January 14th – All Systems Are Go!

We have been closely monitoring the weather forecasts over the past few days, as there was a risk of an ice event like the once that forced all DC-area parkruns to cancel on December 17th. But we are now confident that the ice risk is extremely low. So we are going ahead with today's parkrun. We'll keep the pre-run briefing, well, brief. And you'll warm up in no time.

We make every effort to bring you a free parkrun every Saturday, whatever the weather. Cold (Jan 7th), rain (Dec 24th), or snow fall are no problem. We just wrap up warm, and we always have a good time on the trail. The situations where we would cancel are ones where the trail is closed, as in a major snow event, or where your safety is a concern, as when roads and trails are icy (Dec 17th).


Shiver me timbers! (Run Report #13)

Shiver me timbers, that was cold! 20 degrees & blustery! Andrea here, with a confession: I am a wimp about the cold. But here’s the thing: running is just about the only way I know to overcome it. Every cold morning that I head out to run, I think ‘this is going to be the day that the cold beats me’, and every time, I’m wrong. Of course it’s cold at the start, but there always comes that moment—maybe a mile in, maybe longer—when you realize you’re not cold anymore, and in fact, you’re toasty warm. And every time it’s a reminder that you are beating the cold. It’s a little taste of a superpower. 

So congratulations to 33 mini superhero parkrunners who came out to thumb their noses at the cold with us last Saturday!


This week Sam McGranahan reached the parkrun 10 milestone (and we hope he has now ordered his free t-shirt so he can show it off). But more generally, our group of ‘regulars’ is growing all the time, even while we get first timers every week. This is great news for us, and great news for all of you repeat offenders!  

This week Jim Parsons joined the unofficial College Park 10 Club. And Chris Kujawa and Christine Becraft joined the College Park 5 Club. That brings our totals to 32 people who have run CP parkrun 5x or more, and 6 people who have run it 10x or more. Why do you people keep coming back?  Oh, right, the pancakes after. 


We also had 6 first timers this week. Congratulations to all of you! We had a huge number of people register for our parkrun during New Year’s week (resolutions?), so we anticipate that there are a lot of ‘closeted’ soon-to-be First Timers out there. Why not come out this weekend?

Despite the cold (or maybe because of it?), quite a few people set new PBs this week: Ken Leonard (and Scout), Chris Kujawa, Rachel Lukens, and Monique Bourque. Great running, all of you!

I want to give a special thanks to this week’s volunteers: Gus Campbell, Chris and Nina McGranahan, Jen Murphy, Hump Plotts, Cee Cee Swalling (and her pup), and Lisa Wilson. They didn’t get to warm up by running, and it took a long time for them to thaw out afterwards--maybe it’s no coincidence that every one of them did come to the post-run breakfast at Board and Brew,  Thank you so much, each of you, for helping out!

Have you been enjoying parkrun, and want it to continue every Saturday? Please help make that happen by taking a turn at volunteering with us. Remember, we are people-powered entirely!  Drop us a line at: collegeparkhelpers@parkrun.com.


Winter weather plans (UPDATED)

UPDATE: 8pm, Friday December 16th.

We're sorry to have to cancel this week's parkrun! The greatest risk of ice is exactly when you would be traveling to parkrun. We happily run in snow, cold, or rain, but ice is more dangerous. We're looking forward to seeing you next week (12/24) for a free, friendly start to the holiday weekend. The weather for next week is looking excellent.



We just love running on a carpet of snow, especially on our beautiful trails. We're looking forward to doing this with you some time. But we also care about your safety, and the safety of our volunteers. So here's our plan for wintry weather.

The default is: College Park parkrun is going ahead, unless you hear otherwise. We will announce no later than 6am on Saturday morning, via this website, Facebook, and Twitter. So check online before heading out. We'll announce the cancellation earlier if it's clear that we can't go ahead.

