New Balance, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Announce Strategic Alliance
Running USA wire
As part of the collaboration, New Balance becomes the official athletic shoe of Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
BOSTON and BURBANK, Calif. - New Balance and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts announced a multi-year strategic alliance that includes exclusive footwear, running-specific initiatives and co-branding opportunities.
This exciting alliance will bring New Balance’s innovative, design-forward athletic footwear to the leading vacation destination in the world, in particular Disney’s thriving sports business. As part of the collaboration, New Balance becomes the official athletic shoe of Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. New Balance also becomes the official running shoe for runDisney race weekends and the official baseball shoe of amateur baseball events at the Sports Complex.
In addition, New Balance also becomes the title sponsor of the track & field facility at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, home of the annual Walt Disney World Cross Country Classic and Disney’s Track & Field Spring Training for high school and collegiate teams. Future initiatives include the creation of maps for the running trails at Walt Disney World Resort and fitness programs for Disney resort guests interested in pursuing healthy options.
“New Balance and Disney share a commitment to quality and innovation,” says Rob DeMartini, President and CEO of New Balance. “We are proud to work with Walt Disney Parks & Resorts to showcase New Balance’s brand excellence and the benefits of an active lifestyle.”
"Our relationship with New Balance complements our company's efforts to provide healthy options for families during their Disney vacation,” said George Aguel, senior vice president, Disney Corporate Alliances. "We are excited about this new agreement and look forward to working with New Balance."
To commemorate this alliance, New Balance created a men’s and women’s limited edition runDisney 860v3 running shoe that captures the spirit of two favorite Disney characters - Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse. The 860v3 - runDisney edition was available for purchase at the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon Health & Fitness Expo, and can be found at future runDisney Health & Fitness Expos, special events created jointly by New Balance and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts as well as branded pop-up shops located at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
runDisney is a series of events providing runners unique opportunities to run through Disney theme parks. Race participants earn Disney-themed medals, experience legendary Disney entertainment and guest service and ultimately celebrate their accomplishments with a Disney vacation. The original event in the series, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna, takes place in January followed by the Disney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend in February, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler in September and the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend in November. Disneyland Resort hosts the Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend in January and the Disneyland Half Marathon in September during Labor Day Weekend. More than 150,000 running enthusiasts participate in runDisney events each year. For more information, visit runDisney.com and follow runDisney on Facebook runDisney and Twitter @runDisney.