welcome to the newsletter
In this week’s edition of the newsletter we get ready to celebrate parkrun’s 10th birthday, announce the new ‘Suncorp Bank parkrunner of the week’ and our parkdog needs a forever home.
Ten years ago this Thursday (2 October, 2004) 13 people gathered in a park in Southwest London and completed a 5km time trial. Equal first across the finish line was Chris Owens and Matthew Morgan in a time of 18:47. The thirteenth and final finisher was Simon Lawrence in 29:39, still a very respectable time for 5km. Unbeknownst to Chris, Matthew, Simon and the other 10 runners they had just made history… they were the first parkrunners!
Looking back now at the results from Bushy parkrun #1 a few things really jump out at me:
-8th place James Russell has since gone on to complete 291 parkruns, his most recent being just last Saturday at Crane Park parkrun.
- 4th place Andrew Lane has completed 213 parkruns and also had a run last Saturday at Norwich parkrun.
- 5th place Steve Rowland has now completed 49 parkruns… oh so close to his 50-club red t-shirt!
- 12th place Tanya Wolken, the 5th ever female finisher at parkrun… has never been back! Yep, only 1 parkrun in the bank.
This Saturday at Bushy parkrun these original 13 parkrunners will be back together for the first time in a decade. Alongside them will be parkrun Founder Paul Sinton-Hewitt CBE and around 1,000 others. At almost 500 other locations around the world something like 100,000 others will also be lining up for their free, timed, weekly 5km run or walk. Supporting them will be thousands of volunteers who we all know are the true lifeblood of parkrun.
parkrun has become nothing short of a phenomenon. It’s a running revolution. And we’re all part of it.
As parkrun is now global, the anniversary of the launch of Bushy parkrun has been anointed International parkrun Day. It will be celebrated and acknowledged at every parkrun event on the planet in big and small ways. Some will announce it in the pre-run briefing, others will wear fancy dress… many will put on cake. We all know that cake tastes better after parkrun!
So this week why not tell a friend or family member about parkrun, bring them along, and change their life for the better. Just make sure they bring their barcode!
Tim from parkrun Australia (get in touch)
p.s. Only 4 days until International parkrun Day 2014
Essential Stats for Australia & Singapore
Number of locations – 97
Number of runners – 12,325
Number of runners global – 78,421
Number of PBs – 2,244
Number of first timers – 2,471
Number of volunteers – 850
International parkrun Day 2014
As mentioned above, International parkrun Day commemorates the launch of Bushy parkrun on 2 October 2004 and is now celebrated annually on the first Saturday in October. This year IpD is being held this Saturday, 4 October, which is of course parkrun's 10th birthday!
To celebrate this huge milestone we will be attempting to break the Guinness World Record for the ‘most participants in a 5km run across multiple locations’. The current record was set by Cancer Research UK at the Race For Life One Big Day event and involved 101,246 participants at 23 locations across the UK on 4 June 2006.
Can we do it?
Over the last few months many of you have patiently waited to receive your free 50-club and 100-club t-shirts which were supplied to us periodically by a former sponsor. We received our final batch of these a few weeks back and they are now in the process of being distributed by our Event Directors. Most, but not all, runners who ordered their shirts by the end of July will receive one of the current batch.
To give you an idea of numbers thus far 727 of you have received a free 50-club shirt however this still means around 250 are still waiting and this is regrettable. We are now hoping to develop a global strategy for manufacturing and delivering these club shirts to you however this is most likely still some time away. In the meantime those of you who do join the 50- or 100-club will no longer be asked for your shirt size in your congratulatory email. We will however reinstate this once the new shirt supply has been confirmed and anyone who has joined the club in the interim will be provided with one.
Rest assured we are doing our best to rectify this situation and we look forward to seeing lots of red 50-club and black 100-club shirts at parkrun events long into the future.
Announcing the ‘Suncorp Bank parkrunner of the month’
In partnership with our wonderful friends at Suncorp Bank we are excited and proud to launch the new ‘Suncorp Bank parkrunner of the month’ award to honour outstanding members of the parkrun community in Australia.
So how is it going to work?
One person from each event across Australia will be selected per month as the “Suncorp Bank parkrunner of the month” for demonstrating the following principles:
- Volunteering (must have volunteered at least once during the month)
- General support
- Commitment to parkrun
Each monthly winner will receive an exclusive 'Suncorp Bank parkrunner of the month' running singlet which will be awarded on the first Saturday of each month (for the previous month).
