KINGS Bowl Orlando Scheduled To Open April 15

Kings Orlando is International Drive’s Newest Hot Spot for Fun


KINGS Bowl

KINGS Bowl Orlando Scheduled To Open April 15 

30,000-Square-Foot Dining, Bowling and Entertainment Venue Features 22 Ten-Pin Bowling Lanes, Full-Service Upscale Restaurant, 60 Big Screen TVs and State-of-the-Art Sound System

KINGS Bowl, the Boston-based, dining, bowling and entertainment venue that pioneered the upscale bowling revolution in 2003, is scheduled to open its first Florida location on April 15, 2013 in the “I-Drive Live” project on Orlando’s world-famous corridor, International Drive.

KINGS first opened its doors in 2003 in the heart of Boston’s historic Back Bay. KINGS’ goal was to focus on recapturing and rekindling the fun and escape of bowling which had faded since its heyday. The 1950’s and 1960’s are considered to be the golden age of bowling and KINGS’ award-winning design and décor captures this nostalgic feeling, while adding modern twists. From the start, KINGS set out to create a unique and memorable entertainment experience by emphasizing world-class food, cold beer, creative cocktails, cutting edge technology and great music. The focus is on classic, retro-inspired décor and executive chef-designed menus brought to life by best-in-industry service. In doing so, KINGS sparked the modern day bowling renaissance and carved a name for itself as the original upscale bowling venue, which has revitalized the sport across America.

KINGS Orlando will offer a first-class dining and entertainment experience unlike any other along International Drive or in Central Florida. In addition to 22 ten-pin bowling lanes, KINGS will offer four full-sized billiards tables, a regulation-sized shuffleboard table, a full outdoor bocce ball court (one of only a few in the area), weekend disc jockeys, dancing and much more. Beer enthusiasts who have dreamed of tending bar will take great delight in innovative and engaging tables fitted with beer taps where they can pour the perfect pint at their own pace.  KINGS Orlando will be further differentiated by transforming into an adults-only experience after dark. By day, families with children can bowl and savor homemade ice cream and other treats. At 6 p.m, general public admission moves to adults only, ages 21 and above.

“This isn’t your dad’s bowling alley; it’s an upscale bowling joint,” says Patrick Lyons, president and founder of the Lyons Group and KINGS Bowl America. “Bowling has always been a great social sport and Kings has reinvented the experience for a new generation. Serious ten-pin athletes will relish our ultramodern lanes and roomy player accommodations, while even the most ‘gutter-prone’ will appreciate our chef’s delicious fare and our thoughtful menu of craft beers and signature cocktails.” The Lyons Group leadership team is backed by more than 100 years of combined entertainment industry experience with a track record of innovation and success. The group is credited with re-energizing Boston’s nightlife scene over three decades with more than 30 dining, nightclub and entertainment venues in its growing portfolio.

 

KINGS Bowl
Concourse Lanes

From the moment they set foot inside KINGS, guests will know that they are in for an experience unlike any other. A hip, retro-inspired vibe and grooving soundtrack will greet them as they navigate between a friendly evening at the lanes, great food in the restaurant and socializing in KINGS’ lounge bar that translates to an open, climate controlled outdoor café experience on the stylish, full-service patio. Committed sports fans can catch all of the action at KINGS’ massive sports bar boasting 60 HDTVs and projectors and a real-time sports ticker. Guests can also take in the scene on the energetic concourse catching all the action happening throughout the expansive facility.

The idea of bowling alley food as an afterthought is tossed in the gutter at KINGS; everything is

KINGS Bowl
Signature Cocktails

carefully crafted, made fresh and delivered daily. The full-service KINGS restaurant will serve an impressive, executive chef-designed menu of American favorites and delicious comfort food. Appetizers include unique, modern plays on classic bar fare, such as cheeseburger spring rolls, perfectly fried mac & cheese bites and homemade buffalo chicken wontons. Entrees are highlighted by house-smoked baby back ribs, juicy and creative burgers and KINGS’ signature, tender, award-winning steak tips. Diners will finish their meal with a taste of sweet nostalgia from the built-in Ice Cream Shoppe featuring creative sundaes and delicious homemade desserts. The impressive menu is served throughout the entire facility until close seven days a week.

“I look at every dish on the menu and I think of ways to exceed expectations by sourcing only the finest ingredients and adding a ‘kick’ to every dish,” says Executive Chef Andre Bautista. “We pride ourselves on everything being made from scratch, in-house daily and making sure that each and every plate has a ‘wow-factor’.” KINGS Bowl

In addition to the food and entertainment, KINGS is well-known for its special events and parties. The venue will boast multiple jaw-dropping private bowling and meeting spaces complimented by state-of-the-art audio and visual capabilities. Two meeting rooms can be made completely private and can accommodate up to 100 and 200 people, respectively. Party goers can bowl while enjoying an assortment of upscale culinary delights served right to the lanes, as well as best-in-industry service that has already made KINGS a repeat destination for so many in Boston and Chicago. Birthdays, bachelor and bachelorette parties, kids’ parties, and corporate and team building parties are all made memorable with the unique combination of entertainment, great food and unforgettable service.

KINGS is committed to being an actively engaged member of the Orlando community and has pledged to work with community-based initiatives in an effort to raise money through “fun-raisers” and in-kind donations. KINGS has already made a philanthropic name in its markets, having hosted and raised millions for local charities attended by the likes of popular celebrities and athletes including former and current NBA stars Shaquille O’Neal, Glen “Big Baby” Davis, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Patriots Tom Brady, Wes Welker and Jerod Mayo, Bears captain Charles Tillman, and BC and NFL legend Doug Flutie. KINGS will immediately look to make a similar impact in the Orlando area. Other famous guests at KINGS include Lady Gaga, Adam Sandler, Seth MacFarlane, Mark Wahlberg and many more of music and Hollywood’s finest.

