I was going to answer both the Mickey's Christmas Carol and boot scraper questions, but looks like I was beaten to the punch. Great report, wonderful pictures! I'm glad someone got pictures of the roundhouse. I was floored when we ran by it (especially the engine that seemed to be under construction), but haven't found a comfortable way to carry a camera while I run.
Oh I agree, especially when they blew the steam! Seeing backstage is fun and never takes away from the magic, in my opinion. My camera is a little guy, so carrying it on runs up to about a 10K is no sweat - but sadly I couldn't carry it in the half marathon. Sorry for the delay in the remaining photos, but they will be up soon!
This was pretty cool, although we missed when the actual jet made the pattern.
It's not a Matterhorn shot without that bridge! This ride has got to be one of the bumpiest, most jerky rides ever, but it is still very fun!
Is it just me, or does this angle make the mountain look like it could just as easily be made up of coral?
You're not seeing the whole thing here, but as this ride vehicle rolled by, the guests in the front car were not proportionally balancing their weight.
I'm loving these trains!
Chuga chuga chuga chuga
It was at this point that I imagined my self and Abraham Lincoln in that caboose talking about top hats, coat tails and facial hair.
Right down the middle - this is the first time I have been on this attraction in a good 8 years. Not bad, not bad at all!
Little to the left
Guest 1: Are there drops in this ride, like the pirate one?
Guest 2: There used to be. When I was younger there were like three drops I think? They took them out when they added more sections.
Guest 1: Oh okay, good, I didn't want to get wet anyway.
Me: WHAT AN IDIOT!
ATTENTION! Here is a look behind the great blue wall in Fantasyland protecting the progress of the Storyboats. I apologize for the blurry nature, but this photo had to be taken quickly.
It's 5 o'clock somewhere!
This is the most I have ever seen Pluto look like an actual dog. His puppyness and Goofy were playing duck-duck-goose with a small group of little ones - very funny, very dangerous. One kid actually got very violent. One of his parents had to explain his episode to a CM, saying it had something to do with low blood sugar and a short fuse.
Monica's Minnie ears...very nice!
Long lonely walk of loneliness -Dwight Schrute
I have mentioned these lamps in previous posts. They adorn the queue of the Autopia and are very hot. A nice place to get warm on a cold winters night, these lamps have been known to burn even the hands of Joe Pesci, a guy you would think would be immune considering his Home Alone past.
So we were on these spinning mugs when the firework extravaganza was taking place...magical friends, very magical.
Here's this guy, just loungin the night before the half marathon!
Okay, last one before the half marathon stuff. I really like this shot because, like some of ZTicket's famous photos, it doesn't include many guests and accompanied jibber jabber. Just a simple evening shot of Toad's place.
Number 450, ballin!
It is kind of turning into a tradition to get photos with these guys. Private, they said, get into your uniform and get in line!
Quick post at the big board. I was a little nervous, but could hardly tell you what I was thinking. I was so wrapped up in the moment, it was like the race was decided before it ever started.
A close view of this guy
I wasn't sore, this was just to get out some of the nerves.
I would like to say, very little about the fanfare this year was better than other years, but these massages were great! I hope you all had a chance to get in on them.
Okay, a little X-rated, I know, but you are looking at a guy that is about to blow away not only his previous best time, but his goal time as well. Look at that face. That is face that has no idea that in about 2 days he will be coming down with one of the nastiest viruses he has ever had.
Beyond the barricade...10 minutes and counting
Wheelchair athletes getting ready to go, FYI, these guys raced through the course in times of :46 minutes and :58 minutes. That's lightning quick!
It's hard to tell here, but Goofy came rolling up shotgun in the beautiful Monorail Red to see us off
*You will not see any photos of the route from me, as I wasn't able to carry a camera for this race. I do plan on purchasing some of the professional photos taken, and thus will post those on this thread as soon as I have the digital copies.
My lovely fiance is responsible for taking many of these race photos. She got a great vantage point here at the finish line and didn't need to pay for the 100+ dollar VIP package. Here is a look at the line right before the first place guy came through.
And here he is, JAEYUNG HYUNG, about to cross the line in a 1:10.44, a 5:23/mile pace. This picture is blurry, and the camera was in "action/sport" mode. This tells you how fast he was going
The winner takes time to photograph with the characters. Do you think their fur got sweaty?
And here comes Minnie. He was dressed similar last year, you may have seen him this year in the 5K as Tink as well. Big stud and big smiles, this guy has a ball!