You do not need to ‘enter’ a competition to be in with the chance to win, you do not need to vote and no formal activity is required from you to be selected, other than meeting the above criteria.
Special thanks to Suncorp Bank for initiating and funding this award. Suncorp Bank has been a key sponsor of parkrun Australia since 2012 and this year signed a three-year major partnership extension. Suncorp Bank wants to recognise and reward the most deserving member of each parkrun event every month, based on the common Suncorp Bank and parkrun principles of supporting the community and making a positive difference.
For more information, ask your Event Director or visit the Suncorp Bank website.
Coomera parkrun goes Hawaiian!
Coomera parkrunner Alli Cooke has put down her barcode and is heading to Kona for her long-time dream - Ironman World Championships. From everyone at parkrun Australia we wish Alli the very best success – we know the many long and lonely hours of training will pay off.
Trail running new to Ray’s Outdoors
As a parkrunner, your weekly run takes you off the road and onto tracks, trails and paths right across the country.
Ray’s new Trail range provides the right footwear, apparel and accessories to improve your trail running experience.
Featuring two of the trusted performers in the trail world, Salomon and Merrell, Ray’s new Trail range has something for everyone who loves multi-surface running.
SALOMON - If you want to take your running to the next level or simply want the best for your feet, Salomon Trail footwear delivers technical performance, cushioning and protection.
MERRELL – If you love running and enjoy the feel of the surface beneath your feet, their range of Merrell trail footwear is perfect. Feel the surface and feel protected.
Visit our dedicated Adventurunner zone online or instore and turn your run into an adventure with Ray’s new Trail range.
parkdog of the week
Say hello to CeeCee, our 3rd ‘parkdog of the week’ and 1st who is currently in foster care. That’s right, she can be yours! CeeCee and her foster Mum, Marlena Kaczmarek,
completed their first Mitchelton parkrun together last Saturday! CeeCee is a 14 week old Cattle Dog X puppy. Although she has a lot of energy, the 5km was a bit far for her so Marlena had to take it slow and ended up carrying her the last 50m across the finish line. Although exhausting, CeeCee really enjoyed parkrun and loved meeting all the friendly people and other doggies!
As mentioned above CeeCee is in foster care as she was dumped at the pound at just 5 weeks old so has needed a bit of TLC. She is now ready for adoption and really hoping a parkrunner will give her a forever home! As she grows up she will make the perfect running companion for someone (as well as being a smoochy slightly over-sized lap dog)!
FAQ - Can I run without a barcode?
Yes, but you won't get a time.
If you cross the finish line please stay in the finish funnel and to take a token from one of our volunteers. Ducking out of the funnel severely distorts our results. You can just give your token to a volunteer.
We operate a 'no printed barcode - no result' policy. If you have been told differently I'm afraid you were misinformed. We are strict with regards to this policy as we process over 70,000 results every Saturday and if we were to relax this policy it would triple the amount of work for our volunteers.
Fortunately, it is easy to print off new copies of your barcode - follow the link in the weekly newsletter, old results email or follow the 'request a reminder email' link on every event's home page. If you don't have access to a printer, why not ask a friend or relative to print it off for you?
Upcoming Special Events
4 - International parkrun Day, Penrith Lakes (NSW) cancelled
11 – Mosman (NSW) 1st anniversary, Berwick Springs (Vic) 1st anniversary, Kalgoorlie-Boulder (WA) 1st anniversary, Launceston (Tas) cancelled
18 – Gungahlin (ACT) 1st anniversary, Kingscliff (NSW) 2nd anniversary, North Lakes (Qld) 2nd anniversary, Brightwater (QLD) launch, Murray Bridge (SA) launch, Launceston (Tas) cancelled
25 – Mudgeeraba (Qld) 1st anniversary, Westerfolds (Vic) 1st anniversary, Darwin (NT) 1st anniversary, Bunbury (WA) 1st anniversary, Kawana (Qld) 2nd anniversary, Main Beach (Qld) cancelled
1 - South Bank (Qld) 2nd anniversary, Maitland (NSW) 1st anniversary, Armidale (NSW) cancelled
8 - Diamond Creek (Vic) 1st anniversary, Launceston (Tas) 2nd anniversary, Geographe Bay (WA) launch
15 - Albert Melbourne (Vic) 3rd anniversary, Calamvale (Qld) launch, Shepparton (Vic) cancelled
22 – Sandgate (Qld) 2nd anniversary
29 – Minnippi (Qld) 1st anniversary
Feedback from the field
Ingrid Wheeler - Just want to thank Heather Hunter and her crew for a fantastic first Tamworth parkrun. Weather perfect, atmosphere positive and encouraging. Really great people. Had a ball!
