Kate Veale of Ireland wins the 5000m race walk title at the 2011 IAAF World Youth Championships (Getty Images) © Copyright
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Ireland’s Feet on the Street encourages participation - EUROPE

Athletics Ireland in partnership with Limerick City Sports Partnership just completed their inaugural “Feet on the Street” summer event which was the talk of the summer in Limerick. This race was initiated after an amazing and successful 2010 summer mini series which showcased that more Athletics events are needed in the region. Athletics Ireland is developing these new events to encourage mass participation.

The Limerick City Sports Partnership, an initiative of the Irish Sports Council, had three main goals in mind when they first thought of creating “Feet on the Street”. Firstly, they wanted an interactive activity that would get the Irish public to participate in sports and specifically in Athletics. Secondly, they wanted to create an event that would be able to generate money that can be used to benefit Athletics programmes locally. Thirdly, they wanted to be able to host a large amount of participants while making the environment as friendly and comfortable as possible for them.

The “Feet on the Street” event was very unique and comfortable for all the participants with specific registration areas, very clean changing facilities and all kinds of refreshments.  The turnout for this event was much higher than the event organisers ever expected with over 1,500 participants.

A majority of participants involved in the event were recreational runners who enjoy running and some are beginning to become competitive about their times. The winners, however, included Athletics club members from all the local clubs.

Proceeds from the series went to the “Get BACK Challenge” charity fund and will benefit Athletics based programmes locally. The series could not have been as successful as it was without the help of Limerick Athletics tireless volunteers.

After the event was completed the Irish Sport Council were very happy with the large turnout of participants that enjoyed the event as well as being able to generate a charitable fund that will be able to support Athletics based programmes locally. This exciting event showcases the spirit of the Athletics’ World Plan in further promoting and developing Athletics participation.

How has your organisation designed a new event to help promote the sport of Athletics? If you want to share some of your own experiences please contact us at worldplan@iaaf.org with a short summary, and a member of our editorial team will contact you. Together, we can share in the spirit of the Athletics’ World Plan.