Part of the pre-race excitement with runDisney races is attending the expo. 2016’s WDW Marathon Weekend Expo ran from January 4-7 and since I was running the Dopey Challenge, I needed to attend on Wednesday, January 4th.
If you’re unsure what the expo is, its where you go to pick up your bib numbers, purchase marathon merchandise, and to shop for tons of race related items, ranging from clothes to sneakers, headbands, KT tape, sparkle skirts and so much more.
The official race merchandise can sell out quick so getting to the expo early to get these items is important. Sometimes the excitement of getting these items takes over and you end up with buyer’s remorse.
Tip *** One good thing with the official runDisney merchandise that I didn’t know is it can be returned anywhere in Disney.
Disney provides bus transportation to the expo which is at the ESPN Wide World of Sports. We woke up early and got to expo about an hour after it started. Here we are waiting for bus. Christmas decorations still are up.
There’s such an exciting vibe here. People are looking at their new race shirts, getting their bibs, and really a fun atmosphere (especially if timed right).
So after arriving at the expo, we decided to hit the official RunDisney merchandise tent first. This is in the building with all the different vendors. Here’s a look from above:
On our way there, I decided to stop and get my knees taped at the KT tape booth. I wasn’t trying to get any specific merchandise and knew the lines to get knees taped can get long, so I did this before heading to the rundisney tent. The KT tape helps give my knees some stability and having an expert tape them up gives me peace of mind and I’m so happy I did that.
After getting knees taped I met Laura and Megan who were still shopping l. I found some dopey challenge headbands and pins I decided to purchase.
Next, we needed to go to the Field House Building where you get your race packet. This included our bibs for the race and our 6 race shirts for the dopey challenge.
TIP: Try on all the shirts. While they may be the same size, they can either smaller or larger. We found a bathroom to do this and needed to exchange some which they allow you to do.
After taking care of our race essentials, we went back to the building with the booths and shopped around a bit. I ended up with a tank top to wear for dopey.
One of my favorite booths is the Oofos booth. Oofos are the most comfortable flip flops ever. I wear all the time. I highly recommend and try and pick up a pair whenever I attend a rundisney expo.
We also got super lucky to get a chance to meet one of the infamous Disney race announcers John Pelkey at the expo. I remembered him from the year before and he was nice enough to take a selfie.
We also made sure to see Jeff Galloway, an Olympian who has changed running for me by encouraging running using intervals. By using intervals I am able to go the distance with less stress on my body and I was so excited to get to thank him. And what a genuinely nice man.
There are some fun extras you can find at expo as well. Freebies, giveaways, and we had a blast in the Cigman 360 photo booth. This was so fun and could easily overlooked if you’re in a hurry. I’m glad we really took our time that day.
I’ve gone to expos in the past where I’d rush in get my packet and leave, mostly due to fact I’m anxious to get to parks. But for the dopey challenge, we took it easy and the Expo was a real highlight for me! Before leaving, we made sure to get pictures next to the race signs we’ll be running. Love this tradition!
We also have some Expo clips in the following video from our YouTube channel. What a great day!
Thanks for reading, and good luck to those who are signing up for next year’s WDW Marathon Weekend through early registration!
Next up, our WDW 5k recap!