Welcome to this week's newsletter
In the newsletter this week, we find out more about the Christmas themed parkrun events that take place this Saturday, December 22nd, another two parkruns launch early next year and holiday makers try out different parkruns at their destination of choice.
Following hot on the heels of Tracy Rankin, Delta parkrun’s Delta Dieter Meyer, became the second South African parkrunner to earn a coveted red T-shirt for completing 50 parkruns.
As Dieter proudly boasted last Saturday:
" … and my tally is all home-grown, no fancy overseas parkruns for me."
We suspect he was teasing Tracy who has run a number of different parkruns including a few in the UK.
On the subject of running different parkruns, it has been gratifying this holiday season to see parkrunners running at other parkrun venues while on holiday. Durban North Beach parkrun found its ranks swollen last Saturday by parkrunners from the Delta, Ebotse and Roodepoort parkruns. Two Richmond parkrunners from the UK also ran in Durban.
In the New Year we will add two new parkruns to our family. Both Sunrise-on-Sea (East London) and Modderfontein (Gauteng) parkruns, held dress rehearsals this week and both are raring to go. Sunrise-on-Sea will start on January 5th and Modderfontein on January 12th.
Please remember to join in the fun at parkruns around the country this Saturday December 22nd, by dressing up in a light-hearted Christmas theme.
Our thanks to all those who have volunteered at parkruns this year! Without you there would be no parkruns. Members of parkrun, please remember to volunteer at your local parkrun whenever you can. It may seem as if your parkrun is not in need of extra volunteers, however, I assure you that all parkruns would welcome your help. Email your local event director or me if you are willing to help.
We wish all South African parkrunners happy holidays. Remember to check into your nearest parkrun while you are away.
Bruce (email me)
Each week at Nahoon Point we have been able to wish many parkrunners on the occasion of their birthday and other special celebrations. This week, however, sees a considerably more auspicious occasion taking place within our local parkrun community.
Stephanie Ackermann, our current women’s course record holder, is to marry fellow parkrunner and regular paddler, Travis Smith. Travis has himself led the men home on one occasion and it would appear that strong althletic genes are likely to emerge from their marriage. Steph, incidentally, was the Province’s top female ultra distance runner in 2012 enjoying splendid runs at both the Two Oceans and Comrades Ultra-Marathons. We wish the bridal couple much happiness and a wonderful honeymoon.
Last Saturday another couple was out adding flavour to our parkrun. Leon Botha, running as a first timer, was the first man home, while his wife, Hanlie, who is Border/Kei’s top female runner in the middle distances, carried their daughter, Danika, on her back. Parkrunners at Nahoon Point are waiting patiently for Danika to unleash her speedy talents through our Nature Reserve.
Hanlie Botha with baby Danike on her back in the Nahoon Point parkrun
This Saturday will be our 20th event and while many regulars have gone away, we are expecting to welcome many inland visitors to the region and to continue to have reasonable numbers at our event. Recently, we hosted runners from a number of international destinations, including Germany, Canada, UK, Australia and Ireland, while visiting local runners from Secunda, Kimberly, Bellville, Pretoria, Johannesburg and Bloemfontein have kept us on our organisational toes.
We look forward to a sea of red and white Christmas elves on Saturday and wish parkruns everywhere, but especially to our fellow South Africans, a splendid turnout and a wonderful holiday season.
Wishing you a happy and safe 2013 and exciting prospects in the year ahead.
A trial parkrun at Sunrise-on-Sea was held this week, gearing up our enthusiastic team of volunteers and testing the parameters of the new parkrun course. We are pleased to report that it ran smoothly, hosting 30 participants in total, some of which elected to finish the course twice!
The beautiful Sunrise-on-Sea parkrun to launch soon
A BIG thank you Gill Fordyce who coordinated the delivery of the parkrun equipment and volunteer kit and to our national sponsors, adidas and Blue Label Telecoms.
We wish all parkrunners a lovely Christmas and hope to see you at Sunrise-on-Sea in the New Year.
