weekly newsletter 13 September 2016

Aus_2016_09_06_01

have fun, it's just a run!

This week, like each Saturday we saw first timers, experienced runners and seasoned parkrunners across all our events. First time parkrunner Jay headed to Chelsea Bicentennial parkrun. Can you recall having thoughts similar to hers, running through your mind at your first parkrun?

Driving to the event I honestly had no idea what to expect, my thoughts started running wild.

What if there are all marathon runners? What if I am the only one to show up? What if I can't find the starting and finishing line? What if I get lost on the course?

Pleasantly surprised my expectations were exceeded; the parkrun community were easily identified with lots of marketing signage and volunteers easy to find in their orange high vision vests. A crowd of people dressed in their fitness wear, gathered together at the starting line. Again I am so surprised at how many people knew about this event, and I had never heard of it before. I join the others at the starting line. The air horn goes off, and people start running. I look around me and am excited to see the diverse range of people taking part; from experienced runners, people walking their dogs, people like myself pushing their young ones in a pram, and young kids just wanting to get out and have a run with mum or dad. It was so refreshing to see people of all age groups and backgrounds getting together to take part in this run in the park, each person completing it for their own reasons.

At the other end of Australia, on the Sunshine Coast, a seasoned parkrunner showed his persistence.

"persistence; the continued or prolonged existence of something."

In 2013, Barry Ball began walking the Kawana parkrun course with his wife Helen, finishing in the respectable time of 46 minutes and 44 seconds. The couple have been dedicated participants at the event ever since, and ran their 100th parkruns together in January this year. For some time now, Barry, who is in the VM75-79 age group, has had a different parkrun milestone in mind: to complete the entire course without walking a single step. And on Saturday, his 126th parkrun, Barry achieved this goal. Fantastic effort Barry!

A parkrun goal three years in the making and your persistence got you there. I'm sure the entire parkrun community joins me in congratulating you on achieving your goal!

Happy parkrunning,

Renee Gimbert
National Operations Manager
parkrun Australia


pink parkrun bands


Aus_2016_09_13_02

Western Sydney Marathon

Fast approaching is the Western Sydney Marathon to be held on Saturday 1st October at the spectacular Sydney International Regatta Centre, Penrith Lakes.  

The scenic views of Penrith Lakes, Lower Blue Mountains and surrounding parkland make this event the perfect setting to run in one of our four events, 42.2km, 21.1km, 10km Lap the Lake or the 5km Family Fun Run. 

The Western Sydney Marathon are offering a 10% discount on entry fees for the first 250 parkrunners who register, so get it quick! Register now and when prompted use the promo code "WSMPARKRUN2016" to redeem your discount in the race of your choice!


essential stats

Aus_2016_09_13_03

upcoming special events

launches:
17/09 – Palmerston (NT), You Yangs (Vic), Moree (NSW)
8/10 - Galston (NSW)
22/10 - Orange (NSW)

anniversaries:
17/09 – New Farm (Qld) 5th, Pakenham (Vic) 2nd,
24/09 – Ashgrove (Qld) 1st, Bowral (NSW) 2nd, Merimbula (NSW) 3rd, Tamworth (NSW) 2nd, Toowoomba (Qld) 3rd,
01/10 - Champion Lakes (WA) 1st, Hamilton Island (Qld) 1st, Petrie (Qld) 1st,
08/10 – Berwick Springs (Vic) 3rd, Hamilton (Vic) 1st, Kalgoorlie-Boulder (WA) 3rd,
15/10 - Brightwater (Qld) 2nd, Grafton (NSW) 1st, Gungahlin (ACT) 3rd, Kingscliff (NSW) 4th, Mosman (NSW) 3rd, North Lakes (Qld) 4th, Paradise Point (Qld) 1st, 

cancellations:
17/09 - Penrith Lakes (NSW)
01/10 – Penrith Lakes (NSW)
15/10 – Launceston (Tas), Clare Valley (SA)
12/11 – Mt Penang (NSW)
19/11 – Tamborine Mountain (Qld)


pa_pod_10-09-16


feedback from the field

Aus_2016_09_13_04 (3)

I started parkrun (Ballarat) a few months ago after seeing it pop up on my Facebook feed. I was feeling a bit sluggish after a long recovery after my second baby and needed some motivation.

