Event Profile

Mosman parkrun

When Mosman parkrun started it immediately hit a hurdle.

The initial course at Balmoral Beach in Sydney welcomed 102 parkrunners to its launch in October 2013.

By the start of the next week the event was cancelled. Mosman co-event director Simon Mackley has been involved from the beginning.

The event was started by Kathryn Hodgkinson, who Simon says caught the parkrun bug after only running a few times at Curl Curl.

Getting involved

“Mary Botto and myself saw a post put out by parkrun Australia and they put us all in contact.”

Simon and Mary – now co-Event Directors – both volunteered at that launch event, along with Kathryn and Megan Hopley.

“Council approached us the next week and said we didn’t have the right approvals and they wanted to help us find another place to run,” says Simon.

“It was at a time when a lot of personal trainers were using the park for profit.

“Council soon realised that parkrun met their objectives of a free community activity and in March we had a new location at Spit West.

“Mosman Council have been very supportive.”

Volunteers at Christmas, Mary is RD, Simon third left

The event

Mosman parkrun meets on the land of the Cammeraygal people of the Eora nation.

It averages 50 parkrunners a week, and is therefore one of the smallest Sydney events.

All of the 10 nearest parkruns have averages of more than 100 parkrunners, with some in the 200s.

The course is three laps, by the water “with a sting in the tail”.

“We have a small, sharp hill at one end of the course. We get a few reactions about the hill and people asking for a photo with the view.

“We run most of the course next to a quiet part of Sydney Harbour.

“Being three laps you are always passing participants and able to encourage each other.”

Simon’s parkrun story

Simon has been a parkrunner since 2012.

“I was lucky enough to be bet by my stepbrother to run my fastest 5k at St Peters’ inaugural event in 2012.

“It was New South Wales’ first parkrun.

“I managed to beat my previous fastest time and was hooked from day one. In the early days I couldn’t go that often as we had a new baby.

“When Curl Curl opened up much closer to me, I moved there and then took the opportunity to be on the core team at Mosman for the past six years.

“I had been closing in on my 250th run before COVID hit and only have 11 to go.

“Before Covid hit I had an overseas trip booked to run in Singapore on my way to run my 250th at Bushy.

“I love trying to knock off the challenges.

“Three years ago I joined the Event Ambassador team and am so lucky to work with some amazing teams across the North Shore/Northern Beaches of Sydney and Dolls Point (just south of the airport, along Botany Bay).”

Simon says the current café of choice for Mosman parkrun is Chaos Café, and he recommends the pancakes.

“They really do look like cakes.”

While at Mosman

Balmoral Beach, home of the first Mosman parkrun, is a lovely harbour beach that looks out to the heads of Sydney Harbour.

Taronga Zoo is another big crowd pleaser as it has an awesome view of Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The zoo is in the suburb of Mosman so you don’t have to travel far. Also in Mosman is the Sydney Harbour National Park, which is made up of five small harbour islands, rugged sandstone cliffs, bushland and beaches.

Mosman is home to many beaches and parks, as well as the Mosman Art Gallery.

What’s in a Name…

Mosman is the name of the suburb.

It’s named after Archibald Mosman (1799–1863) and his twin brother George, who moved onto land in the area in 1831.

They were involved in shipping, and founded a whaling station on a bay in the harbour, which became known as Mosman Bay.

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