Posts Tagged ‘Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon’

Disney Wine and Dine Half 2016 By The Numbers

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

Jason Simpson set a race record at the 2016 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon. (runDisney)

The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2016 presented by MISFIT from November 3 to 6 at Walt Disney World in Florida hosted 31,000 runners tackling food-themed races.

The three-day extravaganza featured the new Disney Wine & Dine 10K along with the inaugural Lumiere’s Two Course Challenge, which had runners feasting on the 10K and half-marathon on back-to-back days. The weekend also included Mickey’s Holiday 5K, runDisney Kids Races, the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo, and the weekend’s signature post-race party where Epcot and the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival stayed open into the wee hours for runners and ticket-holders.

Take a look at the numbers behind Disney’s tastiest race weekend.

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

For the first time, the half marathon took place in the morning. (runDisney)

225 million—dishes will served during the 62-day 2016 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

266,000—cups of water given to runners during race weekend

250,000—runners who take part in runDisney events each year

31,000—registered runners for the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2016 Weekend 

14,000—runners registered for the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

12,651—finishers at the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

10,000—runners registered for the Disney Wine & Dine 10K 

9,260—finishers at the Disney Wine & Dine 10K

6,000—runners registered for the Disney Wine & Dine 5K Read the rest of this entry →

How To Run Sold-Out Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

How To Run Sold-Out Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon (runDisney)

Didn’t get into any of the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend races? You can still run by registering with a runDisney Charity Group or Travel Provider. Bibs for the half-marathon, Disney Wine & Dine 10K, Lumiere’s Two Course Challenge, and Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5K from November 3 to 6, 2016 are available.

The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon is typically runDisney’s fastest selling race weekend. The 2016 races sold out in under 3 hours when registration opened Tuesday, March 29. The 10K and half-marathon filled within 30 minutes. The 5K and challenge weren’t far behind. Registration is still available for the runDisney Kids’ Races as of post time. Visit rundisney.com for more info or to register.

The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon welcomes in 2016 a new Ratatouille-themed 10K and two-day race challenge, along with a new half-marathon route and start time for the main event. The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon is moving from Saturday night to Sunday morning due to ongoing construction and new hours at the theme parks. The race’s signature Post Race Party at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival will still take place under the stars from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Sunday night, when Epcot stays open late solely for runners and party ticket holders.

If you want to be among them, register to run with a charity or travel agent.

How To Run Sold-Out Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

The 2015 Wine & Dine Half Marathon Medal (runDisney)

2016 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Charity Groups Program

runDisney Charity Groups offer guaranteed entries, discounted Walt Disney World Resort hotel rates, specially-priced Walt Disney World theme park tickets, and discounts on other race amenities. Check with each group individually for their requirements and benefits. To register, contact each group below. Read the rest of this entry →

Disney Wine & Dine Half Adds 10K, Challenge, New Time

Disney Wine & Dine Half Gets New 10K, Challenge

Minnie greets finishers at Disney Wine & Dine Half (runDisney)

The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon is getting a new menu of events, following in the footsteps of every other runDisney race in the U.S. The race weekend at Walt Disney World from November 3 to 6, 2016 will debut the new Disney Wine & Dine 10K, Lumiere’s Two Course Challenge, and a new half-marathon course and start time. Registration for the 2016 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon opens March 29, 2016 at 12 p.m. Eastern at runDisney.com.

The Disney Wine & Dine 10K, with a Ratatouille theme, will take place Saturday, November 5 as the first course in Lumiere’s Two Course Challenge. The second course is the title half-marathon on Sunday, November 6. The new 13.1-mile route will take runners through Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Epcot, and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and forgo Disney’s Hollywood Studios due to ongoing construction at that park.

Traditionally a nighttime race, the half-marathon is moving to morning. Why? Walt Disney World is planning to open all four of its theme parks during nighttime hours, limiting when races and race set-up can take place. (Read about the behind-the-scenes process in Planning Disney Races Takes More Than Magic.)

Disney Wine & Dine Half Gets 10K, Challenge

“Rivers of Light” at Disney’s Animal Kingdom (Disney Parks)

New attractions expected to open by race day in November include the nighttime Rivers of Light at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and the Frozen Ever After experience at the Norway pavilion in Epcot.

