Princess Half Marathon Weekend

Be a runDisney Princess!

Monthly Challenge

Virtual Coast 2 Coast Step Challenge!

Star Wars Weekends

A galactic experience for the whole family!

Fan Girl Favorites

Enjoying Star Wars, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Disney and all things Geeky!

Running With A View

Running, trails, biking, challenges, nutrition; it's all things I care about and love to do.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Virtual Coast 2 Coast Interactive Map: Beta Version!

The Virtual Coast 2 Coast is on!  We have so many great challengers out there; the competition is stiff!


As promised, the IT Department has developed an interactive webstie which displays our progress on a map!  And the Beta Version is out!

Here is how it works:
-on the left menu, select the names of those members that you would like to see on the map
-click on "Submit" to load
-click on "Submit" again to display

** not all the members are in the database yet
** not all step numbers are in the database yet

However, we should be live on Monday!

If you haven't turned in your steps for January, just email (kesselrunner77@gmail.com) or message them to me! 

Just a reminder on the challenge guidelines:

- You will have from Monday, January 5th 12am to Saturday, November 7th Midnight to complete the challenge.
- The Goal is 4,800,000 steps 
- Everyone who finishes will receive a Finishers "Coast 2 Coast" Medal
- There will be mini goals and prizes each month to boost encouragement and motivation
- Anyone and everyone can join - as long as you have a pedometer/tracker - invite your friends!

I'm very excited about the map and seeing where we all are!

Let us know what you think!

Comment Below or contact me at kesselrunner77@gmail.com

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dashing Through The Dome 2014

What better way to spend a rainy, cold night than running through the Superdome!  And that's exactly what I did this past Friday at the Dashing Through The Dome Race!


The Dashing Through The Dome event was a 2-mile Ramp Run through the Superdome ending on the field!  Participants received an awesome t shirt and tickets to the New Orleans Bowl!


This event turned out to be a race for all ages and even Santa!


Monday, December 15, 2014

Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk 2014!

The Crescent City Classic, Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk has always been one of my favorite
runs!  With the relish of family traditions, the joy of the holidays, the charm of City Park, the magic of the lights in Story Land, and the challenge of the run, this race definitely expresses the Spirit of New Orleans!

Even though the race began at 3:30, the crowds were early as families and friends joined each other for this holiday tradition!  Laine Thomas, one of the event coordinators, told me she was expecting over 2000 people to participate!

The excitement began to build at 2:30 as Santa arrived!

Everyone was encouraged to visit Santa for a free picture and to share their wishes!  I just wished for no more coal and switches!


Next up was the costume contest!  Costumes are a favorite pursuit in the running community and this event was no different!

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Force is Awakening: It's Time for the Star Wars Half Weekend!


Can you Feel the Force Awakening?  You Should!  The first-ever Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend is just a jump into hypserspace away!


Whether you are a apart of the Rebel Alliance, a follower of the Dark Side, or just a wandering Wookiee, you will want to know all the important information leading up to your race!

First Up, Find Your Bib #:  Follow this link to Print Your WaiverLocated on the last page on the bottom right, will be your Name, City, Age and Bib Number.

Once you have your Bib#, you will need to proceed to locating your Corral through these links:
Next, begin Studying The Maps!  Know where to stop for water, where your first aid tents will be and what to expect on the course.

And Finally, it's time to Plan for the Race!

May the Force be with You!

kesselrunner77@gmail.com


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk 2014


Celebration in the Oaks in City Park, New Orleans, is one of the most spectacular holiday lights festivals in the country, with lights throughout the park, Santa, Storyland, Christmas Trees, and the toy train village, it is a magical place for your family to enjoy!  And this Saturday, December 13th, 3:30pm, you can enjoy free admission to the Park by participating in the Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk ! 

This event is a local Holiday favorite of mine, and it will become one of yours, too!  

As a Crescent City Classic blogger, I'll be there with bells on and would love to have you with me!  

Registration and Event Details are in the Press Release;  all we need is You!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Geek Your Gifts

It's time to wrap up your shopping and to help here are my geeky, somewhat nerdy gifts for the Fan in your life!

 For The Star Wars Fan!




For The Harry Potter Fan
 


T-Shirts Game Night with Harry Potter Scene It?  |  Hogwarts Scarfs  Deathly Hallows Earrings


 The Gamer

 Dr Who Fan



Family Game Nights



Need More Ideas?  Check out My Favorite Things or email me at kesselrunner77@gmail.com

Running is a Gift, Treat Yourself or Someone You Love!

Gifts for the Runner or Fitness Mom!

Running is a gift!  Actually all forms of training and exercise are gifts that we give ourselves and share with others!   And here are some gift ideas for the fitness fanatic, the first time runner or that health-minded mom in your life!

