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The Disneyland Half Marathon crowd started arriving bright and early this morning, as 15,000 runners made their way to the park for the 6 AM start time. For it being so early, though, there clearly was no lack of energy! These dedicated athletes carried an overwhelming buzz of excitement with them — and why wouldn’t they be excited? They would soon be running a 13.1 mile path through California Adventure, Disneyland, Anaheim Stadium, and finally, Downtown Disney, some of the best marathon-running scenery one could ask for!

You know, one of my favorite things about Disney fans is their pride. There were SO many people dressed up as a wide variety of characters, including (but not limited to): Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and friends, the Princesses, Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Caribbean, Nemo, The Incredibles, Buzz Lightyear, and Tinkerbell. My personal favorites were a trio that dressed up in Mrs. Potts, Chip, and Lumiere costumes – their suits were impractical, but they didn’t seem to mind!

Even just as a stander-by, it was really easy to feel the good vibes as the race was about to start. The charismatic MC and loud music made me forget that the sun hadn’t even risen yet. My excitement reached it’s peak, though, when Mickey and Minnie Mouse, the “chairpersons” of the event, came out a few minutes before 6 to pump everyone up even more. After a beautiful rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner” by an American soldier (complete with fireworks, naturally), the countdown began, leaving only a few final moments of anticipation.