Halloween at the Walt Disney World Resort

runDisney Announces The “Goofy Giveback” – New Opportunity To Participate At The 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

posted on September 16th, 2014 by Faron Kelley, Director, Marketing & Communications, Disney Sports


Last week millions of viewers across the country witnessed an amazing transformation. They tuned into ABC’s hit summer series “Extreme Weight Loss” and watched as show hosts Chris and Heidi Powell guided a father/daughter team through a reward challenge at the 2014 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna.

The social media response to Jeff and Juliana’s story was incredible. Viewers shared how they were inspired and motivated by the father / daughter story. Many pledged to make changes and adopt a healthy active lifestyle. And several people expressed that they would like to take participate in the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, but it was sold out.

Well we have good news for you.

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Based on the overwhelming guest response runDisney is pleased to announce the “Goofy Giveback”, a unique opportunity for you to participate in the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon and Half Marathon.

Want more details? Take a look at this announcement video.

For more information and to register for the Walt Disney World Marathon, Half Marathon or Goofy Challenge, visit runDisney.com.

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Every Role a Starring Role – runDisney Event Manager

posted on September 11th, 2014 by Melanie Vogel, External Communications Specialist, Disneyland Resort


From helping with the initial course design to ensuring every last race day detail is in place, runDisney event manager Shannon Abeyta and her team work year-round to ensure “every mile is magic” during Disneyland Resort race weekends. See how Shannon’s work came to fruition during the 9th annual Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend in this episode of “Every Role a Starring Role”!


For more from the “Every Role a Starring Role” series, check out the posts below:

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Three Generations Crossing The Disneyland Half Marathon Finish Line Together

posted on September 5th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


Here is a little secret, I love my job and working with runDisney. Event weekends are exciting and standing at the finish line watching thousands of people accomplish their goals is uplifting, rewarding and sometimes emotional. From cheers of excitement to tears of joys, the stories that unfold at the finish line are incredible. I am truly inspired meeting and talking with our runners. Their stories provide messages we can all learn from.

Three Generations Crossing The Disneyland Half Marathon Finish Line Together ‘it’s a small world’ At Disneyland Paris

Last year I introduced the runDisney community to 81-year-old Flor Irlandez from Portland, OR. In 2013 she was the oldest runner to complete the inaugural Dumbo Double Dare at Disneyland Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort. She ran the Disneyland 10K on Saturday and the half marathon on Sunday, 19.3 miles. Last weekend she returned to run the 2014 Dumbo Double Dare, this time at the age of 82. Running with two of her daughters, a son in-law and grandson, she once again completed the two-day event and collected three runDisney finisher medals and family memories to last for years.

There are a couple lessons we can takeaway from Flor’s accomplishment.

First, we should not let age be a barrier to accomplish our goals. Flor’s message is simple, “Just get going, not just running, but walking, getting out, sweating …. I just feel good after a run, everybody should do it.”

Second, participating in a runDisney event can be fun for the entire family. Flor has inspired three generations to lead a healthy active lifestyle. “It just makes it fun and it’s no longer about running and racing, but about being together and being healthy as a family,” says Marissa Walker, Flor’s daughter from Berkeley, CA.

Flor, your accomplishments are amazing, not just in running but also in how you have inspired generations. We all look forward to seeing you at the finish line for years to come.

For more information and to register for a runDisney event, visit runDisney.com.

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#DisneyKids: First runDisney Race

posted on September 4th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


Okay, I am just going to be honest with you, this Disney First is really cute and the photos and videos below are guaranteed to put a big Disney smile on your face. What do you get when you combine adorable kids in costumes, Disney characters and a runDisney event? You get unforgettable Disney memories that will last a lifetime.

This past weekend hundreds of kids participated in their first runDisney race at the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort. From the 400 meter run to the diaper dash, our youngest competitors lined up to challenge themselves and each other.

If you or your child wants to experience a runDisney first at Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort, visit runDisney.com for more information and to register.

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I runDisney: Dave McGillivray

posted on September 3rd, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


Dave McGillivray is the race director of one of the most prestigious running events in the world, the Boston Marathon. Every April he and his team put on an elite event, attracting the top marathoners in the world. It is the one race every runner hopes to qualify for and complete in. McGillivray is also an accomplished runner who has competed in races around the globe. At one point in his early years, he literally ran across the country, Medford, OR, to Medford, MA, for charity. He lives, works, eats, and breathes running.

Running is extremely personal to McGillivray, the roots of which start at an emotional time in his life. As a child McGillivray wanted nothing more than to be an athlete, but each time he tried to make a team he was faced with a challenge, his size, and turned away. In elementary school he gave it one last shot and tried out for the basketball team. Not lacking in ability but lacking in height the coach once again cut him. At the age of 12 this was a defining moment in his life. It was then he decided he would never again let anyone tell him he wasn’t good enough and he took up running because no one can cut you from that.