But don’t worry runners: the race’s signature Post Race Party at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival will still take place under the stars from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Sunday, November 6, when Epcot stays open late solely for runners and party ticket holders. Now you’ve got time to shower and relax before partying the night away with Festival food booths, Disney characters, musical performances, and special access to Epcot attractions. Read the rest of this entry →

10

Mar 2016

Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 Registration Opens

Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 Registration Opens

Minnie cheers runners at the Wat Disney World Marathon. (Photo: runDisney)

Registration for the Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 Weekend opens Tuesday, April 28 at 12 p.m. ET. Disney’s signature running event kicks off the new year from January 6-10 at Walt Disney World in Florida. The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna is the largest running festival in the U.S. with more than 65,000 finishers in five races and three race challenges: Walt Disney World Marathon, Walt Disney World Half Marathon, Walt Disney World 10K, Walt Disney World 5K, runDisney Kids’ Races, Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge, Dopey Challenge, and Disney Castaway Cay Challenge.

Race Report: Walt Disney World Marathon 2016

Runners dash through Cinderella Castle. (Photo: Todd Anderson/runDisney)

Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge dares runners to complete the half-marathon and marathon on back-to-back days in order to earn a Goofy designed medal. The Dopey Challenge asks runners to take on the 5K, 10K, half-marathon, and marathon on four consecutive days for a special Dopey-themed medal. The Castaway Cay Challenge is for runners who opt to add on a 4-night Bahamas cruise from January 11-15, run a 5K race or longer at the Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 weekend, and complete the Castaway Cay 5K on Disney Cruise Line’s private island.

The Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 weekend also includes the free runDisney Health & Fitness Expo, free Cool Down Party at Downtown Disney, ticketed Pasta in the Park Party, ticketed breakfasts after the 5K and 10K, ticketed Race Retreat before the half and full marathons, and Runner’s World Challenge race packages.

Registration for the Runner’s World Challenge is already open and 50 percent full as of press time. Registration for all the other events will open Tuesday, April 28 at 12 p.m. ET.

New Balance Releases New Disney Shoes For Princess Half

The 2015 New Balance runDisney Retro Collection

The weekend is usually runners’ first chance to buy the newest edition of the coveted New Balance runDisney running shoes, as well. In 2013, 2014, and 2015 new styles of the shoes went on sale for the first time at the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. The shoes aren’t available online and can only be purchased at runDisney race expos.

For more information about the races, pricing, or to register for the Walt Disney World Marathon 2016, visit runDisney.com.

Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 Weekend Sell-Out Times?
Walt Disney World Marathon 2016 Registration Opens

The Magic Kingdom archway (Photo: runDisney)

The 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend broke all of the event’s previous sell-out records. The Dopey Challenge, Walt Disney World Half Marathon, Walt Disney World 10K and Walt Disney World 5K all sold out within 24 hours. The Walt Disney World Marathon filled up in 21 days, shattering the nearly four months it took the 2014 race to sell out.

Only Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge and runDisney kids races had availabilities lingering longer. Read the rest of this entry →

Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek Disney Race Weekends

Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek Offers Disney 'Marathon Weekends'

Runners at the Walt Disney World Marathon (Photo: runDisney)

During my latest visit to Walt Disney World for the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend, I stayed at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek for two nights to get the scoop on their Marathon Weekends, offered during many runDisney races since 2011. Marathon Weekends at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and the adjacent Waldorf Astoria Orlando offer runners complimentary transportation to runDisney half-marathons and marathon, an included pre-race breakfast and send-off party, discounted rates that include late check-out, a runner’s concierge, and more.

Disney 'Marathon Weekends' at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

Deluxe Double Queen guest room (Photo: Hilton)

My room was large, comfortable, and clean with a beautiful view of the pool and Walt Disney World beyond. And best of all, it was within the gates of Walt Disney World Resort—a 10-minute drive to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios—with free transportation to the parks. I thoroughly enjoyed the hotel and would stay there again in a heartbeat when visiting or running Walt Disney World. The value and bang-for-your-buck is exceptional.

