Disney World 2015 {Day 1: Expo}

Hey HEY hey!

{{Disclaimer: I began this post over a week ago. I had some technical difficulties with pictures not loading and decided a blog without pictures was too boring to post. Finally got it working again!}}

After a whirlwind week in Orlando, coming back to work for 4/5 of this week was rough. But now I’m back in action {and writing a blog post on a Friday night… don’t judge me and my pathetic excuse for a social life}!

DRIVE TO ORLANDO

We are fortunate enough to live close enough to Florida to have a day drive rather than spend boocoo bucks flying there! My mom and I left mid-morning on Wednesday afternoon. Mickey, we’re coming for ya!

Road trip to Orlando

{We may have made a pit-stop at a Dick’s Sporting Goods along the way… can’t let those coupons expire!}

We arrived at a hotel on International Drive in the evening and found our way to Uno Chicago Grill. I love deep dish pizza! We had decided that we didn’t need to stay on a Disney property that night.

I went to sleep that night with one goal in mind for the next day: get a pair of the 2014 runDisney shoes!

HOW TO GET runDISNEY SHOES

For those of you unfamiliar with the runDisney/New Balance collaborative process, I’ll give you some insight:

On the first day of a runDisney expo, a “virtual queue” line opens up at 6am. You sign up through your race bib number {to ensure you are legitimately running in a race that weekend}. You will be assigned a group number and a time. I’m not sure how many people are in each group, although I’m guessing around 20. You will receive a text and/or email when your turn is up. At that time, you have one hour to return to the New Balance tent. {Your spot is not saved if you arrive later than that} Although you have a group, your spot within that group is determined by your actual time of arrival at the tent. Each person is then escorted individually by a New Balance rep to the shoes. Just because you are in that virtual queue, you are not guaranteed your size or style of choice. It’s actually an incredibly stressful process!

Going through what my mom and I went through last year, we were aware of the process and determined to get another pair from last year’s styles. For the 2015 shoes, they decided to go with a retro design that we were not particularly fond of. We knew they had a very limited quantity left from 2014 though! There was even an inventory online of what was sold out in semi-real time. {I heard it had a slight lag} Since there was the Disney Marathon in January, much of 2014s leftover stock was gone before our race weekend even began! So, as soon as the clock struck 6am, I had my race number out and typed as fast as I could to get the earliest group possible. Guess I was quick enough because I was assigned Group 1! My heart was beating so fast and adrenaline fully flowing! The first endeavor of the day was a success!

We arrived to the expo location nearly 2 hours early. This was partially because we had nothing to do, and partially because we wanted to be very first in line at New Balance. It was a freakishly cold day in Florida {sub freezing temperatures and 21 mph winds} and we were standing outside for two hours. Some people might call that crazy…

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Our toes and fingers were completely frozen and faces red from that cold wind. But we stood there and waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, they decided to open the expo early because everyone was freezing their butts off! The good news is that we were the first two people in line for the shoes! HOORAY!!!!! I got the smallest size made of the men’s “Goofy” shoes from last year, while my mom opted for last year’s Cinderella model. We were so pleased with ourselves!

As we were ringing up the purchase, a New Balance manager that was there shouts “The first two pairs sold of the expo!” and everyone surrounds us and starts clapping and cheering! That was a surreal moment, to say the least! If you know my mom and I at all, you know that we have an unnatural love for “cool sneakers.” My dad said he was glad someone finally recognized us for our great accomplishments 😉

Cinderella and Goofy

Cinderella and Goofy

After our major shoe accomplishment, we browsed through the rest of the expo and enjoyed seeing the different booths in relatively low crowd levels!

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We also took advantage of many photo opportunities!

runDisney

runDisney Expo

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The NEW glass slipper!

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Glass Slipper Challenge

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HOTEL CHECK-IN: CORONADO SPRINGS

Following the Expo, our hotel check-in was a breeze! I took advantage of Disney’s online check-in process, so all we had to do when we got there was receive our room number! This year we stayed at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. While checking in, the concierge even joked “have you done this before?!” because I had everything completed and nothing left to fill out. Our magic bands {that were mailed to the house a month in advance} served as our room key as well as FastPass at the parks!

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REST OF AFTERNOON

For the rest of the afternoon, we walked around Downtown Disney, went to our dinner reservation at BOMA Flavors of Africa, and then went back to Downtown Disney! It was a busy night, but we were so excited to be at Disney, we wanted to do as much as possible!

If you remember from last year, Boma is my very favorite Disney restaurant and I was so glad to be back! It’s an African-themed buffet that is crazy delicious! My only disappointment was that I adore their carrot ginger soup {so random} and we went on a day they were not serving that particular soup. It was still a fabulous dinner, though!

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Plate of Mini desserts!

For the desserts above, I was not a fan of the guava panna cotta at all. In fact, I’m surprised that I had the self-control to not spit it out… definitely not a guava person! At least I know that now. I adored the little zebra-looking dessert, though! The key lime cheesecake was great as well. Bread pudding was so-so, in my opinion.

At Downtown Disney round 2, we made a stop at Ghirardelli to split a sundae… as if we hadn’t had enough dessert for one night! Have you heard about my sweet tooth?

Ghirardelli

Ghirardelli

Once we were finished, we toted our sugared-out selves to the bus area and went back to the hotel. We wanted to get a good night’s sleep since we were going to the MAGIC KINGDOM all day on Friday!

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

  • Is there a food you can’t stand? {guava— ick!}
  • Any further questions about the runDisney New Balance process?
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