Halloween at Walt Disney World Resort

Vintage Walt Disney World: Happy Anniversary, Walt Disney World Marathon!

posted on January 10th, 2013 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


This year marks the 20th Walt Disney World Marathon presented by Cigna. The race has grown over the years from 8,200 runners to more than 55,000 participants today.
“Walt

Dubbed the most magical 26.2 miles on Earth, the race wound through all three Walt Disney World Resort Theme Parks at the time.
“Walt

The route isn’t the only thing that has changed over the years. The finisher’s medal also has evolved. Below is a look at the very first Mickey medal awarded to runners as they crossed the finish line at the inaugural running of the marathon took place on January 16, 1994.
“Walt

The Walt Disney World Marathon continues to be the only marathon where you have a pretty good chance of seeing this guy rooting you on while you run; you just might recognize him.
“Mickey

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New Vinylmation and Dooney & Bourke Items Celebrate 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon

posted on January 7th, 2013 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


“New

I admire those who participate in marathons. I tried running once but didn’t find as much enjoyment as I do with taking photographs. My girlfriend likes the runDisney events, so I think I’ll stick with taking pictures of her while cheering at the finish line. Soon, thousands of fans will be cheering for those participating in the 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna on January 10-13, 2013. There will be a variety of 20th Anniversary merchandise items available during the weekend. A few items, however, caught my eye due to their unique designs.
“New

Vinylmation is no stranger to the Marathon Weekend. This year, Disney artist Maria Clapsis designed one 3-inch figure that resembles Mickey Mouse in running attire. The figure has a space where a participant can write in her or his finishing time. The things I loved the most, however, are the new mini-medals for the Full Marathon, Half Marathon and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge that can be added to the figure. Each medal is sold separately from the figure.

Maria will be meeting with guests during the Downtown Disney Cool Down Party being held on Sunday, January 13, 2013. She will be at D Street in Downtown Disney West Side from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
“New

Two new Dooney & Bourke handbags will make their debut at the Disney’s Health & Fitness Expo located at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. I spoke with Disney Design Group Artist Susan Foy who created the artwork for these bags.

“I enjoyed mixing the Mickey Mouse silhouettes with a variety of patterns for these new bags,” explained Susan. “The navy ground color really makes the design pop. I even added a silhouette of Mickey running as a nod to the marathon. These two items will also have a special leather hangtag attached with the marathon logo.”
“New

If you already ordered these bags when you registered, don’t forget to pick them up at the Playstation Pavilion at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex starting January 10 from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Additional quantities of bags will be released at the Expo for those who missed the pre-order.

I wish all participants the best of luck!

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Stars to Be Out for 20th Walt Disney World Marathon Meet-Up

posted on January 4th, 2013 by Faron Kelley, Director, Marketing & Communications, Disney Sports


UPDATE: Click here for a complete list of attendees. If you are on the list and did not receive a confirmation email, please contact us at WDW.SportsMeetUps@Disney.com. Please note that we will not be responding to questions via this email address. If you have questions, please ask them on the Disney Parks Blog, and we will do our best to answer them.

UPDATE: We have reached capacity! Thanks for everyone’s interest in the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Meet-Up and Warm-Up, and we appreciate your quick responses. At approximately 2 p.m. ET, we will send the meet-up attendees a confirmation email. If you are on the list and did not receive a confirmation email, please contact us at WDW.SportsMeetUps@Disney.com. By 3 p.m. ET, we will post a link to the complete list of attendees. Stay tuned to the Disney Parks Blog for additional unique opportunities in the future.

It’s a celebration of the 20th Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna and we’re planning the biggest and best runDisney meet-up yet.
“Runners

The upcoming early morning event, planned for Friday, January 11, will feature several well-known former endurance stars, as well as Hollywood celebs, to help get everyone ready for the big weekend.

Plans are for our first “corral” of personalities to include Olympic gold medalist Joan Benoit Samuelson, New York and Boston Marathon champion Bill Rodgers, Runner’s World columnist Bart Yasso and athlete/television host Dick Beardsley.

One of the celebs planning to attend is singer, dancer and actor, and now runner, Joey Fatone, who is taking on the Goofy Race and A Half Challenge. Fatone was a late addition to the weekend lineup of celebrities running Disney.
“Jeff

Rarely last, and most certainly not least, no marathon meet-up would be complete without runDisney’s official training consultant, Jeff Galloway, who has run all 19 previous Disney marathons. The former Olympian and developer of the Run-Walk-Run training method will share his experiences and expertise as well.

And of course, there might be a Disney personality or two there as well.

