What better way to get kids active and healthy then to get Mickey Mouse involved?! runDisney Kids Races are held during every race weekend, but we don’t hear much about them. They seem to get lost in all the hoopla around the big races, when in reality they are probably one of the highlights of the weekend! I mean they are just TOO CUTE! Well after Melissa ran the 10K this year, she headed over to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex where her son participated in the Kids Races for the 3rd year. You might die over his tracksuit!!
Disney’s Kids Races are my favorite part of Marathon Weekend. This is how Disney hooked our family for the races. There truly is something for every member of the family at Marathon weekend. You can walk any of the races or run your heart out from young to old. This year is our 3rd year doing the kids races and the changes that Disney made this year were FANTASTIC.
Packet pickup for the kids was easy and fast. Unlike the adult races you get the shirt right there with your child’s bib so it makes the process just a little faster without having to go to a second location at the Expo. This year the kids race shirt was blue! I was thrilled as the last 2 shirts my son has were white which were stained and pretty unwearable before we even left the parks. However a this blue shirt will be around until it does not fit!
My son was running the 200m dash for ages 4-6, so he was the second batch of kids running as they start with the 100m. The kids races started at 11:00 am on the dot with the first wave of 100m little runners. The 100m dash is for kids 1-3 and usually the most fun to watch. Lots of crying kids who just don’t understand what they are supposed to do while everyone and Mickey Mouse cheer them on.
My sons distance would be starting around 11:20 am and he actually ran at 11:25 am. You can always count on Disney for being punctual! There are no set corrals for the kids race however they do start in waves. Parents and kids just line up at the start line and go when they are told. My husband waited with my son while I got a spot close to the finish line to take some pictures.
This year they started at a different part of the track running in the opposite direction as last year. I felt that this gave way more opportunities for pictures. The center of the track also felt less congested from last year and they started less children in each wave which was fantastic. I did not see one parent knock over a child do to over crowding and it also gave the kids a bit more space to run their little hearts out.
I love that parents can run with their kids but kids also have a parent claim tag attached to their bib that you can get your kids at the finish line. With so many kids and parents around it doesn’t hurt to have the claim ticket just in case you get separated.
At the finish line Mickey Mouse is waiting for the kids to give hugs and high fives before the kids get their hard earned medals. Just like the adult races once you get your medal there is water and snacks for some post race fuel. 200m is a long distance so my son was sure to make sure he had some snacks!
After the race we explored the 2 tents of activities located in the center of the track. One of the tents had caricature artists and the other had arts and crafts for the kids to do such as crown making and coloring stations. It was nice to have something to do before and after the race. Since the kids races are very short it did help expand their experience. We did not wait in the line for caricatures since it was pretty cold and windy but they did have some adorable car magnets with the kids race distance on them.
My son said it was the best race yet and I have to agree. Overall the Disney kids races do not disappoint. They truly have a way to make the kids feel like they are a big part of marathon weekend and entertain us parents at the same time. Plus where else at Disney could you have a cool experience, a Disney shirt, race medal and some snacks for under $20!
Melissa Rubenstein is a Family Chiropractor in Miami and a Homeschooling Mom. She is married to a streak runner and has completed numerous runDisney races.