What brings together people of different ages, backgrounds, cultures and physical abilities? The answer is Parkrun—and it’s coming to Florence.

Parkrun is an idea that began in London in 2004 and uses communal areas, such as parks, to promote social and health-oriented activities, free of charge and open to all.



This new addition to Florence’s fitness scene will take the form of a free weekly event in the Cascine park, whatever the weather. The fifth Italian city to embrace the Parkrun, the first ever Florence version will set out at 9am sharp on September 30 and subsequently every Saturday morning, same place, same time. Simply register free of charge on the website and turn up on time at the Cascine Park in viale del Pegaso.

The amazing thing about Parkrun is that you don’t have to be in amazing shape, clad in Lycra with the latest thing in running shoes on your feet. Walk the whole course, bring your dog (or baby) in a buggy, start and don’t finish: do whatever you like!

The underlying philosophy is about taking part and being at ease in a group. Parkrun Firenze will take a special interest in bringing together women and men, the old and the young, the strong and the not-so-strong, nationals and foreigners in a safe, positive and healthy environment.

Ninety-three people have signed up so far, but the goal is to reach 1,000 within a year. The organisers are also looking for volunteers to help manage the event; email firenzehelpers@parkrun.com to get involved.