This week 604 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 86 were first timers and 78 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 27 different clubs took part. This is the 3rd week running now that we've had over 600 attendees and it's brilliant to see so many people participating for so many reasons.
We have our regulars, they know the routine, they know a lot of the other people and come back every week to chat, maybe beat their PB or just out of habit. It's great having such a solid core of regulars.
Then we have the newbies - the regulars of tomorrow perhaps? Eagerly turning up with their barcode at the start; "what do we do then?" - The main advise to all is firstly, relax. Secondly is get over to the first timers briefing, thirdly enjoy your experience and lastly, come back next week. It doesn't matter if you run, walk, a bit of both - perhaps this is the first time you've attempted (and acheived) 5km, you're amazing!
With probably only 1 or 2 exceptions the last mention should go to the tourists! Either here on holiday and finding Bexley to be the parkrun local to their hotel, perhaps it's a planned trip trying to complete 1 challenge or another (tourism is a serious business you know), or they're not venturing far but trying out another local parkrun whilst their local is perhaps cancelled for a week - or on the recommendation of a friend.
Whatever your reason to parkrun - we are more than happy to welcome each and every one of you.
But it would not be possible if it wasn't for our volunteers, 22 of us this week making sure you have a safe, fun event - so big thanks to:
Maria MACDONALD • Stephanie DUNGATE • John HAMPTON • James MACDONALD • Joe CLEVERLY • Shane BYGRAVE • Andy BROWN • Mick CLARK • Jessica GOTHBERG • Grant GRIFFIN • Graham LEE • Louise SMITH • Claire HANNABUSS • Jan LAKE • David LAKE • Alex SLATTER • Ben SAMPSON • Michael CATTERALL • Jane WHITEFIELD • Hayley WHITMORE • Lily STEER
Did you know that all volunteers are just like you - they're not sent from head office after months of training, they're not paid, they get trained in the half hour before the run and they do it all with a smile on their face and to give you the best experience possible. They are our amazing hi-vis heroes and we welcome anyone to come forward and give it a try. You can find our latest roster HERE, along with a link to the role descriptions and how to contact us if you want to give it a go.
This week we also had a visit from a lady called Tracey, who completed the course with her group of supporters - you may have been given a flyer or seen them out there. Tracey suffers severely from Multiple Scierosis and can only walk a short distance with sticks - so with the help of some running friends she is completing 10 local parkruns at the start of 2019, hoping to raise vital funds towards Stem Cell treatment. Thank you to everyone who has supported her at Dartford and Bexley parkrun so far, and you can find more details (and donate) via her website which you can find HERE.
Completing parkrun each week is a great feeling, but every so often you get to experience a special buzz by completing a milestone run. These are set numbers of completed events where you can then claim an exclusive parkrun tshirt (WOOOOOOO)!
Today we congratulate the following milestone acheivers:
Monica Lundqvist & Kelly Grehan for completing their 50th parkruns. Monica also got a new PB too!
James Palmer also clocked in a PB as he completed his 100th parkrun.
You can also get a milestone tshirt for volunteering too - so don't let that hold you back either.
We're quite open to calling anyone out to celebrate special runs, birthdays, anniversaries - come and see the Run Director early on the run day (or better still, drop us an email in the week prior) and we'll do our best to give them a shout out in the morning.
I would just like to ask you to keep Peter Hawney in your thoughts this week - one of our regular attendees. He suffered a heart attack on Wednesday and is currently recovering at home.
Coming up in a couple of weeks is our 7th Birthday! We would like to invite you to join us up at The Stables from 10am for a little get together, a coffee and a few words from us on how the last year has gone. We invite you to bring along some cake if you want so we can really call it a birthday party!
Also, we're looking at pacers for the birthday event. See further details in our news page for that event HERE - it's a lot of fun and really helps your other parkrunners.
Have a good week - see you next Saturday and #DFYB