Kevin Armstrong - Tomorrow (AFL Grand Final Day) marks 2 years since my wife, Stephanie and I started running (& volunteering!) @ Albert Melbourne parkrun. We think it's great but don't turn up as often as we should. We lose 1 run a month (first Sat) to the even older VRR Tan runs that we started running way back in 1992 - hard to abandon old friends but a pity about the clash! But we still miss too many parkruns (both only on between 20-30) & must do better! What we really love is the chance to try other venues when we travel. So far we've only done Launceston (great!) once in Australia but we'll do others. However the international options are fantastic too! We both had to spend time recently back in our old home in the scenic West of Ireland (Co. Mayo) and got a chance to experience parkrun there. I was there longer and was able to do 2 runs in both Castlebar & Westport (incl its 1 year anniversary run & celebration - they know how to have party even @ 10.30am! No drink - just a great parkrun cake, prizes & a lot of fun). I cannot recommend these venues highly enough to anyone who finds themselves in Mayo. They have a leisurely 9.30 am start - perfect for tourists! Both courses are great (& different) and volunteers/post-run could not be better. Another Mayo town, Ballina, will have one soon too! Check them out if you ever find yourself in the West of Ireland - you won't regret it! Tell them you're an Aussie & you'll get an even bigger welcome!! I told them I'd give them a plug & they'd love to see you!
Andrew Dodd - I guess all 50th parkruns are special but Gerard Nesbitt did a rare one last Saturday: his 50th parkrun (all at Newy) during the week of his 50th birthday… and unbeknown to him his wife arranged for 50 friends to run in red shirts!
Linda Brandt - There is no excuses! My daughter Jade Brandt is a good example nothing holds her back from attending her favourite parkrun every Saturday morning if she not able to run it she will volunteer! Jade had accident at Oztag on Wednesday evening with a collision with her own team mate rushing her to hospital to find she had broken her right clavicle (collarbone). If that wasn't enough pain she then backed up to have 4 wisdom teeth out on Friday. In good spirit she arrived at Kirra parkrun ready for action as a volunteer photographer. Now that's dedication!
Jane Curry - Thank you, thank you, thank you. That is really all I want to say except that I enjoy reading the newsletter every week and the community feel of parkrun. You all do a great job. Thanks again.
Danny Smulders - I just wanted to thank you for making parkrun possible. I heard of parkrun a while ago but when I read that it was launching in Pakenham, and the course went right past my house, I knew I had to give it a go. I have never really ran but decided to attend the launch run at Pakenham with my two boys. We were immediately made to feel welcome by the large group of participants and volunteers as we listened to the run briefing in the rain. The run started, the clouds cleared and the sun came out. As my boys finished and waited patiently for me to arrive, total strangers encouraged me and threw high fives my way while I ran/walked the course. The only record I broke was my own, but I felt proud to complete my first 5km parkrun. This is a great program for my boys to maintain their fitness during the off season (footy and hockey), and for me to improve my fitness and finally learn how to run. After our first few weeks we will put ourselves down for volunteering too. You guys run something special. You provide an accessible and welcoming event for everyone from elite runners to blokes like me. Well done! See you next week, and the week after that, and the week after that.
Drop me an email if you have an interesting parkrun related fact, happening or comment that you would like to share with all parkrunners.
Name: Barry Ward
Home parkrun: Logan River
Number of runs: 17
Number of times volunteered: 5
Favourite volunteer role: Tail Runner
What do like about volunteering at parkrun: Great way to get to know other people in the group. It feels good to contribute to the group every now and then. When you become a volunteer in a group, you get to become better known by other members of the group.
Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment: My favourite volunteer position is “Tail Runner”. The first time I did this, I found myself following 2 young ladies (I am 67!) who were walking VERY VERY slowly, just out for a chatty stroll!! I shortly realised that one of them had very recently had a baby – and this must have been the first time she had done much on her feet since giving birth and hence the slow pace.
I decided that, as I was the “Tail Runner”, I would “run” behind them all the way. Do you know how difficult it is to run 5K at 12 minutes per K?? Oh, my aching calf muscles.