Roll on January 5th!
Roodepoort parkrun appealed to its participants this month to bring with them to each event, non-perishable food items for distribution to the less fortunate in the local community. To date we have received a tremendous supply of items for distribution by the Florida Parish. This Saturday, December 22nd will be the last day for the collection of your donations. Thank you all for your generosity!
As part of our Christmas parkrun celebrations, Pauline Weed and her team from the Florida Running Club will provide snacks/drinks for all parkrunners after this week’s event. There will also be a prize of a pair of shoes sponsored by Randburg Runner for the best dressed parkrunner, as judged by an independent parkrun supporter. We look forward to seeing you at parkrun dressed up in your Christmas attire.
We would also like to encourage parkrunners to volunteer at an event early next year. A shoe draw of only the names of volunteers from December 2012 to March 2013, will take place in April 2013. Volunteers will have as many name cards as they have events at which they have volunteered.
Safe running and Merry Christmas,
With the Sabie X Trialrun successfully completed, local and visiting runners (and all aspiring runners) are invited to this coming Saturday’s parkrun at Summerfields. The run will start at 08h00 at Summerfields Lodge gate, which winds through the macadamia plantations and indigenous forest for a magical 5km Lowveld experience.
This is Christmas Saturday and exciting prizes to the Summerfields Spa and restaurant will be awarded to the best dressed parkrunners!
Stay for breakfast or bring the family for a picnic along the banks of the Sabie river. Shower facilities are available for your convenience.
See you Saturday,
North Beach parkrun
With the year drawing to a close, the North Beach parkrun has had some very welcome visitors from around the country, and the world. As expected the Jo’burgers have made a strong appearance, with representatives from Delta, Roodepoort and Ebotse at last week’s event.
A record number of 81 participants took part in last week’s run, which also hosted two parkrunners all the way from Richmond in the UK, sporting their 50 parkrun t-shirts.
It has been fantastic to hear that some of our local runners really look forward to our runs. One runner told us that he really missed the parkrun while he was away on business and had looked forward to getting back to his “parkrun Saturdays”.
We were lucky to have the adidas van visit our last run - giving runners a chance to check out all the latest gear and shoes. One of our regulars, who has taken part in every single parkrun to date, was the winner of the lucky draw - a pair of adidas shoes!
This week we look forward to Durban and its visitors coming out in force and dressed up in the holiday spirit to make this a great and memorable first Christmas parkrun.
We hope to see you at the next parkrun.
Feedback from the field
Hi Gill, Bruce (and volunteers)
Thanks for the year at parkrun and a special thank you for my 50th Party and Prize-giving. It was really fantastic and much appreciated.
I hope we can achieve even more together in 2013. Wishing you and your families a blessed and safe holiday and a safe return to Delta Park.
Thanks for a lovely opportunity to join you on Saturday morning - it is very, very special.
Deonie Hugo (Roodepoort parkrun)
Drop me an email if you have an interesting parkrun related fact, happening or comment that you would like to share with all parkrunners.
parkrunner of the week
Name: Kevin Vine
Club: Khosa road runners
Home parkrun: Roodepoort parkrun
Occupation: CNC programmer and setter
Number of runs: 13
Number of times volunteered: 7
What do you do at parkruns: Put up flags before and take down after parkrun.
How has parkrun changed your running: parkrun has given me a chance to change my running programme. It has given me a new dimension to my running. I feel running on the grass and sand paths has been a good change from always on the road. I feel even from one run a week at parkrun my legs, feet, knees and ankles are getting stronger and is helping my road running. It my only be 5km, but a tough 5km when you are racing against yourself and the clock.
What do you like about parkrun: I like parkrun as it is a good workout, you can make it suit your running needs, whether you just want an easy run or a hard run. Its nice as you can still sleep in a bit, and it doesn't take up your whole day.
Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment: My funniest parkrun moment must of been arriving early at the parkrun when we had a lot of lighting and thunder and no one was there. Having not seen that it had been canceled.