As many of you will know through previous blogs….there is something about cake and coffee that goes hand in hand with Huddersfield parkrun. The problem is that quite often, after a parkrun (who am I kidding, cake is often consumed during and before a parkrun) we may have eaten a little bit too much cake, giving us a bit of a sugar high, followed by a stonking caffeine attack from the vat of coffee drunk…and this makes a downright dangerous combination. At times like this really daft ideas seem like really good ideas and often that really isn’t a good idea at all!
It was one Saturday morning in the early days when Colin, one of our genius run directors and I were sat, eating coffee and cake and Colin leaned over and whispered “I have a genius idea”. Now….those who know me, will know that I love genius ideas….I have a whole load of them stored in my head just waiting for the moment that myself and Matthew Kelly finally get invited onto Dragons Den. In fact….my genius idea about bubble wrapping children once made it onto the hit TV programme, Genius with Dave Gorman…fact! So with great excitement, I whispered back “go on then, tell me your genius idea” *not sure why we were whispering* and Colin came back with the immortal words “let’s have a running bunny”
And the bunny was born!
The rest of that morning and most of the afternoon was spend drinking more coffee, eating more cake and planning the birth of the HUDDERSFIELD RUNNING BUNNY.
For all of you that don’t know about the Huddersfield Running Bunny the basic (and very genius) idea is that each week a different parkrunner dresses up as the bunny to run their parkrun. The aim of the game is to beat the bunny. And the bit that makes it a little bit more genius, is that each week you have no idea who the bunny is going to be, how fast they will run….so you have no idea until the finish line if you have beaten the bunny!
So, the bunny costume was made (thank you to Sharon’s mum - I did tell you in a previous blog that Sharon has a lot to answer for - the talented Mrs Palmer for the largest pair of bunny pants ever made…one size truly does fit all!). And on the 30th July 2011 the very first appearance of the Huddersfield Running Bunny was made!
Over the next few months, the bunny pants and ears were worn every week and washed most weeks, lots of people beat the bunny and lots of people didn’t….and nobody died trying! All in all everything was tickety boo….
And then the parkrun show had to go an spoil everything by mentioning the bunny! So Danny Norman….it’s your own fault that you are now being stalked by a bunny!
On the 1st November 2011, after an entertaining evening spend chatting to the loonies in the Huddersfield parkrun volunteers Facebook group, drinking too much coffee (and wine) with all of us listening to the parkrun show.….another genius moment popped into our heads!!
The genius…..why hasn’t the bunny the got it’s own Facebook page, idea……so the bunny came to life for a second time. A quick back story written and the bunny had it’s own voice! Needless to say a lot of evenings, afternoons and mornings have been spent chatting with the bunny on Facebook…..in fact Nicki Dawson thinks it is the only way to start the day…chatting with a bunny!! And at Huddersfield parkrun that seems normal!
Following on from this came the smiley carrot award for guessing how many parkrunners there would be at Huddersfield parkrun, the bunny cake competition won by Tom and Hannah Whitworth, the pink hot pant superbunny costume and lots and lots of bunny related chat and shopping.
The next obvious step (okay in our mind it was obvious….but there again you have seen how our minds works) was to take the bunny on tour and spread the bunny love with other parkruns. And we all know that all good tours have T-Shirts….so guess what happened next….go on, have a guess……yup, the bunny got it’s own Tour T-Shirt. At first just a batch of 15 were produced and quickly snaffled up, so the next order increased and then last week, for our tourist bunny trip to Oldham parkrun the bunny went technical….and there are now over 40 bunny loving, tour t-shirt wearing, parkrun bunnies.
So far the tourist bunnies have been on mass to Roundhay parkrun (great hilly course and their cafe is a pub!!) and Oldham parkrun (the wettest day ever - but such a laugh). They will be touring to Leeds Hyde parkrun in March and joining the lovely Linda at Bradford parkrun to celebrate Bradford’s 2nd birthday. There are plans to go to Sewerby and camp over (??!!??), Sheffield because they have a good cafe and even Bushy….although what time we will have to set off to get to that one, doesn’t bear thinking about!
Single tourist bunnies have been to
and also Highbury Fields parkrun and Edinburgh parkrun….there has even been a rumour that a certain tourist bunny has recently done a freedom run at Leeds parkrun in his tourist T-Shirt….I wonder who that could be…….Oh yes, I remember….
…..the bunny’s true love…Danny Norman!