Event #113, 17th February 2018.

Castletown parkrun
Event number 113
17th February 2018

This week 247 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 29 were first timers and 61 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 20 different clubs took part.  The weather was perfect to give that added 'spring' in our step.  Lets hope that the spring season may finally be making an appearance.

The event was made possible by 25 volunteers:

volunteers week 113

Sharon ASHMORE • Alicia ASHMORE • Philip SLATTERY • Breda FOGARTY • Thomas QUINN • Eavan CONNOLLY • Claire MILLAR • Marian FAGAN • Sarah DEVANEY • Tom COPPINGER • Haj SLATTERY • Conor DEVANEY • Sandra MCLAUGHLIN • Ronan SHANAHAN • Marella CAHILL • Melanie TUFFEN • Catherine COTTER-MELIA • Kim O'LONE • Finn SLATTERY • Zara SLATTERY • Gerry DUFFY • Bozena KELLEHER • Aoife PLUINCÉID • Brian O'GORMAN • David HEPPLE

There's was lots of help for all of you this week to those PB's as it was pacer week.  It did get a tad busy on the finish chute for a while but a hero jumped straight into action after his run and assisted runners through.  It's the little things that make it all so much easier for the team to manage weekly.  We'd encourage lots more to try this out, even if it's only for a few minutes, we'd be delighted with the help.  You will get your volunteer credit and it does take the pressure off the core team too.
important notice

We had a lot to do this week as we now have to marshal the carpark due to the amount of late comers to parkrun.  We really need your help with this.  The brief takes place around 9.20am.  The event starts at 9.30am.  There was a constant stream of traffic heading into the carpark at 9.25am.  Unfortunately it's been left up to us to ensure nobody parks on the grass verges and that consideration is given to other park users.  Please, please, please set your alarm clocks a little earlier so you have time to park properly.  You could also carpool, walk, jog or cycle up to the event.  

The volunteers at parkrun are simply amazing and are on the ground preparing for parkrun before 9am every Saturday.  Not to mention the amount of background work that goes into preparing for each week, but we do need more help from you, the parkrunner.  We had a bit of a fright on Saturday when we got a call to say a member of the team had hit black ice on the way to parkrun and their car ended up in a ditch.  Thankfully they are fine and well, which is more than can be said for their car, but get this, their family still managed to get parkrun equipment to us in advance of the event.

Over the next few parkrun events we will welcome a number of graduating c25k groups.  This will be an amazing time for all concerned and we are very lucky to be able to share the day with the groups too.  We would welcome volunteers to step up now... there's still a fair few gaps on the roster for the coming weeks.  Remember how far you have all come and where you started.  Why not show them how welcome they are.  Drop us a line to castletownhelpers@parkrun.com.  You know the drill, full training is given and all the jobs are really easy.

If you know of someone thinking about joining you at parkrun, but they're just not sure yet, why not encourage them to come.  You know it's free, non-competitive, fun and you can participate at your own speed and in your own way.  parkrun is not about the first finisher... it's about every one of you!  We will stay at the finish chute for as long as it takes anybody to complete the 5k.  Nobody ever comes last.  We have a tail walker to ensure that everybody get's home safely.  Just do it!!!!  Help them to make the first steps.  Find out how to get involved here.

All parkrunners must follow this parkrun code, this ensures you are all looked after and stay safe and that your volunteers can run the event smoothly.  It couldn't be easier, so tag someone and bring them along.  We have a separate welcome and introduction to parkrun which takes place at around 9.20am.  We show you how to use your barcode and what to do when you complete your parkrun.

parkrun code of conduct


Congratulations goes to Thomas Lawlor who completed his 50th parkrun this week at Castletown parkrun.


If you are celebrating something, be sure to let us know.  Whether it be an engagement, birthday, milestone or divorce... we'd love to announce it for you.  Drop us a line or let us know in advance of parkrun.

And finally...

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Castletown parkrun Results Page.

The female record is held by Louise REILLY who recorded a time of 19:19 on 28th May 2016 (event number 28).
The male record is held by Heywood RICHARDSON who recorded a time of 16:27 on 6th January 2018 (event number 107).
The Age Grade course record is held by Gary CONDON who recorded 84.06% (16:44) on 20th August 2016 (event number 40).

