Dig A Little Deeper: Dopey 2019

BigEeyore

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Congrats on a great time for the marathon! A 4:08 with struggling the last 6-8 miles is amazing! You got some great shots of you running too!
 
  • lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    Congrats on your finish! I'm sorry the train fell off the tracks on you but that's exciting that you still managed to improve your time. That heat threw most of us cold weather peeps for a loop, that's for sure!
    Thanks! There are a few things I could have done differently leading up to the full (more sleep, less food, less time on feet) and I should have paced myself more during the race, but all things considered and if given a do-over, I doubt I'd do anything differently. The entire trip was great and I'm glad I didn't sacrifice (much) for the running the portion.

    NOW you're talking!
    Corral D for Drinks!

    Wasn't there talk of organizing a beer mile? The downside is that it would be more running, but I am confident liquor could have been arranged.
    #WillRunForBooze

    Congrats on a great time for the marathon! A 4:08 with struggling the last 6-8 miles is amazing! You got some great shots of you running too!
    Thanks! I really have to credit @DopeyBadger for the outcome of the race. I stacked the deck against myself in more ways that one and without his training, it could have gotten ugly.
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    Day 6, Part 2: Yes, I know I can't see the fireworks from here.

    After getting my Goofy and Dopey pics and lingering around the staging area just a bit, I did what any self-respecting marathoner would do: went back to the hotel, got cleaned up and hobbled over to POFQ for some lunch. Call it stupidity or just gluttony for punishment, but I don't know any different than to just keep doing stuff after races (usually that "stuff" involves a bunch of beer, but that's not always an option).

    Anyway, we went to Sassagoula Floatworks for lunch. I was pretty excited to check it out since I really enjoy cajun/creole cuisine and Sassagoula Floatworks has a really intriguing menu. I ordered the shrimp po'boy and since we had a spare counter service credit from a previous meal, the jambalaya for all of us to share. The po'boy was fine, but nothing special. The jambalaya was really dry and spicy. I like spicy, but when it's in a flavorful sort of way (if that makes sense). This was just kind of spicy just for the sake of being spicy. I probably wouldn't order it again.

    After lunch, we jumped on the bus at POFQ and headed to MK.

    Quick note: I love POR, but the next time I come down to WDW for marathon weekend, I am almost certainly staying in POFQ if it's an option. I love the single bus stop, the counter service restaurant and the pool area (which we have yet to check out, but it seems really kid friendly). Not sure if they have rooms in our price range that sleep 5, but I'll definitely check it out (or come down by myself, ha!)

    So, we got to MK and had a little time before our first fastpass and the girls went into the Emporium for a little shopping. I took the opportunity to take what I figured were more or less requisite medal photos. The whole process was awkward and I felt like I was taking so long and being weird for taking pictures alone, but my mom likes the picture I sent her, so that's good I guess.

    dopey.jpg

    After the girls were done shopping, our first Fastpass was at Buzz, so we did that. The *last* time I rode Buzz, I thought I figured out the "secret" target to rack up some points and tried my best to hit that. Check out the look of determination:

    Buzz.jpg

    That's the eye of the tiger, friends. Alas, I didn't hit any high scores, but we had fun anyway.

    After that, we did the PeopleMover and then roamed around inside the Star Traders gift shop. I saw a few shirts here and there around WDW during the trip, but nothing that was a must-have. Plus, I figured six Dopey shirts were more than adequate souvenirs.

    Nearly three weeks later, I'm blanking on what we did the rest of the afternoon. My touring plan shows a fast pass for Splash Mountain, so I'm guessing we did that. Really, the afternoon went by pretty fast, so I'm guessing we didn't do a ton except mill around the parks a bit.

    Sometime after 4, we hopped on the monorail to get over to Poly for our 5 p.m. reservation at Ohana. Let it be known that my love for Ohana holds no bounds and I have made this my post-marathon celebration meal in 2017 and 2019. Unfortunately, while the food was great (as always), I still felt really full from lunch and didn't eat as much as I thought. It was a little disappointing because I was counting on doing some serious damage at Ohana this year. Oh well.

