Sunday, June 29, 2014

Disney Bounding

Ashley has been wearing costumes to Disney theme parks since before we bought our first digital camera in 2005. I think her first costume was Pooh -- which she also wore for Halloween that year. Princesses, as you can imagine, were a popular choice with her. Even her doll, Jenny, got into the action and wore her own costumes, which have since been passed down to Cabbage Patch Doll Pamela. 
The problem is, Disney has a little-known rule that costumes may only be work by children and not by adults. Anyone who has bought a ticket to Walt Disney World or Disneyland knows that Disney (unfairly) defines a child as 9 and under. Once you hit double-digits, you can't wear costumes anymore.

I understand the rule. Disney is concerned about adults dressing as characters and being mistaken as such characters. I heard a story about a 15-year old who dressed like Tinkerbell and even posed for pictures. She was asked to change and even offered appropriate clothing, but instead went home in tears. On our 2011 trip to Disneyland, I saw many people doing double-takes as Ashley walked by in her Alice in Wonderland costume. She was 9 at the time. The following year we did not go to Disneyland at all. 

When she was 11 we returned for the Disneyland Half Marathon and were pleasantly surprised to learn more people are dressing sort-of like Disney characters in a move called "Disney bounding." This really captured Ashley's attention -- it is a way for her to wear a costume, without breaking Disney's rules. 

Disney bounding = hinting at dressing like a character
Disney costumes = hitting you over the head with dressing just like the character

Disney seems to be offering more events for wearing costumes. The most recent was their 24 hour event held in May. There are also special Halloween events. Our favorite are Dapper Days. The trouble is, we live so far away it is hard for us to take advantage of these special days. Disney bounding is something we can do every time we go to Disney.

Here are Ashley's outfits:

Her favorite was Anna (from Frozen) because lots of people immediately recognized her as Anna. 

In the end she preferred Disney bounding to wearing costumes because with Disney bounding she was creating her own outfit, and because they were more comfortable. Still, most days she just wanted to be regular girl Ashley. She is the one I love the most.

I found this picture from May 2010. You could call it an early Disney Bound outfit, though she had earlier ones: 

I save my Disney bounding for races:

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