Why I love Peacehaven, The week that had it all......
We are so fortunate, here at Peacehaven to have such a great Core Team of volunteers, who always give so freely of their time for the benefit of all parkrunners. Over recent weeks, we have noticed that the number of additional volunteers we require on a weekly basis, had fallen away slightly. This week was no different by Wednesday lunchtime we didn't have a single volunteer. So we issued a passionate appeal for help, and true to form you wonderful people came forward and filled the roster to overflowing within a couple of hours. Hopefully this will continue over the coming weeks.
By Friday we had so many volunteers, that I was in a quite unusual position of offering some of the Core Team the chance to "stand down" from volunteering, let others take their place and enjoy a run themselves...
During the course of the week, we also received some exciting news, that we would be receiving a visit from parkrun "royalty" in the coming weeks. So here is a quiet little piece of advanced notification to keep Saturday 2nd November free. As you are aware parking can be a little difficult at times, so I would strongly advise an early arrival on this day....
Anyway, back to Saturday, and just as we thought the week had fallen perfectly into place, I received a call an hour before the event advising me that the Run Director had been taken ill and was unable to attend. I didn't want to stop any of the core team that I had promised a run to, so there was only one option I had to step in.
The weather throughout the course of the week had definitely taken a turn for the worse, and summer seemed like a distant memory. From early in the morning we had had torrential rain and strong winds. Inevitably there was surface water and puddles everywhere. The home straight resembled an olympic steeplechase water jump, without the hurdle...
As always our policy with puddles is to clearly mark them and leave the parkrunners to decide for themselves as to whether they swerve to avoid or just run straight through.... This week the main puddle attracted the attention of a large group of children who lined the puddle and were shouting "through the puddle". The looks of disappointment on their tiny faces when runners went around were matched by the squeals of excitement when runners ran through and tried to create a little splash for them.
It was also really nice to welcome a large party of Vegan runners, this week. They also brought with them a small group of supporters who provided vocal encouragement, as they passed the cafe. As the team pointed out in their "thanks" to Peacehaven post on social Media, they managed to fill the first & last positions with an even spread thoughout.
A special mention to two of the Vegan runners who completed milestone runs this week. Mary Daly who completed parkrun number 100 and also to Cheryl Ferreira who completed her 50th parkrun.
A moment that gave one of the Vegan runners cause to chuckle was when someone shouted at them, as they ran past that there would be a lettuce waiting for them at the finish, (and No, it wasn't me!!).... Imagine the disappointment when this promise was not fulfilled. We certainly look forward to your next visit.
This event also saw us make the transition from using the old barcode scanners to the new and preferred option, which is the parkrun Virtual Volunteer app. The two barcode scanners were both nervous about this and insisted on having the backup of the old scanners in their buckets. However, having settled into the event both found it to be so much better. I think the comment that was passed was "It's faster than a checkout at Lidl")... So guess from now that will be our preferred method of scanning. But, before anyone asks we will still only scan, printed barcodes or wristbands.
This morning we had the pleasure of two new Tail walkers. They both told us how they enjoyed a lovely morning walking and talking as they carried out their role. They even had enough energy left to jog most of the last lap. Thank you ladies, much appreciated.
The last task that always has to be done, is to process the results. You can imagine the horror I felt when I connected the watches to the computer and both watches were displaying "000". The thrill of the morning was just about to be wiped out with having to publish the dreaded "No Result". Thankfully, the information was stored, just a completely "new display" to me was being shown........Phew
And that was the week as it played out. Here we are again now ready to do it all again for you for next week. Thank you for your support and please continue to reply to our posts with you offers of help. Zingy will be your Run Director next week, and she will appreciate all of your help.
Oh.....think I forgot to mention the person who will be visiting us. None other than the legend that is Dame Kelly Holmes..... now you wouldn't want to miss that would you?
Over recent weeks we have found it increasingly more difficult to fill all of the Volunteer roles required. We have also repeatedly appealed on a Saturday morning for additional Volunteers to come forward.for the following weeks. We have also introduced our White board for athletes to register their offer to help.
We are extremely fortunate that we have a very good, but small, nucleus of volunteers that have so unselfishly sacrificed their running, for the benefit of others. However, I also feel that these kind people should also have the opportunity to run, occasionally.