    After dinner we went back to MK and had a FastPass for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, which we all rode again. It was cool to ride it at night.

    From there, we didn't have any solid plans. I knew I wanted to shoot fireworks one more time, most likely from behind the castle so as to not mess with the crowd. There was still a bit of time before Happily Ever After, though, and Splash only had a five minute wait. Everyone was on board and we made our way over there, with me trailing behind the others a bit.

    We got right onto Splash with virtually no wait and Maya was kind enough to remind me - yet again - to hold onto my hat. We were also the only ones in our log boat thing, which was fun.

    splash.jpg

    Despite the picture, I swear this is one of Maya's favorite rides.

    After going on Splash once, the girls were begging to go again since there was no wait. Hannah really wanted to go again and was willing to go with them. I wanted to shoot the fireworks, so we made plans to meet up before or after and went our separate ways.

    I hobbled back to behind the castle and set up my tripod and camera near the arch into New Fantasyland. At least two cast members told me the fireworks would be going off *behind* me and that I should probably turn around. I assured them that I was clear on where the fireworks were going off and would be just fine.

    In 2017, I shot Wishes from behind the castle, but over by Mickey's Philharmagic. Here's a shot to give you an idea:

    Wishes Behind 1 by Lee Hermiston, on Flickr

    While I liked how those turned out, I wanted a different angle for this time. FWIW, I freaking love shooting fireworks from behind the castle. If you've seen HEA and don't want to mess with the crowds, behind the castle is the place to be. You can hear the music and with fireworks going off on either side of the castle, as well as "behind" you (depending on what direction you're facing), it feels like you're right in the middle of the action. Sure, you miss the castle projections and Tink, but I think it's a truly underrated experience.

    I was really happy with how a couple of my castle shots turned out. Sometimes, it's worth lugging around a bunch of equipment after running a marathon.

    castle.jpg

    castle2.jpg

    I felt at the time that I had a couple of pretty decent castle shots. So, I turned around to try to get some shots of the actual fireworks. Fortunately, the New Fantasyland arch had this nice spire thing that made for a nice foreground object. While you wouldn't necessarily know you're in Disney World for these photos, I like the way they turned out:

    HEA.jpg

    HEA2.jpg

    I can't remember if I gave any commentary on HEA on my previous post. If so, I'll do it here: this was my first trip seeing HEA. I think it's a beautiful and technologically sound show and I really enjoy the soundtrack, but I don't think it will ever have the emotional resonance with me that Wishes! had/has. Still, it's a really great show and I look forward to other opportunities to photograph it.

    After HEA, Hannah and the girls made their way over. It turns out nobody was riding Splash during HEA and they got to go three more times in a row without even getting off the ride. Talk about an epic ride experience. Splash is now and forever will be my favorite WDW ride, so I'm a *little* jealous of all of that Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah, but I'll live.

    Maya and Hannah took a quick ride on the carousel and we made our way to the exit. As I did earlier that morning during the marathon, I made sure to really savor the moment. Magic Kingdom is my favorite park (and one of my all-time favorite places) and I don't know how long it will be before we're back.

    Next: DATW!
     

    rteetz

    Rumors and News Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2013
    Great photo on Main Street! Those are always a must do on a runDisney weekend.

    You got some awesome fireworks photos too.
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    Great photo on Main Street! Those are always a must do on a runDisney weekend.

    You got some awesome fireworks photos too.
    Thanks, man! Like I said, it was a little awkward for me personally, but it ended up being a nice photo for my mom to slap on the fridge, ha ha.

    I'm actually really happy with the way the fireworks photos turned out, especially the castle ones. Lugging around camera gear is not the most fun thing in the world, but sometimes it pays off a little bit.
     
