runDisney adds new Virtual Running Shorts Series for summer


runDisney announced new races on Thursday — and there is no limit on the number of participants, although there still is a deadline to register. Runners and walkers now can sign up for virtual races that are scheduled to begin next month.

If you’ve never heard the term “virtual race,” it refers to a race that can be run in any location, even as part of another actual race. Basically, the participant chooses the pace (walking, jogging, running) and the location (inside, outside, on a treadmill or not).


runDisney is offering participants the opportunity to bring some of the magic of its popular races to their hometowns with its new Virtual Running Shorts Series. The series includes three separate 5Ks and a challenge to complete all three 5K races in specified time frames:


** Yellow Shorts 5K — must be completed between May 15 and June 1. Register now through May 31.

** Red Pants 5K — must be completed between June 5 and 18. Register now through June 17.

** White Glove 5K — must be completed between June19 and 30. Register now through June 29.

Virtual Running Shorts Series — all three races totaling 9.3 miles must be completed in each race’s timeframe. Register now through May 31.

Each 5K costs $39 per person, and the series challenge is $142. So what do you get for that entry fee? Every registration includes a virtual bib and a Mickey finisher medal. The series challenge comes with each of the individual medals plus a fourth medal and a tumbler. Each individual medal represents one of Mickey’s iconic fashion staples, and the challenge medal features Mickey sporting his complete ensemble.

No finishing time is required for the races in the Virtual Running Shorts Series. As with other runDisney 5K races, participants must be at least 5 years old to register, and everyone must sign waivers online during the registration process.

The new runDisney races benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, an organization that fights blood cancers. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society also was the celebratory charity of Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, meaning it can use the races as both a platform to create awareness and to raise funds for research.

The official runDisney blog states: “Virtual races are becoming more and more popular in the running world with the ease of participating from anywhere. As runDisney continues to grow, we will look for more opportunities to stay connected with our runners as well as introduce a healthy and active lifestyle to new audiences.”

Do you agree — are the new runDisney virtual races good motivators to train? Or is the cost too high when you haven’t stepped foot on Disney property? Tell us in the comments why you think these races are a positive or negative addition to the runDisney portfolio.


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11 Replies to “runDisney adds new Virtual Running Shorts Series for summer”

  1. I just read this on the runDisney site:
    runDisney will make a gift to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Runners will also have the opportunity to make an additional donation to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society when they sign up and register for the races.

    It appears as though they will donate but you may also donate additional money if you choose.

  2. Where do we send proof of finishing our virtual runs? Or do all registered runners get medals? My 9 yr old daughter and I are registered for the series!
    She ran the Mickey Mile in Jan and is so excited to add to her Mickey medals. 🙂

    KRISTIN: No proof of finish required. All paid participants receive medals.

  3. So, apparently money from these runs only goes to charity if you donate extra during the registration process. Several members of Team RunDisney on Facebook called and asked about how much goes to charity. They were all told that only what people donate goes to charity and none of the registration fee goes to charity.

    Honestly, I wish I knew this before I registered. I find it a bit misleading that they claim it supports the LLS, but only if you donate extra. Until Disney posts more specifics on the race, including the amount donated or percentage donated, it’s all speculation that any portion of registration goes to a charity.

    That being said, it’s a fun way for me to train for the Wine and Dine 10K this fall.

  4. I think it is a great way to raise money for charities and still enjoy some of the Disney magic when you can’t be at the World. Do you know what percentage of the registration fee goes to the charity?

  5. I think its pretty fun. Yes, its expensive, but since its designed to fund charitable donations, I am totally going for it.

  6. I signed up for the series last week and am looking forward to getting started. Some friends of mine decided to try the Princess 10K next year and we are using these races as motivation and training. I am a Disney fanatic anyway so this was a no-brainer. I even signed my kids up for the yellow shoes 5K since we will be at Disney World during the time for that one. They think it’s cool that they will get a medal for walking around the World. 🙂 I am so glad that runDisney is doing this!

  7. Can I pay with virtual money? This is virtually the craziest thing I’ve ever heard of. People are going to pay Disney $150.00 to run on their own treadmills or in their own neighborhoods, for a couple of “medals” that probably cost Disney less than a buck? SMH.

  8. Do you get a “real” finishers medal or a “virtual” one?

    KRISTIN: You get a real finishers medal mailed to you.