NEW YORK, September 13, 2012 — The Walt Disney World Marathon on Jan. 13, 2013 sold-out four months before the event with a record 25,000 runners slated to run the house that Mickey built. It’s a common theme among the 10 largest marathons in the U.S. Eight of the nation’s biggest marathons had more than 10,000 finishers in 2011, according to MarathonGuide.com. And many of them, like the Walt Disney World Marathon, continue to grow year-after-year.
But even as races allow more entries, they’re still forced to turn runners away. The 2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Oct. 7 sold-out in just six days with 45,000 runners taking the plunge. And the country’s largest marathon? Fuggedaboutit. The 2012 ING New York City Marathon on Nov. 4 had 140,000 applicants in its lottery for 47,500 spots.
But one of the best ways to get into a sold-out race like New York or Disney is to run for charity. Even the Boston Marathon, which only registers runners who meet their stringent qualifying standards, has spots for charity runners who aren’t necessarily fast enough to qualify. Runners raise a set amount of money for the charity in exchange for a guaranteed spot in the race.
Below are just a few of the good causes that will help you run the marathon on your Bucket List this fall and winter.
Marine Corps Marathon — Oct. 28, 2012
Marine Corps was the fourth largest marathon in the U.S. in 2011, with almost 21,000 finishers. The 2012 race sold out in three hours. But there are charities still looking for a few good men.
For a complete list of participating charities, click here.
ING New York City Marathon — Nov. 4, 2012
In 2011, charity runners in New York raised $34 million for over 200 causes. There’s still time for you to be one of them.
Many more charities still have spots available for the biggest marathon in the world. For a full list of charities participating in the ING New York City Marathon, click here.
Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna — Jan. 10-13, 2013
With the marathon, half-marathon and Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge sold-out, runners still have a few ways to get into the game. Registration is still open for the Family Fun Run 5K, runDisney Kids’ Races and the Mickey Mile during Disney Marathon Weekend. But if you want to run the marathon or half-marathon, running for charity might be the answer.
For a complete list of charities that run Disney, click here.
Karla Bruning is a veteran journalist and running nerd. She has completed four marathons, two triathlons, trains with the New York Harriers and is a member of New York Road Runners. Follow Karla’s “Notes From a Running Nerd” at RunKarlaRun.com, Facebook and Twitter@KBruning.
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