Fitness Minded



 
Running Enthusiast



amazon testing

obagi eye

Tips for Wizard Con New Orleans 2015

Comic Con The Walking DeadGet your Geek On Folks!  It's time for Wizard World and New Orleans Comic Con!

This year's event is scheduled for January 9-11 at the Morial Convention Center.  

This convention is not the same in New Orleans as it is in other cities.  New Orleans is full of excitement, friendly smiles, old-time jazz, delicious food, and a soulful, rich culture!   What better place to express your Geek-ness than a place known for its originality and self expression! 

And this year's Wizard Con has some very exciting guests!

Norman Reedus
Tom Felton
Evan Peters
Karl Urban
Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley

The chance to meet these and other stars is an opportunity you will not want to miss!

And to make sure that you make the most out of your weekend, here are my tips for having an out-of-this-world experience at the New Orleans Comic Con!

1.  Buy your tickets for entry, autographs, photo-ops online in advance.    At-the-door prices are higher, you will be waiting in line, and you might not be able to get the tickets you want if they sell out.  The star list will be amazing, so get your tickets now.

2.  Arrive early!  This is New Orleans, and this is a big pop-culture convention; it will be crowded!  So, get there early to get your parking spot and good seats at events.   Check the Public Parking Map for more information..

3.  Bring Money!   There will be lots of vendors and opportunities that you don't want to miss.  The Convention Center does have an ATM, but the fees for their use is high!  Set your budget and bring cash if you can.   

4.  Have Fun!  This is the place and the city for you to make your geek statement, dress up and have fun !  

But, don't take my word for it - see the fun that we had last year!

Wizard Con 2014 - Recap

Comic Con New Orleans Dr Who


----------I hope to see you there!

Need more information on this or other related events?

Contact me at kesselrunner77@gmail.com



Star Wars Stuff



STAR WARS Battlefront (Deluxe Edition) - Xbox One

Can You Imagine... Marvel vs DC ?

Wouldn't it be amazing if the worlds of Marvel and DC combined? What an awesome movie!


It would be an epic cinema event, and one we'd watch over and over!

What do you think?
kesselrunner77@gmail.com

Star Wars Half Marathon Maps!

The Star Wars 5K, 10K and Half Marathon Maps!


The 5K, 10K and Half Marathon all start and stop at the same points.  With each race, you will experience the wonder of Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure!  And just as your miles broaden in the 10K and Half Marathon, so will your view of the expanded Universe of Disneyland, California Adventure and the surrounding areas! 

It is obvious that the Force will be with the Course!  Looking forward to experiencing this inaugural race!
#letthewookieewin
#MTFBWY
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Need more information?  Contact me at kesselrunner77@gmail.com

Press Release for Celebration In the Oaks Run/Walk

THE ALLSTATE SUGAR BOWL CRESCENT CITY RACE SERIES GETS INTO THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT WITH CELEBRATION IN THE OAKS RUN/WALK

NEW ORLEANS (Dec. 9, 2014) – The Allstate Sugar Bowl Crescent City Classic Race Series is gearing up for its annual Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk. The family-friendly two-mile race takes participants This 2-mile course takes participants through New Orleans City Park during their annual Celebration in the Oaks Light Display and features hot cocoa, Santa, and much more!

WHEN:  Saturday, December 13, 2014 at 3:30 p.m.

WHERE:  The race begins in City Park on Victory Ave. near Storyland and ends on Victory Ave. by the Great Lawn, where the race festivities take place.

WHY:  The Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk is NOLA’s favorite holiday fun run! The course takes participants through City Park to see their annual Celebration in the Oaks light display, where the park is decorated with over 500,000 lights! The day is filled with hot cocoa, pictures with Santa, a holiday costume contest and much more!

This race is particularly popular with families, and many running or walking this event do so with strollers or children by their side.

After the race, participants can enjoy free refreshments and complimentary entry into the walking tour of the beautifully decorated Botanical Gardens, Storyland and Carousel Gardens, before the gates are open to the public!


Registration is available online for $30 for adults, $25 for children and $25 for military. You can pick up your bib at the event with an ID.

RACE DAY  SCHEDULE:                 
1:00 p.m. – The “Family Fun Zone” opens on Goldring/Woldenberg Great Lawn
1:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. – Face painting, photos with Santa, costume contest, warm up  session
3:30 p.m. – Race begins
5:00 p.m. – The post-race celebration ends on the Great Lawn; participants allowed entry into Celebration in the Oaks

Sanaa Restaurant - A Savannah Dining Experience

The Sanaa Restaurant located in the Kidani Village of the Disney Animal Kingdom Villas, is definitely a welcomed change of pace from your Disney adventures.  Sanaa serves both lunch and dinner and is a pleasure that is missed by many but was enjoyed by my family at our last visit to Walt Disney World.

