A healthy way to kick-start your weekend is to walk, jog or run the free Vicarstown five kilometre parkrun along the scenic banks of the Grand Canal.
The weekly event is open for both young, old and averages around 100 people each week. Registration takes place at 9am on Saturday mornings in the Vicarstown Schoolhouse Community Centre then the run starts at 9.30am on the button.
John Scully is chairperson of the Laois Athletics Association and co-ordinator of the parkrun.
“ The Vicarstown parkrun is one of 55 parkruns in the country and is the only one in Laois,” John told the Leinster Express.
“ There are over 700 parkruns in the world. People like to travel from all over to do different parkruns and they are all connected. It is a fantastic way to begin your weekend; sure what else would you be doing early on a Saturday morning. If you come here with worries on your mind at 9.30am they are guaranteed to be gone by 10.30am.
“It is great for your physical and mental health to complete the course along the beautiful banks of the canal. We always go back to the old school afterwards for tea or coffee and of course a good old chat. It is a very friendly environment. Although many children attend each week we are currently working on launching a 2k run for smaller children to take place on Sunday mornings.
“We are hosting the Laois Operation Transformation 2017 grand finale which ends with completion of the parkrun here in Vicarstown on Saturday 18 February. This event is co-ordinated by Laois Sports Partnership.
“ We are expecting a massive turn out for this as the Stradbally, Vicarstown and Timahoe Community Hub reaches the end of its six week combined weight-loss competition and the winning team will be announced here on the day. Everyone is welcome along.”
To take part you only have to register once online at www.parkrun.ie where you receive your barcode which you print off and take with you each time that you attend. Each person is timed although it is not a competition.
The only person that you can compete against is yourself by trying to reduce your previous times. An email is sent to each person later that afternoon informing you of your statistics.
For more information phone John Scully 085 1742251.