Welcome to this week's newsletter. It has been really great to see parkrunners getting involved and helping out with the volunteering at Haga parkrun in recent weeks.
It’s exactly how parkrun should work – every once in a while people helping out to ensure that parkrun can be delivered every single Saturday. We’re all in this together!
This is just a quick reminder to say: volunteering is easy and we’re a friendly bunch to ‘work’ with We usually ask you to come along to the start/finish area 20-30 minutes before the start so that we can assign you your task for the day, and we’re wrapped up pretty quickly after the last runner has come home. So it won’t take all day for you, and you’ll be part of a team helping to give a whole load of people a great start to their weekend.
What volunteers you have partly depends on the nature of the course (a one-lap course requires more signs and more volunteers) and of course also the number of runners taking part each week (there can be up to 8 scanners for an event like Bushy Park which regularly has around 1000 runners). At Haga parkrun so far things are thankfully a bit calmer! Below is a quick run through of some of the roles that we have and what you need to do for each one:
This role is simple but needs a bit of concentration! Just click on a button on the stopwatch each time a runner passes through the finish. Every parkrun uses just one stopwatch (although you can have a ‘back-up’ timer) so at the busy parkruns this can be a demanding role – last weekend at Bushy they were at one point clicking through around 100 runners a minute, nearly 2 clicks per second!
This person hands out the finishing tokens to the runners in the order that they come through the finish. You just need to keep people in the same order that they come over the line. Quick fingers required when it gets really busy!
Now once the runners have received their finish token, they just need this scanned along with their own personal barcode. Just remember the rule, barcode first, finish token second…..
Every runner appreciates some encouragement – and also knowing the right way to run! Whilst every parkrun should be clearly signed so that you can find your way around anyway, it’s always nice to have some cheery, friendly faces out there on the course. No experience required except plenty of enthusiasm!
Where possible (and we have had one at every event in Sweden so far) we will always have a Tail Runner – a runner who runs/jogs/walks with the person at the back of the pack, so that you will never have to worry that you will be ‘last’ at parkrun – you will always have company!
Help to guide the lead runners the right way, and also make sure that other people in the park know that a parkrun is taking place. We won’t always have a lead bike, but it’s a fun role to have if we have enough volunteers.
Did you know that there’s been a photographer at each of our parkruns so far? If you haven’t done so already, go in and have a look at all the photos on the Haga parkrun website here. You don’t have to have the world’s most expensive camera, just an interest in taking some shots and capturing the moment of that particular parkrun!
Deri Thomas (A24286)
parkrun – make it your friend for the winter months!
It didn’t take me long – just one summer - to realise that Swedes are specialists in packing in lots of fun in a short space of time! And the same goes for running events, with almost all the main running events tightly packed into two periods, pre and post-summer (mid-May until Midsummer and then mid-August until mid-October). That leaves a huge part of the year without any opportunity to run a timed event in the company of others – until now! parkrun will be an all-year-round event (weather permitting of course) but as we know, the last few winters have been relatively mild and great for running.
So if you know people who are maybe running Hässelbyloppet this weekend, traditionally the ‘final’ race of the season, let them know that they will have plenty more chances to test their form during the winter months – come along to parkrun on a Saturday morning in Hagaparken and see how you get on over a testing 5km course!
Örebro parkrun – getting ready!
There’s lots of work going on behind the scenes to get other parkruns started in different parts of the country. And it looks like Örebro may be the next city to have a parkrun here in Sweden!
On Sunday October 23rd at 9.30 the Örebro parkrun team are going to be hosting a ‘testlopp’ of the course for all those who are interested. Come and run with the team, try out the fantastic course they’ve got ready and stick around for a fika in the café they’ve got located right by the finish.
You can read all information about Örebro parkrun and the testlopp event on the Facebook page here. Be sure to let any friends and family you have in Örebro know about it!
More running that you can do this week
For those of who want to do a bit more running on this coming Saturday, we have a couple of great options for you. Firstly, starting after parkrun (at approximately 10.00) from Haga Forum is ‘Run of Hope’ a 4.5km loop around Hagaparken, with the aim of raising money for Barncancerfonden. They will make a loop around the park, so we will let parkrunners know where you can join them later! You can make a donation here.
Then in the afternoon if you would like a change of scene, and another beautiful place to run in Stockholm, go along to the Mental Health Run which is taking place around Djurgården, with the start & finish near the Sjöhistoriska Musuem. The run starts at 13.00 and you can choose between a range of entry fees to choose the one that suits your ability to give the best.
Again, you will be able to run in a relaxed environment where the aim is to have fun, enjoy the company of the runners around you and raise some money for a worthy cause. You can read all about the race here. Hope that a few parkrunners can find the energy to double up!
I lördags sprang jag parkrun för första gången med mina kolleger i Mind - i Sverige! Jag har deltagit en gång tidigare i våras i London. Jag slogs av vilken "feelgood"-känsla jag hade efter båda loppen. Både nu i lördags och i London deltog unga, medelålders, gamla, barn, hundar. Vid båda loppen var det en skön kombination av avkopplad stämning och samtidigt viss tävlingsriktning - väldigt "lagom" kanske man får säga.
Det är ett fantastiskt sätt att börja helgen. Och något som är bra för hälsan. Det är därför som vi på Mind vill samarbeta med parkrun och sprida detta suveräna koncept. Mind arbetar för den psykiska hälsan och stöder människor i kris via våra stödlinjer. Motion är bevisligen bra både för att förebygga psykisk ohälsa, och för att behandla psykisk ohälsa.
Speciellt roligt i lördags var det att se ungdomarna från Löparakademien. Jag hoppas verkligen på det samarbetet också. Likaså var det kul att två dagar senare se på min lokala Friskis-och-Svettis anläggning hur de puffade för parkrun.
Potentialen för parkruns koncept är stor - det borde startas minst ett parkrun i varje svensk stad - heja parkrun!
Carl von Essen