Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

( 119 reviews )
100% of reviewers recommend this race
  • Orlando,
    Florida,
    United States
  • January
  • 3 miles/5K, 6 miles/10K, 13.1/Half Marathon, 26.2 miles/Marathon, Other
  • Road Race

Erin

Sydney, Australia
80 35
2016
"A fun half around the parks"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
Erin 's thoughts:

If you're competing in the Dopey Challenge, this is the first race that takes you outside the EPCOT park area. For Goofy runners, this is the first event of the weekend.

Expo: The WDW Marathon Weekend Expo is much bigger than anything you'll find at Disneyland, given they have much more space. Exhibitors take up two different locations at Wide World of Sports, and packet pickup/gear pickup is spread between three locations depending on your events. I liked that the Dopey & Goofy participants were able to pick up their bibs and gear in the same building. Once again, challenge runners need to get their picture taken at pickup so they're able to cross reference at the end of the final event.

Swag: You'll get the race technical shirt (6 shirts if you're competing in the Dopey Challenge/3 for Goofy Challenge participants), gear bag and a mini Clif Bar. There's plenty of product samples from painkillers to Clif products to bananas from the exhibitors on the floor.

Course: The course starts outside EPCOT, and heads up towards Magic Kingdom. The first 9km or so is on roadway however WDW-owned roads allows character stops along the course. There's approx. 4 photo opportunities before Magic Kingdom however the lines can be long. The course seemed to be incredibly crowded on the way up and I felt that I ran most of the way on the grass beside the path (can I call it a trail race?).

Once in the Magic Kingdom, you'll be running up Main Street, around Tomorrowland/Fantasyland and through the castle which is where the problem point is. I don't know if it's because the Frozen characters were on the balcony at the entrance, or if it's because only one ramp was open to get through the castle; however we came to a slow crawl underneath. It didn't make matters any better when people stop for selfies in front of you (note: they make room at the bottom of the castle for pictures). From here it's outside of the park and down back towards EPCOT and onto the finish line.

There are points in the course which are narrow & due to the crowd you may end up running on the grass. It's super important in this scenario to remember etiquette and move over to the right if you're not running (please don't just stop where you are - keep running until it's safe to move over).

Aid Stations: There was plenty of water/Powerade stops along the course, although I carried my own electrolyte drink. For food, there's a Clif Gel station. Medical was well represented on the course.

There were plenty of portaloos before the corrals and on the course, plus all restrooms are open in the parks.

Atmosphere: There is on course entertainment such as performers, music and characters which add to the magic.

Post-race: Disney are great for herding runners through the finish line area. Challenge runners do have to go through seperate tents once they've picked up their medal. Food-wise you do get a runner's box full of goodies plus a water (and Powerade if you please) however there was additional food to purchase (which also took Magic band payment).

The Family Reunion area is large, so organise a meet-up before you run (especially if you're international like me and messaging is a crazy amount) but you'll find race merchandise, celebratory flowers and balloons on sale here as well as a livestream of the finish. The buses to resorts leave from the end of the reunion area, lines were pretty manageable.

Overall: It's a great half marathon course, fairly flat (with exemption of the overpasses)! There definitely was a lot more street running than what I was led to believe - with Disneyland races you've got the parks first so the excitement tends to settle after about 40 mins. It was great to get out into another park (and to see the Castle) after running around EPCOT for the first two days of the Dopey Challenge.

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