Take on Thanksgiving Day with a Turkey Trot!

Written by: Shannon Polk, Kudos Team Contributor

As fall and winter approach, it will get more and more difficult to roll out of your warm bed and go for a morning run. The end of the year brings blustery winds and cold temperatures for many of us, but on Thanksgiving Day, a Turkey Trot is a great way to work up an appetite and contribute to a good cause. 

The Turkey Trot is an event that’s older than the Boston Marathon. It’s also fun for the entire family since many Turkey Trots include kids races and the option to run or walk. 

You can get the family involved and give back to the community by signing up for a local race like the ones listed below, which use the proceeds to benefit local charities: 

YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh Turkey Trot
With three options to choose from, there’s something for everyone with this Turkey Trot event! You can choose a one-mile family fun run, traditional 5K or even a 5-mile race. Proceeds from the event help support efforts to provide food security and healthy options to those in need throughout Pittsburgh. 

Turkey Trot Chicago
This one began 40 years ago and is still going strong, kicking off in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood and benefiting the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Race options include a 5K and 8K as well as a Youth 5K (under 17 years old) and Plymouth Rock Ramble (2-12 years old). You’re also more than welcome to wear a Thanksgiving-inspired costume. 

Charlotte Southpark Turkey Trot
Sign up soon for this one because registration closes once they reach 11,000 participants – it’s popular! You can sign yourself (or your children) up for an 8K, 5K, one-mile or 26.2-yard Trot Trot. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can take on the Tuff Turkey Challenge by running both the 8K and 5K. If you’re feeling fun and goofy, make sure you participate in the costume contest! A portion of proceeds from the race support local charities. 

Mile High United Way Turkey Trot – Denver
This four-mile run/walk draws more than 20,000 participants to Washington Park, and you have the opportunity to register as an individual or as a team. There is also a Quarter-Mile Family Fun-Run that takes place around Grasmere Lake. The first 9,500 registrants will receive a t-shirt, so sign up early! All proceeds support education, health and financial stability for people living in Metro Denver. 

New Orleans Athletic Club Turkey Day Race
Offering a five-mile race and kids’ half mile, the NOAC Turkey Day Race is a 100+ year-old tradition in New Orleans. The races take place in and around City Park, finishing at Tad Gormley Stadium. Proceeds from the event benefit Spina Bifida of Greater New Orleans, which provides support to individuals born with spina bifida.