Monday, May 18, 2015

Events: Star Wars Celebration & More (2015 Road Trip Part 3)

Following part one (read HERE) and part two (read HERE) of our 2015 Disney themed road trip, I bring to you part three!

At the end of yesterday's post, I had left off writing about our evening finishing up at California Adventure. After we watched It's Tough to be a Bug, I was briefly browsing through Instagram for a moment only to find out that the line for Star Wars Celebration (there at in Anaheim at the convention center) had already begun for the J.J. Abrams The Force Awakens panel. This happend around 8 p.m. that Wednesday and the panel wasn't starting until 10 a.m. on Thursday! Since a big part of our trip was attending the Star Wars Celebration (especially that first panel) we decided to be "hardcore", grab some comfortable fold out chairs and "camp out" over night to secure our chances of getting in. So we picked up some stuff at the motel, met up with my brother Rob (who flew in to CA that evening to attend this with us), did a quick t-shirt change (from Pixar fan to Star Wars fan) and started the walk over to the convention center.

And yes, if you were wondering, we did make it in plenty of time to snag a place in line for the live panel!

Of course though, this is a Pixar blog- so I won't be going into many details of the Star Wars convention itself (it would take days of posts just to cover everything we did there during that weekend), but I did want to cover some experiences there that actually do relate to my love for Pixar and meeting some fellow Pixar fans.

First of all, during that first night while pulling an all-nigher there in the convention center, I was able to meet and mingle with a couple followers of my blog. Theresa, also known by her Society6 shop "Forever Wars" (and by chance she was also the designer of that The Force Awakens shirt I was wearing that night), was a blast to talk to. She's a big Pixar and Star Wars fan, so definitely check out her shop HERE and Instagram page to view some of her Disney·Pixar themed items (including some very cool Up merch that she designed herself).

That night I also was able to meet another fellow Pixar fan and blog follower, Steve Crellin. He's someone I knew just a little bit from some online chit-chating back and forth, so it was fantastic meeting him in person! If you're a Disney Infinity fan or listen to the Media Meltdown Podcast (MMP), you may have heard of him. He has been a guest on Disney Infinity TV many times and is the co-host of the MMP. We actually got to hang out with him, his fiancee Sarah and his daughter quite a bit during the convention; we had some really awesome times and some good laughs! It was so fun meeting some great new friends who share the same passion for all things both Pixar and Star Wars.

Me and Steve
Brita and I with Steve, Sarah and his daughter Lyla!

We also met up with and became very good friends with Adrianne and Kristin, two big Disney·Pixar fans (husband and wife) who I've followed on social media for quite some time now! Adrianne, like myself, is a big time Cars collector (that's how I originally found him on Instagram) and so it was fun talking about all that stuff. Kristin is a Disneyland cast member who is a collector of Toy Story "Little Green Men" (the Pizza Planet alien) and has quite the collection of them! We all had an absolute blast together during the weekend and I look forward to hanging out more someday. If you're interested, be sure to follow Adrianne's Cars collection on Instagram HERE and Kristin's page HERE.

Me and Adrianne
Adrianne is a diehard Cars fan- just look at his license plate! 

While I was browsing all the merchandise booths there on the convention main floor, I was always keeping my eye out for anything Pixar related...and this was something really neat that I found! Say hello to R2-Lightyear.

On Sunday after the convention was done, Adrianne and Kristin offered to bring us over to the Company D-Team Center outlet store! This store is for cast members only, but for outsiders (like me) you are allowed to go in with a cast member present. Everything in there is on sale for up to 75% off, which mostly consists of older Disney Parks merch that never sold. Anyway, this whole thing was so much fun..I was like a little boy in a candy shop in there! A big thanks to Kristin and Adrianne for allowing us to come along with them to check it out. Such a unique experience.

After all that, on our way up back through Las Vegas and Utah, we hit up the Mattel outlet store and a couple of Disney Stores (one being a big outlet Disney Store in Las Vegas). We didn't end up finding any rare items or anything like that, but it was fun browsing around nonetheless.

There we have it! Day three of our trip. If you've been following these posts, be sure to check back tomorrow for my write-up on meeting Pixar's "lucky charm" there at the Star Wars Celebration. Stand by!

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