Thursday, January 12, 2012

WDW Marathon Weekend 2012: Yehaa Bob and Fiesta 5K

It's no secret that Team Tizzel participated in events during the 2012 WDW Marathon Weekend. Dave took part in the 5K and Holly in the 5K, half marathon, and marathon relay. Over the next few posts we'll cover the races and our Team AllEars events.

The first Team AllEars meet of Marathon Weekend was over at the Port Orleans Riverside Resort for the Yehaa Bob Show. We landed in Orlando around 6:30, got our bags and rental car, drove to Disney, picked up supplies at Hess, and got lost driving to Riverside. We finally arrived by 8:00 which gave us time to say hi to some of our teammates. This is always manic first few minutes since you're in a room with a 100 people you've met in-person or online and want to try to catch-up with everyone before the show starts.

Bob's show is always fun. He's energetic and "forces" interaction. He always says "You'll never see these people again". In our case he's wrong. YMCA, Hokey-Pokey, Conga Lines, the Green Grass song...... Enough goes on to help you look like an idiot. Now this is all fun, but it amps you up. Wake-up time for the next morning's race is 4:30. After leaving Bob, checking in at Boardwalk, and unpacking, we had a hard time falling asleep. We were lucky if we had 4 hours sleep.

Wake-up call comes. Time for us to get ready and Dave to put on the components of The Duffy outfit. Since we smashed our fundraising goal of $3,000 he needed to carry a Duffy stuffed bear, wear Duffy Ears, and put on a sailor suit. We added a few extra touches to the outfit: The Duffy plush got a bib, Dave had the Hidden Mickey added to his backside like Duffy, and we put a Team AllEars logo on a Duffy hanger we put on his back. It was in the high 40's at start-time so tights were appropriate.

We got to Epcot around 5:40 for a 6:30 start. We met up with the rest of Team AllEars and caught up with our friends and gathered for a group picture. RunDisney signaled for us to go to the start at about 6:15. This is when we found out the race now had a 3-phase start due to the expanded field (3,000 more participants added this year). That meant they let so many people into the start corral and then closed it up. Holly and I were at the back of the TAE pack and luckily begged our way in. This allowed us to walk with many of our teammates.

After singing the National Anthem we were off and walking. As we approached the start line we saw race announcer Rudy Novotny on stage with the Three Caballeros (the guys on the medal). Rudy and Dave conversed on Facebook before the race and Rudy had visited so he knew whom to look for. As we approached the start we made sure Rudy saw Dave waving Stuffed Duffy. Rudy acknowledged us and the rest of our crew with one of many Team AllEars shout-outs. Great start to the race.

The Fiesta 5K was a 3.1 mile race around Epcot. Mile One is through a parking lot and a tiny bit of backstage. Mile 2 continues backstage, then enters World Showcase by Mexico. Mile 3 starts at the International Gateway, jogs backstage a bit, then takes participants through the rest of World Showcase and Future World, with some backstage at the end.

Mile One: During the first mile our grouping of Team AllEars members remained pretty tight and we had some time to talk and catch-up with our friends. Right before passing into the true backstage area we could see a vehicle graveyard. On one side there's an old Epcot parking lot tram and on the other side an old Jungle Cruise boat. We've wondered why they would dump that boat 3 miles from Magic Kingdom.

We started maybe 2 minutes after the gun so our clock time is pretty accurate. Nice relaxing morning stroll.

Mile Two: Once we got to the onstage portion of World Showcase we splintered off from our group. Time to take photos. Epcot at this time of morning is beautiful. This is also when the character photo opps start. In China we stopped for Mulan and Shang (her love interest). In Germany we stopped for Dopey, Snow White, and Prince Charming. The Duffy outfit was getting alot of attention while on line and we made a child smile when he hugged and cradled Stuffed Duffy while on the character line.

Mile 3: On the backstage route behind the UK Pavilion we saw our friend Nancy whom was volunteering as a course marshal. We made our way through The World Showcase into Future World. Mickey was by Club Cool and he wound up being the last character on the course. Dave was a little miffed they didn't have Duffy out for photos. As we approached the finish line we saw the Team AllEars cheering section and stopped again for a few quick hellos. After receiving our medallions and getting our photo snapped we went over to the Team AllEars cheer section and joined in welcoming the last participants.

We had a great time at this event. We had a lot of opportunity to visit with friends, see Epcot in sunrise-light, catch a few rare character pictures, and show a big Team AllEars presence to set the tone for the rest of the weekend.

Here's our video below:


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