The dates for the 2014 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend have been announced as Thursday 9 - Sunday 12 January. The four-day festival in Florida gives runners the chance to embrace their inner child and meet Mickey, Pluto, Donald et al whilst running in 'the most magical place on earth' (don't tell JK Rowling). As well as the marathon there is also a half marathon, Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge (which involves running a half marathon and full marathon on consecutive days), a 5K fun run, and runDisney Kids races.
The runs give you access to the various parks which make up Walt Disney World with the marathon taking runners through all four - Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios and Epcot. The event has proved particularly appealing to women with over 48% of runners at past events being female.
Organisers had a message for runners entering the event: "You're a runner who loves adventure! Your priority in a race is the course. And now you're about to head out on the most magical course on earth during the final race of the weekend - a 26.2 mile run that'll take you through four Walt Disney World theme parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports and the Walt Disney World Speedway. From the Magic Kingdom Park, home of Mickey, Minnie and the whole Disney gang and the wild adventure of Disney's Animal Kingdom Park, to the show biz excitement of Disney's Hollywood Studios, and incredible Epcot, your marathon adventure is unlike any other anywhere on earth."
Sports travel operator Sports Tours International is offering UK runners various travel packages for the event.
The STI website says: "By joining the Sports Tours International team of runners you will experience the best value Walt Disney World marathon packages. You will stay at one of the official Walt Disney World resorts and you will enjoy the benefit and reassurance of a guaranteed race entry. Your resort is located in the centre of the action at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, near Orlando, Florida, with the added advantage of easy access to all of the Walt Disney World Theme Parks and use of the free Disney Transportation System."
For more information, visit the Sports Tours International website.