Through all the years I have spent running and selling these races I have learned that if there is anything that runDisney runners DO NOT LIKE… it is change.
The runDisney blog was full of ’em recently.
2020 Walt Disney World Marathon Course Changes
There will be some exciting changes to the Walt Disney World Marathon course. Participants will run through Blizzard Beach Water Park, and will spend more time running inside Epcot, and less time on the roads outside the parks. The Marathon will start at 5:00am, 30 minutes earlier than previous years.
First off, the course. It looks like we are going to get the opportunity run through Blizzard Beach Water Park, MORE time running inside Epcot… and less time running through the various streets from park to park. Personally, I’m pumped about this. I am part of the minority that actually likes changes.
This gets me thinking about the course, and what’s going on… and I have five major questions…
1) What opportunities does this give for additional characters? They could have some really cool photo opportunities in Blizzard Beach. I’m not super familiar with the park… but I do think Olaf will definitely have to make an appearance… right? A creative spot to stick Lilo and Stitch?
2) Are we getting these changes to incorporate some of the new lands? Toy Story? Pandora? Galaxy’s Edge?!? …. or they could be adding Blizzard Beach to get rid of Hollywood Studios all together… with Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance opening just a few weeks before the marathon, the crowds could be a disaster during the race. So, unfortunately, I think that the addition of Blizzard Beach is to make us forget that we aren’t running through more of Hollywood Studios.
3) Is this a creative way of containing the “wild and crazy” spectators? Less time on the streets is less opportunity for “unauthorized” cheering sections. Last year there was a pretty serious crackdown on some of the unofficial aid stations… Disney doesn’t want them. Of course, people only halfway listened, and there were plenty of great places to stop and meet your friends. A big part of me thinks that more miles in the parks mean fewer miles they have to worry about rowdy spectators.
4) Could this be all because of the construction? It’s a mess right now at Epcot, could they be working a creative way around all of this? I’m not sure where they’ll be in a few months… but right now it’s pretty intense. It makes me think that the course changes are a way to get people *excited* about different running paths through Epcot.
5) Could there be TWO spots to run through Epcot? I mean… we start there, we end there, who’s to say we can’t blow through one section in the park to kick it all off, and then another section to finish it all up? I do know a lot of runners who would be mad to lose that last leg through World Showcase though… will definitely impact margarita sales for the day. Seriously.
Additional Changes Announced for 2020 Walt Disney World Marathon
Also, the race is starting at 5:00 am versus 5:30 am in previous years. I like this because I like early. Fight me. Really, at the end of the day, how big of a deal is half an hour?
There is going to be a new “outdoor exclusive area” – which may be the new “VIP package”. Nothing big except it seems as if spectators will NOT have access to this area, unlike the previous years. This could be why we haven’t heard much about the VIP packages… definitely excited to hear more about that.
Book Your 2020 Walt Disney World Marathon Package Today
Shameless plug time! At publishing time of this post – we still have access to ALL of the race distances when you book your package with Park & Preston Travel. I will say that hotel availability is starting to get very slim, so if you are considering a trip to run one of the races, or all of them, I’d book it sooner rather than later!
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