Walt Disney World’s inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend, the first Star Wars themed runDisney event following the release of The Force Awakens, takes place this weekend; April 14-17, 2016. The movie, this race and runDisney in general enjoy rather a galactic level of popularity. If you are participating in, or even simply attending the festivities, prepare yourself. The Resort and all the Parks see significant traffic during such events.
With the advice below, Epcot will still be crowded, the Expedition Everest line will still be too long, and no, you won’t get a table at Be Our Guest. You will, however, benefit from the combination of preparation and reformed, realistic expectations:
3. Exercise Patience – the excitement you felt signing up to participate in a Star Wars themed runDisney weekend, the anticipation of traveling to Walt Disney World, the unbridled elation of a privileged VIP running experience within several Disney Parks; those feelings are not exclusive to you. Tens of thousands of fellow Disney/Star Wars enthusiasts will be joining you. They all need to get their bibs. They all want runDisney merchandise. They all want to visit the Parks. They all want a Dole Whip. They all need to get to the starting line. They will be all over the shuttles, restaurants, soda fountains and restrooms. The entire Resort will be bustling. That’s just part of the experience. Accept, and if you can, appreciate the spectacle. You’re there on purpose. Enjoy yourself for the same reason.
2. Wear a Costume – leering at fellow participants is one of the joys of any organized running event. Whether interested in what type of shoe is presently popular, or seeing what sorts of exotic race shirts are represented, people watching is an effective and enjoyable means of whittling away those otherwise difficult intervening miles. runDisney invites entrants to step up the spectacle with clever theming and a liberal outfit policy. With the new movie out, thus bevy of new characters, this particular Star Wars weekend entices other-level costuming. Within certain parameters, and given your personal level of fitness, you really ought to take advantage of this creative opportunity. If you pass me in a full BB8 costume, I am going to trip you.
1. Don’t Try to Win – for the maniacal runner, we appreciate your readership, first of all, but you can probably skip this part. Go ahead and good luck to you. Everyone else, if your main runDisney goal is to set a personal best, you’re doing it wrong. With the exceedingly accommodating conditions, and motivation hurling you around every corner, you will likely achieve a PR, but that shouldn’t be your priority. There’s no one proper way to runDisney, but enjoying yourself ought to be Job 1. Muscling fellow participants for position in the starting corral, throwing elbows out of the gate, trampling the hapless at water stations, screeching “On your left!”; all valid techniques for surviving your hometown fun run. runDisney requires none of these. The very philosophy discourages them. Take your time. Look around. Take loads of photos. Yes, you will be doing the serious runners behind you (who registered late) a profound service if you favor the outside of the track, but don’t rush.