DETERMINED to take part in every parkrun in Queensland, Brisbane woman Erica Leota is flying into Weipa next week to tick off another one from her list.
Timing it with the annual Weipa Running Festival, Erica will run the 5km parkrun on Saturday, July 22 and aim to run a marathon the following day.
“I’ve entered a few marathons this year and only ended up running the half-marathon, so we’ll see,” said Erica, who is also bringing up a handful of friends.
The 43-year-old has completed 109 of the 120 official parkruns in Queensland, although the number is constantly growing.
“I just did Mount Isa a few weeks ago but Weipa is definitely the one farthest away,” she said.
“They call them statespersons (those who complete every parkrun in a state) and I’m aiming to be one this year.
“Queenslanders who do it are called Banana Benders.”
With six new ones popping up or about to start, it’s a difficult goal as parkrun usually only runs on a Saturday morning.
“A few people have done them all but it’s hardest in Queensland because we have more parkruns than any other state,” Erica said.
“I do it because I’m addicted to the whole community thing.
“I love how you can turn up to a parkrun as a stranger and afterwards people will invite you out for breakfast or a coffee.”
Erica said the lure of the Weipa Running Festival made picking the date an easy choice. Her friends will fly up and make a small trip of it, taking in a mine tour and an eco tour while in Weipa.
“You would be surprised at how frugal I am when it comes to travel. I’m always looking for deals so I can get to places like Weipa and tick them off my list.”
Registrations are still open for the Weipa Running Festival.