One of my New Year’s resolutions is to be better about posting the run report when I’m the Run Director, so here goes….
It was pretty chilly at parkrun o’clock on Saturday morning – official temperature was apparently 24 degrees, so I couldn’t have been more excited to see 10 hearty volunteers and 43 tough parkrunners appear for our final parkrun of the year. I did feel a bit bad, though, for Liz, Kate, and Jason, our Australian tourists who showed up an hour early, because they were frozen! (In Australia, most parkruns start at 8am…so, we’ve had a number of antipodean early birds.) On the other hand, the Mabifa family was visiting us from Canada, so they weren’t concerned at all by our unseasonably cold weather. Congratulations to all six of you – we were so glad you could join us!
We were on the alternative course again, thanks to a beautiful coating of snow that had fallen overnight. Thank you to Paul and Nick who helped with set-up, putting out the signs and dimple cones. Rodger P. and Karen (a first-time volunteer!) were this week’s marshals – helping to keep our parkrunners safe and sound. Fred and Nick were this week’s timekeepers. Plus, it was a family affair for Fred; there were at least five members of the Fagerstrom extended family at parkrun this weekend! Alejandra (another first-time high-viz hero) was on scanning duties, Roger H. handed out the finish tokens, and Tony brought up the rear as tail walker. Finally, we once again have Travis to thank for his beautiful photos! (If you haven’t seen them on Facebook or Flickr, you must go look immediately!) And, of course, all of us got to act as cheerleaders, since one of the best things about the alternative course is that we get to cheer the parkrunners as they come around Memorial Plaza!
It was great to see so many familiar faces for our last parkrun of the year! Simon drove over from West Virginia to complete his 99th parkrun. Kerstin was back after setting a new age group record at Anacostia parkrun (congratulations!). Kevin came back for a second week in a row with his dad Dennis – Kevin’s still running in shorts, because Marines are crazy tough. Sophie finished her fourth RI parkrun; Sophie, we’re glad you’ve adopted us as your new “home” parkrun, even if Tooting Common misses you! Lynda and Paul, I hope that your traditional New Year’s Eve Fairfax Four Miler went well after your nice warm-up runs at RI! Another one of our amazing volunteers (and chief wagon-storer), Rosemary, also got to run this week, since we already had such a great line-up of volunteers. Finally, a warm welcome goes to our first-time parkrunners: Nickolas, Dave, Jason, Kate, and Sheila. We hope you had a great time and look forward to seeing you again soon!
We also passed out copies of the completely unofficial "parkrun USA challenge" scorecard - if you haven't gotten your copy yet, we'll have more at future parkruns OR you can download a copy from the parkrun USA Facebook group! OH! And then Nick, Rosemary, and I got interviewed by a news crew from NBC Washington (Channel 4) about what it was like to be out running in the snow! If you'd like to see the piece that they aired, it's available here! And, as a bonus, several of the RI crowd had the chance to take part in one or both of the New Year’s Day parkruns hosted by Leakin Park and College Park parkruns. Tony volunteered to hadn out tokens at CP and Simon did parkrun #99. Svetlana and Darrell were spotted at CP, after promoting parkrun at DC Mayor Bowser’s Fresh Start 5K near the Anacostia parkrun course. Tim wasn’t the tailwalker this week, but seemed to have a great time nevertheless. And Eden, Jason, and I all completed the double by running both parkruns.
I’m looking forward to seeing all of you at the Island this Saturday – we’re keeping a close eye on the temperatures and will be posting in the usual places (here, Facebook, Twitter, and via the mailing list) if we need to cancel for safety reasons. This might also be a good place for a plug – if you aren’t already opted in to receive the “volunteer appeal” (which is what parkrun HQ calls the mailing list that we use for our weekly newsletter and for rare, but important, special announcements like a cancellation), this might be a good time to put yourself on the list. To opt-in, simply follow the link in any results e-mail that you’ve received from RI parkrun. See you soon!