January 18th, 2024 President’s Note 18/01/2024

Welcome to all members and friends to Harriers 2024!


It’s been great to see and hear about so many member’s holiday adventures, spending time with family and friends, creating wonderful memories, and of course all the dedicated runners maintaining their fitness with running adventures.


Last week’s first run for the year had a fantastic turnout, with new runners and financial members signing up. It was a novelty to run the Traralgon-Morwell section without it pouring rain.


The 4 weeks since our last run in December seemed to fly by, but there’s a lot to catch up on!


Firstly, congratulations to all those who ran at 2Bays last weekend. Some more incredible results from our members and friends at this challenging event.


This week we’ll have a photographer in attendance at the Glengarry Run, who is documenting Life in Latrobe for a big photography installation at Latrobe Gallery. The Harriers have been invited to be a part of the exhibition, and is acknowledged as playing an important part in the health, wellbeing and culture of the region, so it’d be great if members could wear their Harriers singlets. This is another fantastic recognition for the club, and a positive promotional opportunity.


We may also have members of the Glengarry Football Club join us for this run as part of their pre-season training. Make sure you make any newbies welcome as always.


AND don’t forget club dinner after this week’s run at Glengarry Pub. As always, a great opportunity to catch up socially with friends, have a drink and a great parma.


Next week’s run is at Railway Reserve on Australia Day Eve, so we’ll be having some drinks at the lake after the run. Stick around and have a chat with your fellow runners and club members.


Our current club membership sits at just under 190, with 5 new financial members signing up in the last week. Will we hit the 200 mark?


The Harriers Legendary X’mas Bash in December was nothing short of a smashing success! Over 120 members and guests turned up for some fun activity stations, a little bit of running, a huge club photo, food, drinks, awards presentations, and then DJ and dancing. Lots of photos attached.


Awards on the night included ..


-Special Acknowledgements to Clinton Jolly, Trent Kooyman, Ian Twite, Ian Cornthwaite, Gary Fox, Chris Van Unen, Glenn Crawford, Kylie Warner, Ron Verschuur, Greg Semmler, Danelle Wright, Miles Verschuur, Barry Higgins, Marieka Rielly, Giuseppe Marino & Kylie Warner.


-2023 Winter Quiet Achievers: Kylee Earl, Mandy Ellis, Kathleen Kent, Adrian Suttcliffe & Desley Grey.


-TOP 5 WINTER 2023 WALKER AWARDS: 1. Barry Higgins 2. Ian Heafield 3. Kristina Creighton 4. Belinda Heafield 5. Luke Witham.


-WINTER 2023 CHAMPIONSHIP TOP 10:  1. Miles Verschuur 2. Phill Mayer 3. Maree Graham 4. David Barr 5. Glenn Graham 6. Mark Fairbairn 7. Liz Kenney 8. Gary Fox 9. Ron Verschuur 10. Paul Smith.


-TOP 5 YOUTH RUNNER AWARD WINTER 2023: 1. Dempsey Podmore 2. Seth Bomers 3. Lucy Magaldi 4. Walter Lappin 5. Johnny Rosco.


3 years ago I introduced the President’s Award which is in Appreciation for Dedicated Service to the Club. This award is for those who go over and beyond, who donate their time and energy to making the club a better place. Previous President’s Award winners include Bryan Cake, Edi Murat, Andrew Legge, Kaye Livingstone, Alfie Warner, Ann Bomers, Greg Semmler, Stephen Renehan, Miles Verschuur, Pete Sanders, Clinton Jolly, Danelle Wright and Giuseppe Marino. If you get one of these, you’re in good company ..


-PRESIDENTS AWARDS 2023 - David Barr, Andrew Broberg & Molly Irvine.


All awards presented on the night are important. As I’ve said before, a healthy and well-functioning club acknowledges the people who contribute to make it a great place. There are 3 people in this club who are absolutely outstanding in their contributions. They do more than most people know, mostly behind the scenes, not looking for accolades, just wanting the club to be a great place for everyone. They’re selfless, they are the backbone of the club, they’re tireless in their ideas, in their support, and in their willingness to make things happen, to contribute to the life and vitality of this organisation. So huge thanks and acknowledgment were given to Andrew Legge (VP), Ann Bomers (Treasurer) & Alfie Warner (Secretary).


-The Traralgon Harriers Club Person of the Year Award for Outstanding Service to the Club, was awarded to Kaye Livingstone. Although Kaye wasn’t there to collect on the night, anyone who saw her response last week when I presented it to her could see how meaningful it was and how much she appreciated the acknowledgement. Kaye has done so much for the club over many years. She is a shining light, a constant reflector of values, with little fuss she wants to ensure the club always considers all angles and represents all members. Among many jobs, and aside from her weekly contribution with the lucky member draw, she has also taken on race directing, has been on the committee for many years, helps to support our major events, and coordinates event catering. Kaye is a truly deserving recipient of this award.


The week after the Xmas Bash, we had our informal Xmas Lights Run. Organised and led by club member Alysha Duncan, a huge contingent turned up at 8:30pm for an 8k tour around Traralgon, to look at the amazing lighting displays that many homes turned on for Xmas. It was a joyous evening, with people dressed up, music, some on bikes, some with doggos, and everyone in the spirit of the festive season. Thanks again to Alysha for coming up with this idea 3 years ago and for being the driving force behind organising it. We wish her all the best in her new job in Melbourne and hope she’ll visit us regularly.


Reminder; we encouraging (suggesting, not demanding or enforcing) runners to try and start with their allocated group at Thursday runs. This creates a great race-like atmosphere, and means that runners across all groups finish around the same time. That’s the main reason we have a handicap system, to see groups of similar ability runners take off together, to encourage everyone to do their best, and also hopefully have some safety in numbers, especially for newer members who may not know the courses.


Of course there always reasons and exceptions why someone might not run with their group, and this is absolutely acceptable. If you’re injured, returning from injury, recovering from a big run, have been ill, or just need to get away early but still want to do the Thursday course, it is fine to run in an earlier group, or even a few minutes before your handicap group.


Organisation for the 26th Latrobe Community Fun Run (Sunday March 24th at Kernot Hall) is well under way. I ask everyone to help and support our new Race Directors Trent Kooyman and Clinton Jolly. Entry is now open via Harriers website.


I’m also happy to announce that the Traralgon Marathon 2024 has a new Race Director. Congratulations to Desley Grey for putting up her hand to lead this iconic event. Desley has already started planning to ensure the club runs a fantastic event.


*IMPORTANT Harriers Dates

15 Feb 2024 Trivia Night DeGrandi’s Vineyard

24 March 2024 Community Fun Run Morwell

2 June 2024 Traralgon Marathon


Danelle Wright is orgnaising a special order for female club members of running tights and shorts with club logos. Have a chat to her to make your order. Info in this NL.


Remember to get your articles into the newsletter about your running adventures. The club newsletter is an important communication medium, and most members use it as a place to get updates, information and share stories. Our NL editors work hard to ensure it’s interesting, informative and relevant. Members enjoy reading of other member’s inspirational journeys, so don’t be shy to share. Get your articles, thoughts and running snippets through to Glen Crawford at [email protected]


Thought for the week:

"There are two types of people; those who believe in doing what’s best for everyone, even if it means personal sacrifice, and those who see their own inconvenience as unacceptable, no matter what cost!"


Let’s have a fantastic year for the club and all members and guests!


Phill Mayer – President