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“Running gives me self confidence, it gives me self esteem, it makes me feel good about myself,” McGillivray said. His message to runners and those thinking about starting to run, “never under estimate and never not appreciate where you’re at, that you have this gift to be able to do this (run).” “Never take it for granted that you are healthy enough to do this,” he added. And speaking of health, recently McGillivray was hit with a heart related health issue and he reminds runners, “That just because they are fit doesn’t mean they are healthy.” Make the right choices to take care of yourself for you and for those around you.

Some of his McGillivray’s favorite race memories are those from runDisney events. This veteran of several runDisney marathons, and the 2014 inaugural Dopey Challenge, gives high marks to the entertainment and excitement for Disney races. “It is one of the most well managed, well orchestrated road races I have ever competed in,” McGillivray said. Having young kids he’s also quick to point out how exciting these destination races are for the entire family.

We hope you will take a moment to be motivated by Dave McGillivray’s story and see the unique way he celebrated his 60th birthday. There is no doubt Dave McGillivray has gone and continues to go through life running.

#WhyIrunDisney is dedicated to sharing compelling and motivational human-interest stories. To view submissions and to learn how to upload your story, visit irundisney.com.

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Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend 2014: Merchandise First Look

posted on August 25th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


How many of you will be joining us this weekend for the Disneyland Half Marathon? Here’s your first look at some of the art that will appear on some of the most sought after event merchandise, including performance T-shirts, short and long sleeve T-shirts, hoodies, jackets, drinkware, hats, pins and more.

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A true fan favorite is, of course, the men’s and ladies T-shirts emblazoned with the “I Did It” message on it, with the course map featured on the back.

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As you know the “Dumbo Double Dare” is back! You’ll find plenty of merchandise, including men’s and ladies’ T-shirts in a variety of silhouettes featuring both the Dumbo Double Dare logo and the ever famous “I Did It,” along with a jacket, hoodie, sports bottle, keychain, headwear and car magnets.

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Other great selections will include runDisney performance T-shirts, shorts, a zip hoodie, headwear, sports bands, a magnet, cinch sak and my personal favorite, a runDisney Medal Holder.

Want more? Because we have it! Keep an eye out for specially created Dooney & Bourke bags, trading pins, Vinylmation, drink ware and, of course, our “Coast to Coast” collection.

If you’re looking to make any of these items part of your Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend experience or look, then I’d recommend you race to the Health & Fitness Expo at the Disneyland Hotel, as this merchandise will go fast.

Good luck to everyone participating in this year’s event!

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I runDisney: Jeff Galloway

posted on August 18th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


When it comes to running, Jeff Galloway is a rock star. And if you don’t want to take my word for it, stop by the runDisney booth at a health and fitness expo and witness the line of people waiting to meet and get advice from this running legend.

runDisney fans know Galloway as the training consultant for runDisney. His Run-Walk-Run method is credited for getting thousands of people off the couch, running and crossing finish lines at Disney and races around the world. His warm southern charm combined with his passion to help every runner succeed, makes him adored by all who come in contact with him.

Galloway’s professional running career is historic and well documented. Running alongside Steve Prefontaine and Frank Shorter, he was a member of the 1972 Olympic Team in Munich, Germany. His extraordinary running resume includes winning the inaugural Peachtree Road Race 10K in Atlanta, winning the Atlanta and Honolulu Marathons, and a 7th place finish in the Boston Marathon.

One might think an athlete with those credentials is unapproachable and incapable of relating to the average runner, however with Jeff Galloway, those preconceived notions are far from the truth. With his competitive juices evaporated like the sweat from the thousands of miles he has logged, Galloway is committed to helping all of us become better runners and achieve our goals.

“What I have discovered is I get a whole lot more back in helping another person than I ever got in doing this for myself,” said Galloway. “I’m one runner trying to help another runner and that gives me tremendous joy.”

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Practicing what he preaches, Galloway uses the Run-Walk-Run method in all of his races. At most events you will find him running alongside his wife of 37 years, Barbara. He credits his parents, both educators, for giving him the ability to teach. His professional running career provides the credentials and platform to be heard.

The accompanying video provides a small glimpse into Galloway’s spirit. He talks about what jump started his running career at the age of 13, his motivation for running today and his passion for runDisney.

I invite you to come out to a runDisney event to meet him in person and run with him during a race. One tip, when you meet Galloway ask about his unexpected path to the 1972 Olympic Team and the unselfish act of friendship and sportsmanship he demonstrated during the Olympic Trials. It is a story that will leave you in awe; it is a story that makes Jeff Galloway a legend on and off the course.

