runDisney and PhotoPass (Memory Maker) at Disneyland and Disney World – CM088

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runDisney and PhotoPass

PhotoPass is now the official photographer at runDisney races and events. Heather, Tanya, and Stephanie Haining are here to share with you how their experiences and tips using PhotoPass while running at Disneyland and Disney World (PhotoPass are the photographers, you can get your PhotoPass photos through Memory Maker in Disey World and PhotoPass at Disneyland).


Steph : Hey, everyone. Welcome to Capturing Magic. I am Steph and I am here today with Heather Winfield, who can be found at There, we got it. Hi, Heather.


Heather: Hi.


Steph : We also have joining us today Tanya Hickman, who can be found at Hi, Tanya.


Tanya: Hello.


Steph : We have joining us today, Stephanie Haney who can be found at Hi, Stephanie.


Stephanie H: Hello.


Steph : Thanks for being here everyone. I'm so excited. I don't know anything about this topic today. I'm really glad to have all of you here.


Stephanie H: You're excited for the wrong reason.


Steph : I know, right? I'm excited to be recording. I'm excited to be talking about Disney. I don't even care if it is running in Disney. I'm happy to be talking about it. Today, we're talking about some changes that Disney has made to the runDisney races as far as Memory Keepers would be concerned. Right?


Stephanie H: Yes.


Steph : Tell me, I first want to start with what everybody has participated in because I've not done any runDisney events. Let's hear it, Tanya, first from you. What have you done?


Tanya: Over the past couple years, I've done a couple 5Ks and a couple 10Ks.


Steph : Heather?


Heather: I have done-


Steph : Have done a ton of stuff, break out the list.


Heather: I've done 28 I think or 27.


Steph : Races?


Heather: Yeah, runDisney races. I've done 14 runDisney race weekends and I've done nine runDisney Halves.


Steph : I think when we recorded our very first runDisney show ever you hadn't done any yet, had you?


Heather: No, I had done maybe around two or three races. I hadn't done any Halves because I remember we were talking and I was looking forward to my first Half. I hadn't done that one yet, but I had done several 10Ks and a couple of 5Ks. I'd probably done something like five-ish races. I wasn't totally crazy like I am now.


Female: Hey, if you've got to be crazy about something, I guess running is not a bad thing.


Steph : True.


Heather: It's when you get injured.


Steph : Until you get injured which-


Heather: That's been my last six months, but otherwise it's good.


Steph : Yes, Stephanie?


Stephanie H: I did just the Tinkerbell Half Marathon this past May, first time I ever did a long race for any race type thing, not just for runDisney. I just went big or went home and went the full Half Marathon.


Heather: I slowly moved up. I did a 5K, then a 10K, then a Half. You're just like, jump right in.


Stephanie H: I just jumped in the deep end of the pool and had no idea what I was doing.


Steph : Good for you, Stephanie. You survived. You lived to tell about it.


Stephanie H: I did. I think that's why I did because I had no idea what I was getting myself into.


Steph : I got to admire that, I must say.


Stephanie H: On the day before, at breakfast the day before, I was getting the serious butterflies. My husband was like, “What are you so concerned about?” It wasn't, “I hope I do well,” because that train had long since left. I just didn't want to make a fool of myself. It was one of those what have I gotten myself into moments. I'm not an athlete at all. I was like, “Do I even have any idea what I am doing? I don't want to ruin it for other people,” kind of thing. The first one is nerve-racking.


Heather: They're all nerve-racking. I still think that every time.


Female: Heather literally still wants to throw up literally every morning she goes out.


Steph : Really?


Heather: Every time I get my bagel to eat beforehand, I can eat one bite of it. I'm too nervous.


Female: If I'm like, “I don't feel good,” and I'm like, “Just go. You'll be fine. Just go.”


Female: That was me the day before. The morning of, I was totally fine. I got up. I got myself dressed. I was excited walking over with all the other people. Like I'm going to follow the fairies and the tiger lilies because obviously those were big back then. Apparently, my husband said that as soon as I closed the door to our hotel room he got nervous.


Steph : That's cute.


Female: That's when he started getting like, he didn't want me to be disappointed if I couldn't finish. He didn't want me to get hurt. That's when he said he really started getting nervous for me, but I was totally fine. At that point, I was like, “Let's go have some fun.”


