The course is 5000m (5K) long. This has been accurately measured by us with a professional measuring wheel. The course is in Ecos Park, Ballymena. The course is run mainly on tarmac footpaths.. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.
Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.
Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.
The Ecos parkrun, Ballymena is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:
We hope these tips help to ensure that Ecos parkrun, Ballymena is fun and safe for everyone.
All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.
Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.For more information, please see the Running For Fitness website.
Ecos Park is an oasis of wildlife close to the heart of Ballymena town centre. Eight kilometres of mostly flat footpath lead visitors around 220 acres of parkland that includes woodland, lake, wetlands and meadows in the floodplain of the Braid River.
The parkrun course is marked by permanent yellow topped posts for directions and each kilometre. The start is at the Visitor Centre where there is a map of the course. The first loop of the parkrun course sets off past the lake towards the Ballykeel Bridge where you cross the Braid River. The route follows the river upstream past wetlands and crosses the Millennium footbridge. You then follow the other bank downstream for a while before turning back to the Visitor Centre. The second loop takes runners through a tunnel of willow trees and alongside meadows grazed by Irish moiled cattle before looping back past the lake to finish where you started. The course may be altered when it is necessary to do so for example if the river floods.
After the run, registration takes place in the cafe where refreshments are provided by our volunteers with costs covered by your donations.
Toilets: Toilets are available in the Visitor Centre; use the main entrance to access them.
Ecos Centre is well posted with brown tourist signs from the approaches to Ballymena. The park entrance is on Broughshane Road and parking is available at the centre. Note there is a height restriction of 2m for vehicles in the car park. Alternative parking is available at the Showgrounds (about 8 minutes walk to the Centre).
If using SATNAV, the nearest postcode is BT43 7QA.