Popular parkrun a pageant

More than 80 keen runners took part in a Dunedin parkrun in the Dunedin Botanic Garden yesterday morning. Photo: Gerard O'Brien
More than 80 keen runners took part in a Dunedin parkrun in the Dunedin Botanic Garden yesterday morning. Photo: Gerard O'Brien
There were Santas, reindeer, Christmas trees and even an elf.

They were all taking part in Dunedin parkrun's Christmas-morning 5km run around the Dunedin Botanic Garden.

About 85 runners, many of whom had dressed festively for the occasion, forwent a Christmas sleep-in and instead chose to run loops around the gardens.

A strong contingent of regulars were joined by runners from Wellington, Auckland, Australia, the United Kingdom and Uruguay.

Decked out in a full reindeer suit, Steve Havard was confident he was carrying enough water to get around the course without needing any help.

''I've got my hydration I'm going to carry with me, so hopefully I won't collapse halfway through and need mouth-to-mouth,'' he said.

It was the second time Mr Havard, his wife Tracey and daughter Lilly (10) had taken part in the Christmas Day run.

Run director Tania Hollis said that Dunedin was one of about
15 centres in New Zealand hosting a Christmas run.

Many regulars loved the opportunity to run an extra parkrun outside the usual Saturday social run, she said.

Another two runs are organised for New Year's Day - one in Dunedin at 7.30am and one in Balclutha at 9.30am - although the early run might not be well attended, she said.

''At 7.30 it won't be as popular, because that's a wee bit early, depending how late you were out the night before.''

 

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