Well parkrun certainly gave me that motivation. I made a couple of PBs in my first few weeks - this really pushed me. Then my husband started to get interested in parkrun after seeing how much I was enjoying it.

My husband, the anti-exerciser, was going to get up early on a Saturday morning with two kids in tow, to go for a run! I was gob smacked!

Well since then hubby and I have tried hard to get to parkrun every week, most of the time with our two little rug rats (almost 3 and almost 1). parkrun has helped motivate both of us to do local charity runs.

Our next one is 12km Run Ballarat which we are both looking forward to. Neither of us would be where we are without parkrun!

Christine Hutchinson


Aus_2016_09_13_05

Daisy and Sue-Ellen have been at Lismore parkrun for five events now. I first noticed Daisy at our first timers briefing (I love dogs) I could see she was a little unsure and held her tail between her legs (Daisy was adopted).

When we commenced parkrun, Daisy was looking behind her and was a little nervous with people running behind and around her. Over the past few parkruns I have noticed Daisy become more at ease and even smile as she ran / galloped down towards the finish line with Sue-Ellen.

I commented to Sue-Ellen on how far Daisy has come and she is becoming more confident, comfortable and even enjoys her free timed weekly run / walk with Sue-Ellen and many Lismore parkrunners and dogs too!! Sue-Ellen loves parkrun and say “it’s something we can both do together and it is great that parkrun is inclusive of our four legged friends”.

parkrun changes not only human's lives, but animal's lives too! And it has been absolutely remarkable the change in Daisy over the past few months!! parkrun has been life changing for Daisy and Sue-Ellen and it is always wonderful to see them both at parkrun on a Saturday morning!

Belinda Smith
Event Director, Lismore parkrun


Aus_2016_09_13_06

parkdog of the week

My name is Sadie, I’m a 5 year old Cavalier King Charles.

I started coming to Chermside parkrun a few months ago with my Mum (aka Melissa) to walk as she is currently pregnant and wanted a walking companion.

As soon as she starts getting ready each Saturday morning I bark with excitement!

I love coming along each week. I let her think it’s to keep her company... but really it’s to get pats from all the people!

People know me so well now that I get to sprint to the finish line with them all calling my name!

 


Aus_2016_09_06_07

volunteer profile

Name: Belinda Mikaelian
Running Club: (none- I’m not a runner. I just run!)
Age: 42
Home parkrun: Raymond Terrace
Occupation: Clinical Nurse Specialist
Number of runs: 12
PB: 25:38
Number of times volunteered: 4
Favourite volunteer role: Handing out tokens. I love to see the relief and happiness on the face of those that have given it their all and finished. I enjoy being the person to congratulate them on their efforts at the end.

What do you like about volunteering at parkrun? I love the community feel. I love the smiles you get when you are there cheering people on. I have met some truly amazing souls and enjoy having a chat on a Saturday morning. I feel part of the parkrun team when I volunteer and that’s a great feeling, as parkrun is giving so much to our community.

 

weekly newsletter 6 September 2016

Aus_2016_09_01

parkrun joy

 

This weekend we teamed up with Medibank, one of our National Sponsors, to launch the first ‘Personal Better Day’.

The day was not about personals bests, but personal betters and we saw regulars, first timers, runners, walkers, young and old, prams, dogs and at Inverloch parkrun, we saw red! If you missed Saturday at parkrun, never fear, because parkrun will be on again next week, same time, same place!  Last week I put a call out for a volunteer position we have opened up to support parkrun Australia HQ and I was totally overwhelmed with the huge response. parkrunners are both amazing and generous, parkrunners truly are special. So here is a story I’d like to share from Tony O’Connell, Victorian TD about one of the many special parkrunners. 

