Run Report, Event 237, 13th January 2018.

A certain Benjamin Disraeli is reported to once have said, “There is no education like adversity.” Perhaps we all learnt a little about ourselves this morning in what were fairly miserable running and volunteering conditions. Well done to us all. 

Our finish line volunteers and scanners were on the cusp of frostbite at one point this morning. You will be pleased to hear that no hospital admissions were necessary on this occasion. Through adversity (and the pain barrier) in the name of parkrun. Marvellous.

Indeed it was one of our volunteers who was the recipient of our only major milestone this morning. Congratulations to Heather Patterson who volunteered for the 25th time today. 

Heather started joining us almost exactly a year ago, and since then has not only improved her time by over 20 (!) minutes, she has also revolutionised our tea/coffee and general preparedness. Heather also saw the sense to provide us with a collapsible bin after nearly 200 events. A true parkrun innovator. Well done Heather!

Moving on to the 151 of you who weren’t put off by the dreich January morning. Well done to you all. Not easy going out there. A special welcome to the 20 good folk who joined us for the first time and to our visitors from other parkruns. We hope you enjoyed your morning.

The personal best count took a bit of a spike today too, so the conditions obviously agreed with some of you. 

Well done to Team McAlpin who both left Wallace Park with shiny new PBs to their names. Richard and Patrycja both flew around the course in 20:17 and 24:54 respectively. 

112 parkrun veteran (and still a junior athlete) Katy Dunn smashed her previous best time by 1 whole second to giver herself a new PB of 25:58. Well done Katy!

Another junior athlete performing great things was Dylan Hall who powered his way through the 30 minute barrier for the first time, with a new PB of 29:47.

Finally for today, well done to Aoife Quinn who creeps closer to sub 27 minutes, with a time of 27:07, taking nearly half a minute off her previous best. Super stuff.

Full results in the usual spot: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/wallace/results/latestresults/

Now, to our hardy bunch of volunteers who may or may not be still warming up. The fact that, at one point today, the topic of conversation between our timekeepers was whether we could source a patio heater to keep us warm says all you need to know. It was baltic.

Nevertheless, our thanks to them all. We cease to operate without your generosity and willingness to sacrifice your Saturday morning. It’s never taken for granted. Please do consider putting your name down to help. The roster is always in need of more people. Many hands make light work, and all that.

With that in mind, and with the inimitable John “JT” Torrans as our Run Director today, we can thank:

Timekeepers: Jim Pow and Jonny Davis.

Finish Tokens: Jon Kay.

Funnel Manager: Beverly Reid.

Barcode Scanners: Clare Carson and Laura Johnston.

Marshals: Jennifer Liggett, Kathleen Stewart and Rebekah Andrews. 

Tea/Coffee: Heather Patterson and Marie Therese Fegan. 

We hope you all enjoyed your run, jog or walk with us this morning. It was a pleasure to see you all again. 

We’ll be in the park again next Saturday morning. You best be there too.

Don’t forget your barcode!

JD

 

Run Report, Event 236, 6th January 2018.

On this day in 1017 AD, Canute was crowned King of England. As legend has it King Canute once placed his throne beside the shore and tried to command the waves to stop. Needless to say the tide kept rising and he got a good soaking. 

Similarly, neither the Christmas excesses nor the bitter cold could stop the tide of us parkrunners this morning as 184 of you crossed our line for the first time this year.

Here’s another fact. This is the one day of the year when we can all say that today was our fastest Wallace parkrun of the year. Something we have all got in common today. PBs all round, ish… 

As we expected, we were joined by approximately a million first timers at Wallace today. When I say a million, I really mean 31, but close enough in parkrun terms. 

A big welcome to all you who made the trip up to the duck pond for the first time, especially those of you joining us from as far afield as Gloucester, Ohio and Massachusetts. If we have missed any other exotic locations out, then just let us know!

It was of course great to see all the regular faces again too, for the first time in 2018.

Speaking of regulars, a big congratulations to Jeff Glass who joined the 100 parkrun club. Jeff celebrated with a top 10 finish and a great time of 22:26. Jeff can also lay claim to be being one of the finest pacers to grace Wallace parkrun. 

The Glass family also furnished us with not one, but two magnificent cakes this morning. Our thanks to Michaela and Rebecca for serving it up for us all afterwards too. 

To everybody else, well done on getting out of your beds on a bitterly cold morning. 

