Monday, April 20, 2020

2020 Enchanted 10K

The weather on the morning of the 2020 Enchanted 10K was COLD. Prior to leaving for our trip, I'd checked the weather forecast so I had an idea of what to expect. The only item I wish I had that I couldn't find in stores were hot hands. Other than that, I felt pretty prepared for race weekend.

That shirt I mentioned in my Expo recap that I purchased from Raw Threads? There it is! Oddly enough, no one had a chance to see it because it stayed covered by a pink sweatshirt the entire race!

One plus to this race weekend is that the buses were in abundant supply. I was very grateful for that!

Race morning tip: because the bus boarding time is so early and there's a lot of downtime prior to running the race, bring your breakfast with you! Mine is usually a clif bar of some sort that I eat on either the bus ride over or while I'm waiting in my corral!

After meandering around the race starting area for a few minutes, I decided to walk over to my corral. My goal was to get as close to the beginning of the corral as I possibly could.

I don't understand runDisney's reasoning on some things and wasn't sure why I was placed in corral C for the 10K and corral B for the half? Looking back I wish I'd waited in the runner relations line at the expo to talk to someone about it but honestly, I was OVER waiting in lines at that point. I'm still scratching my head over this one, though.

For about an hour, this was my view. I found that it was warmer to sit down on the concrete and wait vs standing.

Although it seemed to take a while because it really was chilly out there, we finally made it to the start line!

With a fireworks start and a 3-2-1 gooooo from Carissa, we were off!

Since the 10K was Pocahontas themed, she was at the overpass just at a half mile into the start.

I really enjoy this 10K route. Running in Epcot early in the morning is just beautiful!

Mile 1! The first character I skipped was John Smith, but I couldn't pass up the Governor and Percy!!

I mean, look how cute!

Just after mile 3, we officially entered Epcot from the Cast Member parking lot.

Another fun thing about this route is all of the behind the scenes things you get to see!

They also keep you entertained along the way which is always fun!

On to World Showcase

At China, Mushu was hanging out and I skipped waiting in his line. Another character line I also skipped earlier in the race was Meeko.

As I was attempting to take a selfie in Germany (it's a "thing" I do), a super nice guy asked if I wanted him to take the picture for me!

The empty countries are fun to see. I couldn't wait to try the brand new Regal Eagle Smokehouse later in our trip.

The Festival of the Arts was taking place during this race weekend, too!

Just after mile 4, I saw a huge line and couldn't figure out who it was for. Imagine my surprise when I saw Esmeralda and Quasimodo!! What?!

These were definitely unique and I HAD to stop!

It was also in this line that I spent a good bit of time attempting to figure out what was wrong with my GoPro gimbal. It decided to act crazy that morning and would spin uncontrollably. While doing my research in line, I found out that it was likely a lose wire that I couldn't fix on my own. Whomp whomp. No worries though, we are going to have it replaced.

The sunset in World Showcase was beautiful!

The course also took us beneath the skyliner which was so much fun to run under!

After leaving World Showcase, we looped back to the Boardwalk/Yacht/Beach club resorts.

Another stop I just had to wait for was Mickey! I've never seen him dressed in his racing attire before!

How cute!!

Another unique opportunity was Clarice! I've never seen her before, either.

It was while standing in this line that I heard someone say something about the balloon ladies being a minute behind us. Out of all of my 40+ runDisney races, I've NEVER seen the balloon ladies so I had zero worries about what I overheard. This would come back to haunt me later....

Mile 5 and back into Epcot!

I have no idea why I didn't take a picture of the following fiasco, but it happened regardless.

So, as we followed the course to the front of World Showcase, I spotted the Fairy Godmothers. I'd seen a photo of a runner with them on instagram from earlier that morning and knew I would have to stop. Prior to this race weekend, I'd never seen these fairies (ever) and this was definitely a photo opp I wanted to have. I joined the rather long line and waited about 20 minutes. As I was about 15 runners from the fairies, I heard someone say "there goes the balloon ladies"...


Looking back, I realize that I had spent a good bit of time in line for characters (especially the Hunchback ones) and the Germany potty line got me, too.

Nevertheless, I decided to wait it out because I was so close.

Not long after that, one of the bikers came up to our line and told us we were behind pace and likely wouldn't finish. I could still see a TON of walkers though, and still wasn't worried. We were literally 0.6 miles from the finish line. What were they going to do with all of us if we waited?

By the time I was about 5 runners from the fairies, the walker line had thinned out significantly and I could see a line of about 6 bikers riding along behind the final walkers.

The guy who was hanging out on his bike near told us that was it - we could either get the picture with the fairies or cross the finish line but not both.

That's when I freaked out! I wasn't ready to forfeit my challenge medal because of a character picture being that I was so close to the finish line. Instead, I jumped out of line and started sprinting. I bobbed and weaved between runners and didn't look back for a second. Within minutes, I was passing the balloon ladies and knew all would be ok.

To be honest though, that was traumatizing. Seriously traumatizing.


I didn't hang around the finish area for long. After snagging my food box and water, I headed for the bus to take me back to Saratoga.

The post race food box from this race included cheese which was nice to see again! :)

It took a few minutes for my racing heart to calm down after the course fiasco, but it finally did chill out. My mind couldn't wrap around what had happened, especially since I skipped so many character lines in the beginning of the race. Looking back though, I see that the lines I did wait in were rather long and that's what sucked up most of my time. Oh well - it was a lesson well learned for sure!

With that, we spent the rest of the day Disney Springs and Hollywood Studios with a low key dinner at the Turf Club at Saratoga Springs (delicious and highly recommended).

Now you tell me, have you ever had a "balloon ladies" experience like this one? Let me know in the comments below!

To see a video recap of this race, check it out here!


  1. Wow, what a story! No, I've never seen the Balloon ladies on the course before. The one and only time I ever got a race pic withe the Fairy God mother was one of my first Half marathons. It was in Epcot near the end, and for some reason, it was the only pictures that came out in Black and White (I was using a digital camera at the I was a little disappointed because I would have loved to have that picture in color!
    Thank goodness you were able to finish in time and get the challenge medal. I can imagine how nervous you must have been.

  2. OH MY GOD I would've had a nervous breakdown. Such a relief that you made it!


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