Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend – Day 5 – Final Thoughts and Fun at Epcot

Its hard to believe that its already been more than two months since we returned home from our Wine and Dine racecation.  We had an absolute blast at Disney with little man and my father-in-law, and it was exciting to close out our trip with a couple of hours at Epcot on our last day before we headed to the airport.

One of our top priorities once we arrived at Epcot was to get our traditional medals picture taken with Mickey.  We had a Fast Pass for Character Spot, and all four of us got to celebrate our accomplishments from the weekend with Mickey.

Photo Credit: Disney PhotoPass

Photo Credit: Disney PhotoPass

I always love how small of a world Disney can sometimes feel like.  In advance of our trip, I had found out that one of my dance friends from home was going to be at Disney at the same time as us.  We were finally able to connect and meet up on our last day, and it was fun to run into her at Epcot.  We had fun catching up while Preston and his dad rode Soarin’.

It was so great to run into Erin at Epcot

It was so great to run into Erin at Epcot

Afterwards, we headed to World Showcase to enjoy an early lunch.  We decided to get some snacks from some of the Food and Wine Festival kiosks.  It was fun to sample various treats and put together our own little meals.

The Food and Wine Festival food was absolutely delicious

The Food and Wine Festival food was absolutely delicious

After finishing up lunch it was unfortunately time to head to the airport.  Traveling home was a bit of a nightmare.  My father-in-law’s ticket for his flight to Philly wound up getting canceled (not the flight, the actual ticket), so he was forced to pay for a new flight much later that evening.  Our travel woes were completely different.  After boarding the plane for DC mechanical problems were discovered, and we eventually got back off of the plane.  For more than an hour it was unclear as to whether they would be able to fix the plane, or if the flight would wind up being canceled.  We worked with a very sweet and patient gate agent, who looked at a variety of options for us, and since everything else for the rest of the day was completely booked she put a hold on seats for us for a flight the next day.  The whole ordeal was less than fun with a 10.5 month old in tow, but fortunately the plane was eventually repaired and we wound up leaving after a several hour delay.

Grandpop and a tired little man during our flight delay

Grandpop and a tired little man during our flight delay

All in all, it was a fun racecation.  Despite the changes that were made to this year’s Wine and Dine race weekend, I’m glad that we were still able to participate.  I know that a lot of people would have preferred for the half marathon to still be a night race, but having the start time switched to the morning was actually better for us given that we have a young child.  However, the new half marathon course was very lack luster with all of the running on back roads, and although I enjoyed running through Animal Kingdom and Epcot, I was disappointed that we didn’t get to run through Hollywood Studios like the course has previously gone through.

As for the race weekend theme, I was disappointed to see that the theme was really only carried out at the expo and in the staging areas before and after the race.  Other than in France during the 10k, you would have never known that this was a wine and food themed race weekend while running the races.

Having fun in France during the 10k

Having fun in France during the 10k

Many of the same characters were out for both the 10k and the half, so it would have also been nice to see some variation with the characters, or at least the characters wearing different costumes.  We all know that there’s plenty of Disney characters to choose from.

Overall, we had a fun time during our racecation at Disney and our Wine and Dine weekend was a great experience.  While we enjoy running at Disney, there are other runDisney race weekends that we’d like to experience (my friend Kathleen and I are hoping to be able to run Princess in February 2018).  Is returning for Wine and Dine forever off of the table?  Not necessarily, but its also not our top choice for a future runDisney racecation.

QOTD: What runDisney race weekends are on your wish list?

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27 Responses to Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend – Day 5 – Final Thoughts and Fun at Epcot

  1. Chaitali says:

    That’s how I felt about Wine and Dine too. Granted, the year I did it was the year it was cut short so I’m sure that colors my experience a bit.

  2. Lesley says:

    My parents and I did Wine and Dine the inaugural year. The 5k was my first race, so of course I chose Disney. The first year the 5k went through the Magic Kingdom, which was wonderful running towards the park when the sun was barely up. After the first year, there have been so many changes, I don’t feel like it’s the same.

  3. Traveling is hard with kids especially when their are flight delays. Though they look like a blast, I don’t have any run Disney events on my list as it’s too far away.
    Glad you had fun!

  4. Next trip to WDW I need to make it into the parks. My race weekends have consisted of running only but I’d really love to finally see the parks.

  5. kookyrunner says:

    I love racecations, but I hate traveling, expecially with all of the airline delays, etc.
    The Run Disney races always look like a lot of fun but I haven’t participated in one.

  6. You all do pack a lot into your Disney trips!

  7. Looks like you had an amazing time! Are you going to do any Disney races this year?

  8. I’m totally on the fence with Disney races. I LOVE everything Disney (and so does our family), but the expense of getting there, staying there, eating there, etc…plus the race registrations…well, I’m not completely sold. It would be a blast, though, to run through all the parks and grounds and see the characters…I’m sure the Disney magic is in full force 😉

  9. Karen :0) says:

    So sorry about the flight delay and the cancelled ticket! That does sound like a nightmare with a baby! Glad you guys had fun overall!

  10. Rachel says:

    Sounds like a fun vacation. I had a similar experience with my last flight (back in July). Total disaster. And this is why I hate flying now.

    But Disney. YES!

  11. Coco says:

    Sounds like a fantastic trip. I love that your whole family was involved!

  12. I’ve done the Disney Marathon 3 times and have had a blast! My husband and I are going to tackle the Dopey Challenge in 2018!

  13. Marathon weekend is still my favorite weekend! Even with the changes to wine and dine, I still loved the weekend (and the extra hour of sleep on Saturday was awesome!!), and the after party was great as I actually got to enjoy all of it for once.

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