Much like recent weeks, PBs were at a premium this morning with only 12 new personal best times. We’re in the rare position to be able to name all our PBers today. Well done to Steve Harper, Sarah McClelland, Alison Warwick, John McKenna, Paul McGann, Ann McCafferty, Jay Hall, Martin Hanna, Alison Smyth, Rodger Toner, Charley Hall and Stephen Lyster. 

The full list of results are here: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/wallace/results/latestresults/

Again, like last week, our volunteers weren’t fortunate enough to be running around for warmth. The hands of our timekeepers and scanners may never recover! Our thanks to them all. Without them parkrun would cease to exist. 

Indeed, at the start of a new year might we encourage you all to volunteer at least a couple of times per year. In 2017, we had over 2200 different runners and only 213 different volunteers. We really do encourage you to give it a go. Every job is easy, and we can guarantee that you will enjoy it.

With that in mind, and with Laura Johnston as our Run Director today, our thanks to:

Timekeepers: Jon Kay and Jonny Davis.

Finish Tokens: Jim Pow.

Funnel Manager: Beverly Reid.

Barcode Scanners: Clare Carson, Louise Cummings and Diane Conn.

Marshals: Liam Doyle, Joanne Cartland and John Torrans.

Tea/Coffee: Michaela and Rebecca Glass.

Tail Walker: Jill Dunn. 

Post event close down: Heather Patterson. 

Token sorting: Rebekah Andrews.

Spare a thought again for our two parkrun spies in Australia, Michael and Brenda Harris. They had to “endure” 25 degree heat at 7am for parkrun in Brisbane. They ran alongside 700 other parkrunners. Who wants to run in that sort of heat anyway? 

Anyway, we have run out of interesting things to say for this week. We hope you all have a good week, doing whatever you might be doing.

We’ll be in the park next week to do it all over again at event 237. We hope you are too. 

JD.

 

The Wallace parkrun 2017 almanac.

The Wallace parkrun 2017 almanac.

Here it is. We have tried to neatly wrap up 2017 into a few paragraphs. Tried being the important word. 

We had 44 events across 2017.

2206 different participants crossed our finish line, accumulating 9515 runs between them all. 

That adds up to a grand total of 47,575 km, or 29,561miles of collective running around Wallace Park this year. 

To put that into some perspective, the equator is 40,075km / 24,901 miles, so we have run the whole way around the world since January. Not bad at all. 

Each Wallace parkrun is also around about 200ft in elevation. I’ll spare you the mathematics but, collectively, we have run up Mt Everest 65 times this year. We are quite the bunch of sherpas. Hillary and Tenzing would be impressed.

What mere statistics do not account for is the sense of community, the collective health benefits (physical and mental), the money we have saved the NHS, the lasting friendships made and the common purpose of parkrun. Some things you just can’t put a price on.

Who would have thought running around a park several times every Saturday morning could achieve such things?

It would of course be impossible to start trying to work out how many different PBs and milestones there were, but needless to say they were both plentiful. 

Similarly, we won’t start naming individuals but this year has seen many, many people take oodles of minutes off their times, and you are all applauded for your dedication. We don’t all run in pursuit of a time of course, and the fact that we have so many familiar, loyal faces at Wallace Park each week demonstrates that. 

One thing that we will perhaps highlight is the arrival of “Walking at parkrun”. Since it arrived in January it has helped to being many new faces to Wallace Park. 91 different people finished a parkrun with us this year as part of the #ParkWalk club. Between them they completed 623 runs in 2017. Many of the people that this project encouraged to come to parkrun have become regulars, and many are now routinely running the course. 

We can’t do an annual write up without mentioning the volunteer aspect of parkrun. This year saw 213 different people don the glamours, one size fits all, hi-vis. We are indebted to each and every one of you. 

Those 213 people carried out 915 different volunteer jobs between them. Our core team volunteered a total of 224 times between themselves, and we can tell you, they enjoyed every second.

All things considered, we are much more than just a free, weekly, timed run. 

As parkrun founder Paul Sinto-Hewitt wrote recently, “it brings people together in a social, supportive and non-competitive environment. parkruns are not races, there are no winners, and we celebrate participation - whether it be walking, running or volunteering - over performance.”

parkrun HQ say that we are just getting started. We look forward to sharing Saturday morning with you all for a long time to come.

Happy New Year, and see you in 2018.

Don’t forget your barcode!

 

Run Report, Event 235, 3Oth December 2017.

To quote Queen Elsa of “Frozen” fame, “The cold never bothered me anyway.”

All 117 of you channelled your inner Elsa and laughed in the face of the cold conditions for the final parkrun of 2017.

