We are have tickets to do the Princess 5K with our kids, 8 and 6, in February. I’m a little wary, though, of the early wake-up time and the waiting-around time that I’ve heard about. Can anyone give me details on what this is like and how you’ve fared with young kids? (And any tips)?
My DS13 started doing Disney 5Ks six years ago and has done at least one a year. We had one year (he was 10) where the early morning wake up was awful, but for the most part he has done well with it (with an early bedtime). I have to admit though that the past few years we have driven our rental car to the race rather than relying on Disney transport. This has allowed us to arrive later and avoid a lot of the standing around. Disney will recommend that you arrive ridiculously early which we no longer do.
We love doing the 5Ks because it is not timed and it really is great for families.
Agree completely on the advantages of driving for the 5k — if the weather is iffy you can wait in the car — and not needing to get there as early as Disney says, since you will likely be in one of the later corrals especially. My DD21 did the Marathon weekend 5k with me from the age of 8 to 16 and it was actually harder to get her up for the start when she was a teenager than when she was 8!
This is super helpful information! I didn’t realize you could drive your own car–I thought the roads were closed to everything except Disney buses. So the race starts at 5:30–what time would you be leaving your Disney hotel? (We are staying at AoA) And yes assuming one of the later corrals.
roads are open for the 5k because its run entirely on Epcot lots, access roads and park. there will be traffic and other drivers so dont cut it too close, but i usually leave my resort (AKL) by 4am, and arrive about 4:30am. you’ll want to build in time for security lines, last minute port-a-let stop, walk to start. 4:30am may be more time than you need but i get nervous about cutting it too clise. @Dreamer are you more comfortable with a later arrival than i based on your experience?
Last February my friend and I woke up way late for the 5K. We caught the last race bus from POR at about 5:10 am. We were in the last corral, so the timing ended up being perfect. We still had plenty of time.
You were already assigned to the last corral? (I’m a newbie to this). If you arrive late, can you sneak into the last corral? What time did you actually start running, approx., do you think?
Yes, we were assigned to the last corral (for the Princess 5K they only had A, B and C) I think we started about 6:15 am?? I’m fairly certain you can start in the last corral if you’re late. I think they’re stricter about trying to go up a corral.
This is all so helpful and may actually mean we could probably do it. Thanks and I’ll also take any other tips you have on running the event with little ones! But the timing tips have been the most helpful!
yes, you can move back to a later starting corral without any problem. you are not allowed to move up, and although lots of runners try various methods to do so, they are very strict and have a system in place to prevent!
Thanks for verifying that. I figured that was the case.
I’m happy being in the last corral. I would be too embarrassed to be with the fast runners up front.
We arrived at Epcot in April at 5 am for a 5:30 start time and I felt like that was plenty of time.
Disney makes it seem like you can’t drive if you are staying on property but that isn’t true (at least for the 5K).
Where were you staying and was there traffic on the route to EP?
This past time we stayed at POFQ. We didn’t have traffic until we arrived at Epcot to park and that wasn’t even bad.
So–let me make sure I have this right–the announced start time of the race is 5:30; the third corral likely doesn’t get started until well after that; possibly 6:15?
Some of you folks have even been departing your hotels at 5 or 5:10, and still had plenty of time? I’m likewise thinking we could push it and even be leaving out hotel at 5:15 or so, and plan on being in the last corral.
I think even the third corral might start before 6:15–possibly closer to 6. I feel like the first corral was finishing just around the time we started.
yes, the last corral may start as late as 6:15 but i wouldn’t count on it. 6am is a good bet.
Coming back to this thread and all of your helpful tips, we are trying to decide what to do after the race. Is there a lot of milling about after? Would it make sense to try to get a Garden Grill PPO ADR for 8 am and then go to EP at 9? What is usually going on after you finish the race?
I have no idea when my kids will hit their wall after such an early wake up, but trying to have a rough plan for the day. (Possibly EP for a couple of hours, then go back to AoA for a long nap for everyone).
Oh, and this is assuming we are in the last corral and not running fast.
You can mill around if you want, but you certainly don’t have to. There are often character meet and greets after you pick up your medal, drinks and snacks.