Space is limited. If you don’t want to be left out in the cold, RSVP right now to WDW.SportsMeetUps@Disney.com. Only a limited number of qualified runners will be selected to participate, so be one of the first to apply.

In the meantime, here are a few things you should know:

  • All selected participants must be available for a 7 a.m. ET start time on Friday, January 11.
  • Qualified applicants will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • A valid photo ID is required. Participants must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Limit to one RSVP per individual. Applicants sending RSVPs from more than one email address will be disqualified.
  • Valid RSVPs must include your name. RSVPs that include more than one person or are missing information (e.g. incomplete names) will not be accepted.
  • Admittance to the event is non-transferable and limited to the selected applicant; no additional guests please.
  • The event and individual/celebrity appearances are subject to change or cancellation without notice.
  • Because this is a running-oriented event, we require that applicants be experienced runners, able to maintain a 12-minute per mile pace (qualified).
  • Selected applicants attending the meet-up are not required to purchase admission.
  • We will send an email to selected applicants who sent their valid RSVP via email before we reached capacity to confirm their attendance for Friday. We plan to send this email at approximately 2 p.m. ET today, and we will also post a link on the Disney Parks Blog that will include a list of names of all selected applicants. If you do not receive an email from us confirming your reservation and your name does not appear on the list of selected applicants, your RSVP was not selected.

If you’re looking to gain tips and training advice from Galloway as well as our nutrition expert Tara Gidus, they will also be available at the upcoming Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Expo. For more information, and also for additional Galloway and Gidus training details, please visit www.runDisney.com.

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The 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon: It’s A Sell Out

posted on September 7th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


When you consider all of the cool new features we’ve added to this event lately, this news should come as no surprise: The 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon presented by Cigna is sold out.
The 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Is Sold Out

Yep, the last spot has been snapped up, pushing the total number of registered runners over the 25,000 mark, ensuring this will be the largest marathon field in Disney history. And it went fast, selling out less than five months after registration opened. As best as anyone around here can tell, this is one of the quickest sellouts in the event’s history.

There’s no doubt part of the appeal of the race is the many commemorative features, such as the new twists to the 26.2-mile course (it goes through the Walt Disney World Speedway and the Champion Stadium ballpark), the new Mickey Mouse medal, the post-race party at Downtown Disney and the slew of celebrity runners who have signed up to run. Indeed, the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, January 10-13, is going to be unlike any we’ve ever staged.

But if you’re kicking yourself for not signing up sooner, all is not lost. You can still get in on the 20th anniversary marathon fever here in a couple of different ways. One of the best ways is by signing up through a group with reserved entries, such as the Runner’s World Challenge package, which involves several exclusive features, expert training advice and VIP amenities, in addition to entry into the marathon. You can sign up for it and other runDisney race weekends at runDisney.com.

Also, there are a few spots left in the Disney Half Marathon and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge, which involves running the half marathon and the marathon on consecutive days. Granted, that’s a lot of running, but if you think that’s too much to endure in order to be a part of this 20th anniversary weekend, consider this: You’ll have to wait another 16 months for the next Walt Disney World Marathon.

Read these posts for more about the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon:

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The Magic Behind Mickey’s 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Medal

posted on August 28th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


Since we unveiled Mickey’s commemorative 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon medal two weeks ago, the response has been amazing. It is truly unlike any runDisney medal we have ever created, and runners apparently love it.

In case you missed the video reveal on Facebook or Twitter, you can watch it now:

The creative force behind the medal is Disney art director David Brotherton, who designed the unique medal by incorporating the perfect balance between athletics and Disney. In this video, David takes us behind the scenes and shares details about the creative journey that led to this signature medal that will be the jewel of the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna, January 10-13.

There’s still time to get your hands on this or one of the other inspiring Disney medals. You can sign up for any Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend event, including the runDisney Kids’ Races, Disney Family Fun Run 5K, Half Marathon or Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge at runDisney.com. And be sure to connect with other runDisney runners on Facebook and Twitter.

Check out these posts for more updates on the upcoming Walt Disney World Marathon:

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20th Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend is Going Hollywood

posted on August 16th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


More and more celebrities are signing up to be a part of the 20th anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna. Alison Sweeney, host of the popular reality show “The Biggest Loser,” and ESPN personality Colin Cowherd signed up weeks ago.

But recently Drew Carey, Gilles Marini, Sean Astin, Kit Hoover, Jenna Morasca and Ethan Zohn threw their names in the hat, too. Astin and Carey are taking on the 26.2-mile full marathon, while the other celebs are sticking to the 13.1-mile half marathon during the historic race weekend, January 10-13, at Walt Disney World Resort.

