Polokwane parkrun 1st Birthday Celebrations. 16th April 2016.
The day dawned beautifully clear and calm. The BIG day had arrived and Kirsty, Irene and Felicity together with all the helpers arrived just after 6 to get our start really festive looking with bunting and balloons. Lots of cleaning up had to be done first, tables set out and the cup cakes out. Then the water table team headed by Jeannie arrived and set up their table with water sachets and some nibbles for the athletes. Everyone was working hard to make it a really special occasion.
The weather held – not a breath of wind – not too hot. Absolutely perfect! We were once again, as last year, privileged to welcome Bruce and Gill Fordyce, together with a number of the parkrun tourists, one, Cheryl who flew up from Cape Town to join us for our 1st birthday parkrun (and you could not get out of bed?!?!). After a short address by Bruce the athletes were off – 277 of them. That is our new record (we were secretly hoping to break 300), but hoping to get past 300 within before we turn 2.
Then the BIG moment – bringing our first parkrunner to achieve 50 parkruns in to the finish amidst much jubilation and joy. Well done John. What an example to all of us.
Once all our athletes were in, we had a few words from Councillor Lois Hardy, Bruce Fordyce and Felicity, our Event Director. She spoke of the projects that are in the pipeline for the year ahead. An outdoor gym and the beautifying of the wall that runs along Noorderland Hoer Skool boundary. If you are interested in finding out more about them do speak to one of us on a Saturday.
Our grateful thanks to all the businesses who contributed to our lucky draw prizes and the awards to the top achievers. A special word of thanks to Mr Price Sport, one of parkrun National sponsors who arrived with 3 pairs of running shoes for our lucky draw. We also had numerous vouchers, doggy gifts, berry products and others that meant that nearly everyone who stayed received something to take home. And if not a prize, memories of a really special morning and delicious birthday cake there was aplenty. Thank you Irene – you are a party planner and baker of note!
Jeannie Owens and Michael Ward were awarded the trophies for Female and Male “Top of the Table” donated by the Review, having topped the points table that runs for 52 weeks. Now everyone starts from zero again, so check out your points and set your goals (go to Polokwane parkrun website, click on “latest results” and choose points table icon on the drop down menu)
A very big THANK YOU to all the volunteers who so willingly gave up their chance to run with our Comrades legend, Bruce, and contributed enormously to the success of the day.
Once all had finished eating, chatting and generally enjoying the morning, it was pack up time and then back home. I know quite a number of people who I am sure, had an afternoon nap!
Do check out the photos on the Facebook page “Polokwane parkrun” some truly lovely shots.
We are still trying to get the photos onto the website, but not got that far yet. Any offers of help?