News - 21st April 2022

parkrun Profile: Pegasus


It shares its name with a mythical creature but the only thing they have in common is that they are both legendary.


Pegasus parkrun is named after the planned urban development in Canterbury, New Zealand.


It launched on June 18, 2016 with 61 finishers and six volunteers. Over its almost six year history it averages 70 finishers a week.


The course is a two lapper around Lake Pegasus, a man-made lake in the heart of the township. It’s almost as if the lake were made with parkrun in mind as the path around it is 2.5km.




“Many new sub-divisions are cropping up in North Canterbury and the region is growing quickly,” says co-Event Director Chris van der Leer.


“Prior to the COVID shutdowns Pegasus was experiencing a healthy increase in walkers, joggers, and runners at parkrun, and we hope for this to continue.”


“I’m certainly seeing many new faces doing runs around the area, and we encourage them all to join us on a Saturday morning.”




“We are lucky to be strongly supported by the local community, and we regularly give interviews on the local community radio station to help encourage those on the fence to give it a go. The mayor tends to drop by occasionally, along with a few local councillors.”


“We also have a strong social group at Pegasus, and we have a large pool of generous volunteers who help us out every week.”




It sounds like the perfect parkrun for locals but it’s also an event parkrun tourists should consider.


“We have some amazing sunrises, and the lake is like a mirror as we do parkrun.”




“Photos simply don’t capture the beauty of our surroundings. The bridges add a slight bit of magic to the course and it’s always good to see the local lakeside residents outside in their bathrobes with a mug of coffee encouraging us on!”


The parkrun was founded by Geoff McMillan, who had learned of Hagley parkrun in central Christchurch and ran there a few times before thinking about setting up parkrun closer to home.




Chris found out about parkrun from his partner.


“I was always a solitary runner, but one day my partner recommended that we head up to Pegasus to give it a try.”


“I loved the supportive and friendly vibe, and we seemed to become regulars overnight. It didn’t matter if you didn’t know someone’s name because we all had one thing in common – to do 5km around the lake.


“It didn’t take us long to start volunteering and soon we were familiar with how things worked – and here I am.”




After parkrun coffee is had at nearby The Flat White Cafe.


“It has been around for almost as long as Pegasus Town itself and they are very supportive.”


“We tend to take over the place on a Saturday morning, and they usually set up a bespoke area for us to carry on our (loud) shenanigans.”


“Our tradition is to do the Stuff quiz which usually leads to much hilarity.”




The Pegasus parkrun website is here and the Facebook page here

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