Castletown parkrun started on 24th October 2015. Since then 3,660 participants have completed 19,866 parkruns covering a total distance of 99,330 km, including 4,191 new Personal Bests.

Thank you for taking the time to join us at Castletown this week, we're looking forward to next week already.

Your Run Director for this week, Dr Melanie Tuffen and Your Run Report Writer, Sharon Ashmore.


Event #112 – Feb 10th 2018

So, now that the mud has finally washed off the running shoes we can look back at last weekend with a little pride that we managed to say Hello to Brisbane, clap a little, be gently reminded that Valentine’s days was coming up shortly, tramp through the puddles, and somehow manage a free, timed 5km and all of this before 11 am on Saturday.

It was an amazing event, as it always is, and for one of the first times as Run Director I managed to get a photo of the first male and first female finishers as far too often I don’t manage to do it as we have a busy busy time at the start and finish. Thanks to an amazing set of volunteers on the day we managed to get a few snaps that are now on Flickr.

Who were we saying “Hello, Ruediger!” to at the very start?
Well, I came across a tweet last year where a volunteer at New Farm parkrun in Brisbane posted a selfie of himself as a timekeeper at his local parkrun - and he said that he did it once in every ten times that he volunteers. This is a magic ratio that regular Run Director Marian Fagan will encourage us all to try to keep to - as it spreads the load for everyone as evenly as possible, and is an easy number to remember. 

Anyway Ruediger, through the power of Social Media, agreed that we could use his photo and you may have seen it on the facebook or twitter page on occasion over the past number of months. So, from a cold and wet Castletown it is always nice to picture sunnier climates and with Brisbane hitting 34C, well, it warmed my heart a little.

So - what milestones did we achieve?
I know that in the rush to get the Event started and moving on time, I did miss out on calling out for milestones - so if you hit a milestone then let any Run Director know any week and we’ll ensure that you get your certificate…..we keep spares with us every week!
 Indeed it was brought to our attention that we did in fact have two Junior 10 milestones this week. Zach Gunning and Ava Percy

The one thing that I’ll say about this photo of Zach is we're not sure who is the most proud!

Melanie is our parkrunner of the Month for February - why not read her story here.

Thanks to the wonderful crew of team #112 who made it all possible - and Marian in particular who keep things flowing at the base. John briefed the marshals for the first time - though it was his 25th time as a volunteer - so we'll have to recognise that sometime soon.

We had a bunch of novice marshals who did a superb job of encouraging you getting around and keeping you all safe. 
We enlisted a young injured runner to help with tokens for a few minutes - it is always important to ensure that you have the right set of gloves in the Jan/Feb volunteering.
Though we had tough conditions at the finish and two fallers - though both strenuously denying any injury it does reinforce the need to be careful when conditions are tough.

With Martin Hoare running off to attend a wedding, and Louise Reilly running to the car and getting her barcode we had one less ‘unknown runner’ - and it meant that our first male and first female finishers also had the best age graded results on the day. 

With 212 runners and over 30 PB’s, the regular 15% mark was a good one to hit.


We also had a couple of folks introduce themselves to the RD at the end of the Event and thank the volunteers - though we think that the best thanks is to come back next week - for the 3rd and second respectively ! If ye can survive a day like Saturday with a smile, then you are not doing so bad.

This coming Saturday we’ll be back to your regularly scheduled briefings.

Until next time!

Declan Hynes
Run Director Event #112
Castletown parkrun


parkrunner of the month for February 2018

parkrunner of the month for February 2018.


Congratulations to Dr Melanie Tuffen.


Melanie is presented with her parkrunner of the month certificate by Philip Slattery - ED Castletown parkrun.


Melanie hasn't been with us very long at Castletown parkrun, but she's certainly made an amazing impression on many of us. She says she's shy... although many of us don't believe her. Either way, she joins many other heroes on the parkrunner wall of fame. We're delighted she's enjoying parkrun with us. Congrats Melanie.