Female: The only time I get nervous is after Heather leaves the room, that I'm not going to wake up in time to go get pictures of her and she's going to yell at me. “Oh God, I've got to go. I've got to get ready now.”


Female: That's why I had set up the Runkeeper app so that he could follow me. He did fall back to sleep after I went and then got up he said around [6:30] or [7:00]. That was I guess when I was leaving the park onto the long stretch of Anaheim. He said that he got up and started tracking me through that and then was like, “Okay, she's doing this.”


Female: That's good.


Female: I'll have to provide a link. A friend when Heather was running sent me a link off of, I think it's runDisney's site somewhere. I had never seen this before, but they have real-time tracking.


Female: I think I have that too.


Female: I signed up for the chip. He got texts when I hit the starting line, after when I hit the 5K, the 10, different marks, and then gave him a heads up as to my estimated time, barring any catastrophe.


Female: That's when I would cross the finish line.


Female: I always do that one, but this one was completely different. If you look at the site, you can see them actually going like when they hit each, not even just a 5K and 10K. It's literally every point one mile you could see it moving down. I could see when she stopped for a character because it would stop moving. Then, it would start going again and I'm like, “Okay, she's still alive. We're good.”


Heather: This one I really wasn't sure because I'd been injured and hadn't been able to run. I was really nervous and I was talking to my friends on Twitter and everything. I would have people text me like, “Oh yeah, that last mile, your pace is really good.” I'm thinking, “What are they talking about?” It wasn't until after the race that Tanya told me this and I thought, “Oh, that's really cool,” because I had never heard that before.


Female: I had never-


Heather: The tracking thing was different this time. We had to sign up. Maybe it's new, I don't know if from now on or whatever.


Female: Steph, we can get to the PhotoPass now.


Steph : No, that's good. It all helps. It's all part of documenting your event and your running and all of that stuff. It's all good. PhotoPass now has made changes. It used to be a third-party company that would come in and do-


Heather: It's called MarathonFoto.


Steph : They would do photos of the races for all of the runners. Was it just at the finish line?


Heather: No, it was throughout the whole race. They do a lot of other races too because I actually have from other non Disney, I have done non Disney races. I know it's a shock. They're usually the ones that do those other races. They're along the course mostly in the park, but at the finish line. There's a couple obvious differences that we'll talk about.


Steph : Now it's PhotoPass that's in there doing their race photos.


Stephanie H: When I did the Tinkerbell it sounded like that was the first one that they had done or at least the first one in Disneyland.


Heather: It was the second one. It was the first Disneyland one and it was-


Stephanie H: I knew nothing different. From what I heard from other people, they thought they really were impressed. They liked that, especially with the tie in to your PhotoPass. Not to bash on MarathonFoto, but I didn't like the way the photos turned out with MarathonFoto. I don't know. They just weren't high quality enough for what you were going to pay for them if you wanted them.


Heather: That's the thing. The pictures themselves, I noticed the first one that they did it for was the Star Wars Dark Side Race at Disney World. I did that one. I didn't do Tinkerbell, but then I did the Disneyland Half. I've done two with one at each park. I don't know if some of the differences I saw at Disneyland is just that they're working out the kinks or if those are going to be differences at Disneyland and Disney World like usual.


The Star Wars Dark Side one, there were a lot of kinks. It completely shut down PhotoPass on either park. It was because they have to go in and they take it from your bib number. The code that you put into the site, they give the code in the guide and then on the back of the bib.


Basically, it's the year and the race and the length of the race and then your bib number. You put that in. I guess I don't know how they were tagging it or whatever when they were doing it there. It took forever to get the pictures and some weren't found. Like I said, the whole regular PhotoPass system crashed. I don't think that happened with Tink and it didn't happen with the Disneyland Half.


Female: No, and they were pretty good.


Heather: Hopefully, it's better, but there has been a couple of differences. The quality of the pictures themselves, I noticed that they had a lot of lights where they didn't have that for MarathonFoto. The picture would be dark, but I have pictures down Main Street when it was still dark out and it looks light because they had such huge lights.


Female: They were also in little pop tents too.


Heather: Green tents so you could see them, in Disney World they actually had a green balloon also.


