The Ampersand – October 2019
Wine & Dine Weekend is HERE!!
My “out of office” is ready to leave early tomorrow morning… I can’t believe it’s here. I’m so excited, this weekend is the best kickoff to the race season! I feel like I got a little bit of a preview of what’s to come when I ran in Paris, but THIS is the official start to the season!
I’ll be traveling to the races this weekend with my Dad. It’s a pretty special trip for us since we ran our first half marathon at Wine & Dine together in 2013.
We’re staying in the NEW tower at Coronado Springs, so I can’t wait to check it out! I’ve purposefully avoided sneak peeks of the resort so I’ll be wowed when I get there.
On a personal note – my daughter is turning FIVE on Monday! So, I’m not officially coming back into the office until Tuesday. We aren’t staying for the post-race party this year because we want to get home to begin the birthday festivities… but I am okay with that!! How is my baby five years old already?!
HERE WE GO!
I wanted to also let you know about the “Heigh Ho Travel Co” … our new Instagram Account and Facebook Page dedicated 100% to runDisney!! Park and Preston Travel is so much more than just runDisney… Meghan and I wanted a place where we could all geek out on the thing we love most, so the Travel Co was born.
Please “like”, “follow”, and play along!
One of the first things I’m going to be doing once I get to Disney this weekend is checking out the new changes at Epcot. I’m dying to get into the preview center and experience it for myself. I loved what they showed us at D23 Expo this year, I can only imagine what the center is going to be like! Nope, I haven’t looked at any of the previews, I want to be surprised!
If you’re a fan of the McDonalds next to the All-Star Resorts… the location has closed for refurbishment as of today. It’s scheduled to reopen in 2020, so if you are traveling over the next few months – take note! I’m mostly concerned that there won’t be strangers handing out french fries during the full marathon…
Now, let’s talk CHRISTMAS! The final Halloween party is scheduled for 11/1, and then, it’s Christmas. The first Castle Lighting will be Sunday, November 3rd, and I could not be more excited. The season officially begins on November 8th – but for those of you staying a few extra days after the races, you’ll start to see some holiday cheer!
Segments for this year’s Disney Parks Magical Christmas Day Parade on ABC, and other Disney Parks holiday specials to air on ABC and Disney Channel, will be taped at Walt Disney World from November 7th-10th. I’m a little bummed because we have been able to catch some filming on the tail end of our Wine & Dine trips in the past! Not so lucky this year… are you?
Musical performances for the Christmas Special will be filmed at Walt Disney World, while the parade itself will be taped at the Disneyland Resort. The recording dates for the parade have not been released yet.
A few other cool things to note – Mobile Order Service has expanded to more than 35 locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort (you can now mobile order Blue Milk!) and Disney has released a “Foodie Guide” to the special Frozen 2 themed snacks that will be available this season. I’ll definitely be trying the Pumpkin Spiced Donut Tart at Contempo Cafe!
We’re going to keep this mostly focused on Wine & Dine right now because OMG as soon as I hit “send” on this email, the out-of-office is going up and it’s time for RACE WEEKEND!!!
Expo Event Hours:
- Thursday, October 31, 2019 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
- Friday, November 1, 2019 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
- Saturday, November 2, 2019 9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
You can find other important information in one place for this race on my blog, including course maps, corral assignments, and important links!
Just to make things a little easier for you – here are some of the good ones:
- Print Your Waiver Here
- Link to the Digital Event Guide
- Link to the Virtual Goody Bag
- Link for Runner Tracking (or text WDH to 38909. Follow prompts to enter bib numbers for messaging)
THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT INFORMATION:
If you’re ready to book for next year’s Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend, fill out your info in the form linked below. We’ll be in touch ASAP to get your details and lock in your package for 2020!
2020 Wine & Dine Half Marathon Package Request
As always, be sure to check out runDisney Central on the blog for the most up-to-date race information and links to get your quotes.
One cool thing I wanted to tell you guys about this week are some deals I have with Royal Caribbean. I have a few cabins left with some amenity departures (which means free stuff for you!) on the following sailings: Anthem of the Seas sailing g12/20/19 from Cape Liberty NJ, Allure of the Seas sailing 12/29/19 from Fort Lauderdale, Explorer of the Seas sailing 12/22/19 from Miami, and Liberty of the Seas sailing 12/15/19 from Galveston. Perfect Christmas presents, if I do say so myself… shoot me an email for more info!
Also – let’s not forget about Universal Studios. I have some deals right now to save you some money traveling from now until March! Starting at $95 per person, per night, at Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort (based on a family of 4)… you would receive 5-night hotel accommodations, 5-day base promotional ticket (for all THREE parks) and early park admission!
I still can’t believe we’re gearing up for Christmas – but it will be here before we know it. If you have been thinking of doing something different, I can’t recommend the Ultimate Disney Christmas Package enough. The parks blog has a great breakdown of all the Christmas MAGIC included in these packages… let me know if you want more info!
On The Blog
There are many ways to enjoy the great outdoors in this incredible country as there are 61 national parks to choose from. If you’re thinking of taking an outdoorsy vacation with your family, here are a couple of ideas of things you can do.
runDisney has a blog post on some last-minute tips & tricks for the Expo – be sure to say hi if you see me wandering around!! Also, I’m going to need someone to try that Caballero Ale (with a hint of margarita) and let me know how it is!
And last but not least – another plug to the runDisney blog – they’re on the ball this season! A great post to send to your friends & family on the best ways to spectate for this year’s Wine & Dine Half Marathon!
Today is the LAST DAY of the Countdown to runDisney and it has been an absolute BLAST. The most fun is on Instagram – but I have also kept the blog updated. It’s been so much fun and I’m a little sad it’s over… but not too sad… because the real fun starts tomorrow!!
In Other News
I wasn’t quite sure where to put this one, perhaps Running Universal needs it’s own section!!! Early Registration Savings for the First-Ever Epic Character Race 5K and 10K Ends Soon… I’m going to be there for both races and seriously cannot wait until they announce the themes! I have so many costume ideas in mind…
The Jurrasic World races are just around the corner and I can’t wait to see how they go! I just really wish I was going to be there!
I know this is random, but I feel it’s important to share. The FBI has released toxicology reports on the US tourists that died recently in the Dominican Republic – and all have been consistent with natural causes. There was mass hysteria recently about travel to DR because of these deaths, so I wanted to reassure you that the country is safe.
On a lighter note… more science I think you’ll all be interested in – Psychiatrists urge folks to be friends with those who love Disney. LOL… gotta love the scientifical evidence that our Disney obsessions are good for us!
As a reminder: I will be on-site all weekend for the Wine & Dine Half Marathon, so please excuse a delay in my response time! I promise I am monitoring my email and will be in touch as soon as possible.
If your matter is not urgent, I will be sure to get you taken care of when I am back next week.