Disney Asks For Event Volunteers, Revokes Beloved Perk

RunDisney removes complimentary ticket
Credit: Disney

In just a couple of months, the runDisney Wine & Dine Half Marathon weekend will come to the Walt Disney World Resort. The sold-out event will take place from November 2 through November 5 and there will be a 5k, a 10k, and a half-marathon. For those who love to run, there is also the Two Course Challenge, where runners participate in both the 10K and the Half Marathon. There will also be a post-race party on November 5, although that is an additional charge and also requires registration.


Credit: Disney

runDisney events are incredibly popular and take a lot of work to put together. There are also a lot of people required to make sure the events go off seamlessly. For every marathon weekend, Disney looks for volunteers who would like to be a part of the event. There are typically several perks that volunteers are given, with the most loved perk being a complimentary theme park ticket.

EPCOT fireworks cruise

Credit: Disney

However, volunteers who were looking at helping out at this year’s Wine & Dine Half Marathon noticed a BIG change in the perks. Disney will no longer be giving out free theme park tickets to volunteers. The runDisney website currently reads:

Thank you for considering volunteering your time during the upcoming RunDisney race season! Your passion for making a difference in the Central Florida community through our celebrated charities is truly valued. In keeping with that spirit of volunteerism, complimentary theme park tickets will not be distributed. We appreciate your support and enthusiasm for our magical running community.


Credit: Disney Parks Blog

This is not the first time that Disney has cut the perks given to those who volunteer at the runDisney events. At last year’s Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend, volunteers who only volunteered for one day received a half-day ticket that was only valid after 1 p.m. Volunteers were disappointed, since Disney doesn’t really lose any money by giving out the tickets.

Pandora Sunset Animal Kingdom

Credit: Todd F. Burgess, Flickr

Disney also constantly tells the volunteers how things would not be possible without them. So, to many, it was a slap in the face to say how important they are while telling them that they aren’t important enough to be given tickets that have always been given out before. Frustrated guests frequently say that Disney is charging more and giving less. The volunteers aren’t being charged, but are clearly feeling the pinch of Disney’s money belts.

Disney knows that not everyone can head to Walt Disney World for the marathon, so there are also a number of virtual events! The 5K is currently sold out, but the 10K, Half Marathon, and Two Course Challenge still have space available.

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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