Female: At Tinkerbell, they had the balloons and little pop tents.


Heather: I was wondering. I didn't know if the balloon was a Disney World, Disneyland thing or maybe they just now, because they didn't have balloons at the Disneyland Half.


Steph : Let me get the timeline on this. Tell me when all of these races were please. I know Tinkerbell was just Labor Day weekend, Memorial, sorry.


Heather: It was May.


Steph : Memorial.


Female: Mother's Day weekend.


Steph : I'm sorry. I am going to stop trying really because I'm just losing. Tell me.


Heather: The Star Wars Dark Side Races were in April. It was a month before the Tinkerbell Race.


Steph : It was just a couple of weeks.


Heather: Then, the Disneyland Half was just Labor Day weekend. The thing that I think they should've done is they should've just tested it on one race, maybe the 5K from Star Wars. Then, maybe the next time do it for the whole race. When they did it for all the races I think that's what threw them off.


On the first race I saw there were PhotoPass higher ups and they were telling ones what to do. There's a lot of times that I noticed they weren't taking pictures or they were changing settings and they shouldn't have. I was in line for the Spaceship Earth picture and it was dark out.


Then, the one told the photographer to change the settings to day and I'm thinking, “That's not going to come out.” Of course, it didn't come out. I think they were really doing a lot of on the job learning there. I didn't see a lot of those things at the Disneyland one, which was good. I'm hoping hat it's over time and it's fixed and it's not just a Disney World, Disneyland thing.


Female: I was pretty impressed. I had to call them. It was one of those, “Let me give it a shot,” type of things. I wanted to see if there were better finish line photos of me because I had the most anticlimactic photos at the finish line. They were really good. They went and they found some others. Still, there wasn't any of my looking excited. Part of it is because my husband and son were at the 13 mile mark.


I was all excited to see them. That was like my finish line. I was like, “Oh, there they are,” and they had a sign. I was waving to them. Then, I was taking a picture at the finish line. Then, all of a sudden, I was like, “Oh, there's Mickey.” Then, I was so frantically trying to turn off my tracker that I look like I am madly texting at the end of the race.


Heather: I can't say how many times I've had that. Right now, I make myself not do that, but when I would go to stop my thing that's when they would take the pictures. I'd have all these pictures of me looking down.


Female: I was like, “Oops.” Then, of course, my husband didn't take a picture of me. I took a picture of them, which was fine except I lined it up and then I was running when I had lined up. Then, when I actually hit, snapped the camera a big old pole jumped in front of them just randomly. I don't know how that happened. I called them to see if I could find more photos.


I gave them my number and then they went back and they said, “Give it 24 to 48 hours.” They went back and they found a couple more. I give them credit for that. They could have just as easily said, “Yeah, no, we didn't find anything,” but they did find some and posted them to my account.


Heather: Meanwhile, I'm still missing pictures.


Female: I know.


Heather: That's a thing. It's pretty much one of the few things that I miss from MarathonFoto. They used to have an unidentified photos link. You would look through thousands of pictures and I would do that.


Steph : Of course you would.


Heather: I always found several pictures. There was always at least one character picture missing, which for me is the holistic thing. I would find pictures along the route. I don't remember all the times where the photographers are while I'm running. I'll remember when I stop for something, but not those kinds of pictures because they're out there when you're in action pictures. Those I don't always remember.


I would look through every single thing and I always found several. They don't have that here. I do wish there was some way to be able to look through it. Like I said, with that Star Wars one I was going back and forth with them for weeks. They'd say, “Give us seven days.” Then, it was another seven days.


They found some. I had no pictures at first. They found some of them, but I knew there had to be more, but that's all they gave me. I know with this race I'm missing a character picture, of course, one that the guy took on my camera from the sides. We haven't even heard back from them yet. That was two weeks ago.


Female: I had to email about a bunch of PhotoPass photos that were missing from our trip. I have heard back about all the normal PhotoPass photos, but I haven't heard back about any runDisney photos. I don't know if they go to somewhere separate or what the deal is or if they're just completely overwhelmed with people trying to find photos.


Female: I know that one of the running groups that I was on on Facebook from the Tinkerbell, people would post a bunch of their photos. If there were good shots of people in the background and say, “If this is you, here you go.” It was an informal unclaimed picture.


