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Gearing up for the 15th annual Turkey Trot

November 11, 2023

Bonners Ferry is looking forward to another fun, family-friendly, and free Turkey Trot 5k/10k fun run this year on Thanksgiving morning. The gun goes off promptly at 9a.m. Thursday, November 23, from the Boundary County Fairgrounds and leads runners down Riverside Road to the 5k turnaround past Mirror Lake Road.

The 10k continues past the 5k turnaround and will be marked with cones. The water station is near the 5k turnaround.

“This event started as our ‘Second Helping’ run for the day, and now that we’re in our 15th year, it’s become a tradition for lots of individuals and families," said race founder Carolyn (Testa) Birrell. "We’ve grown from 50 runners our first year to a record 351 last year and we collected about six full food barrels for our local food bank. It’s a nice little out-and-back, and Jim Cadnum has generously measured out both distances with his running wheel. Without our volunteers each year, there wouldn’t be an annual Turkey Trot. Talk about being thankful!”

There will be pumpkin pie with whipped cream and hot cocoa with marshmallows and coffee at the finish line, along with tons of prizes.

“We even have a few prizes for best costume!" Birrell said. "Our local merchants are so generous every single year with their prize contributions and they’re still coming in.”

This years' Tom Turkey, Jack Woods
This is the second year our Bonners Ferry High School Cross Country Team has provided the run with “Tom the Turkey.”

"We give one runner from the team, our 'Tom,' a head start before the gun goes off," Birrell said. "The goal is for all the other runners to chase down Tom the Turkey and take his turkey baster from him. Then that runner can be chased down and relieved of his turkey baster, and so on. Whomever crosses the finish line with the turkey baster wins a prize."

This year’s Tom the Turkey is Jack Woods. Last year’s Tom was Sydney Beckle.

“We loved this idea when Carolyn asked for a 'Tom' last year,” said coach Tyler Warner. “It’s a fun way for the team and even their friends to participate in a little competition, hold some bragging rights, and of course – the prize.”

Be sure to arrive early enough to get your prize number. Shout-out Turkey Trivia starts at 8:45a.m. There’ll be a burn barrel to keep you warm and we’ll have great music from the awesome sound system provided by Adam Reeves’ Forerunner Entertainment.

“The run remains free, no registration, and we try to time everyone when we have a volunteer for that," Birrell said. "It’s a great way to earn your second piece of pie before 10 a.m.!"

In the spirit of giving thanks, participants are asked to bring a non-perishable food item for our local food bank. Questions can be directed to Carolyn Birrell at (208) 290-7039.

See you at the Turkey Trot!

Questions or Comments? Send us an email!

Mike Weland, Publisher

6931 Main St.
6619 Kaniksu St., Rm 19
Bonners Ferry, ID 83805
(208) 295-1016

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