It is Time to Talk Turkey

David Yon, November 9, 2021

The calendar is now open to the month of November and the days are flying by.  That means all things in the Yon house are Turkey Trot related. Thanksgiving falls on the 25th of November this year.  That is less than three weeks, maybe two by the time you read this column.  The good news is we can meet in person again this year. After a slow start, the registrations are starting to roll in and we have our fingers crossed that this will be a good year for the Gulf Winds Track Club Tallahassee Turkey Trot.

Last year at this time people were asked to participate on a “virtual” basis as COVID – 19 had slammed the door on holding in-person race events. Participants registered for the race and made special donations for the beneficiaries of the race.  They were told there would be no formal race on race day but instead should pick a time and place to run the distance of one of the Turkey Trot Races. While that approach made sense at the time, it did mean that  2020 broke a streak of 27 years meeting on Thanksgiving morning to run a race.

And in fact, as the starting bell rang on race morning on Esplanade Way, I saw nothing but an empty street behind me.  I must admit it was much easier to direct the event…but that misses the best of what the Tallahassee Turkey Trot is about.  Thanksgiving mornings have become a great opportunity for friends and family to gather and share a morning of exercise and greetings. That usually means at least 5,000 thousand runners and walkers crammed into the starting area. Despite the lack of an in-person race, more than 1,500 people signed up last year to support the event and its beneficiaries – the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Big Bend, the Kearny Center and the Refuge House.

This year the race is back to an in-person event. There is a set of COVID-19 protocols that participants are asked to observe to minimize chances of transmission of COVID (cite) but there should be a lot of people on Esplanade Way and plenty of opportunities to greet friends you missed seeing last year.  While there will be many people running as fast as they can, there will also be many running for the fun of being part of Tallahassee’s biggest race.

As usual, the 1-mile Turkey Gobbler will go off at 8:00 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning. The 5K, 10K and 15K runners will start 30 minutes later at 8:30 a.m.  You can find all the information you need at  You can Register online and pick up your race packet at the Turkey Trot Festival. All participants electing the t-shirt option will receive a high-quality long sleeve technical t-shirt (adult sizes) with a 2021 Turkey Trot logo. Youth sizes are short-sleeve.  There will not be finisher’s medals this year. Once you have registered, your shirt and race number will be ready for you to pick up at the Turkey Trot Festival at Goodwood Museum & Gardens on November 21 (1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.). Starting Monday, November 22, packet pickup will take place at Premier Health & Fitness Center, 3521 Maclay Boulevard. We will be open on Monday and Tuesday from 11:00 am. – 6:00 p.m., and on Wednesday 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  Online registration will remain open through midnight on Wednesday, November 24.  On-site Race Day registration and packet pick up will be available near the race start on Esplanade Way (near 4055 Esplanade Way). Please make every effort to pick up your packet prior to race day.

I look forward to seeing you on Thanksgiving morning. We strongly encourage all participants to come fully vaccinated.

Note – on Sunday, November 7, 2021, Shalane Flanigan finished the New York City Marathon in 2:33:32 completing her 6th Major Marathon in 6 weeks.


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