Female: That's always nice.


Steph : Were you guys happy with the amount of photos that you ended up with? Stephanie?


Stephanie H: I was, but then I have no basis of comparison.


Steph : Frame of reference?


Stephanie H: Yeah, but I was really happy. For the most part, I thought there were some really great ones. They're fun.


Steph : What about you, Heather? Tell me, especially comparing the two since you've done them?


Heather: I think it depends on the race. Some of them I have ones. Like I said, I still feel there are ones that I'm missing. I just don't know it. Definitely I didn't buy every picture when I would do that, but I would always buy the Half or the Challenge ones. Comparing, I usually would have more before.


One of the things that I notice, unless it's just me, but I've had six races with PhotoPass so that would be really bad luck. They used to have at the finish line, you have the pictures of basically just you. They also would have them from the whole finish line. You would see the actual finish line and the time and all the people running through.


MarathonFoto always had those kinds of pictures and I liked those too. They even used to have video for the Halves and for some of the 10Ks. PhotoPass doesn't have that at all. They're all just the close up things. I thought they were going to because I thought I saw people up there, but they weren't. I haven't had that for any of the races.


Female: I forgot about the video. I forgot they used to take video.


Heather: From my first Half, that was the coolest thing because actually in my video they announced your name. My name was not in the video that they had. I contacted them and they found it. I have video of me crossing the finish line and they're like, “And Heather Winfield is crossing the finish line.” It was really cool. They sometimes had them by when you would run through the castle and those kinds of things. PhotoPass hasn't had any of that, which is fine, but I like that sometimes. You had to pay extra, but-


Female: I wonder though because even if you had a video, you could then pull a still from the video if you didn't like your finish line photos.


Heather: They were this kind of, that I was saying, pulled out, not close up kind of thing, but it was still cool to have it. I could show you. I don't know if I have it uploaded anywhere or not.


Female: I know a local race that just did a local 5K for the Fourth of July. They had video that you could go and you would pull in your name. It would find where you finished and then show 30 seconds of that time before and after you had finished. Then, it could give you that 30 seconds of video.


Heather: That's basically what it was. That's why mine was a little bit off. I had to contact them and they fixed it. I had that one. Usually when you wanted the video you had to pay more. Again, that first time it was just like, “Give me everything.”


Steph : I wonder if that's something that they'll eventually add. With all of the technology and the features that Disney PhotoPass is adding to their offerings, I wonder if they'll add videos down the road.


Female: Maybe once they work out the kinks.


Steph : I think it would be fun. I like the multimedia stuff. That's always good. What about picture quality?


Heather: The quality I think overall has been much better. I know even the megapixels and stuff for the pictures are better compared to the Marathon photos. From what I understand, the MarathonFoto, it was their own camera, the photographer's I think. PhotoPass, it's the same cameras they use around the parks.


They've been trained for that and I really do think that they've done a better job. You're still going to have the pictures that aren't good, but overall there's more that the reason that they're not good is people running in front of me or whatever.


Female: Not because of the photographer necessarily, I know. The lighting really helps, the lighting that we have set up.


Steph : Tell me what the lighting is. Is it just big flood lights or is it the lighting that's on Main Street turned on bright?


Heather: They put out those floodlights because, I can even show you. We can post a picture of this on Main Street that I did a race, the Star Wars 10K that I did last year at Disneyland running down Main Street. You can see that there's lights behind me on Main Street, but then I ran and it was just as dark I remember. It's just completely lit up because they had the lights out there. It is a huge difference.


Female: Now, see when you're me and you're in F corral it's pretty much daylight.


Heather: No, this was the 5K. I was higher in the 5K. When I ran down Main Street it was light out. I'm not fast. Don't think even though I did all these races I'm fast. I'm not.


Female: When you're in the back of the pack it's already daylight.


Steph : That's funny.


Female: There were no lights. I don't need lights. I have sun.


Steph : Stephanie, tell me, I would be interested in hearing when you saw how many PhotoPass photos you had from your race were you excited and happy or were you disappointed?


