Friday, November 13, 2015

Friday Five - Jingle Jungle 5k

I'm back from Florida, and just in time to join the Friday Five link up with Mar, Cynthia and Courtney.  Since the Wine and Dine weekend races are still on my mind, I thought I'd take this week's Friday 5 link up to write about the Jingle Jungle 5k and 5 reasons that we loved it.

1.  Welcoming to newcomers - I did this race with my dad and Mike.  It was their first big 5k and I could tell me dad was a bit nervous.  I let him know that there would be plenty of walkers and that he didn't have to worry about being swept or not finishing.  It's an untimed fun run and it seemed like a lot of people were taking their time and having fun with it.  And that really helped my dad relax and enjoy it as well.  This was a great even for people who might be new to races and are anxious about it, they even gave out medals at the end.

Dad showing off his first race medal

2.  Costumes - Mike and I dressed up as Agent P and Dr. Doofenschmirtz from Phineas and Ferb.  We loved the opportunity to be silly and dress up together.  And we all loved checking out everyone else's fun costumes.  Disney 5k's are a little easier to get elaborate with your costumes compared to the longer races since you don't have to worry about running for too long.

Having some in character fun after the race

3.  Characters - We were taking our time with this one and going at my dad's speed.  Since we weren't worried about time at all, we had fun with it and stopped for multiple character photos.  I love that Disney had a lot of characters out for this one.  I remember at least 7, which is a lot in a 3 mile distance.  And they were all animals in keeping with the Jingle Jungle theme.

4. Animal Kingdom - This race started out in the Animal Kingdom parking lot, ran around the parking lot for the first mile, went through the park for the second mile, and then backstage for the third mile.  I loved the time spent running through the park.  That's one of the biggest perks of the Disney races and we really enjoyed it here as well.  Animal Kingdom is such a well themed park and there were a lot of details to check out and keep you interested.

Stopping for photos with park icons in the background

5.  Backstage - And I mentioned that the last mile was backstage.  Which sounds kind of boring but I really enjoyed that peek at the backstage area of the park.  It was cool seeing the back side of the Expedition Everest roller coaster as well as some old items they had hanging out back there.  And of course, they still had characters and photo ops in that area to keep things interesting.  But it was a fun way to see a side of the parks most people don't get to see.

The backside of Expedition Everest

Random backstage props

In short, we all really enjoyed this 5k.  It was untimed but I did have my Garmin on.  It's a bit off since I had it paused while we were waiting in line for characters and I forgot to turn it back on right away at one point.  But it's close. So while it took about 58 minutes of moving time, it took around 1:15 overall for us to finish the course.