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Runners set to take part in virtual challenge to celebrate Norfolk Day

PUBLISHED: 06:30 07 July 2020 | UPDATED: 08:24 07 July 2020

Runners are set to take part in the 2020 Norfolk Day virtual challenge.. Photo: Melanie Sturman

Runners are set to take part in the 2020 Norfolk Day virtual challenge.. Photo: Melanie Sturman

Melanie Sturman

Runners across the county are set to take part in the Norfolk Day virtual challenge.

Melanie Sturman is a nurse from Thetford who was set to complete her 300th marathon before the coronavirus pandemic hit. Photo: Melanie SturmanMelanie Sturman is a nurse from Thetford who was set to complete her 300th marathon before the coronavirus pandemic hit. Photo: Melanie Sturman

Nearly 200 people have signed up for the 5km and 10km virtual run or walk, which can be completed as part of Norfolk Day celebrations on Monday July 27, or across the weekend from July 25.

Melanie Sturman organised last year’s Norfolk Day 10km run, in Thetford, and although the pandemic meant the same event could not go ahead this year, the parkrun coordinator said it is the perfect opportunity to get families out and about around the county to enjoy its “most beautiful running spots”.

MORE: This time let’s celebrate our county over a long weekend

She said: “I am Norfolk born and bred and I feel so passionately about our county.

“Covid-19 meant we couldn’t put on the same event as last year, so now we are doing a virtual challenge where people can sign up and do it from their homes and maintain social distancing.

“But we have trails, the broads, forests, rivers - we are lucky there are so many places to run in Norfolk. This is a great opportunity to go out and celebrate its beauty.

“We can’t put on a race, but let’s try and do it differently.”

Ms Sturman has personally designed the Norfolk Day medal which will be awarded to everyone who takes part.

But with a few weeks left to go, only 12 places are left for the challenge.

Entry costs £8, which include the delivery of a medal, but Ms Sturman said any money left over will be donated to a cancer charity and Thetford and District Dementia Support.

Once runners have completed the 5km or 10km challenge, they are being encouraged to send in evidence to be in with a chance of winning a Norfolk Day trophy for the quickest times.

And a ‘Norfolk Day 5k and 10k virtual event’ Facebook page has been set up for those taking part to send in photos and share their running experience.

The 49-year-old runner, from Thetford, added: “A lot of people are still limited with what they can do, so it still gives them the chance to take part and celebrate such an important day.

“I think it’s going to be a great success.”

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