There is BoygunaSurf from the back, cruising in at 1:32.33 final time. 7:01/mile pace. Next time gadget, next time! It was a great race, lots of fun, lots of support. I would like to thank the redhead that kept me on pace from mile 7 to mile 9 and the other two guys that raced along side me for 99% of the race.
I have heard people complain on various running sites about this event. You hear that the Expo was poorly organized, there weren't many characters on the course, that the running route was not conducive of fast times, and that the medal was too gaudy.
Here is my response. Yes, the goody bags were weak. Let's get on that for next time. Yes, there needs to be more characters, especially in the 5K. The expo was a pretty big mess compared to previous years, so that also needs to be addressed. But as for the "speed" of the course, please. I have been swimming competitive me whole life and have heard over and over about "fast" pools. The bottom line is, you either run fast (for yourself), or you run slow. It is you alone that can decide your speed, not the course. It turns out that the people who complained about this aspect left their full names on the comment. I looked up their times and out of the 6 course complainers, 2 didn't finish the race, 2 finished in over the allotted amount of time, and 1 "ran" a 3:51. Give me a break, the course isn't "fast" enough? What would have made the difference, if the pavement was an escalator? Go back to the airport.
And as for the medal, it was awesome! And don't you want it to be gaudy? Yes!
I have the same problem with the fuzzy animals insisting on taking photos with me. Where do these things come from? I love the Matterhorn and the night shot of Mr. Toad's.
And what's this BoyGuna Surf Club?
This one reminds me of a quaint Tuscan beet farm...
Now speak if this be you as well; I love Toady! The Wind in the Willows is of the greats.
Why hello there, Toady! Mr. Mole and I thought we would join you for a ride in that fabulous motor car!
I'm the Frog Prince!
Ah, the kindest face.
Transferring his old-fashioned dialect via hand and wooden shoulder.
The gear required of a classic Disney nerd
We're on our way to Dover...
Hey, what do you got there? Those wouldn't be the passes due to a little Toad down time, are they?
Why yes, they are! Treat yourselves, and 4 others, to a great little Fastpass.
Yes we can, said Obama.
I know the castle is cliche, but sometimes it is simply glorious.
So I mentioned that the characters were approaching us right? I did. Well here is another guy that wouldn't leave well enough alone. That isn't an autograph book he is signing. It is a sheet of paper that says, "I promise to only take two photos with these two nice people. After which, I will make my self scarce, never to poke or prod again. Signed, Obscure Character 2."
"Mickey, see over there...that is where I'll be frozen."
Just a beautiful photo. Not so much the photo I guess, but more the objects in the photo. It is like Walt is accepting the current Tomorrowland, but is pointing in the distance, making it known that there is a long way to go.
So here's this guy. He said he was from a movie called The Jungle Book. I'll believe that when I see it. He also signed a document saying he would let us alone. But really, this guy was pretty cute so it was okay.
A classic good-timing raccoon. This guy was far less scary than the ones in Lafayette.
A grass skirt, maybe a coconut bra? Let's just make this a whole Hawaiian Luau kind of thing.
"Won't you please be my prisoner, please, please, please!"
"I do not like the cone of shame"
"Oh! A ball! Oh boy! Oh boy! a ball!!"
"Hey, I know a joke! A squirrel walks up to a tree and says, "I forgot to store acorns for the winter and now I am dead." Ha! It is funny because the squirrel gets dead."
"I hid under your porch because I love you."
So we go to Universal on one of the days. Good trip, important trip. But let me say a few things:
- The parking situation is asinine. There is regular parking, preferred, and VIP. They will ask you at the toll gate which one you want. Keep in mind no matter which one you choose, processing the parking pass and charging your card or accepting your cash should take equally the same amount of time. However, if you choose the standard, $12.00 parking, they will insist that it will take you 15 to 20 minutes to walk from your car to the main gate, and then take an extra 7 minutes to process the transaction. BS. It took us two minutes to walk from our standard parking spot to the main gate, and walked slow.
- Universal shows are awesome. They also have some great "4-D" shows. However, with rides like the Simpsons and the Mummy, unlike Disney who manages to hide the mechanical sounds of the ride in order to accentuate the magic, Universal does nothing. You constantly get to hear hinges creaking and hydraulics releasing. Kind of annoying.
- Volume. Two words, TOO HIGH. Everything is super loud. Louder than it ever needs to be.
- Character handlers. Each character has a handler than takes photos for guests when they pose, like most characters at Disneyland. However you will notice with Homer, that the guy is the worst photographer ever, totally cutting off Homer's head. Hey guy, tilt that camera vertical.
