Little did I know when delivering the new runners brief at the very first Clumber Park parkrun that I’d be spending the next five years as a parkrun volunteer, Run Director and Event Director.
In those early years I used to wake up worrying that no one would turn up. 44 was I think the smallest number we saw, how things have changed.
parkrun has given me much to be grateful for, some five years of early mornings in Clumber Park for starters and they have been magical. Just once this summer I urge you to come in early and soak up the parks energy, it’ll fill you with joy for the whole day...I promise.
There have of course been many highs and my proudest moments all go to show that when comunities work together great things can happen. Number one on my list will always be Bailey’s story and how our collective community came together to support him in his sporting endeavour. The sheer joy on his face on crossing our finish line for that very first time will stay with all of us who saw it forever I’m sure.
I’m proud too that we raised, so quickly, the funds for a defibrillator and of that day when we put it to use. Runners and volunteers coming together to help a fallen parkrunner on top of ‘that bloody hill’. Do you know parkrunner A1114043 you gave us all hope that day. You continue to wring the daylights out of life, you’re a truly inspirational person, and guess what?..yours wasn’t the only life changed that Saturday in January.
Proud too that on my watch we saw the creation of the volunteers hut. A collaboration with the wonderful folk of the National Trust. The hut serves to support the heroes of parkrun and other sporting events... yes the volunteers. A brew and a bit of toast goes along way to thank the makers of magic on a cold morning….without their commitment to the cause parkrun simply would not exist.
Volunteering is part of parkrun DNA, the event is yours remember, always arrive prepared and ready to help out rather than have it all done for you.
I leave as the Event Director happy that Sally and the core team are ready to take Clumber Park parkrun to new highs. I know they have plenty of ideas to support our event as it continues to grow, as 44 becomes 444 and beyond.
Please give Sally ( your new ED, although she’s been doing it for a while really ) your full support and if you haven’t volunteered yet.....pull your finger out and help out.
I’m stepping down as ED but will remain a runner and occasional volunteer hopefully for many years to come as I’ll still need my parkrun fix and to keep in touch with all the wonderful friends I’ve made thanks to Saturday mornings in Clumber. I’m sure I’ll be timekeeping, barcoding etc again sometime soon.
Watch out for those humps bumps and stumps (wish I’d copyrighted that one)
Looking forward to Saturday morning lie ins and the occasional run.
Love and best wishes