From Porirua to Russia with love!
This was our first International parkrun – we put on our running gear, ate a quick breakfast and headed off to Zvenigorodskaya Metro station. We noticed that we were the only people in running gear, as most others were heading off to work. We arrived at Krestoskiy Ostrov station where we met Dmitry Kobernik, a St Petersburg parkrunner, who was going to guide us on a freedom run at Elagin Ostrov parkrun in St Petersburg (http://www.parkrun.ru/elaginostrov/). We jogged from there over a bridge to Elagin Island, which is a small ear-shaped island approximately 2.5 km long with lots of ponds, mature Birch, Elm and Maple trees and views out over the Gulf of Finland. Elagin Island even has a museum and a palace – it’s a perfect place for parkrun!
We ran together with Dmitry chatting about the course, St Petersburg, Finland (Sickan’s home country) and New Zealand and also stopped to take a photo in front of the beautiful Yelagin Palace. Dmitry talked about winter parkruns where the runners have to be careful running on icy sections of the track and told us that St Petersburg weather can be bad. On this particular day it was a cloudy, breezy 16 degrees, but we explained it can also be breezy in Wellington, so we were quite at home with the weather!
Dmitry kindly offered to drive us back to our hotel and on the way we crossed the river Neva, drove past the Winter Palace, former residence of Tsar Nicholas II, we saw the Palace Square where the Russian revolution occurred in 1917 and drove past Nevsky Prospect the famous main boulevard of St Petersburg. What an amazing place to visit and go for a run!
Many thanks to our friendly guide Dmitry. We can absolutely recommend Elagin Ostrov parkrun and St Petersburg – Simon, Sickan, Sarah and Emma Derbyshire - Porirua parkrunners (a long way from home)
Porirua promoting inclusivity with all abilities
It was great to be able to host people from Achilles Wellington, Halberg Disability Sport Foundation, and Parafed Wellington to try out Porirua parkrun. Thirteen athletes of all ages and abilities took part.
Thanks to Team Abbott, Team Halpin-Daniel and Neon Tang for being there to help out and guide people on our course. A special thank you to Kelly Abbott and Erin Fit Halberg Disability Sport Foundation for collaborating to make this event happen. Porirua parkrun sincerely hopes that this event has opened some doors to people that might otherwise not have come, and also that some might return to become regular parkrunners or parkrun volunteers.
There were awesome achievements including Ethan nearly breaking 30 minutes (his PB), Frazer running his first 5km run, Catherine wheeling herself up and down the hill and through a soggy finish chute without assistance, and Kate walking the whole 5km to support Catherine.
We really appreciate the support of Wills and Catherine from Achilles and the families that supported their kids by being there, or running the whole course with them. Thank you for being part of Porirua parkrun – Astrid van Meeuwen, Event Director Porirua
Geoff McMillan of Pegagsus parkrun was featured a few weeks back as one of the Heart Foundation runners for the Wellington half Marathon – he wants to thank everyone from the parkrun community who kindly sponsored him.
Here’s how it all went:
“I handed out the Finish Tokens for our 1st Anniversary Run, but necessarily headed for the airport as soon as the last participant finished, leaving the rest of the Run Director duties with my great co-Director Jackie Hancock. My wife, Caren, and I arrived in Wellington, collected our goody bags and then readied ourselves for the race. Sunday morning rolled around and we set off. Caren was looking for a sub-2hr finish and I was hoping I had done enough to sneak under 2:30. Funnily enough, I felt pretty good for 5km (I wonder why that was?), I struggled a bit over the next 5km and my 5km splits were getting slower and slower, however I hit the ramp leading to the finish and finally found my second wind – I’d only been waiting for it for 10km ! I finished feeling better than I’ve ever felt at a finish line and managed a 2:35 time – happy with that.
As far as my sponsorship for the Heart Foundation went, I was their 2nd strongest collector of donations with $2500.00 from my 37 separate donors (14 of whom are parkrunners) Thanks very much for your assistance – I had a fantastic time at the Wellington event!” Regards Geoff, Pegasus parkrun
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Dave Hartley is one of our regular parkrunners at Palmerston North and I’m inspired by his commitment each week. Its great being able to put names to faces and anyone who’s done our parkrun will know Dave – he’s the guy in the wheelchair, and he’s given me permission to tell his story. Dave was…