KINGS will also assure that local residents and members of the Orlando hospitality industry are treated like royalty on the traditionally tourist-heavy International Drive. From opening, they will receive a free loyalty card that will provide the benefits of seasonally rotated, exclusive specials and discounts. Locals will also appreciate free surface parking in 600 adjacent available spaces and easy access via Universal Boulevard. KINGS has also planned a private opening party to offer an exclusive reveal of the venue to Orlando residents and hospitality industry members.

Keep your eyes on kingsbowlamerica.com for more information, and follow on Facebook and Twitter for updates on the Orlando opening.

 

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Night Rides at Walt Disney World

Night Rides

Night at Walt Disney World is my absolute favorite time to be in the parks. The majestic appearance of Cinderella Castle, the way light reflects off of each of the triangular panels of Spaceship Earth, the Tree of Life illuminated from below, and the warm glow of neon on Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards are just a few of the reasons Disney parks after dark are simply amazing. I truly believe that the parks have two entirely different feelings during daylight and at nighttime. Come follow me while I explore the four theme parks of Walt Disney World to see some of the best rides to experience at night as they are completely transformed with different vibes from their daytime selves.

Castle and Partners
Castle and Partners
Spaceship Earth
Spaceship Earth
Tree of Life
Tree of Life
Hollywood Boulevard at night
Hollywood Boulevard at night

 

Animal Kingdom

Admittedly, this is the park I have spent the least time in after dark, mostly due to the fact that there are few times a year that you are able to see Disney’s Animal Kingdom after dark. Since the park is not open into the late night hours, usually not past 8pm or maybe even 9pm on the rare occasion, there are limited opportunities to experience attractions here at night. One such opporunity is during the Expedition Everest Challenge in May. This is a 5K through the Animal Kingdom followed by a scavenger hunt that takes you almost over the whole 5K course again. It is great fun and a unique change to get to see this gorgeous park late at night since the after party goes typically until 2am or so. For those that aren’t able to participate in this fun RunDisney event, the best attraction to ride at night is definitely Expedition Everest. The ride’s twists and turns and drops and backwards section seem even more thrilling when you can’t see what lies ahead. I strongly encourage any thrill seekers to make sure they try to do this at least once. It is not to be missed!

Expedition Everest at night
Expedition Everest at night
View from Everest at night
View from Everest at night
End of Everest tracks at night
End of Everest tracks at night

Hollywood Studios

Stepping into Disney’s Hollywood Studios at night, one can see how the extensive use of neon makes this park come to life. The heyday of Hollywood never looked better than under the fabulous glow of the bright neon colors lining Hollywood and Sunset. The crown jewel of the park at night is the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. It sits ominously looming over Sunset Boulevard, with its imposing exterior emblazoned with evidence of that fateful lightning strike. Much like Everest, part of the excitement of this ride at night is in the surprise and not knowing what is coming next. For those who have ridden Tower of Terror during the daylight, you can often tell when you are to the point of dropping by the telltale sliver of light peeking through the elevator doors ahead. Not so at night. This added element of surprise and not being able to anticipate when the drop is coming as well as during the day increases the adrenaline rush for me.

Tower of Terror at night
Tower of Terror at night

Epcot

My favorite park at night hands down is Epcot, and World Showcase in particular. The lighting softens from the often harsh Florida sun. Music wafts gently across the World Showcase Lagoon. Libations flow and guests are satiated by the phenomenal dining offerings presented by this park. Illuminations is a magical experience for me. But this isn’t about ambiance, food, beverages, fireworks, or even music. This is about Test Track baby! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.) The newly revamped Future World attraction is incredible at night. I love the way the ride gives you a great dark ride inside and then whoosh! You are speeding around the track on a 45 degree angle pushing towards that top speed of 65 miles per hour. When you coming flying through those doors and into that night air, it is invigorating to say the least. Plus, the view of Epcot at night as you whip around the track is amazing!

Illuminations
Illuminations
Test Track at night
Test Track at night

Magic Kingdom

Spread out across the Magic Kingdom you will find fantastic examples of rides that I find are superior after dark. In Adventureland, the Jungle Cruise takes on a new mystique while exploring the Nile, Congo and Mekong Rivers. If you have never done this at night, what are you waiting for? The skippers corny jokes even take on a life of their own by lantern light. Just adjacent to the Jungle Cruise, the Magic Carpets of Aladdin provide a fun experience on your flying carpet that seems a bit more … adventurous (see what I did there) than during the day. Plus, it is a bit harder to spot the spitting camel at night, adding another element of adventure in trying to avoid it. Frontierland also plays host to two excellent choices for night rides. Both Splash and Big Thunder Mountains are far more exciting (in my humble opinion) at night. I love the moment on Splash right before you go down the five story drop when you catch that glimpse of the castle all lit up in all her glory. If you can try to time it right, Wishes as seen from Big Thunder is a transformative experince. It is one of my favorite views of the fireworks show.

Splash Mountain at night
Splash Mountain at night
Big Thunder at night
Big Thunder at night

Although it is entirely indoors, except for the queue, which is infinitely better at night (especially during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party), the Haunted Mansion is another great night ride. This Liberty Square attraction takes on an otherworldly and creepy ethereal feel to it when the sun goes down. I love when it is foggy and you can hardly see the tombstones in the graveyard and just barely catch the sound of the howling dog. Fantastic! Not to be left out is Fantasyland. Dumbo is so stunningly beautiful, especially now with the dueling Dumbos and the gorgeously lit fountains with alternating colors. I can stand in that queue transfixed by the serenity of changing lights and the soft sound of the water pouring out underneath the playful pachyderms.

