The 2020 NFR social calendar got off to a flying start with well-attended weekend events at The Stand comedy club and The Punchbowl, as well as a film night at the Newcastle Arts Centre. We also enjoyed post-run socials at The Bake One, The Queen Vic and Barca.
The advent of social distancing, self-isolation and shielding, when the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic hit in March, forced us into finding new ways of maintaining social contact whilst following government guidelines.
Zoom cafés and quizzes followed, as well as an evening of hilarious Taskmaster-style challenges and an entertaining Family Fortunes soirée. These have been well-attended by our membership – all from the comfort of their own homes!
Bingo card challenges were launched in May and June to give our members a focus for their running, in the absence of running together or training for races. These were very popular and encouraged people to try sessions they’d never attended before, such as Strength and Conditioning on Zoom. These challenges culminated in a virtual relay, which enabled us to showcase the north east and all the amazing places we can run to.
As we eased out of lockdown in the summer, we found ways to meet up in person, whilst still complying with social distancing guidelines. An extremely successful summer quiz run in and around Jesmond Dene was followed a few weeks later by small groups running together (and – more importantly – eating cake!) to support Glasgow Frontrunners’ HomeRun. We also spent an afternoon walking by the river.
As local restrictions tighten again, we will be back on Zoom finding new ways to keep the NFR social calendar alive.