There will be No Christmas Day or New Year's Day Parkrun at Russborough House
September 14, 2019
We all love our home parkruns, but a trip away with a few of your parkrun buddies is always nice too, and this weekend saw tourists from all over the country converge on the Capital. Why? Well, this weekend was parkrun Ireland's fourth Annual Conference in Tallaght - it alternates yearly between Dublin and a slightly more accessible venue (unlike the All-Ireland, but more about that later!)
And why Russborough? Co-Event Director Angela Collins is a proud Kerry girl, and she started her parkrun journey with us just after we started (Event #003), and whether she likes it or not, we still consider her very much one of our own! Here she is on her second parkrun in 2015 (with myself and our Event Director Siobhán, who to be honest is a bit of a witch, but we love her anyway). When work commitments meant Angela couldn't get to Tralee as often as she wanted, she visited a few other parkruns in the Wicklow/Dublin area before she found a new home - and now she's the Boss!
We missed her so much in Tralee that she was awarded the "Best parkrun Export" at our fourth Annual Awards! So since Angela and Aine took over as Co-Event Directors from Andrew, a visit to Russborough was always on the cards, and this weekend provided the perfect opportunity. Among our travelling band of TpoTs (Tralee parkrunners on Tour) we have a few whose addiction to tourism exceeds even their grá for Angela, and so they went to Tyrrellstown in Dublin where they hadn't previously visited, but we still had a couple of handfuls of our regulars from Tralee and Listowel among the 50 in attendance this week.
Of course, there was another, obviously less important, reason for Kerry people to travel to Dublin this weekend, and indeed several of the gang travelled across the city for the match after the conference. We were delighted to meet the legendary Tommy Healy, who was volunteering for the 35th time. He's on the roster as "Marshal", but in fact he seems to do much the same as our own parkrun legend, Pat Sheehy, pictured here with him! He also set up and the course, tidied away the equipment, and generally cheered up the troops! We knew he was a bit of a character, as he had tried to wangle a ticket for the All-Ireland from the travelling parkrunners from Tralee during the week! Needless to say, he didn't get a ticket from us, but thankfully someone else came up trumps and Tommy was there (as well as Pat) to see his beloved Dubllin achieve the Five In A Row!
The welcome started long before Angela's briefing, imagine our delight when we were met at the gate by our old friend Kitty Collins, who let us all into the car park before taking on her second volunteer role of the day on Finish Tokens.
Before Angela's Run Briefing, we were talked through the route by Deirgre Grogan at her First Timers' Briefing. That's one of the roles you can do and still have your 5k fix, and Deirdre did just that to record her third-fastest Russborough parkrun!
Angela welcomed us all, and of course the regular parkrunners and other visitors - Russborough is such a beautiful spot that up to half the field is comprised of "tourists". Of course, the briefing covered all the bases - she's well trained!
One of our crew was hitting an important milestone - Emer Lynch picked Russborough for her 100th parkrun, and Angela kindly presented her with a memento of the occasion. Tralee's parkrun bakers are justifiably famous - several of them were here this week - and none are more famous than Emer's mum Ellen who produced this masterpiece for Emer's special day!
And then we were off. I'm very glad myself and Stella decided to walk this week - it would be hard to take in the beauty of the surroundings if we blitzed around like first finishers Eamonn & Niamh - PB's for both maybe, but I think we got better value for money!
We like to claim Tim Segal as one of our own, however Listowel's Event Director's loyalties lie very firmly in the North of the County, but I'll give him a mention as the fastest tourist of the day!
There were eight juniors with barcodes this week, Liam leaving his brothers on the second lap to finish a minute ahead, and Ciara doing like myself and enjoying a leisurely parkrun - she's visited more than thirty different parkruns now! You can see all the results from this week's parkrun #069 here.
Obviously Russborough is used to having some very fast runners, they even have their own speed camera. I'm not sure Pat, Frances and Emer understood what the photographer meant by "Smile for the camera!"
No-one is ever last at parkrun, because we have a Tail Walker at every event. Except here. This week we had two Tail Talkers, Sharon and Siobhan - they were so engrossed in conversation that we just could not attract their attention to warn them of the speed camera! I just hope they got a ticket.
There are lots of opportunities to volunteer at Russborough parkrun, you can see the roster for the next few weeks here, and if you'd like to help out just give your name to the Run Director any Saturday morning. It's just as much fun as running or walking, and all the jobs are easy, with full training on the morning.
You can do something else for your parkrun too - spread the word! Tell all your friends, and remind them they are welcome to run, jog or walk at their own pace. This is the second week of parkrun's "Park Walk" initiative, reminding them that even though it says "run" in the name, everyone is welcome - you'll always have company if that's what you want!
Unfortunately, time constraints meant we did not have time to join the regulars for coffee and cake after the parkrun - we'll just have to come again! Thank you to Angela and all the volunteers (here I'd like to thank Janet, Shauna, Frances and Niamh who didn't get a mention already) who made us feel so welcome and we will be delighted to return the compliment if you ever decide to join us in Tralee. We promise to treat you just as well as we treat Angela...
Tralee parkrun and Event Support Ambassador
Great news we are returning after are Winter Break on the 6th April 2019 at 9:30am ! Dont forget the all important barcode and remember parkrun is run entirely by volunteers so please volunteer when you can!
Russborough parkrun will be taking a small winter break and will finish up on 22nd December 2018 and hope to return in April. We would like to thank Eric and all the team in Russborough House and Parklands for their help and support over the last 12 months and we look forward to returning in 2019. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers who have been involved over the past 12 months. For those that have attended, visited and supported Russborough in any way over the last 12 months we hope to see you all over the next 3 weeks for a final few Russborough parkruns in 2018. A special mention to all our fabulous Run Directors and Core team of Volunteers who have gone above and beyond each Saturday. Let’s get out and walk, jog, run, volunteer and most importantly enjoy the next 3 Russborough parkruns before our break!
We are delighted to say that we are back in action every Saturday at 9:30am ! We would like to thank Russborough House and Parklands for their support so please if you are visiting Russborugh parkrun visit the house, have a coffee and some cake and help support Russborough House and Parklands.