Haunted Mansion during MNSSHP
Haunted Mansion during MNSSHP
Haunted Mansion pet cemetery
Haunted Mansion pet cemetery
Dumbo at night
Dumbo at night

Last, but certainly not least is my favorite land at night, Tomorrowland. The neon popping off the corner of seemingly every edifice is an inviting beacon to this part of the park. An attraction that I do not often do, but if I do will always choose to do at night is the Astro Orbiter. Sitting atop Rockettower Plaza, this spinning ride, similar to the Magic Carpets of Aladdin and Dumbo, seems to fly even faster through the cosmos at night, especially on that descent. Saving the best (again, in my opinion) for last, the Tomorrowland Transit Authority Peoplemover is a 12 minute break from the hustle and bustle that usually is the Magic Kingdom. At night, you can admire the gorgeous neon of tomorrowland, view lights on the edge of Main Street USA and of course see the luminous Cinderella Castle transform from blue to pink to green to orange before your eyes. You can read more about my love of this attraction here in a previous post dedicated to this classic Magic Kingdom ride.

Tomorrowland at night
Tomorrowland at night

 

Have you done any or all of these at night? If so, what are your favorites? Did I miss any of your favorite attractions to experience after dark at Walt Disney World? If I have, please feel free to share your thoughts. Hope you enjoyed!

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Finding Teachable Moments In the Park: Epcot

When I was younger and we went on family vacations, it was important to my parents that we learned something while we were having fun.

And as we started our family, we made the decision to integrate these teachable moments into our family trips.

I remember my first trip to Epcot in 1986, and all the fun we had talking about what we saw on the rides and the countries we visited in World Showcase. Without a doubt, Epcot was (and still is) my favorite park!

Now that our family lives so close to Walt Disney World, we still keep this tradition alive when we visit Epcot.

I hope that you enjoy this short trip around Epcot’s Future World for some of our family’s favorite Teachable Moments!

httpv://youtu.be/IMKPlD_EIdI

I’d love to hear some of your family’s traditions and teachable moments!

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Wordless Wednesday – RunDisney #Run3rd

Wordless Wednesday – February 27, 2013

RunDisney Run3rd
For this week’s Wordless Wednesday I wanted to share something a little more personal. This year when I ran my second RunDisney Princess Half Marathon, I wasn’t alone. I dedicated my run to two special people and carried them with me from start to finish. It definitely added a new perspective to a solo sport.

For more information about #run3rd visit their site.

Please take a second to really look at the Mission Statement, because it is definitely something that means a lot to me.

RunDisney Run3rd

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Orlando City Soccer To Host Brazilian Powerhouse Fluminense Football Club!

Orlando City Soccer

Orlando To Host Brazilian Powerhouse Fluminense FC

Game to be played on June 22 at the Florida Citrus Bowl against 2012 Brazilian Champions

Orlando, Fla.—Orlando City SC, in cooperation with Fluminense Football Club, is proud to announce an international friendly between the two teams on Saturday, June 22, at the Fifth Third Bank Field at the Florida Citrus Bowl. The announcement comes off the heels of new Brazilian Owner Flavio Augusto da Silva making a significant investment in Orlando City last week, exhibiting the Lion’s strong new ties with the country of Brazil.

“We are delighted to be hosting the reigning Brazilian Champions, Fluminense,” said Orlando City President Phil Rawlins. “They are one of the very best teams in all of Brazil and have a host of world-class players in their squad. I’m sure it will be a great spectacle for our fans.”

Fluminense FC competes in Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A, the top level of Brazilian soccer.  This year they are also one of the sides representing Brazil in the prestigious Libertadores of American Cup Led by Head Coach Abel Braga, who began his professional career with the club, Fluminense boasts some of the top talent from the country of Brazil and beyond. Midfielder Deco and forward Fred headline the club’s players coming to Orlando for the friendly.

We are honored to have been invited to participate in this international friendly match and, most importantly, of the new relationship being built with Orlando City,” said Fluminense’s president Peter Siemsen.

The match adds to the list of top-level clubs Orlando has played in the Central Florida area, which includes: English Premier League clubs Newcastle United, Stoke City, Bolton Wanderers and A.S. Roma of Serie A. The ability to draw major franchises from top-level leagues is something Rawlins says is an important factor in Major League Soccer’s considerations of who gains entry into the league.

“Arranging this took a lot of work and several meetings with Fluminense but it once again shows our commitment to bringing the very best in club soccer to Orlando,” Rawlins added.

The Lions announced last Monday that the Rio de Janeiro native Silva invested in Orlando City, funding the club’s share of a private/publicly funded multi-purpose soccer stadium in downtown Orlando and future acquisition of a Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise.  The new owner also told those in attendance that his Brazilian contacts with major companies and soccer franchises will be important moving forward, with the Fluminense release displaying just that.

Fans can buy their tickets to the friendly beginning Tuesday, February 26, at 12 p.m. Tickets start at just $15 and can be bought online by going to Ticketmaster.com. Fans can also buy Orlando City 2013 season tickets, which start at just $125. The Lions kick off the regular season at home on Sunday, April 14, at the Florida Citrus Bowl against the Rochester Rhinos. For more information on tickets, fans can call 855-ORL-CITY.

