Turkey Trot for Hunger to return this Thanksgiving Day

Published 9:57 am Monday, November 22, 2021

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CHELSEA – Families looking to fit in a few minutes of morning activity before their big meal on Thanksgiving Day may attend St. Catherine’s Episcopal Church’s third Turkey Trot for Hunger 5K Run.

The run is the main fundraiser for St. Catherine’s Beans and Rice Pantry, an outreach ministry through which the church provides food for those in need year round.

After having to cancel last year’s event because of COVID-19, organizers are hoping to restore interest and attendance this year.

“Our biggest goal is to get this race back going again, so we don’t really have a target goal for this year for a dollar amount,” 2021 Turkey Trot coordinator Bill Traylor said. “Our goal is to do the best race we can, and we hope it entices people to come back next year.”

Traylor said the idea for the event came from one of the church’s former rectors.

“He was a runner and decided that it would be a fun way to raise money for our Beans and Rice Pantry,” Traylor said. “It lets families get together on Thanksgiving morning.”

Nearly 160 people attended the 2019 Turkey Trot, he said, and added, “We’re really hoping to grow it from there.”

The race will begin at 7:30 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 25, rain or shine.

Participants will start at the Chelsea Ballpark Complex on Shelby County 39 and end at the church, which is located at 642 King’s Home Road.

Parking and restrooms are available at the ballpark complex.

The Turkey Trot for Hunger is a chip-timed race with a certified 5K course.

All participants will receive a racing bib and chip, but T-shirts are not included in order to maximize funds raised for the hungry.

Bib pickup will start at 6:30 a.m. on the morning of the race.

Those interested in helping at the event may contact Traylor at (205) 365-8113 or bill.traylor@hotmail.com.

“Anybody who would like to come and volunteer, I certainly can find a spot to help,” Traylor said. “Any volunteers would be very helpful.”

To register for the race, visit Stcatherinesal.org/service-and-outreach/turkey-trot-for-hunger.

Suggested donations for participation are listed online, along with how many families each donation amount will help.

The Beans and Rice Pantry operates on the third Saturday of every month from 9-11 a.m. In addition to beans and rice, the grocery bags given to local families typically include a jar of peanut butter, toilet paper, toothbrushes, toothpaste and several cans of fruits and vegetables.

The Beans and Rice Pantry provides food staples totaling nearly $15 per family per visit.

“It’s a great program,” Traylor said, noting people’s donations throughout the year—and from the Turkey Trot for Hunger—keep the pantry stocked. “We’re really looking to grow the race. This year is to try to get back to normalcy, and hopefully next year, we can advertise it a lot more.”