Race Report: Mickey's Jingle Jungle 5K 2016

Disney's Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend started with Mickey's Jingle Jungle 5K. These short races are fun runs at Disney -- they are not timed. When I ran my first Disney 5K back in April, the Star Wars Dark Side 5K, I was in the second-to-last corral. For this race, I was in corral A -- and it made a huge difference! This time, I was able to stop for every character photo op and really enjoy the run. It still took me over an hour to finish, but for these races the only goal you should have in mind is to PR in fun!

Disney races are fun to run in costume. I decided to run this race as Judy Hopps from Zootopia. I bought a bowler hat off eBay and added dollar store ribbon and police badges to clothing pieces I either had in my closet or picked up at Goodwill. I made a pair of long rabbit ears out of felt to hang off the hat and safety-pinned a couple of plastic carrots to a wide belt to complete the look. I got a few compliments and it was really easy to run in -- though I carried the hat in my hand a few times because I was afraid it might fly off.

The course took runners through Animal Kingdom and then past a lake in a backstage area of the park.

Training & Goals
The plan for this race was to take it easy and rest my legs for the upcoming 10K and half marathon on Sunday.

Race Day: November 4, 2016
To arrive in time for the 6:30AM start means a crazy early wake-up time. Traffic was backed up a bit on the way in but I arrived in time to grab a few photo ops before the race began. I was in the very back of corral A for the start. It was 64°F with clear skies and 94% humidity.

Mile 1: 11:18
The race started in the Animal Kingdom parking lot and the entire first mile was mostly outside the park. Photo ops started inside the park so this was a pretty straightforward slow and easy run.

Mile 2: 21:27
Time for some photos! This mile was almost entirely in the park, and there were four characters posing for photos with runners. I stopped to have my picture taken with Rafiki (Lion King), Baloo (Jungle Book), Turk (Tarzan -- my one photo with her didn't come out), and Santa Goofy. Goofy was alternating with Donald; they did a switch right before it was my turn.

Leaving the park a cast member saw me walking and shouted "Pick it up, Hopps!!" So of course I had to run. "Yes sir!!"

Mile 3+: 19:47, 7:30
Here we left the park and ran an out-and-back behind Expedition Everest. I stopped to take a bunch of photos of behind-the-scenes stuff, including floats for the upcoming Rivers of Light attraction that may still open at Animal Kingdom in our lifetimes, haha! I actually texted a couple of pictures to Arthur during the run and he asked me to send more.

At the end of the turn-around Pluto was available for photos in his doghouse. A quick snap with the pooch and then it was back to the Animal Kingdom parking lot for the finish!

After the race I was able to take a picture with Mickey and Minnie. Since I didn't have park tickets I just headed home after the race to rest up for the coming two days.

Garmin final time: 1:00:01 for 3.42 miles
Race Amenities:
All the great Disney stuff including a cotton unisex t-shirt.
Cost:
$75.05 (yes, it's crazy expensive)

Report written December 11, 2016

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