About Orlando City Soccer Club:

Orlando City Soccer Club (OCSC) is a premier professional soccer sports franchise in the United States and is a member of the USL PRO. The Lion’s pro team has won two regular season titles and one postseason championship during their short time in Orlando. Outside of the pro squad, OCSC also has their own youth club, Orlando City Youth Soccer (OCYS) and a U23s team that participates in the PDL. For more information on the pro and youth clubs, visit www.orlandocitysoccer.com and www.orlandocityyouth.org.

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

First Ever D23 Expo Japan To Be Held In October 2013

D23

First Ever D23 Expo Japan To Be Held October 12–14, 2013

The Official Disney Fan Club’s Signature Event Makes Its International Debut 

The Walt Disney Company Japan announced today that it will stage the first-ever D23 Expo Japan, a special event for Disney fans created by D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. D23 Expo Japan, the first Expo to be held outside the U.S., will feature an array of engaging presentations, hosted by senior Disney creative executives, showcasing what’s on the horizon from across The Walt Disney Company, including theme parks, movies, television, music, and interactive gaming. Fans will enjoy unique experiences; have the opportunity to purchase one-of-a-kind merchandise and collectibles; meet many of their favorite Disney characters; and delight in countless other surprises. D23 Expo Japan will take place October 12–14, 2013, at the Tokyo Disney Resort® in the Maihama area. Expo ticketing and program information will be announced in March.

D23 Expo Japan will also feature two special exhibitions celebrating landmark Disney milestones. First, to pay homage to The Walt Disney Company’s 90th Anniversary, D23 and the Walt Disney Archives will present Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives, featuring nine decades of treasures from the Archives’ vast collection. Plus, the Tokyo Disney Resort will celebrate its 30th year with a special retrospective exhibit. This special exhibition, presented by Oriental Land, operator of Tokyo Disney Resort, celebrates this milestone year by making D23 Expo Japan possible. Further details will be posted at http://disney.jp/D23 as they become available.

“We are thrilled to host this extraordinary, three-day event where all the wonderful worlds of Disney come together,” said Paul Candland, president, The Walt Disney Company Japan. “2013 marks The Walt Disney Company’s 90th anniversary, Disney Channel’s 10th, Disney Mobile’s fifth, the Disney–JCB Card’s fifth, Dlife’s first, and Tokyo Disney Resort’s 30th! The D23 Expo Japan allows us to show Disney’s tremendous appreciation to its fans.”

This event is supported by JCB Co., Ltd, and The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited as official sponsors.

Disney fans from around the globe flocked to Anaheim, Calif., for the first D23 Expo: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, in September 2009, followed by a second in August 2011. The next D23 Expo will take place August 9–11, 2013, at the Anaheim Convention Center and will feature: the 2013 Disney Legends Ceremony; a special exhibit from the Walt Disney Archives; the Collectors Forum, where Disney fans can buy, sell, and trade Disney collectibles, memorabilia, and merchandise; an all-new Fan Art Contest themed to the upcoming 50th anniversary of Mary Poppins, and a massive show floor full of special opportunities to see what’s on the horizon for Disney around the world.

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

TrenD Report – Purses, Purses, Purses, And More

TrenD Report – February 26, 2013

This week’s TrenD Report is one for all the purse lovers out there!!!

The LeSportsac Spring 2013 Holland Collection has arrived at TrenD! I was on the fence about this collection, because of the light and muted colors shown in pictures. However, when you see the bag in person the colors are vibrant and warm. I am really becoming a fan of this collection.

Also, they have updated their canvas bags and the new look is fun! Last year’s design had a Tory Burch cut out feel to them, but this year’s update has a more playful and bold feel. If you’re looking for a durable bag, you may want to consider these!

Villains Haveys bags have invaded the shelves of TrenD, and I was super excited about them before I saw them. I absolutely adore the concept of the bag, with a Princess on one side and her Nemesis on the other, yet in person the execution seems low end. Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge Harveys fan, but these feel a little airbrushed to me. It was hard to get a great picture through the case, so I have included an image from their site.

There is a new Hidden Mickey floral design that is new that is so super cute! I am loving the tank top! The colors are super vibrant and fun!

You’ll find a few extra fun things that I found on my visit, so I hope you enjoy this TrenD Report!!!

 

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

7th Annual Wekiva Paintout

weikiva_paintout

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

ARTIST’S PAINTING DAILY!

Sunday – March 3, 2013
Artist arriving

Monday – March 4, 2013
Gallery Open 5pm to 9pm

Tuesday – March 5, 2013
Gallery Open 11am to 10pm

Wednesday – March 6, 2013
Gallery Open 11am to 10pm
Art Auction at 8pm, preview begins at 7pm

Thursday – March 7, 2013
Gallery Open 11am to 10pm

Friday – March 8, 2013
Gallery Open 10am to 11pm with live music
Food Truck Dining at Wekiva Island
Sunset Paint In (6:20PM sunset)
Crescent moon Paint In after dark

Saturday – March 9, 2013
Gallery open 10am to 4pm
QUICK DRAW 12 – 2pm
Private Patron reception 6-7pm
GALA at Wekiva Island at 7pm with Music, Beer/Wine, and Food.

*Purchase Gala tickets by clicking here for $25 each

Sunday – March 10, 2013
Artists departing

*schedule subject to change

www.wekivapaintout.com

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

RunDisney Princess Tips and Reminders

RunDisney

Walt Disney World RunDisney Princess Weekend is almost here so I’ve compiled a list of tips and reminders to assist you as you prepare.

The Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse Royal Family 5K takes place Saturday, February 23 at 6:30 AM and the Princess Half Marathon will be held Sunday, February 24 beginning at 5:35 AM.  With just a few days before the race it’s very important to take care of your body by getting as much rest as possible, eating nutritious meals, and hydrating with water and/or sports drinks.  If you’re visiting the theme parks before race day, it’s best to take it a leisurely pace, take in the shows and sit down attractions and try to limit the time walking or standing in the sun or heat.  Take breaks at the resort to enjoy the pool or take a nap.

Disney’s Fit for a Princess Expo will be held at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort.  The Expo hours are Friday, February 22 9:00 AM- 7:00 PM and Saturday, February 23 9:00 AM- 6:00 PM.  If you are staying at a WDW resort other than Coronado Springs, you will need to utilize bus transportation, labeled with a RunDisney sign.  If you are staying off property, park at Downtown Disney Westside to catch the RunDisney bus transportation to Coronado Springs.  Parking and guest drop-off during Expo hours is not allowed at Coronado Springs.  Be sure to complete and print your race waiver prior to arriving at the Expo and bring your photo identification.  At the expo you will pick up your race packet which includes your bib with timing chip, race shirt, and goody bag.  This is also the time to pick up any commemorative items you purchased during registration.  Be sure to hold onto the large, clear plastic Run Disney bag you are given as this is what you will use for bag check during the race.  Expo is a great time to check out the vendors, see new products, visit with fellow runners, and get into the spirit of the race weekend.

Here’s a quick check list of things to do the day/night before the race:

  • Fill out the back of your race bib with emergency contact and personal information and attach it to your running shirt with provided safety pins
  • Lay out your entire running outfit including every item you are planning to wear and carry during the race
  • Prepare your clear plastic Run Disney bag for bag check by affixing your number sticker
  • Plan your pre-race/early morning breakfast or snack such as a bagel with peanut butter, cereal bar, or fruit
  • Decide where to meet friends and family following the race
  • Set your alarm and/or order a wake-up call
  • Go to bed early and dream about the bling

On the day of the race, give yourself plenty of time for driving and parking or riding WDW transportation.  Race transportation including monorail and buses from WDW resort hotels will begin at 3:00 AM and you must board no later than 4:00 AM and in your assigned corral by 5:00 AM.  If you are checking a bag, it must be at the bag check area no later than 4:30 AM.  There will be food and beverages available for purchase in the Wonder and Imagine lots of Epcot the morning of the race.  Give yourself plenty of time to get to your corral and prepare yourself for race.

You’ve trained, prepared, and waited and it’s finally here.  Enjoy it!  Disney races are full of fun, friends, and surprises…..and there’s a beautiful medal and an amazing sense of accomplishment awaiting you at the finish line.

Happy running!

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

RunDisney Roundtable

For this week’s Roundtable, I thought it would be a lot of fun to look at all of our different thought on the RunDisney Events we have participated in!

I hope you enjoy!

1. What made you start participating in RunDisney Events?
Aurora –  My Husband, Brother and Best friend VoluntEARed at our first event MANY years ago and it is something that my Husband and I have continued. We started off doing the Special Olympics events and now we try to do Marathon Weekend and Princess every weekend. We are running people but we LOVE VoluntEARing!!!
Beth – Just a whim actually.  Sounded fun so I signed up for the Family 5k during Marathon Weekend 2012.  I met some great people and got hooked!
Betsy – I set a goal for myself to do a 5k two years after I had major knee surgery.
Cheryl – My husband started running
Kelly – I figured it would motivate me to want to get out there and complete some races myself. And also to see everyone completing goals.
Shalon – I was never a very athletic person and never thought I’d be able to even complete a 5k. After seeing the wide array of people who ran a 5k at Disney I knew it was a goal I wanted to set for myself.  After doing a 5k I decided to train for a half marathon as it was a bucket list item and was incredible to accomplish that goal at Disney!
Shelley – I have never been an avid runner, but after hearing people talk about how much they loved the RunDisney 5K’s I thought I would give it a shot…and I haven’t really looked back since!

2. What is your favorite Run Disney Race?
Betsy – I think the first race I ever ran is still my favorite. It was the inaugural Mickey’s Halloween 5k in October of 2010. It is the only 5k to my knowledge that ran through the Magic Kingdom. It was absolutely amazing! I wish they still had 5ks in that park.
Beth – Princess Weekend is special to me because I ran the Royal Family 5k in 2012 with my best friend Jaimee & soon to be best friends Mike and James.  That weekend solidified my addiction to Run Disney and my desire to move to Florida.  Plus you get to dress up like Princesses!!
Cheryl – Magic Kingdom 5k – sad that I never got to run this!
Kelly – I’ve only volunteered for the marathon weekend events, so I’d have to go with that.
Shalon – Princess weekend is my favorite since it was my first 5k and first half marathon.
Shelley – I am obsessed with the Princess Half Marathon Weekend activities! I love how even the guys get in the spirit of dressing up and having a great time running.
Aurora – Marathon Weekend every January is my favorite! So many costumes and creativity! A lot of people use this first race of the year as a tribute race for someone or a first time race for themselves.

3. Do you prefer night or day RunDisney races?
Cheryl – day
Kelly – To volunteer, either. If I was completing a race myself, day. I would think it would throw my schedule off to run a race at night.
Shalon – I prefer day races, its hard getting up that early but was much easier to adjust to than staying up later for a night race. Once a day race is over you can walk around the parks to work out any soreness and of course show off your bling!
Shelley – I prefer day races, because I love being able to walk around the parks and eating whatever I want…you know cause I just ran and it won’t count…right???
Aurora – I prefer voluntEARing at the day time races so I can see my friends faces and costumes lol!
Beth – Having run one night race and the rest day races, I prefer day.  Night races are tough to prepare for especially the day of in terms of resting and eating enough prior to the start of the race.
Betsy – I think I prefer day races even though I am not a morning person. It is easier to rest up and prepare for the races than night races.

