Livonia #274 – Even Colder

If you thought event #273 was cold at 12 degrees, you hadn't seen anything yet.  Temperatures were below zero this past Saturday for Livonia parkrun #274, but that did not stop 25 intrepid parkrunners and several volunteers from coming out and enjoying what turned out to be a beautiful, albeit frigid, day.
UntitledWe had one and only one first timer this week, but she was a unique parkrunner.  Willow Vanda-Mower came all the way from Darwin, Australia to visit our Livonia parkrun.  She and her husband are on a 7 week tour of the USA and started in Philadelphia, then went to New Orleans, and then decided to come to Michigan for our parkrun.  That sounds like a great plan.  Willow said she thoroughly enjoyed the folks and the course at Livonia parkrun, and even the weather.  And we were very glad she came.  Darwin's temperatures rarely go below 70 degrees and it has been 85 there this week, so quite a shock to the system I am sure to go running in below zero temps. 2018-01-12_08-57-26

In tourist news going the other way, native Englishman and adopted Livonian Chris Walker went home for the holidays and was able to do two parkruns at Chippenham, near Bristol, England. He got to go home and parkrun with his Dad over Christmas, which is awesome! Welcome back to the frozen north Chris. This week Tim Keer went home to England for his college reunion Friday night. Tim says depending on how much drinking he does, and how much hangoverness he feels, he will decide whether or not to do a local parkrun Saturday morning. IMHO, in statistical terms, the odds of him not doing a parkun are at about .00001 percent.

Let's see who our podium placers were this week. A familiar face, Timothy Howse, was our first finisher, although many people were wearing masks due to the cold so it was hard to tell who was who. Timothy has now finished first 11 times, and has moved into 8th place on the Livonia all-time list. Josh Styron was second finisher for the 3rd time in 9 parkruns, and as yet he has not cracked the top spot. In third was Jeff Everett, just ahead of Josh's son Adam Styron, who was our only junior parkrunner this week.

For the ladies, we only had four of them so they will all get recognition this week. Our first finisher was Tracey Cohen who also was kind enough to bring baked goods for our volunteers. In second was Krystal Lawrence, who along with her friend Nick Shultz, both ran our only PB's or personal bests this week, good job Krystal and Nick! In third for the ladies was also our most experienced lady, Virginia Gerstner, making her way onto the podium for the first time in 24 parkruns. See, persistence pays off. Either that, or showing up when it is below zero out and many others stayed home in a nice warm bed will get you on the podium. And then our final lady of the day was our previously mentioned far-travelled tourist, Willow Vanda-Mower.

In round-number Milestone news, our VIP tailwalker, Sam Bailo, completed his 180th parkrun. Charlie Garnett, also known as Chewbacca this week, ran his 105th. Willow Vanda-Mower gets another honorable mention as she chose Livonia parkrun to do her 70th overall parkrun, and her first outside of Australia. Last but certainly not least, John Tarkowski ran his 30th parkrun, and also got the highest age-graded percentage of the week at 73% of world record pace.

And what would parkrun be without volunteers? A bunch of people standing around without guidance or structure perhaps? Let us celebrate this week's esteemed volunteers: Sam BAILO, Lynn BOVEN, Jennifer BUDD, Tim GALLAGHER, Bruce HYDE, Tim KEER, Thomas PREISS, Elena STYRON, and Donald THEODORE. Elena was our only junior volunteer this week, and volunteered to take some great pictures. Special congratulations and thanks to Jen Budd who volunteered for the 25th time and is now eligible for a snazzy purple parkrun volunteer shirt. Jenn filled in ably on the stopwatch for Spencer who was down in Florida for some unknown reason and missed the below zero temps. We only have one pre-volunteer this week, thank you Kim Zamora! Please volunteer if you are able. Write on our Facebook page and let us know, thank you!


Last week thanks to the magic of Tim Keer's stats we got to recognize all 16 of the people who have parkrun in all six Livonia parkrun years from 2012 to 2017. And I mentioned I would let you know this week who has volunteered in all of the six Livonia parkun years. Without further adieu, congratulations and thank you to: Spencer Greve, Lynn Boven, Kim Zamora, Jennifer Greve, and Robert Vance.  And thanks to the magic of Colin Phillips at Parkrun USA HQ I was able to add some pictures this week, hooray!  Still need to figure out some flikr stuff, but getting there.  See you Saturday!


Livonia #273 – Pretty Darn Cold

Hello everyone!  Well what do you know, we got this week's run report out just in the nick of time, Friday evening.  And for the first time ever, our "new" core team, who have been in place since October of 2016 are using the website to publish our run report.  Instead of doing the run report as a Facebook note, which had a limited audience and only allowed one picture, this way of doing the run reports should allow for multiple pictures (once we figure that out, they have to come from Flicker), better, more accessible storage, and we will fit in better with how the rest of parkrun USA is doing it for consistency, and tourists should be able to find the reports more easily.

