A participant on a Disney running board got the following message from the run administrators in response to their email question -
Thanks for your email. The Disneyland Half Marathon course will not be
going inside the stadium this year. The Angels have a day game on
Sunday, August 31. The timing of our race and the game does not allow
us to run the bases again. We have been lucky enough in past years to
have the Angels playing a night game or an away game. The portion of the
course on Angels Stadium property will take you through the "Big A" and
near the "Hats and Bats".
See you at the start line!
Whereas, the official web site still states, as it has the past 2 years, that the run will go through the stadium. I feel a need to rant a bit. To me, this is just another in the seemingly uncaring way the run is being managed. The first year, it was scheduled a little later in September, when it was (and usually is) a lot cooler than Labor Day weekend. The second year, they moved it up - why? I can only guess - to increase hotel occupancy and dollars generated. People collapsed on the route, and they even threatened to make it a non timed event, after thousands of runners trained and worked to acheive their best results. But, hey, does the health of runners matter when you get a waiver? It's our choice to do it, correct, but it would be interesting to see the results of the runner survey and how many (like myself) expressed a desire to see the event moved to October. We will never see that. Also, after the Year 1 race, they did not announce the Year 2 date as they needed to know the Angel stadium schedule first; I do not know if that was the case with year 3, but they sure announced the date a lot earlier than they did for Year 2, and again Year 3 is a sellout, so their business strategy of continuing on Labor Day weekend didnt hurt registration. And, of course, they limit local runners to encourage more hotel rooms get booked! So, here we are with the program online at last - no advance mailing this year, how exciting for us and cost saving for Disney! And guess what - the date for Year 4 is Labor Day again! And there is no way that the Angel schedule is known for 2009 at this point - so, clearly, the philosophy is not to wait to ensure we can run through the stadium (as still described on the official site), but just get those 3 day weekend bookings, and if we can, great, if not, who cares, right? Well, I care. I care about the fact that management takes me, my money, and my efforts for granted because they know there is a line behind me and they will sell out no matter what, so this runner is through with the DL HM. This third run will be my last. I have been a supporter and detractor of the Mouse in many areas on many occasions, but I have also been a run coordinator for a major half marathon that is now more than 20 years old, and the way participants are treated for this, the scheduling, the (potentially deliberate?) obfuscation of the route change, and other cost cutting measures that have been trickling in since year one, it just isnt fun anymore, and not worth the money to me. Clearly it is and will continue to be to many others - while I will enjoy the experience of exploring new routes and new cooler weekends at less cost. See you as we run "through" the stadium without actually going inside!