Walk for Joy

To many, the name Joy McKinnon is synonymous with Inverloch parkrun. Our most active parkwalker, Joy was there at our trial event followed by our launch and has since attended almost every parkrun at Inverloch, walking 95 of her 96 events with us (once at Traralgon). She was excited by the prospect of completing her 100th parkrun in time for our 2nd Birthday.

Joy also volunteered 12 times in less than 2 years. Behind the scenes she was active in encouraging local community members to join in our event as well as supporting friends and family members, cheering them on the course. For all these reasons and more, Joy was one of the first to be awarded our parkrunner of the Month award in February 2015.

We are deeply saddened to learn Joy has passed away and our thoughts are with her family and friends.

On Saturday 3rd September parkrunners wore their red 50 shirts (or any red shirt), stepped back a pace and Walked for Joy on the day that would have been Joy's 100th parkrun. Joy's PB was 45:14 and 25 walkers all crossed the line together at exactly 45.14. There were also a number of first timers including Joy’s husband Allen, their son Geoff, their daughter Janene and their families. 

Happy parkrunning,

Renee Gimbert
National Operations Manager


Aus_2016_09_06_02


Wristbandad1


essential stats

Aus_2016_09_06_03


upcoming special events launches:

17/09 – Palmerston (NT), You Yangs (Vic), Moree (NSW)
8/10 - Galston (NSW) 22/10 - Orange (NSW)

anniversaries:
10/09 – Bega (NSW) 1st, Inverloch (Vic) 2nd, Wynnum (Qld) 4th,
17/09 – New Farm (Qld) 5th, Pakenham (Vic) 2nd,
24/09 – Ashgrove (Qld) 1st, Bowral (NSW) 2nd, Merimbula (NSW) 3rd, Tamworth (NSW) 2nd, Toowoomba (Qld) 3rd,
01/10 - Champion Lakes parkrun (WA) 1st, Hamilton Island (Qld) 1st, Petrie (Qld) 1st,

cancellations:
10/09 – Mt Penang, Penrith Lakes (NSW), Diamond Creek (Vic)
17/09 - Penrith Lakes (NSW)
01/10 – Penrith Lakes (NSW) 1
5/10 – Launceston (Tas), Clare Valley (SA)
12/11 – Mt Penang (NSW)
19/11 – Tamborine Mountain (Qld)


pa_pod_generic


feedback from the field

Aus_2016_09_06_04

I would like to take a moment to thank the great bunch of people, some of whom have become great friends, who organise and participate at Mitchelton parkrun. For the first time in more than 30 years the dreaded number on the scales no longer has 3 digits starting with a '1'.

The inspiration and encouragement of the band of parkrunners over the last 18 months played an enormous part in that achievement. You have taken me from huffing and puffing around the 5ks to preparing for my first marathon.

A weekend is not a good weekend if not started with a parkrun.

Michael Peldan

Aus_2016_09_06_05

The Melbourne Midday Milers, an informal running club that meets at 12:30 each weekday at the famous Tan track, this week swapped their running singlets for volunteer vests. The Milers held their first parkrun volunteering day fielding 23 volunteers across parkrun events in Melbourne. The parkrun events included: Westerfolds, Albert, Coburg, Maribyrnong and Berwick Springs.

The Milers are regular participants at parkrun, using it not only for a bit of exercise and social interaction on a Saturday morning, but also for chasing PBs and age grade course records. Having a day set aside for club members to volunteer was seen as a way for the club to demonstrate that it is not just about running but also about giving back to the running community.


Aus_2016_09_06_06

parkdog of the week

Hi, I’m Phoebe, a one year old kelpie / huntaway. I run with our family at Lawson parkrun in the Blue Mountains - My mum is a Run Director there.

I have a variety of parkruns versions to my name - sometimes a slow run with mum, a fast run with dad or a fast walk with one of the teenagers. I have has also volunteered as the ‘tail’ runner a number of times...

My mum Kye loves that she can bring me for a decent run with others on a Saturday morning, helping to use up some of my energy and socializing me with lovely people.

I would love to have my own barcode to keep a tally of all my runs, but my Mum thinks I’ve done about 25.