As a mid-week guest I wasn’t able to experience the Marathon Weekends myself, but chatted with folks in the know, got a look at some of the runner amenities like the welcome bag, and took in much of what the resort had to offer. I ran the property, lounged poolside in a cabana, made use of guests’ 10% discount at the Waldorf Astoria spa, hit the lobby coffee shop—which has some amazing pastries, by the way—and more.

Here’s the low-down on Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek Marathon Weekends and runner-friendly amenities at the resort. Read the rest of this entry →

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015 Charity Bibs

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Charity Bibs

Charity runner at Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon (Photo: runDisney)

2016 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Charity Information Is Here! How To Run Sold-Out 2016 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

* * *

The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015 Weekend of races sold out in an unprecedented 30 minutes when registration opened Tuesday, March 17, with both the half-marathon and Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5K getting snapped up within a half hour. But you can still run the November 6-7 races at Walt Disney World by registering via the runDisney Charity Groups or Travel Providers Programs.

Registration is still available for the runDisney Kids’ Races and Wine & Dine Pre-Race Taste. But don’t dawdle. The Kids Races were 90 percent full and Pre-Race Taste 85 percent full as of press time. Visit rundisney.com for more info or to register.

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015

Cheer! Runners get a complimentary drink at the finish. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com

No doubt the race weekend received a popularity boost as the only fall event at Walt Disney World in 2015. Previous years saw the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler in October, another nighttime race that may have split the pool of interest among runDisney fans. But with no Tower of Terror in 2015 and Expedition Everest Challenge making its final bow in May 2015, Wine & Dine becomes the only nighttime race in runDisney’s repertoire and the only fall offering at Walt Disney World.

It doesn’t hurt that the race also has the best post-race festival known to runner kind, in the form of the Finish Line Party at Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, which keeps Epcot open until 4 a.m.

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015 Charity Groups Program

runDisney Charity Groups offer guaranteed entries, discounted Walt Disney World Resort hotel rates, specially-prices Walt Disney World theme park tickets, and discounts on other race weekend amenities. Check with each group individually for their requirements and benefits. To register, contact each group below. Read the rest of this entry →

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Registration Opens

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Registration Opens

Runners at the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon. (Photo: runDisney)

Looking for 2016 info? Look here: Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Registration Opens With New Races
UPDATE 3/17/15
The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon and Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5K sold out in 30 minutes! If you want to run, you can still register with a charity or tour provider: Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2015 Charity and Tour Bibs

Registration for the 2015 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World from November 6-7 opens Tuesday, March 17 at 12 p.m. EST. The race celebrates its sixth year.

How To Make Aladdin & Jasmine Running Costume

Bling! (Photo: Marathon Foto)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: this might be my all-time favorite half-marathon. I ran Disney Wine and Dine in 2011 and 2013, as part of press trip courtesy of runDisney and New Balance, and loved every minute. I hope to keep running it for years to come. My husband proposed at the Finish Line Party after the race in 2011, so it’s our anniversary race of sorts.

But the proposal isn’t the only reason I love Disney Wine and Dine Half. The night-time race means dazzling Disney park lights and one killer after party that bumps all night long. This race is the best bang for your buck of all of runDisney’s half-marathons.

The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon starts at 10 p.m. outside the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and traditionally takes runners through Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, past Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts, and finally to the finish at Epcot. It’s a route runners won’t find at any other half-marathon. The Walt Disney World Half Marathon and Disney Princess Half Marathon share the same course. But Disney Wine and Dine is truly unique.

Plus, the race finishes with the best post-race party I’ve found—at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival, which stays open until 4 a.m. just for runners. Admission to the Finish Line party is included in race registration, along with a $15 Disney gift card and a complimentary beer or wine at the finish. Read the rest of this entry →

16

Mar 2015

How To Make An Aladdin & Jasmine Running Costume

How To Make Aladdin & Jasmine Running Costume

A Whole New World of running costumes! (Photo: Marathon Foto)

In honor of the 2014 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon, I thought I’d share how I put together an Aladdin and Jasmine running costume for my husband and me. We dressed as the duo at the 2013 race, and had a blast in the process.

