Our New Years Day event was so big we've got two run reports to share.
Thank you to Phil and Sarah for the great reports. And thank you to everyone who joined us on New Years Day. And for your patience while we gave the field a break this Saturday. We expect to be back next Saturday, but with our winter course to help the field stay in good condition for all park users. To make sure you're in the know of any changes like our Facebook page, follow us @stonehouseparkrun on Instagram, or opt into Stonehouse volunteer emails on your parkrun profile.
See you on the start line.
First up it's Sarah Miller...
What a crazy obsession parkrun is! It must be something special, or else why would I have set my alarm to 6am AND taken notice of it on New Year’s Day, after just 5 ½ hours’ sleep?
Today’s run was definitely something to wake up early for though - Stonehouse parkrun was to be part one of my first ever ‘double’ and from the number of athletes who were there too, and from the snippets of overheard conversations I caught, it was the same for many, many others.
“We normally get about 40 here”, I heard said. Today, it was 383!! Unbelievable!! Top marks to the RD and the team of eleven volunteers. They looked as calm as could be and coped perfectly with the hoards. The first timer’s briefing was for most of us and in the main briefing, I loved the RD’s opposite shout out, not as normal for the tourists, but for the locals! Whoop! There were over 230 visitors to Stonehouse and - what a way to start a new decade – there were 5 absolute first timers, who received a huge welcome.
I always love the local flavour you pick up when being a parkrun tourist… except this one, just seconds before we set off round the course, which was on the lines of (oh excuse the pun …), if you think you might have parked on the level crossing, please move your car as the local residents are about to call the police! (Eek. Glad it wasn’t me. I was safely parked within the large carpark. A couple of trains passed by during my run though, so I felt relieved that all was well.)
And so, we were off! It was tough! 4 laps of a field, which in places was very muddy! My brand-new trail shoes were put to excellent use and will never look the same again, but they did a great job and I stayed upright! Lap one went quickly, lap two a little less so … and I found myself thinking back to how much I hated running at school but here I was, choosing to do it. Why was that? I soon remembered that it is because at a parkrun it’s so different - everyone is welcome, no-one is judged and you can wear whatever is comfortable. (For some today, they chose cheerleading outfits, complete with pompoms!) I found myself looking around and wondering what motivated others to be getting very tired and muddy, when they could all be snug in bed. Each time I passed the very cheery marshals, I got a boost to keep going and they were so jolly, it was clear that they got a boost to see us all going by too. By lap three, I knew that I was over half way and lap 4 was fabulous because it was the last one!
While many of us were on lap 3 or 4, the speediest runners were getting their barcodes scanned and the buggy runners were finding sticks to clear the clods of mud off their wheels. The finish crew coped admirably and the queues for scanning moved quickly.
Calls of ‘see you there’ could be heard, as most of us changed our shoes and jumped into our cars to get to the second parkrun of the day. There were 28 Personal Bests and three milestones – Lucy Birkinshaw, Max Luff and Karen Mason all ran their 100th parkrun at Stonehouse this morning.
Thank you Stonehouse parkrun for your marvellous welcome and for making the new year double possible!
From Phil Southworth...
At 9am on New Year's Day the 178th successful Stonehouse parkrun and took place, so for many it was their first parkrun of the decade.
There were all time record number of entrants at this event. The previous record was set when 179 entered event #52 on 22 July 2017; however, this record was smashed by 383 who participated in today's event.
Conditions were favourable, and in spite of 70% cloud cover and 93% humidity, there was no sign of rain. The temperature was a fresh 4°C with a 'hardly noticeable' 6 km/h SE breeze.
After Run Director, John Tierney, delivered the briefing we were directed to the start line. John mentioned that volunteers are most welcome and always appreciated, so please consider volunteering at future parkrun events.
The course is flat and takes place mainly on grass including two rather muddy sections, and there is a section of gravel footpath, near the club house.
Congratulations to the 28 participants who achieved personal best (PB) times in this event.
Milestones were also achieved...
Well done to the following parkrunners, who successfully completed the a significant number of parkruns today:
Karen Louise Watson
The 232 First timers included visitors from Swindon, Minchinhampton, Berkeley, Gloucester, Corsham, Calne, Chepstow, Chipping Sodbury, Cirencester, Droitwich, Dursley, High Wycombe, Hinckley, Bristol, Kingsway, London, Tetbury, Tewksbury, Totley, Wotton, Watford, Wimbledon, Worcestershire, Northampton, Portishead, Radstock, Richmond, Thornbury, Wroughton, Redditch, Somerset, Staple Hill, Wales and West Ireland.
Well done to the lovely, friendly volunteers who did a fantastic job hosting this event. Some of the volunteers went and helped out at the 10:30am Stratford Park parkrun as well.
This four lap course is a great way to start the weekend, so why not join in future Stonehouse parkruns.