Inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

For those of my readers who know me, they know that I’m a huge Disney fanatic. So, of course, I’ll be bringing you news from the world of the mouse from time-to-time.

Each fall, Walt Disney World hosts the International Food & Wine Festival at Epcot. In addition to the countries that already have a permanent home at Epcot, other countries including South Korea, Puerto Rico, Belgium, Poland, South Africa, Spain and Australia are added to the mix. Park visitors can indulge in tapas-sized dishes that reflect each nation’s heritage and culinary flair.

The festival also includes wine tastings and food demonstrations. The Eat to the Beat Concert Series also is featured in the American Garden Amphitheater in the American Pavilion of World Showcase. This year seven new acts are featured including Sugar Ray, Air Supply, .38 Special, and Rick Springfield (“I wish I was Jesse’s girl…) as well as returning favorites like Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Billy Ocean, Jon Secada, and Taylor Dayne.

New this year is the Wine & Dine Half Marathon. The 13.1-mile run will wind through three of Disney’s theme parks finishing at World Showcase. Runners can participate in a special after-hours party in the park. There’s also a 5K Mickey’s Family Halloween fun run that goes through the Magic Kingdom. Yes, you can run right past Cinderella’s Castle! Special races for kids are held at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex. So, the little foodies can take part, too!

The finish line at the Inaugural Princess 5K in 2009 outside Epcot.

Registration for the half marathon is full. You can still sign up to be added for a waiting list for the event that takes place 10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 2. The 5K fun run takes place at 7 a.m. Oct. 2. Kid’s races are at 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 1. There are still spots available to register for the 5k and the kid’s races. Tickets also are available to purchase for the special after-party at Epcot.

Runners and their families can enjoy special rates at several of Disney’s on-site hotels. Various accommodations from value to deluxe are available for all budgets.

To register for the race, visit http://espnwwos.disney.go.com/events/endurance/wine-and-dine-half-marathon/.

I must say – I am jealous of anyone doing this run! I had the chance to do the Inaugural Princess 5K at Epcot in 2009 and it was purely magical. I can only imagine how great a run through the Magic Kingdom will be. I have a hunch it will be a very fast course, too.

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