Stephanie H: I was pretty happy with the amount. I didn't realize how many along the route there were going to be. Now, they were all in the park. There was none out in Anaheim, which is probably good because I wasn't looking too good at that point. I was pretty impressed with how many there were. I think there was a couple more around Paradise Pier that I might not have gotten than in the foreground because I made a beeline over.


First, I wanted to take a picture in front of the Little Mermaid and then I took a beeline over to in front of the lagoon because they had the fountains going. I think they had a photographer there, but at that point I knew I needed to keep myself moving to stay at the pace. I just did a quick selfie. Then, there was another couple of runners that were taking pictures. We did the whole, “I'll take yours. You take mine.”


That was on my camera. Then, there were some PhotoPass photographers with some characters in California Adventure. Again, I just did a quick selfie because the line was too long. I was pretty impressed with the amount I got. As far as the quality, I think they looked great. I may not, but that's not their fault. For my first race, I was pretty happy with it. The ones that I really wanted that I'm thrilled to death with are the ones in front of the castle because that's pretty much why I did it, to be able to get that shot.


Female: Those ones are hard to get good shots too.


Heather: I don't have any good ones from this race.


Female: Depending on how many people are running through, it's too congested. You have to sit back and wait for there to be a little bit of a break and then be like, “Yes, this is my shot.”


Stephanie H: Going through the castle was congested, but I took one. It's at the Partners Statue. It's right at the Partners Statue with the castle in the back. That one I was really, they took a couple with mine and then the PhotoPass photographer took a couple and they're all great. I was really, really happy with them. That's pretty much why I did it, to get that.


Steph : Right, for that one shot. That's so funny. I didn't realize that they had PhotoPass photographers at the characters too.


Female: They-


Heather: Sorry.


Female: Go ahead, Heather.


Heather: I got all excited.


Female: As soon as she heard the word character, she's jumping in. Go for it, Heather.


Female: Heather is going to hate me. I didn't stop for any characters.


Female: You didn't? To each their own, right, Heather?


Female: My goal was basically to make sure I could finish.


Female: I feel like that's your first race, especially because you don't know how it's going to go. I think the first 10K I did I was scared I wasn't going to finish because I'm not a runner at all. I only stopped for one character and it was only because Heather was already at the front of that line. Otherwise, I wouldn't have stopped because I was just like, “I don't know if I'm going to make it.” You never know.


Female: I took a picture where Tinkerbell was near the Matterhorn and then the one in California Adventure it was Chip and Dale and Goofy. I just did a quick selfie in front of them with some random person who was getting their picture taken. What I should've done is stood in front of where they were and taken the selfie to block them, but it was too early to think. I thought that there were PhotoPass people at the characters, but I could be wrong.


Female: Heather? We're deferring to Heather.


Female: Let's defer to the experts.


Heather: At Disney World, they're pretty much at every character stop. At Disneyland, they tend to have more of what they call selfie spots, which I hate because I'm awful at taking selfies. It's worthless to me.


Female: I'm bad at it too.


Heather: There was, it felt like half the characters. It probably wasn't that many, but I can't start counting through my head. There was a bunch at this race weekend that they had out. For the 10K, they had several of the Pooh characters on the omnibus. It was really adorable.


Steph : Cute.


Heather: I took a picture of it, but there was a really nasty cast member there who was screaming at you that you couldn't stop and have somebody take a picture of you. They're like, “It's just selfies because it's faster,” but I keep my phone in an armband. In order for me to take a picture, I either have my camera and it'd be a quick picture or I have to go take my camera out, take the thing, switch it around. It's so much longer for me to take a selfie than it would to just say-


Steph : To do the selfie with your phone?


Heather: Yeah. Then, the next day in the same spot they had the Robin Hood characters on the omnibus and I'm not not taking a picture with the Robin Hood characters. Thankfully, it wasn't the same cast member. They were just like, “Oh, it's a selfie place,” but people were stopping and I found someone to take my picture and I took a picture of her. I got a picture with them.


There was one they had in Fantasyland. They had Pinocchio and Geppetto. I got a picture with Geppetto. In the Half, they had the Three Caballeros on their float from the Viva Navidad thing. Again, I was not going to not get a picture there. Someone took a picture for me. That was good, but those were the kinds of places where they didn't have PhotoPass.


