parkrun is a free, weekly, timed 5k event taking place in over 2000 locations around the world. It’s not a race and you can run, jog or walk the 5k. The events are completely run by volunteers.
parkruns I’ve been to:
Aachener Weiher parkrun – Cologne – Germany
The route in Aachener Weiher parkrun consists of two laps. You start next to the pond and go up and over the first hill, then along the edge of the park and up and over the second hill and then around the pond and you do this again for the second loop. You finish at the same location as where you started. The hills are pretty steep and since you go around twice, it’s not the fastest route, but it is a nice park.
Himmel parkrun – Tucson, Arizona – United States
Currently the only parkrun in the state of Arizona. It’s a flat, four loop course around the perimeter of the park. The start is close to the library, along the path, you take a left turn and you run on the sidewalk along the road, you take another left turn and run over the grass along the edge of the park. After taking another left you run along the sidewalk towards the library and run around the library and repeat this another three times. It’s nice to see that there is a parkrun and the volunteers are great.
Karpendonkse Plas parkrun – Eindhoven – Netherlands
My home parkrun. Nice park with a path around the lake. Start is near the car park. The course is two clockwise laps around a grass field, followed by two laps around the lake counter clockwise and finishing on the same field as you started. Course is entirely on paved or unpaved paths, only the finish is on grass. Completely flat course.
Volksgarten parkrun – Dusseldorf – Germany
The Volksgarten is a lovely park with nice ponds and trees and some squirrels running around. It is quite a big park, so it took us a while to find the start. The course is a double loop weaving through the park and since there are a lot of crossings they need a lot of cones to tell you which way to go. There is one hill about halfway into the loop. You follow the paths around the park and after two loops you finish on the grass close to where you’ve started.
Wormwood Scrubs parkrun – London – United Kingdom
It is a two and a bit loop course on the west side of the Wormwood Scrubs park. It is all on grass and the drainage is terrible, so if it’s been raining there is a lot of mud and ankle deep puddles on the course. It’s a mud bath and roadshows won’t do you any good, you need trail shoes or even spikes. You start along the south side of the park and cut over the grass up the hill to the northern perimeter of the park and keep following the perimeter of the park until you get back to the starting point. You then do another loop and after the second loop you go up the hill for a third time to the finish.