parkrun SA newsletter 20th April 2016

welcome to the newsletter


In this edition of the SA parkrun newsletter, we look at the long-awaited launch of Paarl parkrun, look forward towards the launch of Gilloolys parkrun and the ‘Freedom runs for Freedom Day’ events taking place in Gauteng and Cape Town next Wednesday. We also celebrate our parkrunners of the week – the ladies of the Pentz family from Piggly Wiggly parkrun.

parkrunners on a tree-lined section at Paarl parkrun

Paarl has been waiting for a parkrun for over 3 years now. I remember sitting with some interested parties at breakfast after the launch of Greenpoint parkrun and we discussed parkrun in Paarl. Interested people came and went and still the idea hung in the air. After a while, the Paarl Arboretum was identified as the site for a parkrun route, and volunteers started looking at a 5km route, but then excavations and park alterations interfered and Paarl parkruns launch was pushed further back. Finally, on Saturday 9 April we were able to celebrate the inaugural running of Paarl parkrun in the Arboretum in Paarl in the shadow of the famous Taal Monument.

Paarl parkrunners pass through a tunnel

And what an inaugural run it was! Over 700 parkrunners arrived at the start. This must be some sort of record. There were plenty of local first time parkrunners present but also lots of visitors and parkrun tourists. The Mayor, Councillor Van Deventer, was present to say a few words and send the runners on their way. Hanri Coetzee and her team of volunteers have developed a wonderful parkrun which weaves its way between trees from all the continents on Earth. It follows the lovely Berg River and is fairly flat and fast. There can be no doubt that Paarl parkrun will play a major part in the social and sporting life of the local residents and visitors alike.

This Saturday we start the Gilloolys parkrun. This parkrun is an example of an amazing turnaround from disappointment to triumph. Following the sad misunderstanding at the failed Huddle Park parkrun, Chris, Heidi and daughter Emmah Sutton worked flat out to create a new parkrun close by. Gillooly’s farm is a wonderful example of parkrun people and the Ekurhuleni council working together to create a parkrun. Paths have been cleared, alien vegetation removed and a bridge repaired to create a 5km parkrun route. This parkrun is going to be lots of fun to run and in keeping with parkruns ability to transform will be another example of how parkrun is returning parks to the people.

On the 30th April we will launch the first Witbank parkrun. But I will say more about that parkrun in a future newsletter.

This last Saturday Gill and I visited Polokwane parkrun with Cheryl Smit (a serious parkrun tourist from Cape Town) It has been a year since we were last there and we decided to pay a visit on the occasion of the parkrun’s first birthday. Gill’s uncle John Le Cordeur also became the first Polokwane parkrunner to earn a 50 milestone shirt. It was exciting to see how the parkrun has come along. Kirsty, Felicity and Irene are an amazing threesome and have helped Polokwane parkrun to develop into a very special parkrun.

Gauteng Freedom parkruns for Freedom Day 2015

This is a good time to remind parkrunners that the 9 Freedom runs for Freedom day plans are going ahead. Staci Katsivalis has had a lot of interest from serious Comrades marathon runners and parkrunners alike. After all 9 Freedom runs add up to 45 kilometres of running. That’s a serious training run. For more information visit the ‘9 Freedom runs for Freedom Day’ facebook group. For those wishing to take part in Cape Town, there are two options to complete 6 parkruns, both finishing at Root 44. See the ‘6 Freedom Runs for Freedom Day – Cape Town’ facebook group.

Cape Town Freedom parkruns for Freedom Day 2015

Recently Little Stoke parkrun in the UK was in the news on every TV station, radio station and newspaper in the UK. This was due to the local parish council trying to charge parkrunners for use of the park. We have already published parkrun Founder, Paul Sinton-Hewitt’s statement on the issue, but let us not forget our similar problem with Nahoon Point parkrun in East London. We, and hundreds of Nahoon Point parkrunners, would love to see this parkrun up and running again, even if on a changed route.

Nahoon Point parkrun – let’s not forget those beautiful days

Cheers for now,

Bruce (get in touch)

MRPrice Sport


This is your chance to run in a champion shoe! Introducing the Maxed Taurus and the Maxed Marathon Racer – MRP Sport’s range of gold medal winning trainers. The Taurus brought home three golds in the recent Two Oceans Marathon, and at only R459, it makes this the most affordable contender in its category. So switch to Maxed, save and beat your personal best!

Want to know more? MRP Sport will host an activation for the first anniversary of Oudtshoorn parkrun on 23 April where the team will be available to answer any questions you might have about the Maxed range of running shoes. Otherwise, head on over to mrpricesport.com where you can shop the range online!