I think most of the other ones generally will have PhotoPass, but I still would recommend having something. If you want to get pictures with characters, either have your phone or I have a small camera that I use just for my races just in case. They also sometimes have not characters, but other kinds of things or-


Steph : Street entertainment.


Heather: Entertainment, yeah, if you want to get pictures with them. I've had other races where they had the Festival of the Lion King performers out or they had places, which made me so happy. On the trolley, they had the Newsboys hanging out of it and I got to take a picture with it. I was so happy.


Steph : Nice.


Heather: It was a really bad race for me and I was just like, “You're my favorite. I love you.”


Female: Then, she fainted in front of them.


Female: They probably never get that. They probably loved it.


Heather: I was so excited. That didn't have PhotoPass. That's the kind of thing you still should have something if you want to take pictures. Most of the time the pictures on their camera will come out. Like I said, that Star Wars one, I think they were figuring things out.


The one on my camera of the few characters they had out came out better than the one they took on their camera. Otherwise, it usually is good. It's a weird lighting sometimes because it could be dark out. Then, there's that weird time where it's between where it's dark and it's getting light. It's just-


Female: Dawn, dawn, dusk is at night. Dawn is in the morning.


Female: What is dawn?


Heather: It's that weird setting. Do you have the flash on your camera? Do you not? Usually, their cameras are fine. To have that backup is nice. The thing that we haven't even really mentioned about is how with the PhotoPass, like you said, if you have annual pass that has it or you have Memory Maker, Disneyland PhotoPass, it's included. You don't pay extra. With the MarathonFoto, you paid extra for each race, for each person in your family or your friends group or whatever.


Female: It wasn't cheap either.


Heather: No, you would-


Female: I'm sure they didn't have a package. I'm sure there wasn't a package like if you pay X amount, you get all of your photos. I'm sure.


Heather: That's what I always would get for the picture for the race. A race would be $60, $70 depending on what you were talking about.


Female: Wow.


Heather: Then, if you did a Challenge, they would have one for the 10K and the Half. That one would be like $100 plus. If you pre ordered, you got a little bit of a discount, but not-


Female: You'd be lucky if you got two solid photos of just you without somebody in front of you, crazy.


Heather: If you're doing several races, say I would do a race and my mom would be doing a race. It would be the thing. Do I want to pay for all of them? I always had to buy her race pictures. I think she should do just a podcast on her race pictures because-


Female: She takes the best race photos.


Heather: They are awesome. I get so jealous.


Female: She does look really good.


Heather: I could just Photoshop my face onto her. She does such a good job with it. I always have to buy her race pictures. It adds up. Now, it doesn't add up because they're basically free if you have that. That's obviously I think the best perk of it.


Female: For sure, for sure.


Heather: You were saying to go back about the number of pictures. I do think that there are some places where they have more photographers I've noticed since they did PhotoPass. When I've done races at Disneyland they had photographers actually standing in the middle of Main Street. You would be running. Right, you never saw that before.


Female: That's cool.


Female: That wasn't there.


Heather: You would be running and you could sort of see the camera. Again, my pictures of course didn't come out because there were people running in front or whatever. I did think it was cool. When I did races at the Star Wars one when you were running under Spaceship Earth they had five or six photographers just all in a row taking pictures. You were pretty much guaranteed you were going to be getting a picture with that.


It is pretty much just in the park and at the finish line. In the Disneyland Half, you run through the ballpark, which is pretty much the reason why I did it at Angel Stadium. That was really cool. That was one of my favorite things to run. They had photographers there outside the park and they had it when you were running through the park. I tried my hardest to make sure I got a good picture because I run in slow motion.


I was like, “Don't get in front of me.” I did get a picture or two. That's all I cared about. That was my castle picture because it's impossible now pretty much to get a castle picture, but I did it. Those are the only places other than the finish line and the parks that they have the photographers. I do think they had more out overall. Normally, they would have photographers out in the starting area when you're walking to the corrals.


Then, after the race when you get your medal, in between the time you're just walking in the finishing shoot, you're not even out yet. They would have photographers there just yelling like, “Hold up your medal.” You'd be holding 50 things in your hands, but it was still something that you got another medal picture or before the race before you got all sweaty and gross you get a, “This is my outfit picture.” I haven't seen that for either coast that I've done that with the PhotoPass.


