When the event guide came out for the Dark Side weekend, the best news EVER for a runDisney enthusiast was shared.
PhotoPass photographers would replace Marathonfoto as the official race photographers. The internet rejoiced.
Now, I don’t hate on Marathonfoto. They did me some solids in the past with searching out particular pictures not showing up in my account. But the cost of their packages, especially for a multi-race weekend, were simply crazy pants.
This news was most welcome because the race photos were now part of Memory Maker, which was now part of my Annual Pass.
Who says Disney doesn’t give you things for “free?”
Well… sorta. They did increase the price of the APs and all that, but hey, at least there was some value added in the form of pictures.
But how did they do as race photographers?
How PhotoPass worked
All pictures were manually tagged. I talked to a PP at Epcot on Monday who said by 8:45 am that day, the process had been complete. (Some pics of mine are still missing… sooo… read on about that). But that’s pretty amazing if you think about it!
You couldn’t link your race bib numbers until the system can find a picture of you. So pre-linking would not work; you had to wait until after the race to link your numbers.
You had time to purchase and link-up. The pics were not gone within 24 hours if you delayed. I didn’t link mine until Sunday night and all my 5K pictures from Friday were there.
There were not as many photographers milling around pre-race in my opinion. This was not a bad thing!
Normally you are aggressively accosted by MF folks asking to take pics as you walk through the staging areas. This time around, I was only approached by one- and she didn’t even make me stop walking to take the pic.
They were also in attendance for the character pictures.
You could have your own phone used as well and I did, just in case something went wrong with the process.
But PP did a great job!
There were TONS of photographers on the course. TONS.
And rD made a great show of letting you know when one was coming up. They used neon green balloons to mark a photo spot. Most locations had bright lights set up as well (no more dark pics!) and due to the threat of rain the photographers had a green pop up tent to sit under.
It was “easy” to get a picture this go around: just look for the balloons and move to the side if you wanted to be in one!
I die, 24885.
PP photogs were also at each character stop. I can’t speak about the 501st stops since I did not stand in any lines for those awesome folks, but it looks like they might have had photogs for some of those opps as well.
I know the official Disney characters and props were manned by PP.
Finisher photos FTW!
I have skipped these in the past because frankly I’m too cheap.
You know I love my medals and taking pictures with them, but hey, for a $15 download the iPhone shot will do.
But not this time.
I love love love that I got a picture with my two favorite people to drag me through races. I love me some Yanni and John! (Since John is a photographer himself, he tends to be left out of the race shots but we made sure to pull him in this one!)
The PP folks were also at all the character stops as well in the post-race area.
There are a few pictures I remember mugging, er, stopping for that I do not see in my account. I’ve read on Facebook that you can call PhotoPass, describe what you were wearing, and they may be able to hunt up any missing pictures.
It might be worth a shot.
Overall, I’m giving the experience a big thumbs up. If Tink runs as smoothly (different park, different photographers) then I think Disney made a move that benefits runners by switching to PP. ETA: a friend with PhotoPass info confirmed that Florida PhotoPass is traveling to Tink. This sounds like great news!
Here’s the link to purchase your 1-day PhotoPass at Disneyland.
What did you think of the PhotoPass photographers on the course? Are you happy with the change?
Patty Holliday has been running Disney since 2011. She knows just about every tip, trick, and hack there is to cover the runDisney Magical Miles at Disney World and Disneyland. She knows every mile isn’t *always* magical- but most of them are pretty full of pixie dust at Disney!