FOR ONE DAY ONLY: your flu vaccine comes to you!


Discovery has partnered with Uber to bring your flu vaccine to you! So, if you're too busy to go out and get vaccinated, you can have a flu shot brought right to your doorstep. On Friday, 22 April 2016 between 10:00 and 15:00, if you live in selected areas in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban, Cape Town or Port Elizabeth, you can have a qualified Discovery-accredited Dis-Chem nurse arrive at you within minutes, ready to administer the flu vaccine. Vitality members will earn 1000 points for having the flu vaccine.

The vaccine is free of charge: you will only pay R100 for the drive to you when you order through the Uber app. We expect demand to be high, so please be patient and keep trying.

parkrun Launches:


Gilloolys parkrun 23 April 2016
Witbank parkrun 30 April 2016

parkrun Anniversaries:


Lonehill parkrun 23 April 2016
Roodepoort parkrun 23 April 2016
Oudtshoorn parkrun 23 April 2016

parkrun Cancellations:


Nahoon Point parkrun until further notice
Belville parkrun 23 April 2016
Greenpoint parkrun 23 April 2016
Langebaan parkrun 23 April 2016
Voortrekker Monument parkrun 30 April 2016

feedback from the field


Drop us 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


The Pentz Family

Name:  Kerry, Caitlyn, Emily and Lauren Pentz

Age:  48, 13, 11, 9

Home parkrun:  Piggly Wiggly

Occupation:  Wife, Graphic Designer working from home, mum of four. The girls are home educated.

Number of runs:  41, 50, 54, 45

Number of times volunteered:  9 combined

How has parkrun changed your running:  Our first parkrun was mostly walked and took us about 50mins leaving us exhausted for the rest of the day. We are now mostly running the entire route and all come in around the 30min mark, striving to beat our PBs each week. It is also getting us to train an extra day during the week.

What do you like about parkrun:  We really enjoy being out together. Getting some good country air in our lungs, having such a lovely area to run in, meeting new and old friends - it is a lovely way to start our day. We do not like to miss our weekly parkrun!

Trail or road running:  We enjoy both although I think trail is our preference.

Favourite volunteer role:  I enjoy any role

What their fellow volunteers say about them:  They are there week in, week out, in rain or shine, heat or cold and just make volunteering so worthwhile.

Reminders

barcode reminder

TenBits barcode wristbandTenBits barcode wristband

Printed barcodes are used at all our events to record your result. Please click here to collect and print your barcode.
No printed barcode, No result.
We have teamed up with TenBits to provide a barcoded wrist-band (see the image above). This wrist-band includes your parkrun barcode and emergency contact details. In addition, a portion of the proceeds contribute towards parkrun costs. For more info and orders please visit the TenBits site.

All questions answered

Do you have a question about parkrun? How do I collect my club T-shirt? How do I get my barcode? All your questions are answered on our support site

Volunteering at parkrun

We ask every parkrunner to volunteer 3 times a year. When volunteering you receive the maximum number of points towards the yearly competition.

Children at parkrun

All children under 11 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times. Guardians must ensure that children place themselves appropriately so as to prevent a situation where they are being repeatedly overtaken at the start. This is to ensure the safety of your child.

Our sponsors

Blue Label Telecoms investing in parkrun

Blue Label sponsors parkrun - come and find out more at www.bluelabeltelecoms.co.za


Discovery investing in parkrun

Discovery Vitality believes that every decision that a person makes to exercise and get active is a step in the right direction, and participating in a parkrun is no exception. Living a healthy lifestyle can be rewarding, and Discovery Vitality members 18 years and older can earn 300 points for participating in a parkrun event. Children six years and older who are dependents on their parents' Discovery Vitality membership can now also earn points for completing a parkrun. Visit the Discovery website for more information.


MRPSport investing in parkrun

MRPSport is the proud apparel sponsor of parkrun South Africa. We love the idea of partnering with social initiatives like parkrun because it adds value to peoples lives which is what we’re all about. We believe in healthy active living through sports at all levels. School goers, family and friends have the opportunity to join in a fun activity every Saturday morning at one of many parkrun venues around South Africa. Our mission is to encourage this active lifestyle with authentic products, great value and trendy designs. MRPSport will be alongside parkrun every step of the way! We will keep parkrunners updated with all the initiatives in 2016 and beyond. Stay tuned to our newsletter for all the weekly updates. - come and find out more at www.mrpsport.com

