Emu Plains + Emu Heights + Leonay

They’re Off And Running!

The Nepean River Parkrun begins | Image: Mel Burnet

 The threat of a thunderstorm couldn’t stop the launch of Nepean River parkrun last month with a huge crowd turning out for its first official run. Nepean River parkrun is the second parkrun event in the Penrith area, with the first one, Penrith Lakes established over two years ago.

With 240 runners, walkers and volunteers attending the launch, it was just as well the storm clouds cleared because by virtue of its kick off date, Nepean River parkrun became the 1000th parkrun event in the world. parkrun is a free, weekly, timed five kilometre run or walk (not a race!), based on a concept founded in England in 2004. There are over 1000 parkruns worldwide, all with the same philosophy: parkrun is open to everyone, free, safe and easy to take part in. These events take place in pleasant parkland surroundings and people of all ages and abilities are encouraged participate; from walkers, pram pushers, young children and seniors right through to ultra-marathoners and even Olympians.

Registration for parkrun is free and only needs to be done once for each person. Participants receive a unique barcode which they bring to events anywhere and Australia or around the world, and this is used to record their results.

Sheri Thomson is one of the Event Directors of Nepean River parkrun. After regularly participating and volunteering at Penrith Lakes parkrun for nearly two years, Sheri was quick to jump on board with setting up the new event. “For the last few years my whole family has enjoyed going to parkrun – for us, Saturday is parkrun day,” Sheri said. “Sometimes we try to get a personal best time and other times we run with the kids. My seven-year-old daughter, Hannah has completed 20 parkruns, while my now five-year-old son Daniel was just four when he completed his first. He is famous for finding all the muddy puddles, and encouraging other participants.”

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