I have been waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting to run a race in Paris. The first year of these races I was so grateful to send a bunch of clients to run, but I just couldn’t make it happen for myself until this year! That is three years of FOMO if you’re counting…
This year, I knew I needed to be part of the magic. When we realized the weekend was right around our 10 year wedding anniversary, my husband and I decided to go for it! I’ll have loads of posts up covering all aspects of the weekend, but wanted to sit down and write about the races specifically while the information was fresh in my mind!
Before the Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K
Gearing up for the race was a little different than usual… this time, my husband was running with me! He’s run one 5K at Walt Disney World before… but running really isn’t his thing. Someone’s gotta watch the kids, right?
The race was scheduled to start at 8 PM, which is totally different and was honestly a nice change. We spent the morning in the parks and after a quick rest at our hotel, made our way to the corrals!
We were staying at Sequoia Lodge on Disneyland property, and the walk was quick and easy. The races all start and finish in relatively the same area, right near the expo, so it was very easy and convenient to find where we were going.
Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K Corrals
Disneyland Paris races have a corral system just like they do at home. The jury is still out on how exactly they seed the runners… but that’s a different post for a different day. I was lucky enough to get a B corral, my husband was in C… so we stuck together and headed into the C corral together!
One nice thing they provided was Corral CLOSING times…
This was especially nice so we knew what buffer we had and when exactly we needed to be in our corral. We were early, of course, but it was definitely nice to know!
The pre-race entertainment was really, really, really great. I only wish I spoke French! They did a decent job of switching between French and English – but my attention span is all over the place so I didn’t really pay too much attention. I loved the set up though, and wish they would do something like it in Orlando!
They spent a good amount of time interviewing important people in the race planning process, including an awesome interview with the man behind the medal designs. I really would have loved to hear that part in all English! They balanced it nicely with other videos and interviewing runners waiting in the corrals.
Plus, the best part was seeing the guy who won the whole thing cross the finish line in about 18 minutes. Well before we even got started… haha!
Overall, A+ …
Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K Course
I really liked the course, and then I really didn’t like the course. Looking back, I am kind of “meh” about it.
I loved the fact that it was totally new to me – no matter where they sent us, I had never run through there before, so it was very exciting. Starting the race was pretty slow and congested through backstage, but pretty soon we had open space.
The first section was through Disney Village (their version of Downtown Disney), and over towards the parks. There were lots of people spectating, so it was a great way to kick it off.
We made our way over to Disneyland Park, and came in right around Phantom Manor – this was cool because that ride looks SPOOKY at night! We continued through Adventureland and then came out of Disneyland in the back around the 2K mark.
We made our way through backstage over to Walt Disney Studios, where we ran through the Backlot Ride (which we had ridden earlier in the day), and then got to run through the set of the stunt show… which was actually pretty cool. We spent a lot of time in this park, getting to run through Toy Story and right past the Ratatouille ride as well.
One of the coolest features of runDisney Paris races… the finish line was actually IN the park! Once we turned that last corner – Mickey and Minnie were waiting!
Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K Characters
I was SO EXCITED for the Characters… and honestly… was pretty disappointed in the end.
We had heard that the characters on course in Paris are absolutely top notch and unique… which had to have been the case, because the lines were so ridiculously long we opted to not stop for a single picture. *sad trombone*
Here are the characters who were on the course:
- Country Bears from the Country Bear Jamboree
- Dug from Up
- Bolt & Mittens from the movie Bolt
- Koda from Brother Bear (I didn’t see him, only heard he was on the course)
- Thumper & Miss Bunny from Bambi
- Marie & Friends from the Aristocats
- Remy & Emile from Ratatouille (they came out later in the night – if I would have seen them… we would have stopped!!)
- Mickey & Minnie at the Finish Line
The main complaints about the character stops are that the characters here are SUCH a big deal, and Europeans treat this opportunity like a regular in-park meet and greet… versus the USA runDisney photos going suuuuuper quick…
Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K Finish
Once we were finished, the volunteers gave us our medals, and we walked through the finish chute!
There were tons of different snacks and drinks offered at the finish line, which was a pretty cool change… there was water, a fruit drink, AND chocolate milk. We got bananas, chips, and the good ol’ runDisney Snack box.
I was so excited about the box…
Guys… no cheese.
HOW can there be NO CHEESE in the FRENCH snack box?! I’m still not completely over this.
The snacks that were included were okay – it was pretty cool to get to taste different types of European snacks. We took our boxes back to our hotel to meet some friends to celebrate… and that was that!
Disneyland Paris Run Weekend 5K Final Thoughts
The course… was pretty good.
The characters… were cool, but not for us.
The company… was perfect.
Can’t wait to come back and do it again next year!!!
If you’d like to run the race in 2020… shoot me an email. I’m putting together packages that include hotel, park tickets, photopasses, AND race registration… it makes it so much easier to have it all put together!