MOTHER"S DAY FUN RUN: Powerhoop Nelson members, from back left, Karen Clark, Sue Thomas, Sheryl Taylor, Gail Richards and Neisha Woodward. From front left, Sara Irvine, Stacey Homan, Hayley Moreton and Morwenna Hodges. Photo by Jessie Johnston.

Record turn out for Mother’s Day fun run

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It was the perfect start to Mother’s Day for hundreds of women all around the country as they hit the pavement for the Jennian Homes Mother’s Day Fun Run/Walk.

Nelson women turned out in record numbers on Sunday morning for the charity event, over 750 gathering outside Jennian Homes on Champion Rd for the start of the 5km course.

Nationwide, around 10,000 women took part in the fun run and walk at 23 locations around New Zealand, which is a huge jump from the 7000 women who participated last year.

Now in its sixth year, the event is part of an initiative run by Jennian Homes to support the Heart Foundation’s Heart Foundation for Women’ campaign, which aims to improve the heart health of New Zealand women.

Heart disease is the number one cause of death for women in New Zealand, claiming the lives of more than 50 women each week, and it’s one of the reasons why Powerhoop Nelson decided to head along on Sunday and take part. “[We all thought] why not,” says Powerhoop instructor Sara Irvine

“It’s raising awareness of heart health so we’re supporting the good cause, and also we do classes each week and this is just extending what we do and having some fun.”

Amongst the sea of red T-shirts, designed by Dick Frizzell, were Olympic athletes Sophie McKenzie and Anita McLaren, who enjoyed their morning encouraging the participants.

Following the event, a nationwide donation by Jennian Homes of $20,000 was made to the New Zealand Heart Foundation.