Looking for a group to run, jog or walk with or just looking for an excuse to exercise? Come fly with the Flying Irish Running Club! We are a group of fun runners, walkers, joggers, and sloggers that meet up each week for a social run of 3-5 miles. We started off as a crazy idea of trying to organize a group run for friends that has now turned into the world’s largest social running club. We now have over 400 people joining us every week for our run and the best part about it: ITS ALL FREE!
Our Mission: The Flying Irish Running Club is dedicated to the furthering of an active lifestyle through running in a social setting and strives to positively promote the sport of running. The Club is committed to provide fellowship, training, camaraderie, encouragement, guidance and to help people enjoy running in a social setting.
We are organized as a nonprofit under Washington State law so that means we have a Board of Directors who are voted on in a biannual basis that oversee the operation of the Club.
We meet at Ripples Riverside Grille (700 N Division St, Spokane, WA) every Thursday night at 5:45pm. Our official season goes from the first Thursday in March until Thanksgiving. Our Annual Meeting and End of the Season Party is the first Thursday in December.
For further details on how to join, please follow the link at the side to our Membership page.
WE ARE THE FLYING IRISH AND WE RUN SPOKANE!!
History of the Flying Irish Running Club
It all started back in 2005 when the Flying Irish Running Club’s founder, Peter, came up with a grand idea that running should be a fun and social activity. Sure Spokane is a great running community with some of the top High School cross-country and track teams in the nation and the mega-running event in Bloomsday but what about a weekly activity for the average person? Unfortunately there wasn’t much available in Spokane, let alone the rest of the country, at that time. So with this idea starting to take form, Peter approached Tim O’Doherty, owner of O’Doherty’s Irish Grille in downtown Spokane, about an idea that he had. Tim was able to be convinced by Peter’s crazy idea that a decent amount of people would meet up for a run each week. So Tim went along with the idea and the Flying Irish Running Club found its first home.
The first ever run for the Flying Irish was on March 2, 2006 with a group of 9 runners with Peter later claiming that most of which were his family that he had persuaded to come. By the end of that first year, however, the Flying Irish had grown to a total membership of 202. But the highlight of the first year was the introduction of the shirting ceremony. It was already decided before the first run that to earn the Club’s shirt you had to run 6 times, which is based off of Jeff Kaline’s jersey number that hangs on the wall at O’Doherty’s. The only thing was, there wasn’t a plan for any official ceremony. Well, after the first of the shirts were handed out in mid-April one runner who had just received his shirt decided to jump on top of the bar at O’Doherty’s and tell an Irish joke in similar fashion to how you earn the right to put a $1-bill on the wall at O’Doherty’s after singing a song. The runner may or may not have had a few glasses of the “black stuff” before commencing on with the beginning of the tradition that has been done by thousands of other runners since.
The Flying Irish called O’Doherty’s home for 6 years before it ultimately had to move on to a larger hosting area to accommodate the huge growth of the Club. In those six years the Club saw a growth to over 2,500 people running each year with an average of 375 per week with that being far larger than what the total number of people who ran in the first year alone. Also during those years the number of routes grew from the 6 original ones to over 12 different routes. It was a sad day to leave O’Doherty’s but the Flying Irish still goes back “home” a couple of times a year for Legacy Runs.
But as before, the Flying Irish Running Club was never ready to settle and it keeps on trying to improve itself to live up to its reputation as the biggest and best social running club in the world. The 2013 season saw numerous changes for the Club including: a new logo, the addition of a Club Coat of Arms, a new website and the biggest one of all: the move to make the Flying Irish a nonprofit organization. All these changes will enhance the experience people have when they run with the Flying Irish Running Club.
With the 2014 season in full swing we stepped up the Flying Irish experience even more with the addition of the 50-run sweatshirts, new 33-run singlets, hats, a Flying Irish tent to have at local races so that our members can socialize a little more and to top it all off our very own beer: Flying Irish Pale brewed locally in Spokane by Iron Goat Brewery. Know of any other running clubs that have their own beer?!?! With all that the 2014 season is certainly shaping up to be the best one yet for the Flying Irish Running Club!
Flying Irish Running Club Records and Milestones
All records are as of July 8, 2014 unless otherwise indicated.
First Official Run: March 2, 2006
First Run Attendance: 9 Runners
Total Number of All-Time Official Flying Irish Runs: 334
Total Number of People Who Have Run With the Flying Irish: 10,530
Most People to Run in One Year: 2,504 (2013)
Most Total Runs in a Year: 16,568 (2013)
Largest Single-Run Attendance: 633 (3/14/2013)
Erika Addington, Joey Addington, Donald Aslinger, Peter B, Ron Bailey, Greg Baldwin, Grant Birch, Amy Brown, Bob Cannon, Larry Carroll, Gloria Castellaw, Bob Castellaw, Karen Cobean, Mike Crowley, James Dalton, Britt Davis, Jim Dietz, Brendan Dowling, Don Driscoll, Steve Druffel, Pam DuBrock, Fred Dugenet, Eric Erickson, Speed Fitzhugh, Anthony Giannetto, Mark Hallett, Hans Harzl, Cindi John, Jim Johnson, Billie Johnstone, Jon Jonckers, David Lund, Dianne Mahaffy, Gerry Manfred, Michele Miller, Steve Miller, Peggy Sue Moran, Wayne Nelson, Maury Nollette, Johanna Overhauser, Kris Overhauser, Dave Roberts, Rob Root, Tim Rounds, Bob Rounds, Jody Shapiro, Evan Sims, Eddie Tompson, Michael S. Tonkyn, Mark Wachtel, Chrystal Wachtel, Chris Wells, Bret Whitesides
300 Run Club
Amy Brown, Bob Cannon, Brendan Dowling, Eric Erikson, Steve Miller, Dave Roberts, Bob Rounds, Chris Wells