As you may know, in 2007 Lou challenged himself to run a half marathon. In 2008 that dream became a reality and along the way he has inspired many people in the Disney online community to follow suit. Wether they chose to begin running Disney races for health, personal accomplishment, camaraderie or just for fun, their numbers have been growing exponentially. Along the way we have challenged the same online community to run with us to raise money for theÂ Make-A-Wish Foundation of America through the Dream Team Project. It is our goal to for your help to make a profound difference in the lives of children and their families by makeing a childâ€™s dreams of going to Walt Disney World come true.
A little less that one year ago, I blogged out an invitation to the Disney online community to join our WDW Radio Running Team. Since that time we have grown from a group of eight to a Team of over 100!
In the past year, lead by Deanna and Steve, we have had runners of all ages, levels of experience and ability participating not only in Disney races, but local races as well. Proudly wearing our team colors while raising donations for the Dream Team Project benefitting Make A Wish.
In January, at the 2011 Marathon weekend our team raced not only in the half but also the full marathon as well as 4 goofy guys who ran both!
On the morning of the Half, according to Lou, I dragged him out of his soft comfy bed to take him to the race start for the first time, gathering the Team before the race. It was a cold morning that none of us will ever forget. The excitement was palpable and seeing these wonderful people here supporting a cause so near and dear to our hearts truly left me in awe.
As the team headed to the start, we headed to wake up Beci and leave for the Magic Kingdom to await their arrival!Â One by one and two by two we cheered our team onward to the castle and beyond
That afternoon, during the meet of the month, the team had the opportunity to exchange race stories and tips for the following day.
The Morning of the Marathon, we once again headed to the Start to support the team. This time we knew what we were doing and this time we had a plan! GO TEAM!
Again, we hit the Magic Kingdom early cheering the Team on for a few hours before heading to Epcot to welcome them back on their last mile! What a great day!
We also had non-running Team members who choose to wake early in the morning to find a place on the race course to stand, often for hours, and support their team as they make the journey though the parks.
Later that evening we had an informal Team meet where the team shared their race stories and excitedly talked about what they wanted to do next year!
What an amazing weekend we had. We met new people with a common goal and forged friendships that we now hold dear.
Throughout the year we have gained many new members and our WDW Radio Running Team has been represented at the Disney Princess Half, Expedition Everest 5k/scavenger hunt, Disneyland half and the 2011 Wine and Dine Races. Our members have run representing the Team in local races from New York to California, Las Vegas to Texas as well as Ontario Canada!
Along the way, I have heard some amazing stories of what has motivated our members to join. In future blog posts and newsletters I hope to share their stories as well as their strategies for raising donations.
I would like to invite you all to join in our fun and become a member of the 2012 â€œWDW Radio Running Teamâ€ with the intent to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America through the Dream Team Project.
To donate to the Dream Team Project visit our secure fundraising page at the Make-A-Wish Foundation web site
Once again, we will be sharing information and experiences about the races, advice for the weekend events, preparation, motivational stories and the progress we have seen over time.
Our contributors also share tips on what they are doing to support the fundraising aspect of the team and how it has impacted The Dream Team Projectâ€™s ability to begin sponsoring wishes through the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America.
We also organize Team meets over marathon weekend as well as organize team supporters located along the race route.
â€œHow can I be a part of all of this?â€, you ask?
To be a member of the WDW Radio Running Team you need to:
- Join the team for a cost of $35.00 to cover membership materials including but not limited to Team tek (moisture wicking) shirts, headband, membership certificate and shipping cost.
- Commit to fundraising for the marathon at a minimum donation of $100 to Make-A-Wish Foundation of America through the Dream Team Project . That commitment can be for a couple, family, etc. and not just for an individual.
Also available are Running Team Polo Shirts as well as Running Team Sweat Shirts:
Additional Team Shirts can be purchased for Family members, be they runners or supporters for an additional $35.00.
A Team meet up on Marathon weekend takes place each year
Team Members can join the WDW Radio Running Team Facebook page to share training progress and tips. Remember, none of our runners are professionals; we are taking it one step at a time just like you!
Together, letâ€™s bring a smile to the face of children with serious illnesses and their families by sponsoring wishes through the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America
You can join the team as a runner or supporter by emailing Valerie Drew at Valerie@wdwradio.com