About Tinker Bell Half Marathon…

If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you know how I took the news.  In case you missed it, runDisney announced yesterday that Tinker Bell Half Marathon will now be run on Mother’s Day starting in 2015.
After a good night sleep and some time to chill out I realize this is NOT the end of the world.  And it’s not the end of Tink for me (maybe) and well… it’s not all about ME anyway, right?
Wait- what?!  It’s NOT about Shenanigans?  HA… yeah, I know, there are actually other people to consider when throwing a tantrum over something not going your way.  I think I’ve been hanging out with #OhLucy too much lately because I was weirdly upset over this news.
Y’all, I was overly dramatically upset.  I’ll admit it.  And I’ll apologize if I offended anyone or squashed your excitement over the change.  That was not my intent.  But I also know that I wasn’t alone in the disappointment.  Check out any Tink related or runDisney related Facebook group and you’ll see what I mean. A lot of us moms and daughters are feeling like the change doesn’t help us celebrate being a mother, but puts us in an awkward position due to the date.  I’m not sure runDisney expected this response.  Maybe they did but are confident enough due to overwhelming response in the past to move forward with Mother’s Day weekend. Who knows?
For those that wonder what the big deal about Mother’s Day weekend, I can share what I’ve seen posted and what my own feelings are on the matter.  Many of us liked running Tink in January for a number of reasons:  the long 3 day weekend works for both school and work vacations, the weather is awesome for running, and the crowds and costs are both lighter during January. 
In addition to all the above, Tinker Bell became a “girls only” trip for me.  I met my running friends from all over the country and I spent time connecting with them.  I left family behind (on purpose) and just enjoyed being Patty rather than being Mommy.
runDisney suggests that this is the perfect weekend to take your Mom and run with her!  Great idea!  Except that my mom wants to spend her Mother’s Day with her mother, an 84 year-old bundle of awesome who no longer travels.  Bringing Great-Grandma to Disneyland just isn’t an option for us.  So that’s out for my family.
I’m also not sure about bringing my kids with me to the run.  May is an insanely busy time of year for this mom.  Sports and activities are wrapping up and every weekend is already booked for us!  Squeezing in a quick trip as a family to Disneyland doesn’t seem very likely.
This crew does it all: dance, scouts, soccer, football!  And May is a HUGE month for us.
So where does this leave me?  Welp.  I get to make some choices.
  • I could never run Tink again.  #SadTrombone  I know, I know, it’s not really a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but remember, I love this race.  More than any other runDisney event.  Tink’s my girl!  That option is REALLY not high on my list.  I’m loyal to a fault when I find something I love, and well, I love the Tink Half Weekend.
  • I could take the family for a super fast in and out trip.  This is possible considering we will live in Phoenix by the time the race comes around.  Much easier on transportation if we choose to drive or fly.  And y’all know I’m ok with taking my kids out of school for Disney.  But the end of the year is tricky for the reasons I mentioned above, so this might be a play it by ear thing.
  • Pull the Mother’s Day card: as in, it’s MY day and I’m going to spend it doing the thing I want to do.  By myself.  The greatest gift you can give to me is a weekend for myself.


Wow.  That sounds crazy selfish, doesn’t it? I mean, we know distance running is a selfish sport due to the time you need to commit to training. But to run away from the kids on Mother’s Day seems like I’m telling them I really really don’t like you.  Is it just me?  Will I get over that?  I don’t know… it just seems wrong to make that choice at this point in time.


The great news is I have a long time before I need to make the leap to registration.  I also have a super amazing supportive husband and family who will understand and help me come to the best decision for all of us.



I’d love to hear from you!  What are your thoughts on the change?  Vote in the poll and sound off in the comments.

Will you run Tinker Bell on Mother’s Day?


  • LuluAddict says:

    I am not happy with the change. I like to have a winter race and a summer race to keep me training throughout the year so now I have to find a new winter race. Also, the Jan date was great for Tinkerbell since the parks still have their Christmas decorations overlay and even back of the packers see the lights since you head into the parks at the beginning of the race. Nothing is prettier than running by Small World lit up for Xmas. May weather in SoCal is tricky, it can be hot or cooler but we’ve had 100+ degree heat waves in mid-May so I’d bet more on hot. It also puts the race too close to the DL Half. It’s a very busy time of year, like you said sports and school are starting to wind up. I think it’s extremely rude to put it on Mother’s Day and make people choose between family or themselves. I’m really hoping they are going to put another race for that weekend.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      I assume they have some business decisions behind the move- things we will never be told or explained. I have my fingers crossed that they are planning another Disneyland race during the winter to take Tink’s place as I too counted on Tinker Bell to keep me running through the winter months!