Having planned our reservation to Sanaa on a day we were exploring the Animal Kingdom, we caught a bus to the Kidani Village from the Animal Kingdom Villas bus stop. The Kidani Village lobby is beautiful with a glass back wall, giving you a full view of the Savannah.  The restaurant is found down the staircase in back of the lobby, and once there you feel as though you have arrived at an African Game Reserve: gazing upon giraffes, zebras, ostrich, kudu, and gazelles.  After checking in for your reservation, walk out onto the deck.  This view should never be passed up.  It’s amazing to see the animal so close, and you and your family quickly get immersed in the wonder and magic of Disney, and you forget for a moment that you are still in Walt Disney World. 


I always encourage guests to talk to the Cast Members they meet, as you will hear fascinating stories of far away places and cultures.  We met a special Cast Member, Bulelani, from South Africa, and he shared with us the many facts and stories about giraffes.  We hung on his every word and really enjoyed talking to him! Did you know that giraffes in their native habitat sleep only 30 minutes a day?  They take very short naps because of the constant danger of predators.  We saw a giraffe lying down, and he told us you would never see that in the wild.  So odd but fascinating!   Bulelani continued to entertain us by talking about his home, and we were amazed that there are 11 native languages in South Africa!
 
Our adventure continued as our name was called and another wonderful Cast Member sat us at our table.  Amee was from Botswana, and she told us that is was very hot in Botswana but that Florida was way too humid for her – she could hardly breathe! 


The menu at Sanaa is a fusion of African and Indian – the best of both worlds!  They did include a Bison Burger on the menu in case your tastes are more traditional.  The entrees were delicious, but the desserts could not be beat in display or taste!  I had the Tanzanian Chocolate Mouse (my mouth waters just thinking about it today!).  Everything on my plate was made of chocolate – including the butterfly and the writing on the plate!  At this point, I became a little selfish, and would not share with anyone, no matter how much they begged; it was way too good! 




After the enjoying your meal, don’t let the adventure stop – be sure to explore the Resort! One place to stop is The Library.  As you enter the lobby from the stairway, walk down the hall on your left… you will find a sign for the Library.  We actually thought we were going to a Library (we are readers).  However, we found a beautiful sitting room with an outdoor porch where you can sit in rocking chairs and enjoy the Savannah View. 


With the beauty of this Resort and the tremendous views, you can understand how easy it would be to get lost in the moment and feel as if you had been transported to the exotic continent of Africa!  It was a perfect ending to our visit to the Kidani Village.  Don’t you think it is time for you to enjoy Disney’s Animal Kingdom?


Cyber Monday Tips


I'm not a Black Friday shopper mainly because the FanGirl and Guy stuff I'm looking for isn't always going to be in a brick and mortar store.  I find Cyber Monday shopping has a better selection, is more convenient, and is more me! 

I did go out Friday afternoon, after the big push, to see what was out there and to talk to retailers.  The general consensus was check on Monday - they should have the same deals online.  And some retailers told me they would have cyber deals all week.

Here are my tips for Planning Cyber Monday, and being a Successful Cyber Shopper!

5 Tips for Planning Cyber Monday

1.  Use a Savings Card
  • Target Red Card:  It's FREE, is tied to your debit card, and gives you 5% Off and Free Shipping
  • Sam's Card:  $45 for basic Savings Card, and you will receive exclusive deals 
  • Amazon Prime:  $79, free shipping, a must for online shopping
Always check these 3 to compare pricing before buying toys, video games and electronics.  Many people head to big specialty stores, but they do not always provide the best prices.

2.   Make a List

You don't want to buy things you don't need, so have a list ready, and the gifts prioritized.  List out everyone by name, along with small gift items.  Some websites offer special offers like free shipping for reaching a purchase level:  a small gift just might get you to that limit.

 Cyber Monday will not be the only sale day before Christmas; stick to your list and be patient.  

3.  Be Cyber Safe
A big online shopping day means a big day for criminals, too:  online scams and potential viruses will be waiting for the unexpected buyer.  Limit your shopping to merchants you know and trust.  Go to their sites by typing in their URLs into your browser address bar:  DON'T click pop-ups or links in emails!    Do not use free wi-fi; stick to your home, office or secure locations because even a reliable wi-fi spot may have eavesdroppers waiting to hijack your personal information! 

4.  Do Your Research

A Great thing about online shopping is it allows you to effortlessly read product reviews, see what is popular and determine if your gift is best for the fan girl/boy on your list.

5.  Enjoy Shopping!

Buying gifts should not be stressful:  it should be thoughtful and fun!   Giving someone a gift is letting them know how important they are to us; so, plan, execute and enjoy Cyber Monday!

Need Ideas?  Check My Favorite Geeky Gifts!

or for the Fitness Buff in your life,  check Essential Gifts for Runners!
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Contact Me for more information at kesselrunner77@gmail.com