Are you a parkrun-loving dog, aka a parkdog? If so, and you’re clever enough to read this newsletter, we’d love to hear from you. 

Please send your profile to helloAU@parkrun.com with the subject ‘parkdog of the week’. 

And remember, don’t forget your bark-code. 

Woof!


AUS_2016_09_06_08

volunteer profile

Name: Ryan Lovatt

Number of runs: 51

parkrun PB: 24:12 with no push chair, about 28 minutes with a push chair.

Why do you come to parkrun: I enjoy getting out and running so getting the chance to do this first thing on Saturday is great. Kids are a great motivator.

Who do you come to parkrun with: 3 of my kids (2, 4, 9), although the 4th (7 months) has just started coming along.

What do you like most about parkrun: the happy cheerful, attitude of everyone there.

Do you do other training – if so, what: go for a run in the evening once a week.

Have you visited any other parkruns: Yes, Altona (nice scenic run but tough with the hill in the middle of the run, good to have playground at the end), Wyndham - Nice run along the river.

Do you have any specific goals or races coming up: Nothing in concrete but I would like to do the hoka one one trail series next year (especially the night run).

How can we improve parkrun: it's pretty awesome right now as it is!

 

weekly newsletter 30 August 2016

Aus_2016_08_30_01

the joy of volunteering


My husband was the volunteer timekeeper on Saturday so whilst I was running and thinking of this, I decided exactly what I wanted to share in this weeks’ newsletter. 

You are probably used to giving all the vollies wearing high vis every Saturday a round of applause, and you’re likely to have heard the call out for volunteers during the pre-run brief, or seen what look like crazy people flashing a roster and pen around in the air, this is because we ask our participants to volunteer three times a year – this is simply because we need volunteers in order to operate. 

Volunteers are the backbone of parkrun, from the person who arrives early to set up the course, to the marshal in the high vis vest giving high 5’s and guiding you in the right direction, to the timekeeper that concentrates on which button to press as runners cross the line.

Then we have the photographer that takes your happy snaps that we all know you love to tag as soon as they hit Facebook, to the volunteer cake bakers, to the Event Directors & Run Directors, volunteers really are what makes parkrun happen. 

Many will know that volunteering is actually fun and very rewarding, it also contributes to the development of community spirit, social cohesion and friendship. If you’ve ever volunteered, (or you are lucky enough to own an eggplant 25 volunteer shirt), we salute you. Thank you to each of you for helping to make the magic happen. 

As parkrun continues to grow, so too will our volunteer roles, the newest of which is a Volunteer Helpdesk Role. The role involves coordinating incoming athlete support emails. You will be required to update athlete details online and respond to athlete request emails. Timing is based on volume, however will be approx. 15min per day, and this role can be shared or rostered between multiple volunteers.

Have you ever wanted to volunteer but Saturday mornings just don’t work, or do you have gaps of spare time during the day? We are opening up this role for expressions of interest. If this sounds like you, please email renee.gimbert@parkrun.com outlining experience by COB Friday 9th September. 

Happy parkrunning,

Renee Gimbert
National Operations Manager


Wristbandad1


essential stats

Aus_2016_08_30_02


Aus_2016_08_30_03

join us for Personal Better Day on September 3

Lace up your sneakers, because Personal Better Day is coming.

On Saturday, September 3, we’re gunning to beat the national attendance record and aiming for more than 25,000 Aussies participating in parkruns nationwide. 

Personal Better Day is a great time to bring your friends and family along to your regular parkrun, and show them just how fun it can be. Like all parkruns it’s about participation not performance, so you can assure your loved ones it doesn’t matter how fast they run, or even walk. 

