Thursday, September 5, 2013

Disneyland Half Marathon Expo

My friend Michele and I waiting in line
This past weekend I had the opportunity to run the inaugural runDisney Dumbo Double Dare!  Like many attendees, I traveled to California on Thursday, so I could attend the Disneyland Half Marathon expo on Friday--the first day it opened.

I got to the expo around 8:30 am where I meet some friends.  The expo did not open until 10 am, but with the time difference I could not sleep past 6:30 am.  After some breakfast, we decided to just wait in the already long time to get into the expo.  Why was the line so long already?  In the past, runDisney official merchandise has gone very, very quickly at the expos.  If you want something, you better get there early!  With this being the inaugural Dumbo Double Dare, merchandise for it was in even higher demand.  My plan of attack was this:  Know what I want, grab it and get in the check out line!  It worked.  I got what I wanted and waited less than 5 minutes to pay.  If I would have gotten into the line five minutes later, I would have waited over and hour--yes!  Over an hour to pay.

Limited Edition pins! 
After hitting the official merch area, I made a quick circle around the expo and hit the vendors I wanted to
see.  My first stop--the runDisney booth!  I had to see all the new medals that were released.  The brand new medal for the runDisney Wine and Dine half and well as the all new medals the marathon weekend events were debuted that morning.  I had to see them first hand.  What do you think of them?  

My favorite vendor at the expo was the Disney Wedding display.  They had the pumpkin coach!  One day, someday I will have a vowel renewal at Walt Disney World.  I rounded the corner from the runDisney booth and there it was.  I had to do a double take, it took my breath away.  I just stood there and stared for a few seconds.  It was so cool to see in person, it was cool to see so close up.
Some of the new medals! 

After a few more vendor stops, it was time to pick up my packet--which meant more time in line.  I spent about 45 minutes in the pack pickup line.  It was starting to get hot and runner were getting grumpy!  After getting my pack, I had to get into another 45 minute line just to get out of the packet area and into the expo/shirt pickup
area.  After about two hours--I was so ready to get out of there!

I went back to the expo on Saturday around noon to exchange my shirts.  The shirts this year were cut really big, so I need to size down.  I was really worried about a crazy line and I almost did not
bother.  When I got there Saturday, I was happily surprised to find everything orderly with no crazy busy lines.  I exchanged my shirts with no problems and even made another trip around an uncrowded expo.

This was by far the craziest, most crowded runDisney expo I have ever been to!  I have a few idea why... First, people are so scared they will miss out on the official merchandise, so stocking more of it would be very helpful.  Also, having the 5k, 10k and the first leg of the DDD the same day created the problem of so many runners being required to hit
the expo on Friday.  It seams this problem will take care of it's self because in the foreseeable future, runDisney has the 5k on Friday morning instead of both the 5k and 10k on Saturday morning.  The expos will be opening the day before the 5k, so a three day expo should cut down on the crowd too.  

Besides the crazy hot, crazy long lines, I enjoyed the Disneyland Half Marathon expo.  I love the sunrises like the new medals and the pumpkin coach, and old favorites like meeting Jeff Galloway at the runDisney booth.  Did you go the the Disneyland Half Marathon Expo?  What where the highlights for you?

A dream is a wish...



  1. Everyone is getting me so paranoid, reading about the expo! I do think PHM will be slightly better because the expo will open Thursday, but I'm concerned all the runDisney stuff will be gone by Friday afternoon when I get there. I guess there's nothing that can be done about it!

  2. It was awful. I'm not gonna lie. It was crazy insane and I was so overwhelmed. The chaos of people running to the racks and gabbing tons of shirts in their hands was nus

  3. I got there right as it opened and it was a mob scene. I waited in line for nearly two hours - no joke- to pay for my shirts. I've done the DL several years in a row and it's NEVER been that bad before.

  4. Sounds like fun; maybe one year I'll be able to do both princess and Disneyland. :)

  5. Can't wait to read your race recaps!!!