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Bloomsday Road Runners Club Turkey Trot tradition returns to Manito Park

People of all ages gathered in-person on Thanksgiving at Spokane’s Manito Park Duck Pond for turkey trot after the race was held virtually last year.
Credit: KREM
People gathering at the 2021 Bloomsday Road Runners Club (BRRC) 'Turkey Trop' at Manito Park on Thanksgiving.

SPOKANE, Wash. — The Bloomsday Road Runners Club (BRRC) hosted its in-person annual Turkey Trot running tradition on Thanksgiving morning.

Turkey trots have been a Thanksgiving tradition for many families for years.

The first turkey trot in the country was held in 1896, according to the event's host, the YMCA. That original race is still ongoing and takes place in Buffalo, New York.

Last year, the Spokane turkey trot was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but organizers decided to host the event in person this year.

About 4,000 people of all ages gathered early on Thanksgiving morning at the Manito Park Duck Pond despite the cold weather; some brought their kids, others their pets, and many the Thanksgiving tradition by wearing their turkey hats.

The three miles distance race event started at 9 a.m., and people had the option to run or just walk the unofficial race.

Runners attending the race had the opportunity to donate cash and canned food to the Second Harvest Food Bank. Those who could not participate in the event also contributed to the runners club by making their donations online.

In 2019, the turkey trot runners donated over 6,600 lbs. of food and $8,000 for Second Harvest Food Bank. The money provided almost 40,000 meals to Spokane residents in need, according to the organizers.

The total number of food donated for this year will be revealed next week, a Bloomsday Road Runners Club organizer said.