Lindsay Graham and Matt Charlton are Co-Event Directors at Carlisle parkrun. They have been very busy helping to keep the local parkrun community entertained, active and in touch with one another over the last year.
The 21st March 2020 is a date that will live long in the memory of Carlisle parkrun. A week after the final parkrun of 2020 (although we didn’t know that then!) and the beginning of a new Saturday morning phenomenon, Carlisle parkrun Live!
parkrun is a massive part of people’s lives and on that first Saturday without parkrun that I (Lindsay) decided to ‘go Live’ on Carlisle parkrun social media to check in with all our regular parkrunners, have a little chat and make sure everyone was doing ok. Little did I realise what I had started.
After a couple of weeks of watching me ‘go Live’, Matt joined in, “it’ll only be for few weeks” he thought, “I can manage that.” Almost a year later and we’re still going, every week at 9am, either Matt or myself ‘go Live’ on Carlisle parkrun social media for around 30 mins (it started at about 5 minutes and escalated quickly!)
In the last year, Carlisle parkrun Live has taken the place of parkrun on our local parkrunners schedules and we have viewers who are there every week for their regular catch up and chat. Over the past year we have, in amongst many other things:
Watched Matt recreate the Carlisle parkrun course in his back garden, complete with wind and rain for realistic weather conditions
Seen a dinosaur (not)parkrun round my garden
Organised a collection for the local Carlisle foodbank, in place of the in person collections we’d normally arrange during the year
Celebrated the NHS with our own rainbow of parkrun t-shirts
Had multiple quizzes, about Carlisle parkrun, Chances Park (our home), parkruns round the world, and more…
Had a tuba performance from parkrun regular Robert Ainsworth
Celebrated numerous birthdays!
Gone Live from wherever we happen to be on Saturday morning
Attempted to impersonate the Zoom cat lawyer and ended up stuck as a rabbit for far longer than intended…
Perhaps one of the most exciting things has been that we’ve also gained a ‘sister parkrun’ in Malaysia, in Presint 18 parkrun! Proving it really is a small world, Presint 18’s Event Director, Aie Rajapaska, had parkrun at Carlisle back in 2018, went to University with Matt’s brother (who also holds the course record at Presint 18) and became a regular viewer of Carlisle parkrun Live.
Once we found out about this we were sure to give a shout out to Presint 18 each week, to celebrate their 2 year anniversary and one time we even woke up to a return video when they’d had their own parkrun Live at 9am Malaysian time!
parkrun truly is a global event and one day when the world is back to normal we’d love the chance to meet our Malaysian friends in person again!
Carlisle parkrun Live has been our way of staying connected with our parkrun community and making sure that all our parkrunners know that we’re thinking of them. We’ve no plans to stop before the real Carlisle parkrun can return, so if you fancy some virtual tourism before then, please join us this Saturday at 9am!
Lindsay Graham and Matt Charlton
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