The Wine & Dine Half Marathon sold out yesterday in record time for this race. NOT in record time for all races (I think Star Wars and Avengers sold out faster last year).
I watched the registration process as an observer. I was not registering for this event and had no dog in this hunt.
You know I love my runDisney. You also know I’m willing to say when I think things aren’t handled the best way when it comes to the races.
I get the frustration, truly. But, guys: this is NOT runDisney’s fault.
Maybe this can refresh your memory on how to best register for a runDisney event?
Contrary to “popular” belief (ie- all the running groups on Facebook) the registration process proceeded as NORMAL for a runDisney event.
This may be different from other race events you’ve registered before, but for runDisney, this is how it goes.
1- The link opens up right before noon ET and typically shunts you into a queue if you arrive by 12:05 or so. The queue is new-ish: it’s been around for a few races now.
2- Having all the information at your finger tips is key. As is signing into Active.com ahead of time. It can make ALL the difference when seconds matter. Do NOT try to register multiple people by yourself. Everyone needs their own computer or device to register themselves.
3- Travel agents and Charities have always been given bibs. This is NOT new information. Rumor says they were given *more* bibs this year, but I have absolutely no proof to base this on. Unless you are a Travel Agent or Charity Agent, I’m guessing you don’t either.
People of the running community: I love you.
But this race and the high drama over reaction to not getting a bib is ridiculous.
Examples of the totes magotes cray cray that I witnessed yesterday:
People MAD that charities were given bibs. Whaaaa??!! I’m not even sure what to say about this one.
People PISSED that runDisney doesn’t allow their entire family to register together since they planned the vacation around this race. Cart before horse anyone? Here’s an idea: register first, then plan the trip.
People demanding refunds. Um… no. runDisney has never allowed refunds or transfers to any races. You probably should have registered with the understanding that it was a risk you were taking. If you want a refund because your running partner did not get in, well, I think you should be deferring and hoping for next year.
HOWEVER… it sounds like runDisney doesn’t agree with me on this one. I hear (rumors again) that people are being refunded for this race if their spouse or family members were not able to register. If you’d like one, send an email to runDisney and hope they are feeling generous.
People blaming WALKERS for taking up all the spots. Hey there- on behalf of all the walkers and run walkers, eff you. Our money is just as good as yours and as long as we are working within the time limits of the race your elitism is completely misplaced.
People insisting the rules about Coast to Coast be changed to fit their situation. Yo- if C2C is so important to you, why didn’t you snap up one of the guaranteed entries through a travel agent? There were ways to register and ensure your C2C efforts would be honored without waiting for race day registration. Again- a risk you take. There’s no guarantees given by runDisney that registration will be available for you to complete the Coast to Coast Challenge.
People mad that the race sold out so fast. Don’t you read my blog? Haven’t I told you this time and time again? I’m joking, but… not. Le sigh… the days of waiting- even until you get off work!- are over for runDisney registration. OVER. With the possible exception of Marathon Weekend since many people are not ready for the marathon distance.
I didn’t exaggerate: these points are STRAIGHT from Facebook.
I’m sure you can agree that some of us need to get a reality check here.
We are all talking about registering for an elective event that should be FOR FUN. The very cool thing about Wine & Dine is that it’s held over the Food & Wine Festival. Even if you aren’t running- you can still have the most MAGICAL vacation ever. I’m being serious here: that’s one of the draws to the event. The race is great, but there’s so much more to enjoy while you are there.
If you still desperately want to run, check into the charity and travel agent options. I’ll admit, raising funds can be daunting. And the travel agent may not be the best fit for a local or a DVC member (you are required to book rooms this year if you use a travel agent bib). But it’s an option.
I repeat: you have options.
*Or you DID have options. I hear most of these avenues are on wait lists at this point.
Why did this race sell so fast? I’m sure it had a lot to do with Tower of Terror 10-Miler no longer running. When you take that race off the table it meant people only had one east coast runDisney option in the fall.
Fewer races = more demand for the one left standing. It’s simple supply and demand, right?
This reminds me of the registration for Disneyland Half Marathon weekend in 2013. That weekend sold out wicked fast (oh- and people didn’t whine about it either, for what it’s worth!) This was the norm on the west coast before Avengers and Star Wars gave more choices to runners.
So now that I’ve vented my frustration with your frustration, lets talk about what we would like to see change.
I think this could be a great discussion to have as long as we are reasonable.
Oh hey- the person who suggested runDisney hold multiple half marathons based on “real runners vs the circus in the back”… you are NOT invited to chime in.
Because: eff you.
As for me- I do NOT want to see a lottery. Ever. Conceivably I could enter every event via lottery and NEVER be chosen.
Think about it. That could really harsh your Disney mellow if you, like me, find the Disney races to be the best things ever.
However, I would love the idea of offering a family or group lottery before registration opens.
Many people attend these events with their family. Registering 10 people at once is next to impossible these days. How about we put our family in as a lottery (all or nothing) that occurs 1 week before regular registration. Limit 10 people in your family or group.
If your group/family isn’t chosen, then you can decide to take your chances on regular registration day. Limit this lottery field to say 2,000 half marathon slots.
Since runDisney loves to see families run together, this feels like a good way to encourage this and try to limit some frustrations. The details would have to be worked out, but this is similar to how Nike Women’s events are run. The difference being both the group lottery AND open registration would be available.
This is just one idea. I’m sure there’s others.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on improving the runDisney registration system. Shout them out!
Patty Holliday is a Marvel loving, Disney obsessed wife, and mother of four. She’s a travel agent specializing in Disney & Universal vacations- and loves a candid confession. Find her in Virginia (or anywhere frequent flyer miles or her trusty minivan takes her.)