It all started with the 10k Saturday morning, which actually ended up being a lot of fun and went a lot better than I was expecting. I arrived early, and by early I mean before the race area was even open. Considering I was driving myself, I just didn't want any unexpected delays, like road closures and things. Since I was there so early I decided to go ahead and take some pictures before the race. There were quite a few characters out, Mickey and Minnie, Remy and Emile, Goofy and Donald, and Lumiere. I went shortest line to longest and was able to get everyone except Lumiere, but that was fine since I saw him at the expo. The pictures actually came out really well!
I was in my coral staging area nice and early, which means I was practically right up against the gate. Of course, that was an hour early. This is that magic time where you become friends with everyone around you. I had a good time waiting, well other than the fact my body decided it needed to go to the bathroom right when the race was starting. I was going to have to wait... They walked each corral from the staging area to the start and the front people got to hold the race tape, which was fun. I was right behind them, and honestly I really liked my placing.
There wasn't a lot of fanfare when it came to the start. I mean the race announcers were doing a great job, the music was going, and the atmosphere was there, but there weren't as many fire works and craziness as expected. I assumed those were being saved for the half (and I was not disappointed!). Luckily I was able to get around the few walkers (seriously, why do they go to the very front?) and I actually had a ton of space for the first mile or so.
The character lines were long compared to my memory of previous years and I chose to run past most. Partially in favor of a restroom and partially because I just really wasn't interested in waiting for the character pictures. The first few miles were all on the major roads around EPCOT so there wasn't too much entertainment, but one new thing were the massive TVs that Disney brought out and were showing clips from old Disney cartoons and current movies. It was like watching TV on the elliptical, except I was actually moving the the screen wasn't.
Once I got into EPCOT, I was actually surprised how pretty it looked. I'm no rookie to the parks and have seen EPCOT in all different weather and at all different times, but this was just something new for me and I just really don't know why. There were characters in a few of the countries... ok I finally stopped for a bit for a picture with vacation Genie, but he was totally worth it!
Running around Boardwalk was a lot of fun because that is my typical vacation run. It brought back memories of all of my family vacations, I even found the room we normally stay in! It had rained the night before so it was a little slippery, but I think everyone was prepared for that.
We finally hit EPCOT one last time, ran past the center, by Spaceship Earth, and to the finish line, where I had excellent spacing for some great finish line pictures.