13.1 Magical Miles: Disneyland Half Marathon Recap

DisneyHalf1It’s been a week since the big event and I’m still sitting at my desk admiring my new shiny medal, haha. Labor Day weekend was a whirlwind of a vacation filled with all things Disney! In Downtown Disney and throughout the theme park, you could sense the level of excitement from all the participants, staff, and everyone else involved with the race. 

This being my first half marathon, I had no clue what I was getting myself into. Continue reading

Happy Lunar New Year from Disneyland!

Earlier this week I visited Disneyland and Disney CA Adventure for some well-deserved vacation time after organizing a run last weekend in Sacramento. It was a whirlwind 3-day trip but I had so much fun and made a lot of connections. After all that work, a Disney trip was in order! 😉
Lunar New Year 2013 Continue reading

A Disney Christmas Story

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you’re all having fun with family and friends on this festive day. Christmas is a time of the year that always seems to bring me cheer… that and my birthday in the summer of course. But today is particularly special because it celebrates the birthday of that special man who changed the lives of many for thousands of years, and whose life has truly become a story for the ages. With that said, I would like to focus on my experience at the annual Disney Candlelight Processional, a celebration of the biblical story of Jesus’s birth accompanied with choral performances.

Candlelight Processional 2012a

I blogged last year about the Candlelight Processional but this time was even better because Disneyland hosted a contest among annual passholders for a chance to win reserved seats to the event! Normally seats were reserved for people who purchased dinner packages for the event or who were VIPs and received invitations. Last year, I remember waiting an hour before the performance, and then having to stand throughout the entire show in order to see; even then it was hard since I only stand at a whopping height of 5’6”. The new contest was issued in the months of October/November with e-mails sent to the winners shortly after that time. Winners were allowed to have up to 3 additional guests at the event who also must have been annual passholders at least until the end of the contest period.

Mickey & Me

We attended this event earlier in December. Claiming our wristbands was a fairly easy process and the park had plenty of staff on hand to help. We then waited in line (approximately 40 minutes to an hour prior to the event) to be seated, keeping in mind of the first-come-first-serve policy. It was worth the wait because we scored great seats in the front-mid section right next to the exclusive VIP seats. I was ecstatic to be so close to the performance and brought my good camera to capture the moment. 


The Candlelight Processional started with the symphony on stage and hundreds of choral singers marching down Disney’s Main Street towards them, while singing Christmas music. The narrator of the night was Edward James Olmos, famous for his roles in “Stand and Deliver”, “Maiami Vice”, “Selena”, and recently “Battlestar Galactica”. This Hollywood veteran is also a Candlelight Processional veteran, narrating the Christmas Story for over 15 years, and it definitely showed in his voice and interpretation of the text. Traditional Christmas songs were sung after each section of the story, with some songs featuring soloists. The music is always the same each year but is amazing to hear it live.  I’ll definitely be coming back next year; it’s my new Christmastime tradition! 🙂

Edward James Olmos View entire performance here:

Credit: A. Jacoby

Disneyland Expansion Project

             Credit: Yelp.com

If you’ve recently gone to Disneyland, then I’m sure you’ve noticed the many dark windows along the left side of Main St. This section of the theme park is currently undergoing  construction as of early January. All those shops you held dear to your heart (Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor, Candy Palace, Carnation Cafe, the Coca Cola Shop, and Blue Ribbon Bakery) are currently closed as part of Disneyland’s expansion project. But fear not, you can still get ice cream across the street at the Main Street Cone Shop and candy can be bought at various locations throughout the park. Most of the shops listed are scheduled to reopen in the spring, with the exception of Carnation Cafe that will reopen in the summer.

Credit: MiceChat.com

In addition, Jolly Holiday (themed after Mary Poppins), is the new go-to place for beverages, pastries, soups, and sandwiches. They offer the same food as seen in the surrounding Disney hotels. An interesting fact about Jolly Holiday is that it houses an antique cuckoo clock. Ask the workers for the story behind it! 🙂