Most of them are eager to run here because they already know what it’s like to run in a runDisney event. Carey, the comedian and host of “The Price is Right,” ran in the Disneyland Half Marathon last year. Astin, the lead actor in the movie “Rudy,” ran in the Tinker Bell Half Marathon earlier this year. And reality TV stars Morasca and Zohn (“Survivor” and “The Amazing Race”) ran in the Walt Disney World Half Marathon earlier this year and the Princess Half Marathon last year.

Cowherd, Sweeney, Marini (“Sex and the City: The Movie” and “Dancing with the Stars”), and Hoover (“Access Hollywood” co-host) are the runDisney newbies. Hoover and Sweeney have run other half marathons, but this will be the maiden voyage for Marini and Cowherd, both of whom have never run a half marathon previously.

Cowherd, in particular, is apparently not the least bit nervous about biting off a half marathon. In fact, he’s been having a lot of fun with it. Check out the video below, which appeared on the runDisney Facebook page and on Twitter, and you’ll see what I mean.

By the way, you can run with these celebs. The weekend races are filling up, but you can still register at runDisney.com.

Get more news about the upcoming Walt Disney World Marathon in these posts:

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New 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Medal Revealed

posted on August 14th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


Disney is known in the running industry for its cool race medals, so it should come as no surprise that runDisney has pulled out all of the stops in designing a medal for next year’s 20th anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon, January 10-13. The medal was revealed this morning after a two-week social media campaign called “The Great Medal Caper” in which fans such as you got to unlock clues to eventually unveil the medal.
“New

Trust me, this medal is unlike anything we have created before. It has the traditional round shape, but it features two spinning parts, including a medallion with a classic image of Mickey Mouse on one side and a modern image of him on the other side. The other cool features are two engraved quotes from Walt Disney himself.

And to think, all you have to do to get one of them is run 26.2 miles. Better start training now! But don’t forget to sign up for the race first at runDisney.com.

Check out these posts to read more about the upcoming Walt Disney World Marathon:

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‘Biggest Loser’ Host Alison Sweeney First Celeb to Enter the 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon

posted on July 16th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


Plans for the 20th anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend are still being developed, but one thing is certain: some celebrities in Hollywood are already starting to line up to run it.

Alison Sweeney, host of the popular reality show “The Biggest Loser,” has just thrown her name into the hat. She recently entered the half marathon. Word is, other celebrities are on the verge of signing up, too, as well as some famous former distance running stars.

For Sweeney, an avid runner, the decision to choose the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend was an easy one – her kids’ faces lit up at the prospect of coming to Walt Disney World Resort for the race weekend, January 10-13, 2013.

Sweeney has already started training for the race. Check out this video of her from a recent training run at a park near her Los Angeles-area home where she talks about getting ready for her first runDisney race.

Check out these posts for more runDisney news from Walt Disney World Resort:

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New Twists and Turns Coming to 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Course

posted on May 17th, 2012 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


The countdown has begun to the 20th anniversary of the Walt Disney World Marathon on Jan. 13, 2013, and not surprisingly, our runDisney folks are hard at work putting their creative juices together to come up with some fun new twists for the race.

So far they have added some special entertainment along the 20th mile to commemorate the 20th anniversary and added a post-race party at Downtown Disney. They are also working on the creation of a special 20th anniversary medal, which I’ll reveal later.

But the latest development that I can share with you now involves some unique twists to the course. Here’s a hint: the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon is going to have some “high-speed’’ elements that will knock this race “out of the ballpark.’’

Think you have it figured out?

Well, just check out this video for all of the new details about the fun enhancements to the 26.2-mile course that will go through the four Walt Disney World Resort theme parks – and a few other places you probably never dreamed about.

If you want to get in on the fun, just sign up at runDisney.com for the marathon or any of the other family-oriented races taking place here during the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna, Jan. 10-13.

Check out these posts for more runDisney news:

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‘Today Show’ Hosts Run 2011 Walt Disney World Half Marathon

posted on January 10th, 2011 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


'Today Show' Hosts Al Roker, Meredith Vieira and Natalie Morales Before the Walt Disney World Half Marathon

This weekend, runners from all 50 states and 60 other countries took part in a variety of Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend events and our sports author Darrell Fry will have some of the highlights later today. But first we wanted to share a fun look at a few familiar faces we ran into before a run – “Today Show” hosts Al Roker, Meredith Vieira and Natalie Morales. The trio met with Disney characters at the start line before running the Walt Disney World Half Marathon. Were you there?

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