It has been a little over 3 weeks since we came home from the marathon but oh my GOD did we have fun!! We have been VoluntEARing with Disney for a few years. We started out doing the Special Olympics Events and enjoyed it so much that we have signed up for other events! This was our first marathon though and we can not wait to do another one!
The deal is for most of the events it is based on a points system. For every hour you work you get a point and for every 16 hours you work you get a free one day one park Disney ticket. BUT for some of the bigger events like Marathons you usually get a ticket for each shift you work! For this particular Marathon you got a ticket per marathon shift you worked (Maximum of 2) BUT if you worked a third shift at the Expo then you got the hour credits AND you got a water park ticket!! FABU!!!! Gotta Love that!!
So on the 8th we head out to Disney’s Wide World Of Sports Complex. This place is PACKED!! Our shifts were to work at the Expo from 2-830pm. We went to check in and they give us our boxed lunch and our nametag and T-shirts! They gave us about 20 minutes to eat and then we headed out onto the Floor. Lunch was your choice of Sammie (Turkey, Roast Beef or Veggie), bag of chips, an apple and a HUGE chocolate chip cookie. James and I were working Packet Pickup. We were giving out bibs and D Tags(electronic tracking) to Full Marathon athletes! We were checking in the ELITE runners! The first 1500 runners! The Shift right before us checked in the #1 Guy who has won the Marathon the past 6 years in a row (including his win this year) It was really fun to meet the runners and their kids and find out where they were from and stuff like that! the Shift went very fast and soon it was time to check into our hotel.
We didn't book in time to stay on property so we stayed just off property in a Comfort In right off of Apopka Vineland. For 60 bucks a night we were good! We checked in around 9 and James went RIGHT to bed seeing as we had left the house to head to Wide World when he got home from work and the poor thing had NO sleep! He was ZONKED! We had to be back at WWoS at 2am for our half marathon shift. I had EVER intention of going to be at a decent time but I got sucked in to Celebrity Rehab and got maybe 1 hour of sleep ;) LOL!oh well!Who needs Sleep??
I NEEDED SLEEP!!! It was SO dismal when we woke up at 1am! It was COLD and I mean in the 20’s in Orlando. We dressed in layers upon layers upon layers with hats, gloves and hoodies and jackets! It wasn't raining yet but it was brewing! We arrived to the Tents at the WWoS and we get our credentials punched, our jacket, our lunch and herded on a bus to EPCOT. We got Super BRIGHT Orange Jackets with the Half Marathon Logos on them and box breakfasts… lol. Well.. they were strange but we were glad we had them. They included 2 snickers bars, a bag of peanuts, an apple, a chocolate chip cookie and a bag of trail mix and a small bottle of water! We tucked the snacks into our front pockets of our windbreakers and sat back to enjoy the warm ride to Epcot. We were scheduled to work the Baggage tents for this Half portion of the Marathon. James and I decided that instead of handling the bags we would stand outside and direct people where to go….. why we decided this in the 20 degree weather with rain and snow coming I have NO idea but we did! And we had so much fun! OMFG we were SO COLD and numb most of the time but We had so much fun! It was chaos and crazy and loud and busy but the only thing I would have changed was the temperatures! It was FREEZING!!!! It Sleeted and Rained and Hailed and Snowed! All in a 4 hour time slot!!! IN ORLANDO, FLORIDA!! You all know how I feel about snow….. not my friend! 21 years of New Hampshire winters were PLENTY for this chubby girl! But we soldiered through it! We were freezing cold and dancing to keep warm but we had a BLAST! I got to meet so many people. I got to meet Katie because she was running! She prolly thought I was a crazy lady because I ran up to her and yelled KATIE!!! LOL.. she looked at me funny and I said “ I’m Rora from twitter” Thank God she smiled because if it wasn't her I would have felt like a HUGE jackass! LOL! She looked adorable in her running gear and pig tails and I hugged her and wished her luck! It was BUSY as BANANAS for a good 2 hours with the sea of the Half Marathon runners going thru to their corrals! But I danced and laughed and made the most of it! Once the Racers were all thru the corrals we just hung around talking. We made it over to the runners tent to watch the race on the big screen for a half hour or so until our bus came to pick us up at 630 AM to head back to Wide World of Sports. We tried to steal a bagel or orange but the Nazi's in the tent wouldn't let us even though a TON of other people were doing it but… oh well :) Around 615 we went back to our area and got debriefed by our Team Leader whose name I can not remember but I called him Adam because he reminded me of Adam from that show Half & Half LOL…. I actually called him Adam once and felt REALLY bad but it wasn't in a mean way! We got on the NICE WARM bus for the 5 minute trip to Wide World of Sports. We checked out of our shift and received Sports Enthusiast Pins, Toy Story T-shirts, Little Blue Drawstring backpacks, another”breakfast” bag and our one day one park tickets! WE LOVE free swag :D We headed back to our hotel in the FREEZING cold and went RIGHT TO BED!! lol… we both passed the hell out! Good Hard WARM sleep since we turned the heat on to 90 ;) Hell… we didn't have to pay the heating bill…LOL
We slept till about 5 and headed out to grab some Pizza at Cici’s and ended up talking with a family who was running the full the next day and were asking questions about VoluntEARing and how the half went. It was really fun! We headed back and went to sleep because we had the 6am shift the next day for the Full!
~Pictures in the Next Entry~