This year at the 2018 Walt Disney World Marathon expo, allegedly the VP of runDisney made an announcement. He said running events would return to the Disneyland Resort. What he left out is when. We know little about runDisney or how they operate. They postponed Disneyland’s running events due to construction of Star Wars Land. The failed construction in Downtown Disney also played a role. Since runDisney is tight-lipped, it is hard to know. In this post you can see that runDisney says construction is why the races were cancelled indefinitely.
I am addressing the reasons many think runDisney cancelled the races. Many believe the races are not profitable. People think Disneyland calls all the shots at the running events. This is not true; runDisney is a company in Florida. Disneyland is a theme park run in California. Take these facts into consideration. Disneyland and runDisney are not the same. Disney owns both, but runs each separately.
Many people do not realize runDisney rents Disneyland for races. Disneyland has little to do with actual runDisney events. Have you ever rented a venue for a party or wedding? You are paying for the venue but you do not run it. The concept applies here. Disneyland lets runDisney use their theme park and will even have their staff work the event. But they are not in charge.
Even if the Anaheim races did not sell out that does not mean runDisney events lose Disneyland money. RunDisney will never give us the details. The info I share comes from research and from talking with Disney. I will even call runDisney to ask questions. My family works at the resort so I hear a lot. The bottom line is runDisney races help keep Disneyland busy.
Some think that not enough tourists come out for the races. Perhaps the pass holders who are locals are most of the runners signing up for the races. That is how most road races work. Even if runDisney events at Disneyland cater to locals that is a moot point. Remember that runDisney and Disneyland are not the same company. Heck, Star Wars took place around the slower time in January. These races help keep Disneyland busy. Super Heroes took place before the Christmas season, right when attendance dips.
Star Wars Land will open Summer 2019. I can imagine runDisney bringing back the half marathon weekend in September 2019. Since Star Wars Land opens in the summer. Now remember, this is speculation. It is possible the hotel construction can delay this further if the project resumes. All runDisney really needs is a new staging area.
By the time the half marathon weekend rolls around Star Wars Land will have been open a few months. It’s possible a race could bring up attendance if it has waned at that point. I think Star Wars Land will make Disneyland very busy this summer. Once the newness wears off its possible, a race could bring in more tourists.
Like runDisney fans who would not make the trip only for Star Wars Land. If Disneyland is almost at capacity most of the summer perhaps Disneyland may not want to host a race.
So moving the half to November would be nice. Super Heroes was struggling to sell out the half, and the weather is much better. I would love to have happen. Training during the summer in So Cal for any long distance running event can suck.
I think during this hiatus runDisney can make a lot of positive changes. They pushed Tinker Bell back to May on Mothers day weekend. Many runners stopped signing up. Many runners preferred running Tinker Bell in January. It would not surprise me if they moved Tinker Bell back to January and Star Wars Half Marathon moved to May.
With, Pixar Pier being popular runDisney would be smart to add a Pixar themed race. Perhaps runDisney should replace the struggling Super Heroes with Pixar. That is my two cents though. I also wish they would add a holiday themed 5k.
I was confident the races will return in late 2019 or early 2020. With all the silence on runDisney’s end my confidence is challenged. After Galaxies Edge opens at Disneyland, runDisney would be remiss not to return. Yes, runDisney experienced a slump in sales but Star Wars Land should help remedy that.
I have asked everyone I know at Disneyland have you heard anything about runDisney? So far no one knows anything. That means nothing though since they work for Disneyland not runDisney. Sometimes people hear things when events are in the planning stages. City permits are also easy to find online so if runDisney applies for one we will hear about it.
With the hotel plans on the back burner means it is possible the races will be back. Who knows for sure? We have no news and runDisney has not updated this post. Right now runDisney returning in 2019 is uncertain.
Here are some helpful posts to help prepare for your visit to Disneyland.
Click here for my runDisney at Disneyland Tips.
Click here to read my post on Christmas Tips at Disneyland.