Didn’t Get Into The Disney Marathon? Run For Charity

Disney marathon, Walt Disney World Marathon, run Disney

Runners pose in front of Cinderella Caste. (Photo: runDisney)

Disney lovers, it’s not too late the run the 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon presented by Cigna on Jan. 13. The Marathon, Half Marathon and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge may be sold-out, but there are still a few ways to get in on the runDisney action.

A record 58,000 runners have registered for the event, with 27,000 toeing the line in the half marathon and 25,000 in the Disney marathon. A whopping 10,000 participants will tackle both races as part of Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge, which dares runners to complete the half-marathon on Saturday and the marathon on Sunday during the Walt Disney Marathon Weekend. 

If you’d like to be one of them, you still can by registering through a group, charity, or the Runner’s World Challenge, which give runners access to training advice from Runner’s World editors along with other VIP amenities.

I ran the ING New York City Marathon for a charity in 2007, and can attest to the warm, fuzzy feelings running for a good cause can give you. All charity entries have a required minimum amount runners must fundraise on their behalf ranging from a few hundred dollars to over $1,000. But many also include other perks like free park tickets, special hotel and transportation packages, racing gear, training programs, discounted race entry fees and more. Check with each charity to confirm their race packages.

Disney Marathon Charities

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training is the official charity partner and race beneficiary for the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. They have entries for the marathon and half-marathon available.

A-T Children’s Project has spots for the Disney marathon and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge.

Team ASPCA, Run for Our Sons, Joints in Motion and St. Jude Heroes are looking for runners for the half, marathon and Goofy.

My nephew shows off his medal. (Photo: Phil Hospod)

So is The MAGIC Foundation, which I was surprised to discover used a photo of my very adorable nephew showing off his Disney Kids’ Races medal on their registration page. If that face doesn’t convince you to run for a children’s charity, I don’t know what will.

Autism Speaks had two Disney marathon and nine half-marathon entries available at press time, and Team JDF, Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Tourette Syndrome Association’s Team TSA  have half marathon entries up for grabs.

Other charities that participate in the Disney marathon include Covenant House, Team Diabetes, Caleb’s Crusade and American Liver Foundation. For a complete list of charities participating in the 2013 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Weekend, check here.

Regular registration is still open for the Family Fun Run 5K, runDisney Kids’ Races and the Mickey Mile. But you can run many of those through charity too. Chances are, you’ll be glad that you did.

As a member of the running media, runDisney sometimes provides me with complimentary race entry, hotel, park tickets, and some meals for runDisney events. But as always, all opinions are purely my own. I really do believe in being honest about my experiences. For more information read my Disclosure Policy.

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a regular contributor to SHAPE.com, the host of NYRR's On The Run web + TV show, and a race announcer at events like the TCS New York City Marathon. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now she freelances as a running reporter. She's run 7 marathons, 20 halves, 6 triathlons, sings in an '80s cover band, spoils her dog + travels compulsively.

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09 2012

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