Our supporters

Dis-Chem supporting parkrun

As a brand committed to and grounded in the basic principles of good health, Dis-Chem Pharmacies is proud to partner with parkrun as a means to healthier living. Our brand values and ethos are positively aligned with proactive health ambassadors such as Bruce Fordyce and the parkrun team. We see, endorse and appreciate the efforts of parkrun to improve the health and activity levels of all South Africans. Stay tuned to both Dis-Chem and parkrun websites and social media channels for communication on seasonal and unique offers and promotions, exclusive to parkrunners in South Africa! dischem.co.za


 

message from parkrun global

Yesterday Stoke Gifford Parish Council in Bristol, England, became the first in the world to impose a financial charge on parkrun to continue delivering our free, weekly events in a local park.
I am writing to reassure you that we are working very hard with the local event team, the wider parkrun community and all levels of local and national government to appeal this decision, so that parkrun can continue, for free, in Little Stoke Park, forever.
Importantly, we will not allow this decision by Stoke Gifford Parish Council to set a precedent that could undermine one of our core founding principles: that there should be no barrier to participation in physical activity, however small. You can read our official statement on the Little Stoke parkrun situation here.
It has been truly humbling to see the groundswell of support and solidarity shown to the Little Stoke parkrun community. parkrunners the world over have been contacting us offering help and support, and whilst we understand how passionate you are about protecting something so important, we ask that you always act with respect and dignity when defending parkrun. We must all remain calm and measured in our actions. We are all extremely disappointed but we will do things the right way, following the proper channels.
There is however one very important thing that you can do to help, something that will help this debate take place in the right context. Please take a moment to visit our new microsite loveparkrun.com to see the incredible impact we are having and share the positive story of how we are challenging inactivity with your social network.
We should all be proud of the very real impact parkrun has already had, and continues to have, on the health and wellbeing of hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. The Little Stoke situation, although disappointing, only makes us more determined to succeed in creating a healthier and happier planet.
I would like to thank the many thousands of volunteers all over the world for protecting and defending the parkrun principles. In particular, I would like to congratulate and thank the Little Stoke parkrun team for their heroic efforts over the past year.
Thank you all for your continued passion and support.
#loveparkrun
Paul Sinton-Hewitt, CBE
Founder, parkrun

 

parkrun SA newsletter 7th April 2016

welcome to the newsletter


In this edition of the SA parkrun newsletter, we welcome Hogsback parkrun to the family, look back on Two Oceans and lots of international parkrun visitors and look forward to the return of the Freedom Day Freedom runs. We also celebrate our parkrunner of the week; Leon Bradley from Golden Harvest parkrun.

Hogsback in the Eastern Cape has always been an attraction for tourists from around the world. Perched high in the Amatola Mountains with breath-taking views of the Eastern Cape, this delightful town is famous for its hiking and walking trails and for its warm hospitality. So we were extremely pleased to welcome Hogsback to the parkrun family last Saturday. Vanessa Kruger and her team have been planning the parkrun for weeks and there were many dress rehearsal runs before the team settled on a fun grass and trail route close to Hogsback’s famous Edge. Needless to say the views are spectacular. A number of parkrun tourists made the journey and they all described the parkrun in two words “great fun.”

Bob Norris (Regional Director parkrun SA) and Sammy at Hogsback parkrun

Hogsback parkrun will attract many visitors over the years, particularly in winter when there is often thick snow blanketing the mountains.

The Saturday before was Two Oceans weekend. Many of the parkrunners who ran the famous ultra-marathon and half marathon remarked that it was time the Two Oceans moved to a Sunday. We keen parkrunners don’t enjoy losing a Saturday morning! Some of our international country managers braved the two Two Oceans distances, whilst the rest visited Root 44 parkrun. They were extremely impressed with Root 44 and rated it as one of the best parkruns in the World.

parkrun global visitors at Root 44. Ruth Shields (Ireland), Dave and Linda Moorcroft (Dave is former world record holder at 5000m), Nick Pearson (CEO parkrun global), Torrin Theron (Regional director parkrun SA), Josh Pearson, Gill Fordyce (parkrun SA)

Congratulations to all our parkrunners who ran in the Two Oceans race. We particularly acknowledge those who discovered running thanks to parkrun and have made the long and exciting journey to marathons and beyond. However we must make particular mention of Matt Shields from Ireland. Matt is the parkrun country manager for Ireland and he and his wife Ruth are currently doing a wonderful job in growing parkrun in Ireland. Matt focused on Two Oceans several months ago and made us all very proud when he ran 4 hours 30 minutes for the 56km race finishing second Grandmaster in the over 60s category. Well done Matt from everyone at parkrun SA. (Incidentally Shaun Mieklejohn from Hilton Village in KZN won the masters over 50 race in a shade under 4 hours. Shaun started the very first Dusi parkrun just over 3 years ago.)

