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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

2015 Jingle Jungle 5k Race Recap

One of the biggest takeaways from last year's Wine & Dine Half Marathon was that I wished we had registered to run Mickey's Jingle Jungle 5k that morning. So this year, I made good on that wish and registered for both!

Rachel wasn't able to snag a precious registration spot for the 5k this year, so I was going it solo that morning. With some clever costume repurposing by my mom (thanks to my friend Bridget, who gave up part of her Halloween costume for my cape), I was fully embracing the holiday theme to this race by dressing as Belle in "Something There" (you know - this beautiful dress).

This is definitely one of my favorite costumes I've run in so far, but that cape did NOT make running any easier in the heat and humidity we faced that morning! Not to mention the constant mistaking for Little Red Riding Hood. Where she features in Disney, I don't know, but I sure stumped the DJ for about ten minutes that morning as he tried to figure out who I was!

Now that Expedition Everest is no more, the Jingle Jungle is the only Disney World 5k that doesn't run through Epcot. A welcome change, especially coming up on Marathon weekend, when I'll be running through Epcot every morning of the Dopey Challenge! The course weaves its way through Animal Kingdom (starting and finishing in its parking lot), and packed 6 character stops into 3.1 miles, plus ops with a festively dressed Mickey and Minnie at the start line.

Starting near the front of Corral B, I managed to stop for 5 out of 6 of the on-course characters stops, and almost made it to Goofy and Donald before they closed the line off to encourage runners to the finish. Will have to pick up my pace just a tad to get all of them in next year!

This race is absolutely going down as one of my favorite runDisney events to date. I loved the course through Animal Kingdom (particularly later that evening when AK was cut to make the W&D course shorter!), loved how many characters were out, and loved the holiday theme. I'll absolutely be back next year...and have an eye on Minnie's Christmas outfit as a race costume!

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