Steph : Now, wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Am I understanding right? You get your medal before you run the race?


Female: No.


Heather: No, after the race. Those are two separate things. I was saying before the race.


Steph : I was like, “Wait a minute.”


Female: I can't do this. I'll sign up and get a medal and then leave.


Heather: Sorry, I'm getting excited. I'm talking fast. Before the race, there's a whole starting area. It's more a Disney World, a Disneyland. There isn't as much going on in the starting area. It's just you go to your corral it feels like to me. I don't know. At Disney World, they have a whole area. They have characters out.


That's why they're better in the starting area. They have just photographers walking around. I know they have them at Disneyland too because I know we've gotten pictures before we did a race and everything. Then, when you're just walking to the corral it can be pretty far. Then, period, next thing is after the race. That's the medal part.


Steph : I'm with you now.


Heather: The other thing after the race with the medals, speaking of, this is the other thing that I don't like that they've changed. They always used to have, after you finish the race and you get your medal, you get a food box and water and all that stuff. Then, you go to get your official medal picture.


They have all this stuff set up where you can go and get your picture. They always used to have a backdrop that was specific for the race. If you're doing the Princess 5K, it said Princess 5K. It had the picture of the medal and all that kind of stuff. Since they've changed this, they're all generic backgrounds.


It's just a runDisney background. I've always noticed I think they have more of them, but I also notice that a lot of people aren't getting their picture now. It's probably because they're like, “Well, why do I need a generic picture because I can get it anywhere else?” The lines are shorter.


Female: They do put a tag on the bottom because, as you said that, I pulled up mine. It is a generic background, but they put a border across the bottom that had the Tink Half Marathon logo on it.


Heather: There's two issues I have with it. The one is, depending on how the picture is taken, now it's going to either cover up your outfit, it's going to cover up-


Female: True, true.


Heather: The other thing is I've done six races and I've had issues with that at three other races I had. I did the 5K at the Star Wars Race and they put the 10K border on it. I did-


Female: That happened to a friend of mine. She did the Half and they put 10K. I was like, “Call them up.”


Heather: It was worse when I did the 5K and they put the 10K. I'm like, “Oh my goodness,” because I'm superstitious with this stuff. I'm like, “But I didn't do it yet. Why does it say I did it?” I've had in other ones where they didn't. The 10K with this race weekend, one of the things they didn't contact me about, they didn't put any border on it at all. Then, when you do a Challenge, if you do the 10K and a Half, it's this race.


It was a Dumbo Dare Challenge. They have separate lines. If you want to do the Half picture, it's that one and if you want to do the Challenge. I did three different lines because I also did the coast to coast to make sure I got a border for each one. The Dumbo Dare one hasn't shown up yet. That's another one we're still waiting for.


Female: Those border photos showed up no early than five days after the race. They're at the top of the list on when they showed up, which means they're the newest ones to show up. They showed up after our trip.


Heather: It's like if you want to edit the picture, because sometimes it needs to be lighter or it needs to be brighter. Especially with the Star Wars Races, I noticed a lot of them, post pictures, maybe it was because of the sunlight. I don't know. It needed to be brighter.


You know how it is when they have the PhotoPass border on it. If you start changing what that looks like, it changes the border. It doesn't look right. It's harder to edit it. I just really liked the backdrop. Most races, if you see, that's what they do. They have the backdrop for the race.


Female: Backdrop instead of border?


Heather: Yeah, it's just obviously a cost-cutting thing because now they don't have to print up borders for each race.


Female: Lame.


Heather: That's I guess probably-


Female: People that run a lot of races need different backdrops. Don't they know?


Heather: The other thing too is with MarathonFoto they never would take the picture for you. I would ask a person behind me to take it on my camera because I always wanted a picture. With PhotoPass, both times for the 5K they were like, “Yeah, I'll take the picture.” I thought, “Okay, this is great. I don't have to ask somebody.” Then, starting with the 10K they're like, “No, no, no, we can't do it. We're not allowed.”


With the Star Wars 10K, the person behind me was like, “I'm not going to take it because I'm not allowed.” No, you're allowed. It's just they're not allowed. They wouldn't take it on my camera. Then, of course, that picture got lost. The first of those 27 races I've done is the only time I don't have an official picture of me with my medal.


