Janet Reid: From South Africa to South Australia

Knowing there was a parkrun in her new city helped Janet Reid acclimatise to life in Australia.

But it was when a parkrun started in her neighbourhood, a year later, that she and her husband finally felt at home.

“In 2014 we moved to Adelaide, South Australia, from Cape Town, South Africa.

“Exactly one year to the day of our arrival, Lochiel parkrun launched. This became not only our home parkrun but the place where we found our new family.

“We can be found there most Saturdays and regularly volunteer. I am the ED there as well as a South Australian Event Ambassador.

“Almost six years later, our friendship circle stems back to Lochiel. I can honestly say that if it wasn’t for Lochiel parkrun, we would never have settled as well as we have here .

“We are now proud Australian citizens and look forward to all the parkrun adventures that lie ahead.”

Janet is event ambassador (EA) for Kangaroo Island, Meningie, Moana and The Avenues parkruns.

She became an EA in March this year.

“So I’m a relative newbie. I was encouraged to apply by fellow EA’s Alicia Hopper and Kate Corner.

“I see an EA as the link between individual parkruns and HQ.

“My role is to support and encourage the ED’s – especially during the tough times.

“I recently had the thrill of assisting with the launch of The Avenues parkrun situated in the Kuipto Forest.

“It is South Australia’s first and only 5km loop parkrun. “It’s a trail run on a wide fire track, winding through a pine plantation, indigenous gum forest and the most spectacular stringy bark gum forest.

“They draw small numbers and have a bonfire as their trademark – very welcome on cold, foggy mornings!”

Getting started

Janet has run more than 230 parkruns at 26 events.

Her first was at Root 44 parkrun in Stellenbosch, South Africa on August 10, 2013.

“I was participating in a group fitness challenge and doing a parkrun was part of that challenge.

“My first parkrun tourism was from Cape Town, South Africa, to Torrens parkrun, Adelaide, South Australia.

“We had flown over to Australia (Gosh! Imagine that – flying internationally!!) to visit our daughter Hayley who was living here.

“When I discovered the parkrun Challenges Chrome Extension, the bug bit. Then the 5k App came along and the bug bit deeper.

“Then I started chatting to fellow tourists via various Facebook pages. I was hooked!


“My early starts are definitely not as spectacular as some tourists, but my earliest was a 5.30am rise to be on the road by 6am for an hour’s drive to go Kuipto Forest, South Australia.

“My furthest was from Adelaide to Port Lincoln – 7hrs 15mins or 650km.

“We were ticking off another SA parkrun, while exploring our beautiful state at the same time.

“Whenever I think of Port Lincoln parkrun, I think of oysters from Coffin Bay, a little further down the road.

“This year, I was able to participate in PALM 21 ( parkrun adventurers listeners meetup) up in Queensland. We did Nambour parkrun and met the infamous Fluffy, the resident emu!

“Probably the biggest highlight though, is the wonderful people I have met along the way, each one enriching my parkrun life.

“Whilst it’s wonderful being a Passionista and supporting your home parkrun, it’s such fun getting out and exploring other parkruns.

“Thanks to the tried and tested parkrun format, you know what to expect before during and after. It’s a way to meet new friends, participate in the fun challenges, enjoy a coffee and parkfaff.

“Oh yes, you also get to see more of our beautiful country!”

Top 3

Janet’s top three parkruns have an international flavour to them.

“Root 44 in South Africa. It’s a trail run through vineyards with breathtaking scenery.

“Thetford parkrun, UK. It’s flat and fast taking in a river, bridges, swans, lovely scenery and the ruins of an old abbey.

“Brandon Country Park parkrun, UK. A stunning double loop through magnificent parklands and forest with a magnificent stately home at the top of the hill and a beautiful pond.

“On my bucket list is Puarenga parkrun in New Zealand – the smelly one! I’ve heard so much about it that I simply HAVE to go there.

“Shellharbour parkrun because it gets mentioned every week on the parkrun Adventurers podcast by the one and only Oliver Spake, plus it looks very pretty.

“And any parkrun in beautiful Tasmania.”

This story featured in Issue 5 of the Runs With A Barcode magazine. Available now from here.

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2 replies on “Janet Reid: From South Africa to South Australia”

Wonderful to get to know more about you, Janet! You have made Lochiel parkrun the happiest, most community minded and well connected! L.pkrun is one of my happy places! Geoff and you are significant in making it so!

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