Speaking of speedsters, we have had a couple of narrow scrapes where slower runners have taken a tumble or been barged at the start of a parkrun. This is not in the spirit of parkrun as we want everyone to enjoy their parkrun experience. We urge the faster runners to remember that they are running a parkrun and not the Olympic Games. We also urge all slower runners and walkers to please remember to line up at the back. It can be very irritating trying to run around a slower runner, particularly on narrow paths and trails.

Joanne and Paul Sinton-Hewitt at Harrismith parkrun with Brenda Casey and Annette Stegen

parkrun founder, Paul Sinton-Hewitt, and his wife, Joanne, both attended the recent country managers conference in Cape Town. (Paul ran the 56km Two Oceans and Joanne the 21km.) Both extended their trip in South Africa and took the opportunity to visit and run a couple of parkruns. They ran parkruns and Freedom runs at parkruns at Harrismith, Nkomazi, Nahoon Point, Umhlanga and at Delta Park. Paul remarked that we have wonderful volunteers at our parkruns but that our courses are tougher than those in the UK.

Mad Hatters at Harrismith parkrun

“We were very honoured to be able to host Paul & Jo Sinton-Hewitt at our parkrun! The weather was great & everyone had a fantastic time with them! We hope to see them again when they visit SA in the future.
We celebrated the foolishness of April Fools with some dressing up, as well as by running the route the wrong way round!”
– Brenda Casey

After the success of the Freedom Run Challenge last year, we have decided to do it again. Please see Staci Katsivalis’s below article on the nine Freedom runs for Freedom Day Challenge.

Cheers for now,

Bruce (get in touch)

Take on Cape Town in the first ever multisport weekend


We dare you to challenge yourself in Discovery’s first ever multisport weekend in Cape Town, on 23 and 24 April 2016. There’s a taste of something for everyone, with fitness levels ranging from beginner all the way to professional multisport athlete, and age groups from 5 years and up.

Taking place on Sunday 24 April, Discovery World Triathlon Cape Town event is already sold out, but you can always join the crowd and watch all the action, especially the International and Local Elite athletes. It’s incredible to see them go as they swim, cycle and run to victory.

RUNCYCLERUN with theDiscovery Duathlon Cape Town

A duathlon is ideal for those who want to whet their fitness appetite as it follows a straightforward RUNCYCLERUN format. With the Discovery Duathlon Cape Town, taking place on 23 April 2016, adults can choose between three race distances and also enter as an individual or as a team of up to three members. Learners between the ages of 12 and 19 have the opportunity to get in on the action by competing as individuals or as part of a team in the schools challenge.

Team Vitality members: 50% cash back

If you’re a Team Vitality member you’ll qualify for a 50% cash back for all these multisport events. Simply sign up for Team Vitality running and/or cycling before you enter to qualify for this cash back. Team Vitality is SA’s most popular running and cycling club with unparalleled benefits to joining including a starter pack worth R1 500 with racing kit and vouchers for sports gear.

For more information on the weekend’s events visit www.discoveryduathlon.com or www.capetown.triathlon.org

See you at the finish line!

Woodlands parkrun!


It’s high-fives all round for Woodlands parkrun! It’s their third parkrun anniversary this year – so if there’s any reason to run this weekend, it’s to join them in celebrating. Here’s to many more! Also, keep an eye out for MRP Sport’s team in red! Be part of the parkrun activation in Woodlands this weekend where you can check out and find out more about our Maxed range of running shoes! See you there!

Freedom Day


Freedom Day is nearly upon us, and we will be completing the Freedom parkruns for Freedom Day challenge as we did last year.

A Freedom parkrun is a run on any parkrun course where you time yourself. You can record it on your results so that you have a record of any Freedom runs you have completed, but it is not an official parkrun so does not count towards your tally of total parkruns for joining one of the ‘clubs’ for running, 10, 50 or 100 parkruns.

Last year we set a challenge to run all the parkruns in Gauteng in one day and over 20 of us achieved the goal. With a few more parkruns open this year we plan to stick to our challenge of completing 9 freedom runs for Freedom Day (27 April) and incorporate the new parkruns with some of the old parkruns.

If you would like more information, like our Facebook page '9 Freedom runs for Freedom day', where all the information will be posted.

Route 44 were not to be outdone last year and they rose to the challenge to run all the parkruns in Cape Town area. Will they rise to the challenge again, and will any other province join us in the challenge? The idea is to run one, some or all.

The plan will be revealed on Facebook in the coming week.
Look forward to seeing you on the challenge.