Read all about Melanie...


Name: Dr Melanie Geraldine Tuffen. However, I am a doctor of plants, so unless you have chlorophyll I can't advise you on your fungal infection. If you are a tree, please make an appointment. I have to say Dr, otherwise my mother gets upset. If somebody DARES send a letter to the house with the incorrect title, she crosses it out and inserts either "Dr" before my name or "PhD" after it before passing it on to me.

(Fun fact: Melanie means "dark", Geraldine "one who rules by the spear" and Tuffen "To spit" so technically I am "Dr Dark One Who Rules by the Spear and Spits")

Club: Celbridge AC Fit4Life

Age: 32

Home parkrun: Castletown

Occupation: My official job title is "Pest Risk Analyst". My job is to identify threats – in the form of nasty insects or deadly diseases – that could invade Ireland from another country and kill or cause extensive losses to trees or crops. By identifying threats before they arrive, I can figure out what we need to do to keep the pests out and continue to have healthy, thriving farms and forests. I am a bit over enthusiastic about plant health and will happily talk anyone's ear off about it, as people regularly discover over coffee after parkrun.

Number of runs: 28 (though there was a time during a storm when I had a bad barcode scan but honestly not upset by it don't mind at all...:p)

Favourite volunteer role: Barcode scanning. There are never any unexpected items in the bagging area, just a queue of happy people who have finished parkrun for you to congratulate. Also, always fun to see the creative places some people store their barcodes (I'll leave it up to your imagination!)

How has parkrun changed your running: There is no staying in bed on a Saturday morning. Don't feel 100%? Run/Walk. Feel great? Go for a PB. Injured? Volunteer! Visiting friends or family? Only go to the ones willing to drive you to the nearest parkrun on a Saturday morning. Even if it means having to squeeze your bum between two child seats and take the occasional kick to the head from a toddler.

First parkrun: York, 9th April 2016. I had done the NHS Couch to 5k programme and a friend from work said he would drive me over.

What do you like about parkrun: The people. I put off going for the first time to Castletown on a few occasions, because I was worried I would just kind of end up standing about by myself before and after the run. I'm actually quite shy. No really, I am. Eventually I went with the resolve to sign up to volunteer, and did, and haven't regretted it. Yet. They probably do, though. I have been to several different events now, and I can't get over how wonderful and welcoming the volunteers are, no matter where it is in the world.

Most memorable or funniest parkrun: Having only just completed a couch to 5 km, I didn't really have any proper running gear at my first parkrun. Certainly not waterproofs. As we pulled in, the Yorkshire skies darkened and heavy rain began to fall and I resolved to wear my proper raincoat which I had come in. Naturally, two minutes into the run the sun came out. and I almost died completing the course in a bloody heavy raincoat.


Do you wish to nominate a fellow parkrunner?  Drop us a line to castletownoffice@parkrun.com and tell us why they are your parkrunner of the month.


parkrunner of the month for January 2018

parkrunner of the month for January 2018.


Congratulations to Sarah Griffin.


Sarah Griffin - parkrunner of the month for January 2018 - photographed with VHI Roadshow Ambassador and Irish International track and field athlete. 

Like all parkrunners, Sarah definitely brings a unique presence to Castletown parkrun.  She's always smiling, always jumping around ready to go and can't seem to get enough of volunteering.  Her enthusiasm is just amazing.  If you're ever having a bad day, try standing beside Sarah for two minutes, you'll feel amazing.

On behalf of all the Castletown parkrunners, thank you Sarah for bringing us so much fun to our community.

Here's a little introduction to Sarah....


Name: Sarah Griffin

Club: St Coca's AC

Age: 33

Home parkrun: Castletown

Occupation: Teacher

Number of runs: 23

Favourite volunteer role: pre-run set up

How has parkrun changed your running: parkrun has made me enjoy running and it introduced a social element to the process which led to me finally joining my local running club

First parkrun: My first parkrun was in Castletown in November 2016. I turned up not knowing what to expect but really enjoyed it and started volunteering really soon after that.

What do you like about parkrun: People say 'parkrun is a community' and it really is.