A lot of events suggest that if all athletes volunteer maybe three times a year, then it spreads the responsibility fairly. Certainly people should not feel intimidated that any of the roles are difficult. I can guarantee that just about anybody could do any of the roles. However, people do have their preferences as to what they like to do. There are even roles that can be done which allow you to run as well.....
We are so fortunate to have such a fantastic group of volunteers and runners, which makes our event so friendly and welcoming. I would like to take this opportunity to appeal to everyone's lovely nature. Next time you think, "I can't run this week"....please consider "I can volunteer this week"
Please.... try it just once, and I guarantee you that the thrill of helping someone else is far greater than anything you can achieve for yourself.......
I look forward to being inundated with offers of help. A problem that somehow I will find a way to deal with.......
A glorious Saturday morning and my 100th parkrun, if anyone had told me 3 years ago that I would complete 100 parkruns, I would have said that they were dreaming. I had never been a runner but when I heard that parkrun were training people to be guide runners I pricked up my ears and thought I would give it a go. Helen Todd volunteered to start running with me and at first we ran around the local streets and then Helen suggested we gave Hove Prom parkrun a go. I was very apprehensive but agreed to go along. After that we did a few more parkruns at Hove Prom and then I was delighted when Peacehaven parkrun started. The team at Peacehaven are great and as well as thanking Helen for all her encouragement and support, I would like to thank all those who have volunteered to guide me over the past 2 years and enabled me to now be a member of the parkrun 100 club.
Not only was Saturday my 100th parkrun, but we also saw Nicole Taylor break the record for the fastest female at Peacehaven with a finish time of 17.23 minutes. I think most of us felt the draught as Nicole ran past! Congratulations and well done Nicole and thank you for visiting Peacehaven parkrun.
Another first for Saturday was Steve Dickson’s first time as Run Director and what a great job he did, along with all the other volunteers who help make Peacehaven parkrun possible.
Shortly after Peacehaven parkrun started, I persuaded my friend Carol Moore, who has a physical disability, to come along and marshall. Carol is now a regular marshalling from her bench shortly after the skate board park. Like me, Carol loves parkrun and there are not many weeks she misses. It is a lovely start to a Saturday morning and certainly worth getting up early for, although when it is cold, wet and windy I may often think differently, but always feel good for getting out and taking part.
My partner Mick Etheridge has also now started to get involved, initially he wasn’t interested in marshalling or running, but after coming along to the Christmas Day parkrun, he has volunteered and run it a few times with Helen guiding him. It’s amazing how infectious parkrun soon becomes. It never ceases to amaze me how popular parkrun is. I am always telling friends how good it is and that even if someone doesn’t want to run they can come along and walk or marshall.
I am conscious that I have only completed 100 parkruns thanks to those who have volunteered to guide me, I now want to be able to volunteer more myself and hope some day soon to with support, have a go at being Run Director and also giving the first timers briefing, though what people will think when being given directions from a blind person I am not quite sure, though I believe that after 75 runs at Peacehaven, I know the course as well as anyone else.
Thank you all for taking the time to read this and look forward to meeting you all again next week........
The expected wind didn’t fail to let us down. Seaford Beach parkrun was cancelled early so we expected a number of visitors from some of our old regular participants and former volunteers.
The posts we use for our finish funnel stayed in the hut and in their place out came the large cones which take a lot of moving and generally stand up in bad weather. For once the signs on poles were a waste of time trying to hold them with incredibly strong gusts was impossible.
Amazingly we had a good number turn up and the usual spirit was there, the third lap up the grass slope into the wind is the hardest point, if you run up this hill on the last lap you have done extremely well and right at the top a nice puddle awaits you when it is wet.
There were 84 people attending, 17 first timers, 7 PB’s and two special visitors all the way from Canada who both spoke to me after their run. Although there are events in Canada they are not in their local area so the trip to the UK to see family is welcoming, they really enjoyed the course.
Our storage unit is always of great value when the weather is bad, stepping out into reality once we get prepared can be a shock, and this is mid-summer. It is good to see people coming forward to volunteer using our strategically placed white board, this has been very useful.
You have to admire the tail walkers, Dawn and Milene took the reins this week and you could see the relief when finishing with the conditions this bad, they were just 2 of many volunteers who we are extremely grateful for week in week out.