June 23, 2024

Turkey Trot: 5k marathons on Thanksgiving morning

Running a 5K on Thanksgiving morning has gained popularity over the past few years in the form of a “Turkey Trot”, but why are people so drawn to spending their holiday running?

Turkey Trots might seem like a new concept; however, the first Turkey Trot took place in 1896 in Buffalo, New York. The Buffalo YMCA hosted the event where participants would run an 8k. 

Although the Buffalo YMCA keeps the tradition of their 8k run, many Turkey Trots we see today are a 5k race.

The great thing about Turkey Trots being a 5k is that it can attract professional runners or even amateur runners and walkers. Turkey Trots have been used as a way to provide people with exercise before they spend most of their day eating, while also creating a sense of community. 

“After running the Turkey Trot it made me thankful for physical activity and the community on Thanksgiving morning,” Maddie Farina, second-year student, said. 

Fraina added that she ran her first and only Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning in 2016. “I had never even run a 5k before, but my mom made me do it. It was a one-and-done thing,” Farina said. “It was hosted by my high school and there were a lot of people. It seemed like it was a tradition for some people.”

For third-year student, Olivia Costello, Turkey Trots are most certainly a tradition. For Costello and her family, these events have been a way for them to get together as a family for the Holiday while burning a few extra calories.

Costello has been running Turkey Trots with her family for the past six years in Dover, OH. “We all go home to shower afterward and then take a nap. After we wake up we get to eat a bunch of food the rest of the day,” said Costello.

Turkey Trots have become a tradition for many families and it does not look like they’re stopping anytime soon. The largest one has nearly 20,000 participants and takes place in Dallas, Texas. 

With most Turkey Trots being virtual last year, participants are itching to get back to their traditional Trots.

There are several trots taking place this year, including the Bexley Turkey Trot. Although the event will be held virtually, the proceeds will still benefit the mid-Ohio foodbank. Chase Columbus is also hosting one on Thanksgiving morning, benefitting Easterseals of Central & South East Ohio.


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