4. Costume or no costume when you’re running?
Kelly – For me to run in, no costume, but I love seeing everyone else in their costumes. It adds additional time on top of their training schedules for everyone to make their costumes, so to see everyone’s hard work is so fun!
Shalon – Costumes are a blast to create and show off during races!  Just make sure to try them out beforehand to make sure it all fits well and won’t bother you during the race.
Shelley – I LOVE all the costumes, and I have really enjoyed the races when I have dressed up!
Aurora – As a spectator/voluntEAR I love the costumes! Have fun with it!!!!!
Beth – Costumes ABSOLUTELY!  That’s one of my favorite parts second only to the bling!  Be creative and have fun with it.  Just make sure its comfortable and allows your skin to breath while running!
Betsy – I have never worn a costume while running, but I do enjoy seeing the costumes.
Cheryl – No Costume

5. What’s your best tip for visiting RunDisney Expos?
Shalon – Take you time to look around all the booths and companies there.  You may not buy something that day but gives great ideas for running gear later on.  Always take business cards of booths you enjoy so you will remember them after race weekend.
Shelley – Keep your eyes on the prize or you will find yourself walking out with TONS of cool stuff that you might not necessarily need!
Aurora – Do not go in there with a time limit set. Give yourself time to get your packet and have time to look at all the booths. There are SO MANY things to look at that if you only have an hour or whatever, you will end up skipping one that you probably wanted to see really bad!
Beth – I like to go as early as possible the very first day.  It can be crowded and hectic but it’s a great time to see new products and meet up with friends and really get into the spirit of the race weekend.
Betsy – Definitely get there as early as you can and plan on allowing at least an hour or two. For larger race weekends like marathon, Princess and Wine and Dine, it can get crazy long lines. Take time to wander around the expo after packet pickup and see what the vendors have to offer. I’ve found some great deals on shoes, running belts, etc.
Cheryl – Go there early, it gets crowded!
Kelly – Go the first day, as early as possible. I’ve seen numerous products (if not all of them) sell out so quick.

6. What is your favorite RunDisney memory?
Shelley – This is such a tough one! But the memory that always makes me tear up is when I was running the Princess Half last year. We had just crossed the start line, and out of the blue I could hear Zoe yelling ‘Go Mommy! I’m so proud of you’ and I found her in the crowd jumping up & down blowing me kisses. Just knowing that I am setting an example of being healthy and reaching goals makes me push myself harder.
Aurora – Medaling my Best Friend Nicole when she on a whim ran her first full marathon! Nicole has never been a runner. She is more of a mosier! She decided to run at the pressing of her soon to be husband and did the full marathon in about 3 and 1/2hours! I have never been so PROUD in my life! She beat some people who are real runners and she had a blast doing it! I cried and cried and cried when she crossed and have never been so happy to see someone cross in my life! Putting that medal around her neck is something that will stick with me forever!
Beth – One of my favorite memories is running the 2012 Tower of Terror 10 Miler with my best friend, Jaimee, on both of our birthdays.  It was a night race and started at 10pm on her birthday and we were still running when the clock struck midnight signaling the beginning of my birthday.  We made shirts to go with our costumes that celebrated this.  It was so fun running and having so many people wish us Happy Birthday!
Betsy – My favorite memory was running my first race since there was such a great sense of accomplishment coming off of my knee surgery. I have great memories from most all of the seven races I’ve run, but I think that the first was the best.
Cheryl – Running across the finish line
Kelly – My very first 5k was a RunDisney event and it was such an emotional day for me, so crossing that finish line and being able to see my parents and boyfriend cheering me on is definitely my favorite memory. Also, putting medals on a couple of the 20 year ‘Perfects’ this past marathon weekend was very cool, along seeing people get really emotional after finishing their first half marathon/marathon and being able to celebrate with them.
Shalon – Even though completing my first 5k was very memorable, completing my first half marathon Princess weekend 2012 was an experience I’ll never forget.  I had such an incredible time running and sharing that memory with Shelley.  I’ll never forget how we both burst into tears as we crossed the finish line…and again as we cried like babies as Aurora gave us our medals!

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

The Backside (s) of LEGOLAND Florida

Backside of snowman
Backside of snowman

So a while back I did a post on my own site at the suggestion of our fearless leader, Shelley. To this day that post, The Butts of the Kilimanjaro Safaris, remains the most popular on my blog. While at LEGOLAND Florida a few weeks ago, I laughed when I noticed the backsides of some of the Lego statues around the park. I thought it would be entertaining to go around the park and take see what I could see as far as the backsides of LEGOLAND.

The culprit that inspired this redux of the previous blog post was the snowman above in Fun Town. Next I noticed the painter at the entrance to Miniland USA. On the way to lunch we passed the otters and deer. We caught the back of the shark and Captain Brickbeard during the waterskiing show in Pirates’ Cove.

By far, the most were spotted on the Safari Trek in the Land of Adventure. Here we saw elephants, zebras, giraffes, lions, meerkats, ostriches, parrots and the monkey. I found this to be appropriate due to the inspiration.

Back on the way towards the front of the park, we found the Bird Lady in Fun Town, Tourist and the Plumber in The Beginning. This is also where we encountered the Climbers in the Market Restaurant. As we exited, we stumbled upon the last few above the entrance sign in the Adventurer, the Construction worker, the guy with Overalls and the Racer.

