This week we had 39 wonderful runners on the beach to see in December in great junior parkrun style! It looked misty and gloomy when I woke up on Sunday but the clouds had parted over the beach and we actually had pretty good conditions for this week's event. OK, it was a bit chilly, but it is December after all!
There's lots to talk about this week so I'd better get on with it. Firstly, as always we must thank our wonderful volunteers who were Rachel BLEE, Andy DEAL, Ursula GOODE, Reid JACK, Jennifer MCCLUNEY, Martin SMITH, and Jamie SMITH.
We had no visiting parkrun tourists this week with everyone being Portrush locals, but we did have 2 first timers. A big junior parkrun welcome to Connie MCBRIDE and Charlie DICKENSON. I hope you enjoyed your first junior parkrun and we hope to see you back with us again.
For our first timers as well as a reminder to everyone else, your barcode works at any junior parkrun or parkrun event anywhere in the world so if you are visiting family and friends somewhere else over Christmas, why not take your barcode with you and visit a nearby junior parkrun. They are all on the parkrun website.
This week was a special event as we had some big milestone occasions to celebrate! Aodhan ATCHESON, Anna MARTIN (who also ran a PB!) and Alfie GROCOTT received their Marathon wristbands this week by running their 21st junior parkrun. Put together that's the same distance as running a whole marathon, 26 miles. Congratulations, and we look forward to you progressing towards the Ultra Marathon milestone.
That Ultra Marathon milestone was achieved this week by Ellie BUCHANAN, an overall total of 100km of running. Well done Ellie.
Although Ultra Marathon is the highest award which receives a wristband, a further milestone is reached at 100 junior parkruns and you can print a certificate from the parkrun website to recognise that achievement. Kate MCCLUNEY ran her 100th junior parkrun on Sunday with all 100 runs having been completed on our home beach at Portrush, achieving 6 PBs in the process. Kate, a member of the McCluney family who are all key supporters of our event, has also completed four 5k parkruns. It looks like we will have more people reaching 100 over the next few weeks so we look forward to more celebrations!
And, then we must give a special mention to Molly BLEE. Molly and the rest of the Blee family are parkrun regulars and all play a big part in making sure both our junior parkruns on Sundays, and our big sister 5k parkrun events on Saturdays, happen at Portrush every week. This week Molly ran her 150th junior parkrun, all of which have been at Portrush. She has also run 102 5k parkruns. I make that 810km of running. On Sunday Molly became the joint first in Northern Ireland to run 150 junior parkruns, and only 53 people anywhere in the world have run more junior parkruns than Molly has. We will have to see how many more records Molly can set as she still has time before she turns 15 to set more records. Fantastic running!
As well as Anna, Oscar LEITCH, Cormac COYLE and Luke MINIHAN ran new PBs this week. You must like running in cool December conditions!
After all that excitement, we can start to look forward to another junior parkrun on Sunday. Hope to see you there!