Special guests included Trotter, the mascot of the annual event; Bucky, the East Tennessee State University mascot; and other mascots from corporate sponsors like Chick-fil-A, who riled the students up for the event set for Thanksgiving, Nov. 22.
As always, organizers said the Turkey Trot will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Legion Street in Johnson City, near Memorial Park Community Center. An awards ceremony will be held at Cardinal Park following the race.
Race Chairwoman and Johnson City Vice Mayor Jenny Brock and News Channel 11’s Josh Smith told students the top three schools with the most participants in two divisions will be awarded $3,500.
“This is a tradition for our community,” Brock said. “The Turkey Trot kicks off the holiday season in the best way — with friends, family and a healthy run or walk before the feast.”
This year, classrooms were asked to choreograph a signature Turkey Trot dance to the song, “Let’s Turkey Trot” by Little Eva. Video submissions will be posted on Facebook, and the one with the most likes and shares wins. Winners will be featured on WJHL, receive vouchers to Quantum Leap and will get to perform their routine on stage at the Turkey Trot.
“We can’t wait to see all our participants shaking their tail feathers Thanksgiving morning,” Race Director Karen Hubbs said ahead of Friday’s event.
For the past decade, the Turkey Trot has awarded more than $156,000 to organizations that promote health and wellness. Last year, more than $24,000 was awarded to Tannery Knobs Bike Park, ETSU, the Turkeys in Training program, the Johnson City Police Department and the Johnson City Fire Department.
Registration information can be found at www.jcturkeytrot.com. Early registration by Nov. 19 is $25 for adults and $20 for students 18 and younger. Late registration, Nov. 20 and 21, is $30 for adults and $25 for students 18 and younger.
There will be no late registrations on the day of the 5K, and packet pick-up and late registrations will be at Memorial Park Community Center from noon to 8 p.m. on Nov 20 and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Nov. 21.