  • Its a very hard weekend with activities, something will have to be sacrified I think and seems like for me it would be Tink. I already know I have a conflict with Mother’s Day 2015, so its out for me. Not to pout, but I wish I had known this when I signed up for GSC, I was going to do Tink in 2014 and got all caught up in the hype with GSC, so I signed up saying I would do Tink in 2015….now I can’t. Pouting a little too….and its really NOT the end of the world…just a disappointment for many of us.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      I feel ya Julie. Completely. So many things happen in May: graduations, end of year recitals, concerts, sports tournaments, first communions, etc! I just think for a women’s focused event, May was not the best choice for the participants. I can’t say that it wasn’t the best choice for the business however.

  • Anne says:

    I won’t NOT run it because of the date (on account of having no mom or grandmoms to consider) – but…May would be a sucky time to go I think. Bigger crowds (Bigger?? How can it GET more crowded??!) better chance or really hot weather (though I’m astounded at people talking about how “cold” it was this year…did I sleep through something?!)
    Frankly I prefer the East Coast runDisney things for convenience and all that…but wouldn’t turn down a freebie to CA!!

  • I was a little bummed about the announcement myself. I was hoping to do a CA RunDisney Event in 2015 for the Coast to Coast medal but I don’t know how I feel about it being mother’s day weekend. Decisions, Decisions…..

  • The change of the race didn’t bother me. I was more bummed that the announcement was more earth shattering… I was really expecting to hear about a race in Disneyland Paris. The change to Mothers Day weekend might be hard now because my university has is graduation that day.
    No worries. I am like you in that if I REALLY REALLY want to run it I will make it happen.

  • For me, it is not a big deal since you know I run with my daughter and I visit my Mom enough and she considers MD another Hallmark holiday! Anyway, I certainly understand the frustration for many younger runners.

  • Anonymous says:

    Tink 2014 is my first rD event. Taking DD13 and leaving DS & hubby behind. I was looking at making this a yearly tradition. If rD does another event at DL in Jan/Feb/March….I would forgive them and go to that event…..if they don’t replace it and just move it….they will most likely lose me. I really don’t want to leave for Mothers days weekend…..how do I explain that to my mom & MIL & SIL…..and hubby! I also don’t really want to do DL half weekend because I don’t want to train in the Arizona HEAT for an early Sept event. I sure hope they add another event!! I don’t have love for the “tink” event…..but want to do a rD event in CA.

  • PugletGirl says:

    I was disappointed, since I thought Tink 2013 was so much fun. I don’t see May as being a good time of year for travel with the kids due to school and I can’t imagine not spending Mother’s Day with them or my own mom. I am trying not to think the worst of Disney (that they want more money from families instead of single gals on a girls’ weekend), but it’s hard to hang when RunDisney keeps upping prices without doing much more for runners. (You can see I’m still pretty bummed!) I love running Disney, but they are definitely making me look to other local races to do instead.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      I completely understand. Totally. I keep wondering if it will backfire though. Instead of bringing my kids, I just won’t go. Locals will fill up the race, for sure, but will they also bring in the hotel and resort tickets $$$ (thinking many have AP already)?

  • Tania says:

    I probably won’t run it until many years down the road when all my girls can run with me. So it’s not a no forever!….lol. I don’t like the date, but there may be others who love it. So I won’t bring out my picket signs. And like you said, it’s not always about me, me, me.

  • Tracy says:

    I’m probably the odd person out but it doesn’t bother me. I think that each person’s situation is different. For me, I love to take my DD to Disney and because I split custody, it’s guaranteed that I’ll have her on Mother’s Day! Also, because I split custody, I’ve found that celebrating holidays on days other than the days they fall on is not as much of a big deal as one might think. I don’t have my daughter for Thanksgiving or Christmas this year but we did Thanksgiving the weekend before and we’re having a big Christmas celebration next weekend before break! So moving things around is a given for me and I decide to make it just as fun! I know that doesn’t work for everyone but I hope that others can make it work too.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      That’s a great way to look at it! I’m really happy for those that will get to run it for the first time thanks to the move, just wish it wasn’t on THAT date. But I’m glad you and your DD will be able to run together!

  • Kristen :) says:

    It’s a tough call – I might could convince my mom to come with me. She hasn’t been to Disney since WDW opened!!! She’s overdue for a trip 🙂

  • Lauren says:

    Honestly, I didn’t think much at all of the announcement. I am running it in January and so who knows when I’ll run it again. The thing I was disappointed in was the hype that was created over this new announcement, and it was the most underwhelming pieces of information to come out. I wanted a new race announcement lol!

    • Longhorns2 says:

      LOL Well, I think that’s not rD fault. The runners tend to read more into things than are really there because we want so badly to do more runDisney events! I’m guilty- I was scanning that video for clues the whole day. Haha

  • Erika says:

    I was never really considering Tink anyway, but I think all your reasoning is quite sound and I feel bad for the mothers/daughters/(sons) who will now have to make some awkward decisions and have to run in hotter weather and bigger crowds, to boot.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      Hot + crowds = no bueno. That’s really a bummer for sure. But Labor Day wasn’t bad (in my opinion) so I can deal with those changes I think. It’s my kids that I have to worry about!