Painter
Painter
Otters
Otters
Deer
Deer
Shark and Brickbread
Shark and Brickbread
Elephant
Elephant
Elephants
Elephants
Giraffe
Giraffe
Zebra
Zebra
Parrot
Parrot
Ostrich
Ostrich
Monkey
Monkey
Meerkats
Meerkats
Lions
Lions
Bird lady
Bird lady
Tourist
Tourist
Plumber
Plumber
Climbers
Climbers
Adventurer
Adventurer
Overalls
Overalls
Construction worker
Construction worker
Racer
Racer

Have you been to LEGOLAND to see any of these backsides? Would you like to see more in this tongue in cheek 😉 series?

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

RunDisney Savings Plan

If you are like my family, you have a runner doing multiple RunDisney events in one year so it is necessary to have a RunDisney Savings Plan.

Here are some things to consider if you are running in the RunDisney Wine & Dine Half Marathon.

First let’s look at the costs of entering the Wine & Dine Half Marathon

  • $175 by June 18, 2013
  • $190 between June 19 and August 13, 2013
  • $205 on or after August 14, 2013

So it’s easy to see that if you know that you are planning on running in a RunDisney event it is best to register as soon as possible!

The next big expense to consider is booking a room!

Keeping in mind that we are using the RunDisney Wine & Dine Half Marathon, you can find onsite pricing from Disney directly for value resorts is $121 per night for a 2 night stay,
this price does not include park admission.  You may find cheaper pricing by contacting a Travel agent, booking your flight and travel together via travel websites or your airline website, or by taking advantage of any special offer that may come your way.

Another option is renting points from a Disney Vacation Club member. We don’t have an article on this yet (we promise it is coming soon) so we recommend you search the web on Disney Vacation Club point rental.

Renting Disney Vacation Club points can save you money on a room for the race! For example For the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon cost of the Disney’s Beach Club resort is $389 per person for a 2 night stay.  For 2 people your cost would be $778 depending on the Disney Vacation Club point cost: a Studio at Beach Club would run you between $310 and $410.

So far Costs are:
Race:  $175 or $190 or $205
Hotel:  $121 or $778 or $310-$410
Flights:  For this example we are assuming  $250 round trip for 1 person so $500 for 2 people

Which then brings us to the cost of tickets. You’ll find that a 3 day ticket from Disney Direct (without the Run Disney discount)  is $636.88 includes tax, note this includes Park hopping.  A 3 day ticket without park hopping is $515.46. Please note this is the current price of tickets, like any other product, prices can change; we recommend you call Disney or search the internet to confirm current pricing.

So now it’s down to the nitty gritty! Time to calculate all of our costs: $205 + $410 + $500 = $1115.00, if you need tickets that cost increases to $1630.46.  Food costs differ based upon needs, so add in your own food costs.

How can I save: Starting now you could put away $408 a month and have enough time to save $1630.46 by June 18th. If you already have tickets you could save $279 a month. You will need to add in extra savings for your food costs but this should give you a good guide of how you can plan to save to race.

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Jewels Of The Titanic Exhibit

As you know, us ladies here at On The Go LOVE things that are shiny and blingy!!!! So when one of our most favorite venues The Titanic Experience announced that they had a Jewels of the Titanic Exhibit coming to town, we KNEW we had to go!

Jewels of the Titanic

Premier Exhibitions Inc is doing a three-city tour that started in Atlanta, Ga and ends in Las Vegas, NV running until May 31, 2013. It is here in Orlando from January 11- March 12. The collection bodes 15 of the most beautiful pieces of jewelry that were actually found on one of the first dives to the Titanic site. Diamonds, Sapphires, pearls and gold pieces that actually belonged to one of Titanic’s wealthiest passengers.

Jewels of the Titanic

When guest boarded Titanic, they sent many of their most valuable items (Jewels, Money, Books, Paintings) to the Purser’s office which would hold all the expensive items in one place. They received claim receipts for pick up when Titanic would dock. It was explained to us by Mark Lach, who is the Titanic: the Artifacts Exhibition Creative Director that the guest who had valuables in The Purser’s office, once Titanic hit the ice berg, immediately went to retrieve their items and they were put into leather Gladstone bag, which were locked into safes and moved out to the lifeboats with the passengers.

Nobody is quite sure of the events after that but many pieces of the jewelry sank with the ship and are on display today. in 1987 when the team recovered a Gladstone bag from the wreckage site it contained, jewelry, bank notes, gold sovereigns and gold watches! Because the Gladstone bags were handmade, the chemicals that were used in the tanning process of the leather SAVED the currency notes and protected the rest of the belongings.

Also, just an FYI, the INFAMOUS Heart of the Ocean that was features in James Cameron’s Titanic, was fictional and never actually on board Titanic. But they do sell a replica at Titanic The Exhibit if you should feel the need to reenact any moment of the movie.

Thank you to Krystin of ThisIsPress.com for inviting us and as always, treating us like Royalty!

 

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Wordless Wednesday – RunDisney Princesses

Wordless Wednesday – February 20, 2013

RunDisney
For this week’s Wordless Wednesday, I thought I would post a picture of Shalon and & I celebrated finishing the RunDisney Princess Half Marathon last year. It was our first Half Marathon, and it was an amazing experience to share with such a great friend.

