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A tradition for many families, thousands of people participate in this years YMCA Turkey Trot

Posted at 4:27 PM, Nov 23, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-24 00:55:45-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — The holidays are celebrated through many traditions like eating pumpkin pie, watching football and spending time with family. Some people even wake up a little early to exercise before the big Thanksgiving feast.

Thursday was the YMCA of the Pikes Peak Region's Annual 5k race series. The 26th Annual Turkey Trot 5k and Kids’ Tiny Trot in Colorado Springs was held at the Briargate YMCA.

Four thousand people signed up for the Turkey Trot and even more people came to cheer on their friends, all before the big Thanksgiving day meal.

“It's an annual tradition on Thanksgiving morning we like to come out and do the Turkey Trot,” said Gerald Romero.

Romero is an avid runner. He has run this Turkey Trot around 20 times. Romero said this is a fun race to compete in.

“We got high school kids, college kids out here, it is a competitive race,” Romero said.

Starting at 8:15 on Thursday morning, many young kids ran in the Kids’ Tiny Trot, including Ryan Barthels, who was dressed up in a turkey suit. He said the race went well.

“It was good, I felt confident,” Barthels said. “I am thankful for my dog and for family and friends,” Barthels said.

The traditional 5K Turkey Trot race started at 9am.

“We have so many fun people out here for the race today,” said Santa.

One dad and daughter duo, Hayley and Jeff Edwards dressed up as turkeys as well for the trot.

“This is a tradition for us and we have a great time. We are happy to be out here and a part of the YMCA,” Jeff Edwards said.

“My dad and I have been doing this for five or six years now, it's kind of our thing, we wake up and go to the Turkey Trot together while mom stays home and does everything, hi mom,” Hayley Edwards said.

People dressed up in festive outfits with turkey hats, blow up costumes and warm turkey onesies.

Jeff Edwards said his favorite part of his warm full body turkey suit is the pockets.

“The pockets are probably the best. That was an unexpected nice thing. And they zip close. The stride is going to be a little short, I think we’ll have to run from the knee will be okay but it’ll be fun,” Jeff Edwards said.

Romero said when he is running the race, he tries to focus.

“I think about getting through the pain and going through as fast as I can,” Romero said.

Romero said after the race he is looking forward to spending the rest of the day with loved ones.

“It's great and I'm just going to enjoy Thanksgiving now with friends and family,” Romero said.

Hayley and Jeff Edwards are looking forward to the food.

“We're probably going home and eating,” Jeff Edwards said.

He said his favorite dish is the pie and Hayley’s is green bean casserole.

“It has to be pumpkin pie, it's good stuff, you can't have Thanksgiving without pumpkin pie,” Jeff Edwards said.

To remember this day, families took pictures with the turkey mascot and his special guest, Santa Claus.

“Make sure you stay good for Christmas, I want to see you all and bring you lots of presents, have a great day everybody, happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas,” Santa said.

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