Jeff, thank you for what you do for runDisney and for runners around the world. You are changing lives, and in the end that is bigger than any medal and raises you higher than any winner’s podium.

As the official training consultant for runDisney, Galloway provides training plans for runDisney events. His plans and videos on how to get off the coach and use the Run-Walk-Run method to jump-start a healthy active lifestyle can be found at runDisney.com.

#WhyIrunDisney is dedicated to sharing compelling and motivational human-interest stories. To view submissions and to learn how to upload your story, visit irundisney.com.


For more from the “Why I runDisney” series, visit the stories below:

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Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend Finisher Medals Revealed

posted on August 7th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


runDisney is looking to provide major incentive for runners training for the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort, November 14-16. After months of meticulous design work, here are the finisher medals for the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon, Avengers Super Heroes 5K and runDisney Kids Races. All three medals pay tribute to some of our favorite Avengers super heroes.

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For the more than 12,000 unleashing their inner super hero and taking on the half marathon, the Inaugural Mission finisher medal features a spinning inner medallion with the signature Avengers “A” on one side, and symbols recognizing Captain America, Thor and Hulk on the other.

The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Inaugural Mission Finisher Medal Front The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Inaugural Mission Finisher Medal Back

Although individual registration is sold out for all events, there are a limited number of spots remaining through through our charities and travel providers. For more information on those opportunities click here, and to get information on future runDisney event weekends, visit runDisney.com.

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I runDisney for Those I Couldn’t Help – I am Running for Charity

posted on August 4th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


At 34 years of age, Tisa Daniels of Round Hill, VA, is a wife, a mother of two boys and a runner. Four years ago Daniels returned to the sport to accomplish two things; fight off weight gain as she quit smoking cold turkey and start living a healthy, active lifestyle to be a role model for her oldest son. A couple years later after taking a 15-month break to have her second child, Daniels would again look to running to help battle through postpartum depression.

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Today, Daniels is running strong as a veteran of several 5K and 10K events. Her current goal is to run the Glass Slipper Challenge at the 2015 Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend presented by Children’s Miracle Networks Hospitals at Walt Disney World Resort, February 19-22. Running a 10K on Saturday and a half marathon on Sunday will push her body to new limits, but the distance and physical challenge is not all that’s new. This time she is running for a cause- she is running for charity.

Daniels is thankful that her kids have never needed the services of a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, but working as a social worker at a Level 1 Trauma Center she has witnessed first hand the blessing these facilities bring to kids and parents. It is for those kids, and kids of future generations needing a local hospital that she has dedicated these races to raise money for CMN Hospitals. “I am running Disney as a charity run to help all the families I have seen though the years but couldn’t help,” Daniels said.

Running for charity is a great way to add more meaning to your experience and offers you a chance to give back to people and organizations in need. Starting with the 2015 Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend, runDisney is excited to offer our charity partners the opportunity to use CrowdRise. This registration platform makes it easier for runners to find a charity, register for an event, then track and share their fundraising progress with friends and family.

As Daniels told me, “It is the ultimate gift to be able to raise money to help families who you don’t know, who you’ll never meet, who need it.”

To get information on running for a participating runDisney charity, visit CrowdRise. And click here if you want to join Daniels and run the 2015 Princess Half Marathon presented by Children Miracle Network Hospitals.

#WhyIrunDisney is dedicated to sharing compelling and motivational human interest stories. To view submissions and learn how to upload your story, visit irundisney.com

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New Challenge, New Medal For Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort

posted on August 1st, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


Well runDisney fans, Tinker Bell is at it again!

With a little faith, trust and pixie dust, runDisney introduces the Pixie Dust Challenge for Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort, May 7-10, 2015. Runners looking to test their wings and register for the challenge will take on the Tinker Bell 10K on Saturday and the Tinker Bell Half Marathon on Sunday. At the end of your 19.3 adventure you will receive the inaugural Pixie Dust Challenge finishers medal, in addition to your 10K and half marathon finisher medals.

Whether you participate in the runDisney Kids Races, the Never Land 5K, the Tinker Bell 10K or the Tinker Bell Half Marathon, runners can expect Disney entertainment and excitement throughout each race. Peter Pan, the Lost Boys and Fairies will cheer you on all weekend long as you make your runs through Neverland, the amazing Disneyland Resort and along the historic and charming streets of Anaheim.

Registration for the Pixie Dust Challenge and all Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend events opens on Tuesday, August 12, Noon EDT / 9 a.m. PDT, at runDisney.com.

Here’s a little message from our very own Tinker Bell.

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