  • Erika says:

    Oh, and I REALLY REALLY wonder what rD’s motivation was for the change. I can’t think of any rational reason for the move, but I’m sure there must have been one from their perspective.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      A guess- and it’s just a guess- is that the back to back race weekends of WDW and Tink have proven to be hard on their staff and resources. So they needed to move it. And WDW isn’t going anywhere! Tink had to be pushed back somehow. I’d also guess they are looking at bringing more families to the parks, not just a girls weekend type thing by doing this on Mother’s Day. More families = more money spent in tickets, hotel rooms, and food! — oh and Mickey ears! 😉

  • Anonymous says:

    I think the motivation for the change is that 2015 will be Disneyland’s 60th anniversary. Perhaps a lot of refurbishments will be going on in January 2014?? Or…rD will add another race for January??

  • Anonymous says:

    Anyway, I do think the Mother’s Day date is not good for a lot of families.

  • I’m ok with the date. I’m a little bummed I didn’t do Tink in 2014 for the special C2C medal, but maybe they’ll keep it around. Given some of my knee problems though, Tink and Princess were just too close together for me to recover and run like I would want to. Plus I’m hoping one year I will be in good enough shape physically and financially to race in ALL of the rD races and with Tink, Princess, and Marathon weekend all shoved into a 6 week window makes it extremely tough.

    Let me follow it up by saying that I don’t have kids, so I’m not a mother so the date doesn’t bother me. I love my mom but I see her regularly and don’t need a special day to say thank you.

    • Longhorns2 says:

      Someone mentioned on a FB page that now rD could do a C2C GREEN medal to be given out at Tink next year! That actually made me happy- I’d love a green C2C! Good luck on running all the races in a year! A dream of mine as well (but I’m skipping the marathon and only doing the half!)

  • Amy Albers says:

    I would guess that they wanted to spread out the races – WDW marathon is in January, too, and Princess is in February. So maybe they wanted to spread it out. Expedition Everest is in May, but that’s not as huge of a deal. Like others have said, I understand this, but Mother’s Day weekend? Bad, bad, bad.

  • B4me says:

    I am running Tink for the first time in 2014, and for now, it will be my one and only time. My destination runs (as opposed to local) are a weekend away for either me and my runner friend or me and my husband. A rarity but much needed non-parenting time. However, I am not prepared to spend the entire Mother’s Day away from my four children.

    So, could I go against the fundamental grain of a destination race and make it a family trip? May is insanely busy with end of school and sports activities. We finish in early June. As such it’s not feasible to a) take my kids away for a weekend at that time b) take any days off from school as exams are looming and finally, it makes it prohibitively expensive to bring a family of 6 from Texas!

    As to the future – could I run with my children once they are old enough / ready for this Half? Well, as the mother of four BOYS I can say now that’s never going to happen at a Tinkerbell race!

    Glad I am in for 2014, sad it’ll never be again.

  • Jennifer K. says:

    I’m pretty excited about it. I don’t like January races because that’s right in cold/flu season. Just because I’ve lucked out on Tink weekend (barely last year) without being sick, doesn’t mean the streak will hold. I also don’t like running in the cold, and January can be cold and rainy one weekend and beautiful the next. I’d much rather run in the Spring. Locally, there’s also competition with the Surf City marathon and half that many of my friends run. I think more people would do Tink with me if Surf City wasn’t so close.
    That said, I don’t get the Mother’s Day weekend thing. There are plenty of dates in April and May that don’t conflict with family-oriented holidays. I’m sure Disney has studied the outlook of that weekend for a while before making this decision and they have their reasons for believing it will be profitable for them. I’m curious to see how it turns out. You have a year and a half to figure it out, right? No reason to get upset right now. It’ll work out!

  • LuluAddict says:

    After reading some stuff on other boards and reading a rumor there are plans to add 3-4 new races, one in DL, one in WDW, and one in DLP, plus somewhere else (maybe another DL – DL races have been selling out in a day lately so they are stupid not to) – I think they are going to slot in another race into the same weekend, one that includes the boys. I think they will make it like the Dumbo Dare – a 10K, Half, and a Challenge medal and really maximize the amount of families/people in the parks. I don’t think there is any way they are going to throw away a holiday weekend with a race already built around it. With Tinkerbell, I think they got a lot of women who made it a ladies-only meet up and they missed on park revenue. That is my guess but it’s the only one that makes sense to me. I don’t think maximizing pink C2C people had anything to do with this, though it’s a side benefit from shifting TInkerbell. I think it’s about adding another race both mom AND dad will run.

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Patty Holliday

Patty is a 40-ish mother of four living in Virginia. A bit geeky, sometimes sarcastic, lover of a candid confession. She's trying to love running, she swears. But much like her marathon, it’s taking a very long time. Ahem. She's searching for the perfect way to balance family, work, travel, and fitness. Perfect defined as high on fun, low on guilt.

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