Staci Katsivalis

parkrun Launches:


Paarl parkrun 09 April 2016

parkrun Anniversaries:


Woodlands parkrun 09 April 2016
Polokwane parkrun 16 April 2016
Oudtshoorn parkrun 16 April 2016

parkrun Cancellations:


Nahoon Point parkrun until further notice
PE Hobie Beach parkrun 09 April 2016
Langebaan parkrun 09 April 2016

feedback from the field


Root 44 parkrun was honoured to be chosen as the parkrun where Colin Dinwoodie decided to run his 250th! This was Root 44’s 150th event as well as the first time a parkrunner has reached this milestone at a South African parkrun. Bushy parkrun is Colin’s home run, but he is now based in Edinburgh. The parkrun weather fairies also made sure that the weather was cool enough for Colin and his wife, Karen, to enjoy their run, but not wet enough to feel like they were back home!
Congratulations, Colin!
Torrin Theron Root 44 parkrun – Event Director

Colin Dinwoodie celebrates his 250th parkrun

Drop us 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


Leon Bradley on his bridge at Golden Harvest parkrun

Name:  Leon Bradley

Club:  Chamber Running Club

Age:  68

Home parkrun:  Golden Harvest parkrun

Occupation:  Retired Engineer

Number of runs:  84

Number of times volunteered:  10

Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment:  I ran three different parkruns in England in June last year. They had the same friendly atmosphere but were very easy runs.

Trail or Road Running?:  Both

Favourite volunteer role:  Timekeeping

Why should others volunteer at parkrun?:  It’s a good social occasion and an opportunity to meet like-minded people

What fellow volunteers say about them:  Leon has been a huge asset in helping us get our parkrun off the ground. He comes with many years of experience, including attending parkrun overseas. He has spent many hours in helping the park which also includes the building of a wonderful wooden bridge which has been aptly named "Leon’s Bridge" He thrives on the vibe and the interaction with our fellow park runners, always smiling and having fun.

Reminders

barcode reminder

TenBits barcode wristbandTenBits barcode wristband

Printed barcodes are used at all our events to record your result. Please click here to collect and print your barcode.
No printed barcode, No result.
We have teamed up with TenBits to provide a barcoded wrist-band (see the image above). This wrist-band includes your parkrun barcode and emergency contact details. In addition, a portion of the proceeds contribute towards parkrun costs. For more info and orders please visit the TenBits site.

All questions answered

Do you have a question about parkrun? How do I collect my club T-shirt? How do I get my barcode? All your questions are answered on our support site

Volunteering at parkrun

We ask every parkrunner to volunteer 3 times a year. When volunteering you receive the maximum number of points towards the yearly competition.

Children at parkrun

All children under 11 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times. Guardians must ensure that children place themselves appropriately so as to prevent a situation where they are being repeatedly overtaken at the start. This is to ensure the safety of your child.

Our sponsors

Blue Label Telecoms investing in parkrun

Blue Label sponsors parkrun - come and find out more at www.bluelabeltelecoms.co.za


Discovery investing in parkrun

Discovery Vitality believes that every decision that a person makes to exercise and get active is a step in the right direction, and participating in a parkrun is no exception. Living a healthy lifestyle can be rewarding, and Discovery Vitality members 18 years and older can earn 300 points for participating in a parkrun event. Children six years and older who are dependents on their parents' Discovery Vitality membership can now also earn points for completing a parkrun. Visit the Discovery website for more information.


MRPSport investing in parkrun

MRPSport is the proud apparel sponsor of parkrun South Africa. We love the idea of partnering with social initiatives like parkrun because it adds value to peoples lives which is what we’re all about. We believe in healthy active living through sports at all levels. School goers, family and friends have the opportunity to join in a fun activity every Saturday morning at one of many parkrun venues around South Africa. Our mission is to encourage this active lifestyle with authentic products, great value and trendy designs. MRPSport will be alongside parkrun every step of the way! We will keep parkrunners updated with all the initiatives in 2016 and beyond. Stay tuned to our newsletter for all the weekly updates. - come and find out more at www.mrpsport.com

Our supporters

Dis-Chem supporting parkrun

As a brand committed to and grounded in the basic principles of good health, Dis-Chem Pharmacies is proud to partner with parkrun as a means to healthier living. Our brand values and ethos are positively aligned with proactive health ambassadors such as Bruce Fordyce and the parkrun team. We see, endorse and appreciate the efforts of parkrun to improve the health and activity levels of all South Africans. Stay tuned to both Dis-Chem and parkrun websites and social media channels for communication on seasonal and unique offers and promotions, exclusive to parkrunners in South Africa! dischem.co.za


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