit the expo and pick up your race packet.

Theresa and I got off work a little early hoping to beat rush hour and get to Disneyland a little quicker. On a good day, it will take us 40 minutes to get from our house to the Mickey and Friends parking lot. But getting on the road at 3:15pm in Los Angeles traffic meant that jumped up to 1:20 just to get to the Disneyland exit. And once we got there, it looked like everyone else had the same idea. The line of cars on the very long off-ramp backed up all the way to the freeway. During busy times, there is an overpass that Disney opens that bypasses the light at Ball Road. Unfortunately for us, that overpass was closed and it took over 30 minutes to exit the freeway and enter the Mickey and Friends parking structure. Two hours after we left the house, we were finally parked and headed to the expo. Friday after work is definitely not the best time to do this.

Once we arrived at packet pickup though, it wasn't too crazy at all. I like seeing the special carpet leading down to the packet pickup. Jacob joined us at this point too.

Pretty quiet down here too.

Race packet time!

I gave my name and number and then I hear "Legacy!!!" along with a lot of clapping! Yep, this is year number 10 for me and it's the 10th year of the race!

I got my very own escort over to the legacy booth that was set up.

Here I got a couple special gifts. A drawstring backpack and a blue tech shirt, and both had "Legacy Runner" printed across them.

Beside the booth was a display for Legacy runners as well.

There's me plus the other 435 people who have run the race every year since this started.

Time to head into the expo.

And stop at whatever photo opportunities I see along the way.

Not too busy up here either. I got my 2015 Disneyland Half Marathon shirt, and I still love that they have a special booth set up for shirt exchanges now.

I wandered the expo floor just a little bit, picked up some shot blocks for the race on Sunday, then went to check out the official merchandise. Nothing in particular I need, though I did find it interesting seeing the hand-drawn art.

They've even got an official Disney artist cranking them out where you can watch. I didn't realize it at the time, but as I was leaving, I saw there was a video camera above her station, with the video feed going to a TV that you could watch while you were in queue for the registers.

After the expo, it was time to find some dinner. We all wandered into Downtown Disney, taking a quick break to watch the Tahitian dancers.

Dinner would come from the most excellent Earl of Sandwich. My favorite is the delicious Holiday Turkey. Ian must have been inspired by the dancers, because he decided on a Hawaiian BBQ sandwich, which had chicken, ham, pineapple and cheese.

He was definitely a fan, nearly finishing a half sandwich by himself!

Time to head into Disneyland!

Ian's never been on the Disneyland Monorail before, so we figured what better way to enter the park.

Waving at the monorail as it pulls in. While we were waiting in line, as soon as Ian would see it pulling around the corner, he'd yell "I see it!"

I was really hoping to ride up front with the driver, but after 2 cycles and the parties that were riding up front not getting off, we made our way to a regular car.

Riding on Jacob's lap so he can get a good view.

Waving at all the people down below in the parks.

Our one and only ride for the day (not counting the monorail) was King Arthur's Carrousel. Mommy and Jacob led the way up front.

While Daddy and Ian (and Duffy too) brought up the rear.

Ian was just too adorable riding with his bear. We're starting to push into Ian's bedtime though, thus the tired eyes.

Riding in front of the castle with his teddy bear.

After that, the four of us made our way to the front of the park. We said our goodbyes to Jacob, then hopped on the tram back to the parking structure.

Here's a few shots of the gear from the half marathon. First the 2015 Disneyland Half Marathon shirt. I like the colors this year. So much better than some of the first years, when they had solid white shirts and just the logo on them. The colored shirts were a big improvement.

Next is my legacy shirt. It's a fairly simple, no frills shirt, but it also doesn't have advertisements all over it like the other ones either.

On the back, it shows Legacy Runner 10.

And finally the drawstring backpack.

Well the race will be here before I know it. Here's to year #10! Wish me luck!

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