Aladdin and Jasmine were definitely the easiest of the running costumes I’ve put together:

Cinderella and Prince Charming

Cinderella in Rags and Jacques the Mouse

Cinderella in Pink

Beauty and the Beast‘s Belle in Blue

The Hunchback of Notre Dame‘s Esmeralda

Honestly, this is a costume that anyone could make. If you want to put together your own Jasmine and Aladdin Disney running costumes, here’s my step-by-step “How To.”

How To Make An Aladdin & Jasmine Running CostumeHow To Make A Jasmine Running Costume

Gather all the pieces you need to transform into Jasmine. I have zero background in sewing, so the sewing tools I used are:

1. Needle and thread

2. Safety pins

3. Double-sided tape

4. Scissors

The costume items I used are:

1. Harem pants

2. Shorts

3. Tank top

4. Neck gaiter

5. Ribbon Read the rest of this entry →

How To Buy Disney New Balance Shoes At Wine & Dine and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekends

How to buy Disney New Balance shoes at Wine & Dine and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekends

New Balance 890v4 runDisney Cinderella shoes

Runners, your last chances to buy the 2014 Disney New Balance shoes are here: Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World in Florida from November 7-8, and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland in California from November 14-15.

The procedure for buying the Disney New Balance shoes will be the same for each race. Registered runners have the chance to get an appointment at the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo on Friday of each race weekend. The general public can march straight to the expo on Saturday. Runners can also go to the expo on Saturday.

How To Buy Disney New Balance Shoes At Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Registered runners can sign up with their bib number online at NBvirtualQueue.com, beginning at 6:00 a.m. Friday, November 7 to get an early bird appointment to try on and buy Disney New Balance shoes.

How to buy Disney New Balance shoes at Wine & Dine and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekends

2014 Sorcerer’s Apprentice Mickey Mouse Shoe

You can reserve one style and size through the virtual queue, and pick up to five more pairs at your appointment.

Spectators and other shoppers can buy the Disney New Balance shoes at the expo on Saturday. For more information and to sign-up, visit NBvirtualQueue.com.

After you sign-up, you’ll get a text or e-mail confirming your group letter and a time to return to the expo. Then you’ll get a second notification when it’s time to high-tail it to the expo for your appointment. Head to the New Balance tent to check in near the West Entrance to the Jostens Center. They’ve got a queue that tells you when it’s your turn. Read the rest of this entry →

Pixie Dust Challenge Flys To Tinker Bell Half Marathon

Disney adds Pixie Dust Challenge to Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend

Runners get their Tink on at the Tinker Bell Half Marathon. (runDisney)

You asked, runDisney answered. Disney’s running branch today announced the addition of the Pixie Dust Challenge to the 2015 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland in Anaheim, California from May 7-10.

The inaugural Pixie Dust Challenge follows in the footsteps of other popular runDisney challenges like the Dumbo Double Dare at Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend and Glass Slipper Challenge at Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend. Runners who register for the challenge and complete both the Tinker Bell 10K on Saturday, May 9 and the Tinker Bell Half Marathon on Sunday, May 10 earn a fairy-themed medal in addition to a medal for each race.

Disney adds Pixie Dust Challenge to Tinker Bell Half Marathon

The start of the Tinker Bell 10K. (runDisney)

The Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend, Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland and Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World were the only runDisney half-marathon weekends without multi-day running challenges, along with the shorter distance The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Weekend and Expedition Everest Challenge.

The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend has the Dopey Challenge and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge. The Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend has the Rebel Challenge. Dumbo Double Dare at Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend and Glass Slipper Challenge at Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend round out the challenges.

Yet, race challenges have proven especially popular among runDisney fans, often selling out first among each weekend’s events. The 2015 Glass Slipper Challenge filled up first in 1 hour and 45 minutes despite technical difficulties when registration opened for the Disney Princess Half Marathon and the 2015 Rebel Challenge reached capacity in just 25 minutes before any other Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend event. Read the rest of this entry →

Liebster Award Q&A, Nominations + Silly Photos

Liebster AwardThanks to Danielle at Live, Run, Grow for including me in her Liebster Award group of blogs!

In grade school, I absolutely hated chain letters. But I actually enjoy reading Liebster Award posts, even if they are the blog equivalent of chain letters. They’re a fun way to learn something new about other bloggers and spread some blogger love.