  • Neon Cactus

    Old Run Disney Addict
    Joined
    Feb 10, 2016
    Awesome medal photo! I've only seen HEA from Ohana. I booked the dessert party in April so I can make sure to get a good view of it. I do like the music in it. And that's a big Disney victory to ride through without having to get out of the ride!
     

    Chaitali

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 2, 2011
    Oh, I’ve never thought to watch the fireworks from Fantasy Land. Sounds like a really cool experience! We stayed at POFQ for the marathon and really liked it. It was pretty convenient.
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    Awesome medal photo! I've only seen HEA from Ohana. I booked the dessert party in April so I can make sure to get a good view of it. I do like the music in it. And that's a big Disney victory to ride through without having to get out of the ride!
    So, try to get to the "front" of the dessert party area, if you can. I've looked into it (mostly for fireworks photos, I'm not a big dessert fan) and I've read that a lot of the view isn't great unless you're right along the rail. Though, maybe they've changed the layout. Either way, good luck! It's a great show.

    Oh, I’ve never thought to watch the fireworks from Fantasy Land. Sounds like a really cool experience! We stayed at POFQ for the marathon and really liked it. It was pretty convenient.
    I'm sure it's another idea that I've "borrowed" *cough cough* stolen *cough cough* from Tom Bricker, but I really do love it. It's so relaxing and immersive.

    POFQ really impressed me this trip. I'm looking forward to giving it another go.
     

    Neon Cactus

    Old Run Disney Addict
    Joined
    Feb 10, 2016
    POFQ is my favorite non-deluxe hotel there. It's half the size of the other moderates and I like the French Quarter theming. The pool has a fun slide too. Plus it has the beignets at the food court.
     
  • Smilelea

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 15, 2017
    We like POFQ. I like that it's "smaller" and the boys enjoyed the pool.

    Splash is my favorite too. So far, my children do not share that love (too scary).

    Those firework pictures are awesome!

    Also, I agree with the awkwardness of pics with the medals and I only had one. However, I'd do it again. I think the picture of it for memory keeping purposes is worth the few moments of awkwardness
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    POFQ is my favorite non-deluxe hotel there. It's half the size of the other moderates and I like the French Quarter theming. The pool has a fun slide too. Plus it has the beignets at the food court.
    I am with you 100 percent. I thought maybe the theming would be a little too gaudy, but I really like the way it looked. And POR is *so* spread out.

    We like POFQ. I like that it's "smaller" and the boys enjoyed the pool.

    Splash is my favorite too. So far, my children do not share that love (too scary).

    Those firework pictures are awesome!

    Also, I agree with the awkwardness of pics with the medals and I only had one. However, I'd do it again. I think the picture of it for memory keeping purposes is worth the few moments of awkwardness
    I bet your kids come around on Splash. Mine didn't love it their first time (except for my youngest), but they were so gung ho for it this time around. It's such a classic.

    And I agree about getting photos, even if it can feel weird. I've lost count of how many times I've gone back through old race photos. Plus, when I'm old, fat and gray(er), I want to be able to point to those photos and say, "I did that. That was me."
     

    BigEeyore

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 22, 2008
    As crazy as it is, keeping moving and walking around the parks after the marathon is so much better for you than sitting on your behind the rest of the day. And hobbling around the parks with your medal and race shirt is one of those uniquely Disney experiences - basking in the soreness and the joy of the accomplishment!

    Awesome medal photo on Main Street! Everyone who has done Dopey needs at least one shot with ALL the bling!

    Cool perspective on the fireworks behind the castle!
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    As crazy as it is, keeping moving and walking around the parks after the marathon is so much better for you than sitting on your behind the rest of the day. And hobbling around the parks with your medal and race shirt is one of those uniquely Disney experiences - basking in the soreness and the joy of the accomplishment!

    Awesome medal photo on Main Street! Everyone who has done Dopey needs at least one shot with ALL the bling!

