Disney World hosts several road races every year, including 5Ks, 10Ks, half-marathons, and marathons. But even if you’re not planning to lace up your running shoes and join the race, your vacation could still be affected by these events.
The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend is in full swing, which got us thinking about how Disney World looks different during these runDisney races. There are several things that change at the parks and hotels during the race weekends, so check out those changes to be prepared before your next trip.
If you’re interested in participating in a runDisney race, check out our page about all the different races to find the information you need to sign up and prepare.
Whether you’re running or not, you’ll likely see these 3 CHANGES happen during all of the runDisney races. As preparation is key for a great Disney World trip, we wanted to make sure these were on your radar before you head out the door to visit the parks.
Disney World’s races are road races, which means, as the name implies, that runners race on the road. To keep the runners safe, Disney will close down some stretches of road during the races.
The good news is that those roads don’t stay closed all day long. Races at Disney World start very early in the morning (we’re talking 5AM at the latest), and each has a cut-off time that runners must complete the race before or else be picked up by Disney transportation.
For the longer races (like half-marathons or marathons), the roads might remain closed for a while into the morning, especially around EPCOT where most of the races finish. It’s possible that the roads will be closed around park opening time, so if you’re hoping to rope-drop EPCOT on the day of a runDisney race, you may want to plan ahead.
To see all the road closures during runDisney races, head to the event hub and look for the section that says “transportation.” An interactive map should pop up that shows you which roads will be closed at any given time.
One way to avoid the road closures around EPCOT is to stick to Disney transportation, like the Monorail or Skyliner. You could park at the Transportation and Ticket Center and take a Monorail from there to EPCOT. There are Skyliner stations at several Disney hotels and at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, so you could go to one of those stations and ride the Skyliner to EPCOT.
Races at Disney World are very popular, and most sell out within days of opening registration. That means there are hundreds of people flocking to Disney World to run the race, and they’ll likely want to visit the parks before and after their race. Many will also stay at Disney hotels.
If you’re planning a vacation during a runDisney race weekend, you’ll want to be extra vigilant about getting your reservations EARLY. That includes hotel reservations, Park Pass Reservations, and dining reservations.
As with any other popular time of the year (like summer vacation or the holidays), the extra events bring lots of crowds, which means all kinds of reservations will sell out faster than they might during slow times.
You can also expect to see more crowds in the parks, although for some of the race days those crowds might arrive later in the day than usual (since the runners need to finish the race before they can start their day in the parks). If you arrive at the parks early for rope drop, you’ll have a better chance of getting on all the rides you want to before the park gets very crowded! And runDisney race days might be a good time to purchase Genie+ in order to avoid long lines at attractions around Disney World.
Extra Food Options
We don’t usually see a ton of new snacks for runDisney race weekends, but you may spot some new menu items at the Disney World hotels. We typically see a Runner’s Pack menu item added to most Disney hotel quick service restaurant menus.
The Runner’s Pack comes with a bagel, a banana, some peanut butter, a granola bar, and a small Dasani water bottle for $9.99. This is meant to be a quick snack option that runners can grab on their way back from the races (as most restaurants won’t be open before the race).
Runners can also purchase this the night before their race and use it as breakfast in the morning before they run! The Runner’s Pack isn’t limited to just runners, so you can pick one up even if you’re not participating in a race.
Want to learn more about runDisney races in Disney World? Check out these posts:
- runDisney Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend
- runDisney Princess Half-Marathon Weekend in Disney World
- runDisney Springtime Surprise Weekend in Disney World
- runDisney Wine and Dine Half-Marathon Weekend in Disney World
- runDisney Virtual Race Series
We’ll keep watching for more news from Disney World, so stay tuned to DFB for all the latest updates!
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Have you ever participated in a runDisney race? Let us know in the comments!
The post 3 Ways Disney World CHANGES During runDisney Races first appeared on the disney food blog.