Here are the rules:

  • You must link back to the person who nominated you
  • You must answer the 10 Liebster questions given to you by the nominee before you
  • You must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award
  • You must create 10 questions for your nominees
  • You must go to their blogs and notify the nominees

I’m not a fan of “musts.” Play along if you like, and if not, no worries!

Danielle’s Liebster Award Questions

1. If you could run any race in the world what would it be?

This is tough. I’m torn between a fast, iconic race in a fun city, like the Berlin Marathon or a destination race in a locale I’ve always dreamed of visiting, like the Marathon International de Moorea in French Polynesia. When I dream, I dream big!

That could be me in Moorea! (Photo: Te Moorea Club)

That could be me in Moorea! (Photo: Te Moorea Club)

2. What is the best race you’ve run so far?

I can’t pick just one! There are very few marquee races I’ve run time and time again, mainly because I’ve got a big bucket list and love experiencing new places and new races. Of the 21 half-marathons and marathons I’ve run, there are only three I’ve revisited more than once: TCS New York City Marathon, Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon and Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. I’d run them every single year if I could. Read the rest of this entry →

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Registration Opens

wine run, Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Chef Mickey and Minnie greeted runners at the finish of Disney’s Wine and Dine Half Marathon on Nov. 9, 2013. (Photo: runDisney)

Registration for the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend from November 8-9 at Walt Disney World in Florida opens Tuesday, March 4 at 12 p.m. EST.

It’s no secret that the Wine and Dine Half Marathon is my favorite half marathon. I ran the 2013 race as part of a press trip sponsored by New Balance and runDisney. In 2011, the event was my first runDisney race and where my husband proposed. So it will always be a sentimental favorite.

But that’s not the only reason I love this race. Marriage proposals aside, it has the best post-race party I’ve ever been to, at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival.

The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon starts at 10 p.m. outside the ESPN Wine World of Sports Complex and takes runners through Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, past Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts, and finally to the finish at Epcot.

Once there, runners can party until 4 a.m. with Epcot all to themselves. Admission to the Finish Line party is included in race registration, along with a $10 Disney gift card and a complimentary beer, wine or soda at the finish.

wine and dine half marathon

My husband and me with the real Aladdin and Jasmine. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)

Friends and family can also buy tickets to the Finish Line Party, where select Epcot attractions like Test Track and Soarin’ remain open into the wee hours. The party also includes all the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kiosks, live bands, DJs, and meet and greets with Disney characters. My husband and I got a photo with Aladdin and Jasmine while we were dressed as Aladdin and Jasmine at the 2013 race. In 2011, we photographed ourselves around the world. Read the rest of this entry →

Year in Review: Top 13 Races and Top 13 Posts of 2013

Toronto Waterfront Marathon, year in review

Finished! (Photo: Marathon-Photos.com)

Oh, 2013. Without setting out to do it, I ran 13 races in 2013. And I wrote a whole lot about them. Welcome to my year in review.

I started the year with a bang at the Walt Disney World Marathon. And I’m ending with a bang with the Runner’s World Holiday Running Streak.

In between, the year was filled with a roller coaster of highs and lows.

There was the thrill of a new 3-mile PR after the low of a hip injury. I’m the klutz that fell off a horse. It knocked me out of the game for a few weeks and sent me into physical therapy.

There was the high of running in Hawai’i and the low of getting sick for my fall marathon. And there was the redemption of a 5K PR after marathon season was over.

If 2013 taught me anything, it’s that you can’t win them all. But you can still have fun trying.

This photo of me with my finisher’s medal at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon is proof of that. I was sick, failed to run a marathon personal best like I wanted, but still managed to enjoy the race. My smile says it all.

And you know what? When you give a goal your best and fail, it makes the successes even sweeter. I ran 6 of the 13 races either as fun runs or training runs and I ran 7 of the 13 races as races, pushing with everything I had. I managed to PR at three of them, and scored a few PRs in workouts without even trying, too. I’ll save those for my Goals of 2014 post.

