KwaMashu parkrun in KZN launched on 14 January 2017. In the first three years, parkrunners covered over 39,000km on the course. Co-Event Director Sihle Nala tells us more:
How did KwaMashu parkrun come about? The parkrun was set up by some KwaMashu community members that loved running; they did this with the help of Dr Sbongiseni Dhlomo who was then the KZN MEC of health.
They also received assistance from the Princess Magogo stadium; KwaMashu Athletics club; Run/Walk for Life; The KwaMashu sports centre and the department of sports & recreation in the area.
Who helps to make KwaMashu parkrun a success? We have a very dedicated core team of volunteers that go above and beyond to make every event a success.
The main team that has been around since the inception of the parkrun include: Mbongeni Shezi, Siyabonga Mncwabe, Xolani Myeza, Nelisiwe Shandu, Thohoyandou Shange, Sihle Nala, Siyabonga Duma and Sthe Nxumalo.
Some of the volunteers work night shifts; they come straight from work directly to parkrun to volunteer. Some have offered their garages to be used to store our event equipment.
What makes KwaMashu parkrun unique? Our volunteers are very friendly and welcoming. Which is the same for our regular parkrunners. We take group pictures after most events which we share on facebook.
What is the route like? Our route is a four lapper around the stadium. One of our recent visitors commented on how they expected to be bored by the same loop 4 times but they enjoyed it.
What success stories have your parkrunners had? Our current male record holder Mbulelo Mathanga who was a regular at our event. He recently represented South Africa in Hamburg. He dominates the 5,000m and 10,000m races in his category.
What is the one thing a first timer to KwaMashu parkrun should know? We once had a group of runners from Amanzimtoti parkrun visit the event. Although they are used to hills in their area, they were not ready for the uniqueness of our hilly, four lapper route.
One of their more experienced runners vowed to train harder in order to conquer our hills and retain his PB for a 5k. We welcome such challengers.
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