For Saturday December 17th the decision will turn on whether we have snow (lovely!) or ice (stay inside!). This will depend on early morning temperature changes. Our volunteer team will be ready with smiles (and warm coats), so we're keeping our fingers crossed.


New Year’s Resolution parkrun, and more

DECEMBER 2017: If you're reaching this page via an online race directory, note that this post is about the Jan 1st 2017 New Years parkrun. For information about the Jan 1st 2018 New Years parkrun, see our News page or the link on the right of this page. And consider trying the New Years double parkrun by doing Leakin Park parkrun at 8:30am and then College Park parkrun at 10:30am.

UPDATE: We're anticipating a big crowd Sunday for the New Year's Resolution parkrun at 11am. ... and to add to the festivities UMD has announced that the sold-out Maryland-Nebraska basketball game will start at 12:00. So traffic and parking will be more challenging than a typical Sunday morning in College Park. You'll perhaps be a little ahead of the basketball traffic, but check traffic. Our recommendations:

1. Bike or carpool if possible. Allow a little extra time.
2. University Boulevard (Rte 193) can get very crowded before big games.
3. UMD Lot 11b (behind The View) will be for permit holders only. Don't try to park there.
4. There are 3 small parking lots by the start at Acredale Park, but they may fill up.
5. Rita's Italian Ice (Rte 1 & Metzerott, 50 yards from start) has kindly agreed to let us use their (small) parking lot; just don't block the recycling bins.
6. AMF Lanes bowling alley on Rte 1, opposite Holiday Inn Express and 3 mins walk from start, has kindly agreed to let us use their parking lot. They have lots of space, but please park on the edge, away from the building.

We're looking forward to seeing you! (Don't forget your personal barcode: parkrun.us/register).

Two updates on how parkrun is helping to bring health and happiness to the DC area this holiday season: a special New Year’s Resolution parkrun on Jan 1st, and other area parkrun events to mark the end of the year.


Holiday parkruns in College Park

You can get your regular Saturday 9am College Park parkrun fix throughout the holidays, including on December 24th and December 31st. No change there. And as usual we’re delighted to hear from you if you can help out as a volunteer on one of those days (collegeparkhelpers@parkrun.com).


We’re excited to announce that on January 1st we’ll be holding a special New Year’s Resolution parkrun. Some things will be the same as you have come to expect: the beautiful Paint Branch Trail; the absence of entry fees, swag, or prizes (just bring your barcode); results online and emailed to you barely an hour after the run; and the smiles and friendly volunteers.


Some other things will be a little different. We’ll start at 11am, so that you can sleep in (or do another run … more on that below). We’re expecting to welcome lots of guests to our parkrun, including College Park mayor Patrick Wojahn, University Park mayor Len Carey, District 3 County Council Member Dannielle Glaros, parkrunners from DC and as far away as England, and community members who will be running/walking/jogging with us for the first time. We’re very happy to be partnering on this event with our friends at Prince George’s Running Club, who have a tradition of New Year’s Resolution runs. And we’re also delighted that the nice people at The Board and Brew will be open for us to hold a special post-run meetup.

Bring your friends and family. It's going to be a great start to 2017.

Registration? No special sign-up required, beyond your regular parkrun registration/barcode (get your barcode here). But if you're on Facebook you can click or share this Facebook event. It will help to give us an estimate of the numbers.


Special parkrunning opportunities in our area

In 2016 the Washington DC area became a hub for parkrun USA, with 3 events launched, and more are in the works. During the holidays, why not try out one of our sister events at Fletcher’s Cove parkrun on the C&O Canal towpath near Georgetown, or at Roosevelt Island parkrun, which includes a memorable mile of running on a boardwalk through peaceful wetlands. Both parkruns will be held Saturday at 9am on December 24th and 31st. You can just show up with your parkrun barcode. (Do check the Roosevelt Island website or Facebook page if it’s cold; they might have to cancel if the boardwalk is icy.)

So for New Year’s weekend, you have two opportunities to do College Park parkrun, or you can sample two area parkruns in the same weekend.

