• 36°

Russell to have annual Turkey Trot

Donations to benefit Greenup food pantry

For the more athletically-minded, there will be the annual Turkey Trot 5K run/walk on Thanksgiving morning in Russell, Kentucky.

With an unofficial theme of “Let’s hit the streets to help others eat!”, proceeds from the 5K go towards helping others.

Turkey Trot organizer Ruthie Lynd said that for many families and friends, the event has become a traditional start to their Thanksgiving holiday and a reunion of sorts, as old high school friends reunite and enjoy some friendly competition and help out a good cause.

She said this year, the format has changed just a bit, in that it is an “official” 5K run/walk where runners and walkers of all ages and abilities are encouraged to register online at tristateracer.com or download an application. Applications may also be found in the office of Russell High School.

Racers will gather at the Russell Senior Center, just down the road from the SuperQuik in downtown Russell. Registration begins at 8 a.m. and the 5K begins at 9 a.m.

Proceeds will go to the Helping Hands store and agency in Greenup, Kentucky.

Lynd said it has become a tradition for many runners to create “theme” T-shirts, perhaps honoring a lost loved one or someone battling disease.

Others show a lighter side by creating “turkey tutus” and headdresses to add to the spirit of the holiday.

She said there are some “regulars” who have run the 5K since it started sometime in the late 1970s. While the exact beginning date is still up for debate, the “Founding Fathers” of this event talk about how it began with several runners who wanted to gather for an early morning run on Thanksgiving, and being thankful, each brought a bag of food to donate to a local food pantry.

While the “sponsorship” has varied over the years, the goal has remained the same — to help out “Helping Hands”, a local food pantry in Greenup County. This agency has come to rely heavily on the Russell Turkey Trot to get them through the holidays and then some. It is the hope of this year’s race organizers to not only give food items to Helping Hands, but to be able to give a sizeable monetary donation as well.

For more information, go to tristateracer.com or Ruthie.lynd@russelLynd.kyschools.us