Okay enough with the preliminaries, onto the report.  It was a cold, cold day in Livonia, with a run time temp of 12 degrees F.  It was pretty especially with the sunshine.  We had 28 hearty souls come out.  Only 1 first timer, welcome Margo Johnson!  We had not surprisingly zero personal bests.  I think everyone who was there had a personal best for their coldest parkrun.  Anyone coming tomorrow should beat that record handily as we expect a temp of ZERO for the 9 a.m. start.

So who were the first finishers among the frozen?  For the men it was Timothy Howse for the 10th time.  The polite Jeff Everett was second, after he and Timothy both went off course for a bit, Jeff allowed Timothy to retake the lead.  Steve Dancy, the grey ghost, was 3rd doing his 96th parkrun.  We hope it warms up enough to celebrate his 100th without chattering teeth.  Lynn Boven was top age grade of the week at 64% of world record pace.

For the ladies it was our visiting snow shoe racer Megan Boyak as first finisher.  It was Megan's 6th first finish in 9 parkruns, an impressive percentage.  Megan lives in Saratoga Springs, New York and, as you can imagine given her pastime, is used to running in snowy conditions. In 2nd for the ladies was 1st timer Margo Johnson, and in 3rd for the second week in a row visiting from France was Katie Gallagher with her last Livonia parkrun until probably June as she returns to the City of Lights.

The biggest milestone of the week goes to our very own Lynn Boven who ran his U.S. record 210th parkrun.  Steve Boyak "The Coach", and Megan's Dad, ran his 60th parkrun.  And that was it for milestones in our smaller field due to the cold.  Any predictions on tomorrow's attendance?  How about 19 as a guess?

As teased in our Facebook pictures post from last week on Kim Zamora's picture we would like to recognize the 16 people who have run in all 6 years of Livonia parkrun's existence.  They all have done at least one Livonia parkrun in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017.  Five of them ran this past Saturday.  These five are:  Lynn Boven, Charlie Garnett, Kim Zamora, and Megan and Steve Boyak.  Congratulations!  Megan had the longest time gap, and barely made this list, running the 1st parkrun of 2016 and the last parkrun of 2017 as a holiday visitor.

The other 11 people who have run in all 6 years are:  Spencer Greve, Rick Brauer, Lori Brauer, Jennifer Greve, Karen Slayton, Linda Lutz,  Maura Bradley, Tom Budd, Steve Erickson, Annie Potocki, and David Hullinger.  Congratulations everyone!

In next week's run report we will have a similar feature on our mega-long tenured volunteers, don't miss it.  Speaking of volunteers, here are the selfless folks who turned out in the cold last week to make everyone's parkrun dreams possible:  Sam BAILO, Lynn BOVEN, Charlotte BURKE, Leonard CONSTANTINE, Steve DANCY, Tim GALLAGHER, Charles GARNETT, Spencer GREVE, Bruce HYDE, Tim KEER, Jeremy MATTSON, Patrick STARR, John TARKOWSKI, Kim ZAMORA.  Thank you, so much!  A special thank you to not registered Eric Hughes who froze his little fingers off after being pressed into service as our guest photographer.  He took many great pictures.

If anyone can volunteer tomorrow and can be really bundled up, we would appreciate it.  Due to tomorrow's expected extreme cold we encourage anyone without proper protective running gear to stay home.  And anyone not in good physical condition please stay home.  We do not want any frostbite nor cold induced asthma attacks, etc.  We will have extra pocket or glove hand warmers if you would like them.   Stay frosty my friends!


June 3rd – Five Years of Livonia parkrun

Can you believe it? Five years ago there were no parkruns in the United States. None. We didn't even know this was a thing. Then a runner named Rick Brauer found fellow runners in the UK and the ball started rolling. Here we are now with a free weekly, timed 5k in the suburban city of Livonia. We have had dozen upon dozens of parkrun 'tourists' come visit us. We have an average of 40-50 runners every week with spikes that take us close to 100. June 3rd is our anniversary. Please dust off those running shoes and come join us. Run, walk, jog. To us it's all the same. We wait for everyone to get out and enjoy the park. We really hope to see you there. Let's break that record attendance!!



Volunteers are requested for timing; course set-up / clean-up; finisher tokens and run timing plus course marshaling. Please arrive by 730am for instructions. We've new hi viz volunteer vests to use as well! As with the finisher token's - - please return at the end of parkrun!!


Volunteers needed for all positions

Our parkrunner numbers are increasing every week which is a good thing, however we cannot manage parkrun with only 2-3 volunteers. Course marshaling and assistance with course set-up and clean-up is necessary. Our 'Lone Cone Ranger' and his trusty sidekick can use assistance to ensure new parkrunners are not challenged with left or right turn decisions. It's all quite simple, just arrive by 730am and we'll direct you to where you are needed. You can still run or walk and earn double points for your efforts which contribute toward the parkunner of the month award. Watch this site for more information.

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