• World Harmony Run

    World's Largest Torch Relay
    World Harmony Run

  • 1,000,000 Participants

    Across 6 Continents
    1,000,000 Participants

  • Dreaming of a more harmonious world

    100 countries
    Dreaming of Harmony

  • Schools And Kids

    Make a Wish for Peace
    Schools And Kids

  • Sri Chinmoy: World Harmony Run Founder

    World Harmony Run Founder
    Sri Chinmoy

  • Carl Lewis: World Harmony Run Spokesman

    World Harmony Run Spokesman
    Carl Lewis

  • New York, USA

    New York

  • London, Great Britain

    Great Britain

  • Shakhovskaya, Russia


  • Around Australia

    15,000 kms, 100 days
    Around Australia

  • Around Ireland

    14 Days, 1500km
    Around Ireland

  • Wanaka, New Zealand

    New Zealand

  • Arjang, Norway


  • Rekjavik, Iceland


  • Beijing, China


  • Prague, Czech Republic

    Czech Republic

  • Belgrade, Serbia


  • Lake Biwa, Japan

    Lake Biwa

  • Kapsait, Ethiopia


  • Pangkor Island, Malaysia

    Pangkor Island

  • Bali, Indonesia


  • The All Blacks, New Zealand

    The All Blacks
    New Zealand

Netherlands 15 September: Epe - Heerenveen

After a great night sleep the Golden Tulip hotel in Epe treated us with an excellent breakfast this morning. We ate to our hearts content and afterwards thanked the representative of the staff of the Hotel profusely. The general manager of the hotel wasn’t there but we hope he will read our report here. Thanks again!

From the hotel it was only a very short run to the first school. The van der Reijden school in Epe. Here we were received with tremendous enthusiasm. All the kids were waited for us outside with big banners that said welcome in many different languages. The banners were decorated with pictures and drawings. There was also an official present from the city.

He introduced us in extremely nice words to the kids. He said:

“Not only does the fire of this torch give you warmth when you are cold, and not only does it give light when we are in the dark but there is something more to it. If you are very, very silent you can hear that it is whispering something. The torch is voicing forth all the good wishes of everyone who held it”.

We couldn’t have said it better! After the short ceremony we all went outside with the kids and set free a few doves as a symbol of freedom.

If there is anything that gives freedom to the minds and lives of people isn’t it harmony? But what was more: the kids loved it! Some of the children still joined us for a few hundred meters as we left Epe.

From Epe the route went to Wapenveld through some nice forest area. The only problem was that we were running terribly late so we had to rush. (and of course in the rush some people got lost here and there). We arrived a little late at the ‘asielzoekerscentrum’, this a place were people who want to get Dutch citizenship stay temporarily until their case is decided.

There were kids here from Afghanistan, Angola and Turkey; they were so cute! They had so much joy when they ran with the torch. Everyone enjoyed the moment with a final group photograph.

After saying goodbye to the children we continued towards Zwolle.

Here we had an absolutely fabulous meeting at the Wendakker school. Some children awaited us at the corner just before the school and proudly ran with the torch the last few hundred meters. Their enthusiasm, and the enthusiasm of their teacher were very inspiring. In the auditorium of the school about 150 children were waiting for us. As we climbed the stage they started singing a song accompanied by one of their teachers on the guitar.

It didn’t take us long to recognize the melody. It was the melody of our World Harmony Run Song ! They made very nice words to the music in Dutch. It said:

“Run, run, run! Do you want to be my friend? Once a friend, twice a friend, thrice a friend, four times a friend, now and forever!”

The kids sang the song very, very nicely. Many of the kids also had made nice drawings for us on which they had written their names. They handed out the drawings to us and eagerly explained which part of the drawing they had made. After the little ceremony, during which the children continuously cheered us, we went outside. The teachers had prearranged a nice formation in which the kids were standing which created a pathway for us to exit the schoolyard. We said goodbye to all the teachers and children and ran off through the mass of kids.

We are really grateful to all the teachers and children of the Wendakker School. We all felt really, really warmly received by you!

The next meeting was scheduled at 13.30 in Steenwijk, which is a small city about 33 kilometres towards the north. Somehow the last few days we were constantly behind on schedule, so again we had to run fast to make it in time. This part of Holland is known as the ‘Venice of the North’. Especially the little town Giethoorn is famous. There is an incredible amount of lakes and canals in this area and Giethoorn resembles Venice with its many bridges and the beauty of the houses. We saw many boats on the lakes and the canals. If you look at a boat sailing on a little canal from a distance it looks as if a sail is moving through the meadows, which was especially funny to some of the international runners who are not used to this scene.

We reached the city hall of Steenwijk only a few minutes late (which was quite an achievement) and were cordially welcomed by Mr van der Berg the alderman of sport of the city. He took us to the back of the city hall where there was a beautiful park.

We made a little ceremony at a cosy looking little restaurant located in a kind of chapel. Mr van der Berg proved to be a sportsman himself and a top referee in the sport ‘korfbal’. (Korfbal resembles basketball but you are not allowed to dribble) Korfbal is actually the only sport in the world that is played by mixed teams (men and women together).

We were served an excellent lunch outside in the sun. The weather seems to be a good friend of ours the last few days! We talked merrily and made a nice group picture with the workers of the restaurant. The restaurant is actually run by people who have a slight mental handicap, a great initiative of the city of Steenwijk. The workers were friendlier than the friendliest!

The final stretch towards Heerenveen we could take it a little easy. This day again, like so many other days Nataliya from Ukraine was the hero of the team. Today she ran 25 kilometres; some days she even ran 55 kilometres! We passed a few small villages and were cheered by loads of children on bikes, coming back from school. After passing the Thialf stadium we ran into Heerenveen. The vice-mayor of Heerenveen received us in front of the city hall.

He addressed us with some nice words and also told us about the big achievements in the world of sport by the city of Heerenveen. They just won their soccer game in the UEFA cup last week! Inside the city hall we got some refreshments and chatted with a few officials from the city. The vice-mayor of the city presented us with a towel of the city Heerenveen as a souvenir. I guess this is one of the best gifts we ever received from a city!

From the city hall it was only a short way to the sleeping place of tonight: the beautiful Best Western Hotel de Heidehof offered us a free stay tonight. The proprietor of the hotel received us in front of the hotel and we made a nice picture together.

The hotel also served us with a very nice meal including a big ice cream. We enjoyed it thoroughly!

Distance: 85km

Team Members:
Frank de Lange (Holland), Klaus Schulz (Germany), Mark Collinson (England), Mark Hoogakker (Holland), Marton Fekete (Hungary), Nataliya Lehonkova (Ukraine), Ondrej Vesely (Czech Republic), Vladimir Ilaysov (Russia).

You can send a message to the runners or read the messages.

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