Well done to you all for braving the December chill. Safe to say that was the quickest pre-run briefing we have done for a long time. We didn’t want to keep you standing around for too long! I’m sure you were all well warmed up after the first KM anyway. 

A special welcome to all of 21 of you who were joining us for the first time and indeed to our multitude of visitors from Cardiff, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Manchester and Singapore! 

We had no major milestones of note today, but we did have 9 of you who cut through the icy conditions to secure yourselves new personal best times. Well done to Dawson Cleland, Jo O’Boyle, Johnny Devlin, Dylan Hall, Eamonn Bailey, Neil McCusker, James Conlon, Lousie Thompson and Lesley Hunston. 

The full list of results are here: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/wallace/results/latestresults/

Our volunteers today weren’t fortunate enough to be running around to keep warm. Our thanks to them all for giving up their Saturday morning today. Volunteers are a perpetual necessity and you will be made most welcome. There is a job for everybody. So, with Jonathan Davis as our Run Director today, we can thank:

Timekeepers: Paul Blackstock and John Torrans.

Finish tokens: Jon Kay. 

Scanners: Laura Johnston, Alan Parker and Rebekah Andrews.

Marshals: Peter Gunn, Norman Colhoun, Lynne Campbell and Colin Campbell. 

Tea/Coffee: Gary Green and Colin Ramsden.  

Tail walker: Danny Roberts. 

Post event close down: Heather Patterson. 

A special mention too for our pacers who provided their services for us again today. Our thanks to Jeff Glass, Hazel Glenn, Colin Ramsden, Derek Bunting, Eamon McCaighy,  Fiona Dickson, Linda and Minnie. 

To those of you mad enough to then go and take on the Castlewellan Christmas Cracker, we hope you are all able to walk. You all deserve a rest tonight. 

A reminder that we are NOT running on New Years day. It is however the one day of the year when you can run two parkruns in one day. The full list of events that are on are listed here: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/christmas-compendium/

Finally, standby tomorrow for the Wallace parkrun 2017 review. Should make for interesting reading and viewing.

Until then, over and out.

 

Run Report, Event 234, 25th December 2017.

Ho, ho, how much fun was that? If only every Monday morning was like that.

It was a pleasure to welcome all 159 of you to Wallace Park this morning for our second  ever Christmas Day parkrun. 

As anticipated we had lots of you joining for the first time, 30 of you in fact. It is always fantastic to see lots of new faces, and hear lots of different accents. We hope you all enjoyed your trips up to the duck pond. 

We had one milestone of note this morning. Barry Marshall reached his half century of parkruns. Congratulations Barry! Hope the next 50 are just as fun. 

Ten of you also managed to record festive parkrun PBs. Quite the Christmas present to yourselves. 

Paul Bracken will be very pleased. His first PB at Wallace since last December, and cracking the 21 minute barrier for the first time. Good work Paul.

Young Jack Netherton also got a hurry on this morning as he cruised round to record his first sub 19 minute parkrun in 44 attempts. Well done Jack.

Alan McFarland also knocked nearly exactly a minute off his PB as he made his way around the course in 56:49. Good to see Alan again today!

The other 7 PB hunters today were, Clare McClelland, Jennifer Murphy, Andrew Willis, Eamonn Finn, Ali Meek, Sue Jeff and Tony Cushnahan. 

It would also be remiss of us not to mention our first finisher, Chris Madden, who zoomed round to record (we think…) the 4th fastest run of all time at Wallace parkrun in a time of 16:14. 

All the results can be found in the usual place: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/wallace/results/latestresults/.

Well done to all our you who crossed the finish line this morning. Wet and mucky. Love it.

Now, we are always grateful to our volunteers, but I think we can be especially grateful for them today. With the ever-wonderful Michael Harris as our Run Director today, we can thank:

Timekeepers: Jonathan Davis and Fiona Rollock.

Finish tokens: Laura Johnston. 

Scanners: Brenda Harris, Dawn McClure and Fred Hamond.

Marshals: Pat Green, Kerstin Marshall, Oscar Rollock-Graham, Ella Rollock-Graham (aka Mrs Claus) and John Torrans. 

Tea/Coffee: Sharon Johnston.

We should also mention that Michael and Brenda (one third of our core team) are heading off on an Antipodean adventure on Wednesday. We hope they have a great time in Australia and New Zealand over the next four weeks. 

Now, we’ve all probably got much better things to be doing/eating then reading parkrun run reports. 

We hope the rest of your day is filled with happiness, and turkey.

JD.

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