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Magherafelt Junior Park Run off to a flying start

17 April 2018

A new free sporting event for young people has had a fantastic launch this Sunday past (15th April), as over 130 participants from ages 4 to 14 walked, ran or jogged at their own pace round the 2k course at Polepatrick, Magherafelt.

Part funded by the Northern Partnership for Physical Activity and Mid Ulster District Council, supported by Council Sports Development staff and run by a committed core team of volunteers that co-ordinate it each week, Magherafelt junior parkrun is a timed 2K run for 4 – 14 year olds, that takes place every Sunday at 9.30am.

Magherafelt junior parkrun is a fun event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone, allowing access to exercise and fresh air for free!  The course itself is marshalled so that juniors will be in sight of a marshal at all times.

Deputy Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Mark Glasgow, who was in attendance at the launch, said, “A recent report published in the BMJ indicated that 66% of children in Northern Ireland do not meet the recommended level of physical activity, which has worrying consequences for the future of our population. The Mid Ulster area has a higher than average population of 0 – 15 year olds.”

Initiatives such as junior parkrun are extremely important in the contribution they make to the health and wellbeing of current and future generations. Of course, in common with other parkruns, Magherafelt junior parkrun would not be possible without the incredible work from the core team of volunteers who so generously give of their own time each week to support the event, and who therefore deserve a special word of thanks.”

While it’s completely free to join in, participants must initially register before their first run. They then bring along the printed bar code they receive, and can then take part every week. You can find out more about the course and register online at http://www.parkrun.org.uk/magherafelt-juniors/

Organisers are always looking for additional volunteers to assist on the day so if your child is interested in participating, then why not stay to help?

If you are 15 years of age or older and you would like to participate in a park run yourself, the Mid Ulster Sports Arena (MUSA) Park Run is an option. With over 100 participants in each session, and almost 30,000 runners over the past four years, this free event which happens in MUSA, Cookstown every Saturday at 9.30am, is always open to new participants. For more information on the Cookstown run visit http://www.parkrun.org.uk/musacookstown/

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