What I like most about parkrun: is the friends I've made - it's great knowing that I can turn up to most races and see a familiar face! And we even carpool to them occasionally too

Most memorable or funniest parkrun: My most memorable parkrun was definitely the New Years Day double I did this year. We ran Griffeen parkrun first then bundled ourselves into the car and headed over to Porterstown parkrun as quick as we could where, after 3 laps of their course, we were rewarded with a mighty feed. Then there was the eating of mince pies and drinking of chocolate wine out of the boot of a car afterwards. (Not the driver of course!) I mean, what a way to start the year! 


Do you wish to nominate a fellow parkrunner?  Drop us a line to castletownoffice@parkrun.com and tell us why they are your parkrunner of the month.



Event #111, 3rd February 2018.

Event #111, 3rd February 2018.

A very special Run Report.

Well, what do ya know... it wasn't raining and the sun actually made a very short appearance to put a spring in our step on the morning of event #111.

It was a very special day for a regular runner to Castletown parkrun.  John O'Lone always has a smile on his face and a handful of parkrun signs as participants arrive every Saturday to parkrun. Himself and his wife Kim can quite often be found pottering around base sorting out the start and finish area before most of us have even left our homes on a Saturday morning.

We were delighted to see John rock up with Kim and his family and friends as he does almost every week, but knowing this week was going to be an extra special parkrun for him was even sweeter! 50 parkruns... imagine!!! Isn't that quite something? Well, we've just discovered that John has also become a member of the parkrun volunteer club with volunteering roles numbering 25, but we know he's actually volunteered at many more. John was due to run his 50th parkrun last week, but as Kim wasn't available, John decided to marshal so he could share the occasion with Kim and his family this week.


John receiving his 50th parkrun cert by Run Director, Marian Fagan.

The core team also welcomed John and his daughter Nikki to join the behind the scenes fun.  The core team are a small group of parkrun enthusiasts who make sure the event is setup and packed away each week, the results published, the tokens resorted, event reports written and your hi viz gear washed and sorted for the following week.


John is pictured with his daughter Nikki.  In true family style, they decided to feed a multitude of parkrunners when they completed their run.


Photographed above is Kim O'Lone. (behind every good man...!!!).

If you feel you might be interested in helping on the core team, don't be shy! It's YOUR parkrun, have your say. Just approach any of the happy team and have a chat.

To the parkrunners who volunteer, THANK YOU! If you've ran more than 10 parkruns and not volunteered yet, now is your chance. We really struggled this week to fill the roster. There are lots of parkrunners who haven't volunteered yet, but you are missing out. Its very rewarding and a heck of a lot of fun too.  If you're not too sure how to volunteer, follow the link here, or pop your name on the volunteer list next Saturday at parkrun.


This weeks parkrun heroes

Aoife PLUINCÉID  •  Bozena KELLEHER  •  Brian KIERNAN  •  Eamon SHIELDS  •  Fiona SHIELDS  •  Gerry DUFFY  •  Hazel TIMMINS  •  Katherine CARROLL  •  Kim O'LONE  •  Marc AUGUSTIN  •  Marian FAGAN  •  Michelle GOODBURN  •  Nicola O'LONE  •  Orla WALSH  •  Paul HAWKINS  •  Philip SLATTERY  •  Roisin RYAN  •  Sandra MCLAUGHLIN  •  Sean HENEGHAN  •  Sharon ASHMORE  •  Simon CORBETT

In other news....

Did you know parkrun are encouraging irish speakers to take part in parkrun and are providing wristbands to anyone who would like to speak and recognise other irish speakers. You can send for one to majella@antoireachtas.ie or speak to Philip, our event director.




And finally....

This week we had 268 wonderful participants. The first man home was Marc Augustin and the first woman home was Orla Reidy. Well done everyone. We hope you had as much fun as us. See you all next week for more of the same.

Full results are available here... 

You'll find photos here...

If you still can't find what you're looking for, check out the main page here, or ask any team member next weekend.  We love getting asked questions.

Your run report writers for this week Marian Fagan and Sharon Ashmore

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