Why We Ran Dressed As Santa In March

It’s Easter time which, obviously, means that it’s time to dress up as Santa… Right?

Christmas may have been 3 months ago but that didn’t stop  just over 400 people of all ages and abilities dressing up in their festive Santas outfits and running in the St Frances Hospice’s Annual race, Santathon, in order to raise money.

Mrs Santa with her little Easter Bunny
Mrs Santa with her little Easter Bunny

Santathon was planned for last November 2017, but due to snow and ice on the ground it was postponed to March-one weekend before Easter.

It was our 4th year that we have run the race as a family. Of course, we may all start at the same time but it’s not long before I am left behind and all I can see if a sea of red ahead of me. They are always there at the finish line to cheer me on though.

The boys and their Dad have won it 4 years in a row. Dad being the first male over the line and Jak being the first under 16 to finish.

The boys before the race
The boys before the race

There is nothing quite like getting dressed up and going for a run, especially when you know it’s for a good cause. Not only is it fun, but it is such a fabulous community event with an amazing atmosphere-everyone cheering each other on and giving each other words of encouragement as you run round the streets.

The event was started by Sir Trevor Brooking, who was made a patron of St Frances Hospice, after a big warm up in the stands of Dagenham and Redbridge Football ground

Courtesy of Time 107.5
Courtesy of Time 107.5

Hands on watches and. with squeeze of a horn they were off

Courtesy of Romford Recorder
My boys up front    Courtesy of Romford Recorder

We certainly raised a few eyebrows. Can you imagine seeing hundreds of Santas: babies in prams, children, adults and even dogs pounding the streets, what a sight we must have been! Families came out of their houses to wave us on, Cars bibbed as they passed by and children banged on the windows of their homes to say hello.

You don’t have to run, many people walk the route. It’s a time to enjoy the event with friends and family.

A Rabbit amongst the santas Courtesy fo Romford Recorder
A Rabbit amongst the santas
Courtesy fo Romford Recorder

Dad and Jak were competing for the first place. Unfortunately for Jak, the stewards didn’t point him the correct route and he didn’t do the full course ( he attempted to make it up at the end after he realised that he hadn’t done the full 5k, but it wasn’t enough) He finished first, and to be honest he still would have won, if he had done the correct route but he passed the medal over to the first person that ran the whole route and that was his younger brother, Joseph. What an honourable young man my boy is.

Dad and Joseph with their trophies
Dad and Joseph with their trophies

Joseph was over the moon to be the first child under 16 to win the race, something he has been dreaming of doing. Of course, it’s not about winning but rasing money, but it means a lot to my little fella. Last year I was in hospital and couldn’t run with them, so this year he said he was doing it for me. My boy has a heart of gold.

Joseph collecting his trophy
Joseph collecting his trophy

I think that they should rethink about when the race will be next year. I’m thinking that Santathon at Easter was much more enjoyable and we certainly got the attention from the public.

St Frances Hospice is one of the largest adult hospices in the UK. They provide care and support to local people affected by a life-limiting illness, as well as their families, completely free of charge. They are an independent charity and rely on voluntary income and volunteers.

 

 

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Running through the town dressed as Santa

Every year in our home town, hundreds of people gather together at the local football ground dressed in Santa outfits and run in the boroughs annual Santathon. Young and old, people run or walk 5k to raise money for St Francis Hospice. A local independent charity who provide care and support to individuals with a life-limiting illness, as well as their carers and family members.

Last year the eldest boy and Dad ran and we supported them, they were the first male and boy child over the finish line. This year the eldest wasn’t very well due to a having sickness bug a couple of days earlier so he didn’t run, but instead the two youngest, Dad and I ran. I had been out to the shops over the weekend to buy some festive outfits. Dad wanted to go in a sexy santa outfit and Oliver a Reindeer. It wasn’t as easy as I thought, buying a santa outfit. I visited all the pound shops and superstores, but no where sold the outfits only santa hats. After traipsing round the shops for an hour I eventually found a store that sold a female and boys outfit.

The event was taking place on Sunday at 11am. Up and dressed, we arrived at 10.30 to register and pay our entry fee. All payments going to charity and any that they received on the day were going to be double by Barclays bank.

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posing before the race
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all ready to run

My boys looked so cute!

As time was nearing to the start of the race we was all called outside into the football stadium and gathered in the terrace for a little warm up by the Mayor and Diags from Towie. Dad and Joseph were down at the front with the other fast runners. Oliver and I were towards the back.

It took a while for us to get out of the stadium as there were so many of us but as we exited the gates and the crowds of santas began to filter out, Oliver saw a gap and began to run. I couldn’t keep up with him. He is used to running a 2k but this was his first 5k run, so I explained to him that it was longer and that if he wanted to stop he just had to tell me. That wasn’t going to stop him, he was in the running mood and just kept on running. We slowed our pace and enjoyed running along. Cars were bibbing us and people were waving, it was such a lovely, happy moment. Oliver held my hand and we ran together.

I felt so proud of my little man running along the streets, he didn’t stop once! We had to slow at some points to get passed other santas or because cars were parked on the pavement and there were no room but his little legs just kept on running. Just like Forest Gump!

As we neared the finish, Daddy (who had already finished) came to help us along

IMG_20151213_123038My little man was so proud of himself when he crossed the finish line. He was presented with a medal and he ran off to find his brothers to show them.

DSC_3073_optDaddy was the first male over the finish line so he was awarded a trophy

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We all had a fun day, there were lots of laughter and brilliant achievements. Joseph ran it in just over 22 minutes and Oliver just over 34. I’m so proud of my boys!

Can’t wait until next year when we can all run as a family again. Hopefully the eldest won’t be ill and he can join in too.

 

 

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