The Stromlo Running Festival continues to go from strength to strength but remains focused on the ethos of the event’s co-founder, former marathon champion Rob de Castella.
The festival was established to be about the community, a community coming together through the joy of running.
This year athletes came from across Australia to compete in a range of distances at one of the premier trail running courses in the country.
What makes this event so special is the inclusive approach to running the festival. Volunteers involved are recognised and celebrated for the important role they play in making it a success.
Race director Mel Bingley said the inclusion factor was vital to the festival’s success. “Our volunteer event team is thriving and quickly becoming a standout for the event, providing social inclusion, and a lot of fun, to members of the community who aren’t able to participate.”
The festival’s holistic approach and success has been recognised at the Canberra Sports Awards this year. The event won the Minister for Sport and Recreation Award for Event Excellence.
“We are thrilled to be recognised in the category of event excellence. It’s an acknowledgment of the whole team for the months of planning and preparation that went into the 12th Stromlo Running Festival,” Mel said.
“The appetite for mass events that bring the community together is strong and our record registrations support this,” Mel said. “The Stromlo Running Festival is an event that provides opportunity for runners of all abilities to seek out challenges and celebrate achievement.”
This year the festival offered four distance options: 50-, 30-, and 10-kilometre courses, with a kids’ run of 2.5 kilometres also included.
“We have plans for a couple of additional course distances next year to entice more people to trail running and encourage our interstate friends to come along to this destination event,” Mel said.
Events such as the Stromlo Running Festival wouldn’t be a success without the management skills to run it. Coupled with an inclusive philosophy, which accords volunteers the same importance as the athletes, the festival has all the ingredients for ongoing success and high participation.