Steph : I wonder if it's timing or something if they take it with their camera plus your camera it delays all the racers that might-


Female: There's lines now.


Female: They do get really-


Heather: They don't and that's the point.


Steph : They don't anymore?


Heather: They don't get in line anymore. There was nobody. I went to, I actually-


Female: When I walked up they took the picture, walked away. It was less than a minute.


Female: Easy.


Female: Weird.


Heather: I think they do have more of them but they also, like I said, I just think a lot of people I notice were just bypassing it because there's no point. They have other spots outside because that's what they tell you. They're like, “There are selfie spots outside.” I went to one and there was nobody. It was actually I think the Dumbo Dare one and there was nobody around at all.


That's why I asked her, “Can you take a picture for me?” She's like, “I can't. I'm not allowed.” I was saying how none of my other ones had shown up yet at that point. My 5K and 10K hadn't shown up. She actually went to someone who was higher up than her and she came over and she's like, “Well, go to guest relations.” I'm just like, “I just want to make sure I have it.” I didn't start with my whole sob story. I had ice on my knees like, “I just want a picture.”


Female: Heather would've started crying at that point. That's a crying time right after a race.


Heather: Long story short, she did. She's just like, “I'll take it.” I did get a picture, but I can tell you that after the Star Wars Half, it's like I love this, but look at all these problems I have. I actually fell during that race two miles in. I fell hard and I was really injured. I was all bleeding. I stopped at every medical tent. It was awful. This is how bad I was. I didn't even stop for characters after the race. I went right back to the room.


Female: That's bad.


Heather: That's how bad I was. Again, it was the whole thing. I wanted the picture and the photographer was really nasty to me. As soon as I was done, I started bawling. It was just everything combined in the race, that was the straw that broke it. That is what happened I feel like. That's how hard it is.


Steph : It sounds like to me, and I guess I haven't been to any races. I don't really know. I really probably shouldn't weigh in. It sounds like to me that maybe the lines are shorter because they're saying that. Tanya said that some of the lines do get long. Maybe they're not-


Female: They used to.


Heather: They used to.


Steph : They're super short now because they're saying that they can't. Everyone is taking all their photos out front.


Heather: No, they always said they couldn't take it.


Steph : Really?


Heather: They always said they couldn't. That was the thing with them. They never let you take it. That's why I always would ask the person behind me and they would be like, “Okay, and I'll take it of you,” and that whole thing.


Female: MarathonFoto never took pictures with your camera. They wouldn't touch your camera.


Heather: That's why when they had switched to PhotoPass in the 5K for both races they were like, “Yeah, I'll take it.” I thought, “This is great.” That's why it was weird. Then, the other races, they didn't. Like I said, the lines, like Tanya was saying, the lines used to be long and they'd be all the way backed up.


They would be yelling at you, “There's more spots,” but they would also be just as long. That's why now six races that I've done since this there's been practically no lines. That's why sometimes there wasn't even someone behind me to ask to take the picture.


Steph : Interesting, interesting. Is there anything else on your list that is urgent? We're about through our time. Heather?


Heather: No, I think we talked about how easy, you have it on your app now. You couldn't do that before with the MarathonFoto. You had to wait.


Female: Just like a PhotoPass card, it's really easy.


Steph : Stephanie, what about you? Was there anything else you wanted to hit on?


Stephanie H: I think that was it.


Steph : Great, thank you for being here. Let's remind our listeners where they can find each of you. We have Heather Winfield here from, do you want to do your outro, Heather?


Heather: My character site is, I love characters, and it's I'm on Twitter and Instagram. I'm HeatherW25 and I have a Facebook page for my character site and it's I Love Characters.


Steph : Perfect. Tanya?


Tanya: I love characters. You can find me on-


Steph : In case you didn't get it.


Tanya: In case you didn't know, you can find me on all social media at TanyaH666 and my blog is


Steph : Thank you. Then, Stephanie?


Stephanie H: You can find me at for paper crafting goodness.


Steph : Thank you for being here and we will see you next time on Capturing Magic.



  • NoelleW

    You’re back! And I binged 2.5 episodes in one day, dreaming about Disney rather than working. Yay! Please please….keep the podcasts coming!