 

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram

Cheering for a runDisney Event

princess_half_logo_2013

My addiction to running didn’t start with the running itself, it started with the cheering.  Back in 2009 I made some friends, and not long after I learned that they were running in a race.  A race at Walt Disney World.  I honestly had no real concept of what this meant, but I had always had it in the back of my head that running was something I wanted to try.  So I made a decision to seek a little inspiration, and go cheer for them. That day I learned one solid thing: cheering for a race isn’t easy. Now that’s not to say that it can’t be, like anything else it’s all about how much, or how little you want to throw yourself into it.

This upcoming weekend, February 22-February 24, 2013, runDisney is hosting Disney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  There are two races that you could be cheering for, the Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse Royal Family 5K, and the Disney’s Princess Half Marathon.

Some Fun RunDisney Facts about Disney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend:

  • More than 26,000 runners in the half; 8,000 in the 5K and 1,700 in Kids Races; many from throughout Central Florida

  • The half marathon includes more than 24,500 female runners and 1,700 male runners

  • Runners represent all 50 states and 32 countries

  • The youngest participant is 14 and the oldest woman is 78

  • There are 98 RunDisney runners celebrating their Birthday during the race

If you have runners running either of these races you should sit down with them and talk with them to find out some information that will make cheering for them easier:

What corral are they starting in?  For each race, runners are split up into corrals that have staggered starting times.  These corrals are typically lettered.  Runners in B will start the race before runners in C.

What is their pace per minute? Runners don’t all run at the same speed. You’ll need this knowledge for longer races if you’re going to travel between points to cheer.

Will they be stopping? Disney races are designed for fun. Along the course there will be various special areas, characters, and photo opportunities for runners to participate in.  This means that despite their pace, your runner can take longer if they’re planning to stop to take a picture and have to wait in a line.  If you didn’t expect your runner to be stopping you might find yourself getting worried when they don’t show after an expected period of time.

What will they be wearing? In case you’re not going to see your runner before they enter the corral in the morning, they should definitely send you a photo of what they will be wearing so you can easily spot them on the course.

Regardless of which race you’re cheering for, I can’t stress enough that the right time to head out to cheer is when the runners head out to run.  The 5K starts at 6:30 am on Saturday, and I recommend getting to the starting line of the race no later than 5:45 am.  This will give you time to meet up with friends, watch your runner head to their corral, and find a good place to cheer from at the Start.  By contrast, the Half starts at 5:30 am, though depending on where you’re cheering from (more on that below), you might have some wiggle room.  Transportation options are explained in the Official Race Program.  Whether you’re busing, taking the monorail, or driving yourself – everything you’ll need to know is in there.  Just turn to page 42.

Cheering for the 5K itself is fairly easy.  If you look at the course map you’ll see that the race starts and ends in Epcot.  In fact, it starts and ends in the parking lot of Epcot.  Spectators will not be allowed into Epcot during the race, this means you will only be able to see your runners at the start and end of the race.  Knowing their pace is important here.  A 5K race is approximately 3.1 miles.  This means that when you see your runner at the start of the race, and their pace is 10 minutes per mile, that you can expect them to reach the finish line in about 30 minutes.  If they’re planning to stop, even one photo opportunity can increase their time by 5 minutes or even more.

For the Half Marathon, cheering can be a bit more involved, or relatively the same.  The Starting line for the race is out on Epcot Center Drive, you can actually walk out to the road from the parking lot through the woods.  Just look for the signs when you’re there.  The Finish line is in the Epcot parking lot.  Many people never go out to the starting line, because it is extremely difficult to spot runners at this point.  The Platinum level ChEAR Squad Race Retreat spectator package might be a good, albeit expensive, option.  You can relax in luxury while your runner is rounding the corner in Tomorrowland.

If you want to be more active you’ll need to consider using the Online Spectator Tool.  With this tool you can try to determine the best places to watch your runner along the path.  There are many options to choose from.  But my preferred choices are: Mile 0 at the Starting Line, Mile 5.3 on Main Street, USA in Magic Kingdom, Mile 12 at the bus depot in Epcot, and Mile 13 which is just before the Finish.  Other popular places to cheer from are at the TTC, at the Contemporary across from the Magic Kingdom bus depot, and on the Western side of Polynesian Resort.  The runners will run by (or through in the case of the TTC) all three of these. You can find this information on page 43 in the program.

In this era of high tech, you’ll want to consider one of a few options for tracking your runners.  For starters, each runner is tagged, and runDisney provides a means to track your runners via this tag using the Runner Tracking tool for the event (tool changes per event, but your account will remain between events, and be good at all future races).  Here you can receive alerts via text or email and auto-post updates to Facebook or Twitter.  I will be honest, this tool is not the most reliable of systems, but it has gotten better than it used to be.

There are plenty of other ways you can track your runner.  For example, if they take walk intervals, and have their phone with them, a simple text message stating where they are can work wonders.  If you and your runner both have an iPhone I suggest using the Find My Friends app that Apple puts out.  You’ll want to set it up before the race, but with it you’ll be able to use the mapping features of your iPhone to locate your runner.  If a runner wants to broadcast their location to multiple people across multiple devices, I suggest using a WhatsApp group to do so as it’s available across multiple phone types.  Applications like RunKeeper are very popular with runners for tracking their runs also have additional functionality that lets others track the runner on their phone.

The last, and most important thing, is that the person you’re there to cheer for isn’t the only person out there running that day.  While you’re out on the course waiting for your runner, you might notice that most bibs will have a name on them.  If you can read a name, shout it out and cheer for that person too.  I can not begin to tell you how much it will mean to that person.  There are plenty of people out on the course who otherwise have no one to cheer for them.  And who knows, you might end up cheering for one of us here.

Follow us for more updates: Facebooktwittergoogle_plusyoutubetumblrinstagram