But if you need even more, then you should also join the parkrunners who will be taking part in DC mayor Muriel Bowser’s FitDC Fresh Start 5k event at 9am on January 1st, on a pretty route by the Tidal Basin. Mayor Bowser is a parkrun supporter and she will talk about plans to soon launch a 4th DMV parkrun in Anacostia, and her hopes for more free parkruns to enrich our communities. Seasoned parkrunners will have a tent at the event and will be signing up new participants. We hope that some of you will be able to join us there.


We look forward to seeing you in the coming weeks.

Your College Park parkrun team



Inaugural run, October 15th 2016

We are excited to officially launch College Park parkrun on October 15th 2016. If you can't join us this week, don't worry. We'll be there the next week, and the week after that, and the week after that ...

The Diamondback, UMD's independent student newspaper, had a nice article this week about College Park parkrun. Thanks to the global parkrun community, it has been shared around the world, and seems to have been particularly popular in Australia. One nice consequence of launching our event is that we've made connections with far flung parkrunners with ties to College Park. For example, Mary Botto is a Terp alumna who is now a run director at a parkrun in Sydney. (Looking for excuses to visit that one!)

If you'll be joining us for the inaugural run, here are a couple of things to remember.

1. Don't forget your barcode! Your one-time sign-up at parkrun.us gets you a personal barcode that you should print out and bring to the run. It gives you free access to all 900 parkrun events worldwide. (You need to actually print it, as our scanners won't work with your phone.)

DFYB image

2. Transportation and parking alert! This weekend is a home football game at UMD (12pm, vs. Minnesota), and it's also UMD Family Weekend. This means that parking will be more scarce than normal. So please don't even try to park in UMD's Lot 11b, which would normally be the ideal place to park. And we expect very limited parking in the small lots right next to the run start. The kind folks at AMF Bowling on Route 1 have agreed to let us use their big parking lot for parkrun. If you park there, it's just a couple of minutes walk across the street to parkrun. Just walk down Metzerott Rd behind Rita's Italian Ice. If you drive to the start and find that no parking is available, then getting back to Route 1 is quite circuitous.

Of course, if you can come to parkrun by bike or on foot, then so much the better. That way, you get double the enjoyment of our trails, and none of the stress of parking.


3. Post-run meet up! Totally optional, but we'll be meeting up for coffee (and more) at The Board and Brew after the run. Come by and join us for a chat in this cool independent coffee shop. It's just a few minutes walk from the start/finish.

dress rehearsal B-and-B

The weather forecast for Saturday is looking lovely. We're excited to enjoy our great local trails with you.

For updates you can also follow us on Facebook or Twitter.


Dress rehearsal run, October 8th 2016

College Park parkrun officially launches on October 15th, but we're holding a dress rehearsal run on October 8th. We'll be testing out the equipment and the logistics, to iron out the inevitable kinks. The only difference is that this event will not be an official parkrun event, and so your run time or volunteer role will not be included in the parkrun database. But the run and the company will be just as good as any other week.

Please join us at 9am one the Paint Branch Trail at Metzerott Rd. If you run (or jog or walk), you'll be the first to cover our accurately measured 5k course. It's a little shorter than the course we've been using for our practice events since January. If you can't run, then you can be a pioneer member of our volunteer team. Drop us a line at collegeparkoffice@parkrun.com if you can lend a hand on Saturday.

Our regular post-run meetup at The Board and Brew will be as official as ever.

Most important of all, for this week and all following weeks: Don't Forget Your Barcode. Free one-time registration at parkrun.us.


Announcing the start of College Park parkrun, MD

College Park parkrun starts 15 October 2016

We are delighted to announce the launch of College Park parkrun, MD on 15th October 2016, 9am at Paint Branch Trail, 4289 Metzerott Road, College Park. We hope you'll be able to join us for the launch and a coffee afterwards!

Older Posts in Category ⇒