So here are my 13 races of 2013. Read the rest of this entry →

Why Do You Run Disney? I Run Disney Because…

run Disney

Kids and kids at heart at the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. (Photo: runDisney)

112 years ago today, a man was born who would have a profound influence on my own life, my family, and millions of other people worldwide. On December 5, 1901 Walt Disney was born in a small house on the northwest side of Chicago. I grew up not too far from there, 30 minutes due west of the city and Walt’s first home.

Walt and Mickey watch over Magic Kingdom in the "Partners" statue. (Photo: Gene Duncan/Walt Disney World News)

Walt and Mickey watch over Magic Kingdom in the “Partners” statue. (Photo: Gene Duncan/Walt Disney World News)

So today, Walt’s Birthday, feels like the right time to reflect on why I run Disney.

Why I Run Disney

When I was about 8-years-old—just 30 minutes and 85 years from where the man behind the mouse was born—I promised myself I’d never forget what it felt like to be a kid. I was surrounded by grown-ups who had clearly forgotten.

I don’t remember the inciting incident, but I remember the day clearly.

I was sitting on the grass by the pond next to my house picking dandelions. A grown-up I didn’t know well yelled at me, essentially, for having fun—the kind of fun a kid has on warm spring days, doing cartwheels, singing, playing and like. Maybe I accidentally cartwheeled into her, or maybe I was giggling too loudly. Whatever I’d done, I thought it was innocent child’s play. The grown-up did not.

Her grumpy admonition stung. As I sat sulking, staring at the grass stains on my pants, I promised myself I would never, ever forget how it feels to be a kid.

It was a solemn promise that I’ve held close to my heart. I run Disney races because of that promise. Read the rest of this entry →

Race Report: Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon 2013

2013 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon, 2013 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Minnie jumps for joy at the 2013 Wine & Dine Half Marathon Finish. (Photo: runDisney)

The fourth annual Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon on November 9, 2013 at Walt Disney World in Florida was a record-breaking run. I attended the race on a press trip sponsored by New Balance and runDisney.

In this post, I’ll walk you through the entire race day experience including:

  • Running in Costume
  • The Course
  • The Start
  • The On-Course Entertainment
  • The Finish Line Experience
  • The Finish Line Party
  • My own race experience
  • And a slideshow of photos from the event
2013 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Men’s winner Justin Scheid. (Photo: runDisney)

Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Justin Scheid, 27, of Sparta, N.J. was the top man, breaking the course record by more than 90 seconds in 1:11:47. He won the race easily, breaking away from the lead pack near the halfway mark and running solo to the finish.

Kristen Tenaglia, 29, of Seminole, Fla. obliterated the women’s course record by nearly 3 minutes, finishing in 1:23:37. Appropriately, she’s a tech rep for New Balance, runDisney’s official shoe partner.

2013 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Women winner Kristen Tenaglia. (Photo: runDisney)

We mere mortals also helped break a record at the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon too: 12,134 runners finished the race, the most in the event’s four-year history.

The race weekend also included the Health and Fitness Expo, Disney Jingle Jungle 5K and Kids’ Races, all at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

It’s no secret that Disney’s Wine and Dine Half Marathon is a favorite among the 60 races I’ve run. My husband proposed at the Finish Line Party in 2011, and it was my first runDisney race. The Finish Line Party also happens to be the best post-race party, bar none, of any race I’ve done.

So when New Balance and runDisney invited me to be their guest for the race, I returned in 2013 with high expectations, but also trepidation. Would it be as much fun as I remembered? Could 2013 possibly live up to the magic that was 2011? Could I really run a half marathon in harem pants? Yes, yes and yes.

2013 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Running as Aladdin and Jasmine (Photo: Marathon Foto)

Running in Costume

It helped that my husband, Phil, and I dressed as Aladdin and Jasmine. As I learned a few Disney races ago, running in costume is always more fun.

We got cheers the entire race from other runners, Disney employees in the parks, volunteers at fluid stations, spectators along the course, you name it. Barely a minute passed without us hearing shouts like:

“Look! It’s Aladdin and Jasmine!”

“Go Aladdin and Jasmine!”

“Why don’t you just take your magic carpet? That would be a lot faster!”

“You’re in a whole new world now!”

It motivated me to keep going and made the whole experience more fun. As usual, a post on how I put those costumes together is yet to come. Read the rest of this entry →

14

Nov 2013

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