- Unkempt staff. I saw a guy with a full bottom row of crack teeth and then a second staff member with an inch and a half long pinky nail...the ideal shovel for the powder. Some people want to run harsh words at Disney for their strict facial hair standards etc. But let me tell you, after seeing this madness, I would get the Wally Beaver haircut and smooth face any day.
With that said, on with the show!
go go gorilla!
Here you enter a lesser version of your favorite park...also, Back to the Future is gone.
double thumbs up!
This shirt was being worn by a father of three
Something about this offer just screams "not in the direction we want society to continue..."
This was a great attraction! Extremely scary! No sarcasm here - just wait until you walk into the room where all the guys are hanging from the ceiling wrapped in plastic
Oh yeah, my boy Vin came along
Not sure how many of you chatters care about whips, but this is a Nissan Skyline GTR R-34 - get crunked!
one point twenty one jigga-watts!
Simpsons did it
Uh Bart, I, I, I, uh I don't know about this
No...well, I don't know. None of that, I guess.
I am fascinated by the interpark/studio fire departments.
If you didn't catch this in the theaters, put it on your On Demand - superb.
Potato Head is cheating on Disney
Reconstructing what was damaged in the lower lot fires
Sending us to DJ's locker
Did you know they used this popular set for a couple scenes from Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull?
Old JP props
We all know this is Gabi and Carlos' house. I personally am a bigger fan of Susan.
This one shut people up a little bit. Kind of ghastly. A scene from War of the Worlds...
One more for ya
Have you been on this? When you got off, was your neck in searing pain?
Now this, this was good stuff. The Donkey was hilarious and sounded exactly like Eddie Murphy. "Hey Shrek, I'm a donkey Shrek." -Michael Scott
Remaining set stuff from that movie with the Who's
This is a wonderful little program where birds swoop and key-yaw over your heads. Some monkeys, dogs, cats and rats as well.
Now here is something you don't see every day. Woody W.P. was mouthing off (speaking through his costume) to a guest who wouldn't stop grabbing his tail when out of no where this staff member burst onto the scene and gave Woody a powerhouse uppercut. End of story. Red, white, blue and yellow bird hits the deck.
Were the fires looming? Yes they were, but quite a bit away.
View of the lower lot from the giant rope swing you have to take to get down there...
Here he is, the thinker. He got up, thought, "should I wear that Big Dogs shirt I have about farting? I mean, a lot of people will be standing behind me today...YES!"
Bingo, Dino DNA!
You have T-Rex? We have a T-Rex (giddy old man voice)!
"Tell your friends about us!"
They are actually in the earliest talks of a new JP film.
Even US is in on the Celebrate thing...
Wall-E stars in a new version of Back Draft
Those German pigs may have the goofiest voices of all time!
Isn't she beautiful!? Yes! And she made a good point regarding the presence of the ghost in this attraction. Just because you are blowing wind on our necks, doesn't mean we should all automatically assume there is a ghost behind us. After 8 minutes, it gets old.
A classic show
I know there are a lot of haters our there...but this is a great stunt show in my opinion. Especially when the bi-plane comes over the barricade.
Kyle, Peevs and Cocoa making their way to the park for one more night
See all the ghosts??
Waiting in line for TOT...let me say this: probably one of the best rides ever. We had a host, a college aged blonde, who was totally into the role. Very serious. There was a shorter guy that was okay too, but this CM took her stage role from the second we saw her until we were walking off the ride and she called things as walked towards the exit
My camera has a setting for fireworks, but without a tripod, it is very hard to use.
It's weird, do fireworks remind anyone else of the Family Circus cartoons?
Scary! Waiting for Fantasmic...
I'm going against my own rules by posting this, I just thought it looked cool
Control, this is Pizza Port...
Pizza Port, this is control...
Pizza Port, Control, this is wet ball...
Wet ball, Pizza Port, Control, this is THE Space Mountain...I just wanted to say, this shot would have been a lot better if that family had the courtesy to scoot over a tad...
For a later date!
Believe this friends, all the top hats with ears were sold out; park wide. I saw 6 year old kids running around with them. Pretty sad deal. But if you need a hat embroidered, go to Roxanna at the hat place in Tomorrowland...she's excellent!
This quote is so true
I made a deal with this bear and a raccoon that I would do two more photos and that was it...
Mickey my boy, I will be back...be strong
We are certainly sad
Garmin, tell me these events cannot be changed? No, but there is a next time. Go home BoygunaSurf, go home.
and so we did.
Here is the hardware
Thank You for viewing our trip report! Please stay tuned, as I will post some pictures of the training process leading to the 2009 Disneyland Half Marathon!
Thank You again for all your wonderful comments - all good things!