To register, and for more details, head to www.personalbetter.com.au


pa_pod_generic1


upcoming special events

launches:
17/09 – Palmerston (NT), You Yangs (Vic), Moree (NSW)
8/10 - Galston (NSW)
22/10 - Orange (NSW)

anniversaries:
03/09 – Blue Gum Hills (NSW) 2nd, Broadbeach Waters (Qld) 2nd, Lochiel (SA) 1st, Warner Lakers (Qld) 1st, Warwick (Qld) 3rd,
10/09 – Bega (NSW) 1st, Inverloch (Vic) 2nd, Wynnum (Qld) 4th,
17/09 – New Farm (Qld) 5th, Pakenham (Vic) 2nd,
24/09 – Ashgrove (Qld) 1st, Bowral (NSW) 2nd, Merimbula (NSW) 3rd, Tamworth (NSW) 2nd, Toowoomba (Qld) 3rd, 

cancellations:
10/09 – Mt Penang, Penrith Lakes (NSW), Diamond Creek (Vic)
17/09 - Penrith Lakes (NSW)
01/10 – Penrith Lakes (NSW)
15/10 – Launceston (Tas), Clare Valley (SA)
12/11 – Mt Penang (NSW)
19/11 – Tamborine Mountain (Qld)


feedback from the field

Aus_2016_08_30_04

St Peters parkrun had two runners celebrating their 100th parkrun on Saturday. Sarah Jane Thomsett and Kim Pike have both been run directors, regular volunteers and have encouraged countless people to give parkrun a go - they totally embody the spirit of parkrun.

Many of the people they introduced to parkrun turned out today, many in tutus (because who doesn't love a run in a tutu) to walk or run the course and cheer these 2 fabulous women home. Kim had a particular motivation for getting to her 100th parkrun - she wanted to do it before her twins arrive, which will not be too far away.

Rachel Launder

Aus_2016_08_30_05

Not many parkrunners get their 50th run in by their 5th birthday, Its a tight schedule.

You can’t get your own barcode till you are four and Odin Bonar turned 5 the day after his ‘redshirt’ run at Newy - accompanied by his slightly older twin brothers who recently became the youngest identical twins in the parkrun universe to complete their 100th run.

Odie has completed 25 different parkruns with his family and having completed all 12 parkruns in the Region of Runners is a Regionnaire.

#theboyswholookliketripletsbutarent


Aus_2016_08_30_06

parkdog of the week

Please allow us to introduce ourselves – we are Basil (on the right) and Sybil (eyeing off the cake) and we own humans at Cleveland parkrun in Queensland! 

We LOVE Saturdays so very much and we know what day of the week it is just by the feeling in the air.

We obey all the rules and run on a short leash (not as quickly as we’d like to, but that’s another story) and we are generally loved by all concerned. 

We both started our lives in a rescue centre and boy were our humans lucky the day/s they chose us – pats, swims, licks and running companions. We love parkrun; it ROCKS. 

Basil and Sybil Weaver

Are you a parkrun-loving dog, aka a parkdog? If so, and you’re clever enough to read this newsletter, we’d love to hear from you. 

Please send your profile to helloAU@parkrun.com with the subject ‘parkdog of the week’. 

And remember, don’t forget your bark-code. 

Woof!


Aus_2016_08_30_07

foreign correspondent

Name: Bill (Bullet) Justus

Age: 53

Home parkrun: Okanagan Canada

Occupation: Restaurateur- Chef (Retired Canadian Airforce) 

Number of parkruns (volunteer): 5 dummy and 1 official

Number of parkruns: 0 - I have spent the better part of bringing this to Canada we were the first to get it going here in the beautiful Okanagan. I also have CIDP google it…LOL and have been battling that which makes it Impossible to run.  I will get back this I am sure.

I volunteer at parkrun because: I love running, I love seeing people with a sense of accomplishment on their face a smile a big as the moon. If I could change one thing it would have been here 18 months ago. It gives me HOPE

You should visit my parkrun because: Well I live in and amongst the wine capital of Canada the trail of beautiful and you would get a chance to meet me, I’m a pretty nice fella, a great tour guide, and a little bit crazy.

And when you’re in town you should also check out: Chinamans caves, Wall of a 1000 eyes, Myra canyon, Eks Grill, Okanagan Mtn Park, Angel Springs, and one of the 186 Plus wineries, over 19 golf courses, in the winter we are at 5c to -10 but have 6 world class ski resorts just a 45 min drive away. Run in the morning and ski-board in the afternoon.