    Cool perspective on the fireworks behind the castle!
    While I was definitely moving slower, I really enjoyed the park time after the marathon. It was a gorgeous day, too.
     

    run.minnie.miles

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 6, 2016
    MK after the marathon is a great idea. We did it the day after and I will forever love my medal/castle pictures! I love the medal pic on mainstreet- your mom should be proud!

    I am so glad your girls love splash, it was my favorite in MK as a kid, so I'm sure that love will carry for them into adulthood! Such great memories for your family!

    I totally understand that "last look" at the castle- it's bittersweet!
     

    ZellyB

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 18, 2010
    Fantastic medal shot and, oh those fireworks shots!! We had watched Wishes a couple of times behind the castle and really enjoyed it as well, but haven't tried it yet for HEA, but we may next time.

    And, I initially had the same reaction as you did in regards to missing that emotional reaction to HEA like I had to Wishes. BUT, for some reason this year, seeing it again, I really cued into the music more (I think last time I was busy watching the projections and fireworks in detail rather than just experiencing the full package - if that makes sense) and the music resonated a lot more with me. Then we watched from the roof deck at California grill, so you really can't see the projections that much, just the music and fireworks and then I really got all the feels. So it may just be one of those things that has to grow on you. Happily Ever After, the song, now absolutely gets me.
     

    jennamfeo

    DatRunHo - Powered by Pizza
    Joined
    Aug 25, 2017
    Magic Kingdom is my favorite park (and one of my all-time favorite places)
    You've never been to Disneyland, right?

    GREAT photos! I love HEA. I don't think I have seen Wishes. This was the first time I actually watched the Fireworks show at any park all the way through. (I would much rather ride Space Mountain with no line.) But it brought me to tears every. single. time.
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    MK after the marathon is a great idea. We did it the day after and I will forever love my medal/castle pictures! I love the medal pic on mainstreet- your mom should be proud!

    I am so glad your girls love splash, it was my favorite in MK as a kid, so I'm sure that love will carry for them into adulthood! Such great memories for your family!

    I totally understand that "last look" at the castle- it's bittersweet!
    MK was really great. Since it was our third time in the park that trip, we didn’t have to rush around to see anything and it made for a relaxing day.

    Splash has always had kind of a funny presence in our trips. The girls went when they were in kindergarten and weren’t super thrilled with it. It was under refurb when we went five years ago.

    This year, Josie was set on “redeeming” herself with Splash and Maya proclaimed it her favorite ride before ever stepping foot on it. I never would have guessed we would have ridden it as much as we did, but I’m glad I passed on the love.

    Fantastic medal shot and, oh those fireworks shots!! We had watched Wishes a couple of times behind the castle and really enjoyed it as well, but haven't tried it yet for HEA, but we may next time.

    And, I initially had the same reaction as you did in regards to missing that emotional reaction to HEA like I had to Wishes. BUT, for some reason this year, seeing it again, I really cued into the music more (I think last time I was busy watching the projections and fireworks in detail rather than just experiencing the full package - if that makes sense) and the music resonated a lot more with me. Then we watched from the roof deck at California grill, so you really can't see the projections that much, just the music and fireworks and then I really got all the feels. So it may just be one of those things that has to grow on you. Happily Ever After, the song, now absolutely gets me.
    Watching fireworks from California Grill is a definite bucket list item for me.

    And I agree that HEA grows on you. I like the song itself and the full soundtrack is good, as well.
     

    lhermiston

    Beer-powered running machine
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2013
    You've never been to Disneyland, right?

    GREAT photos! I love HEA. I don't think I have seen Wishes. This was the first time I actually watched the Fireworks show at any park all the way through. (I would much rather ride Space Mountain with no line.) But it brought me to tears every. single. time.
    Aww. Wishes used to choke me up a little bit after Robin Williams died. There’s a line from Aladdin, “Genie, I wish for your freedom” that always gets me know. Watch it on YouTube with your kiddo sometime.

    And no, I’ve never been to Disneyland (or really California/West Coast, for that matter). I’ll get there one day.
     



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