Turkey Trot takes place under COVID-19 guidelines


Photo courtesy of the Keefe family

The Keefe family participates in the virtual Turkey Trot. The route they chose ended at Lyon Park, where the race would have begun in another year.

It’s the 15 year anniversary of the Arlington Turkey Trot, which was rated Arlington’s best local running race of 2019 by Arlington Magazine.  Yet instead of its usual route, the Turkey Trot went virtual this year. The race was made a “Trot Week” instead of a “Trot Day” to prevent becoming a superspreader event.

With eight recommended routes, that included stores such as Good Stuff Doughnuts and Cafe with free food and trails through nature, the race offered a more personalized track. 

“We had an official start time at 10 a.m. rather than 8 a.m, so [that was] a little bit easier,” one runner with a high school student, Ms. Susannah Keefe, said. “We were planning on bringing our dog [since] it was sunny and warm.” 

Ms. Keefe described seeing other racers en route with the trademarked orange shirts. The race shirt and packet were given to those registered at Christ Church (Presbyterian) at 3020 N. Pershing Drive during one of four days in order to prevent crowding. 

“The 2020 Arlington Turkey Trot [ATT]  t-shirt features ‘Major Tom’ riding a drone,” the Turkey Trot official website said. “Had we been able to run in person, ‘Major Tom’ would have rode the drone as the festivities were filmed from above. But alas, that was not to be this year.”

Major Tom is the turkey mascot of the race that encourages charitable donations as well as Thanksgiving traditions. This year’s Turkey Trot benefited Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC), Arlington Street People’s Assistance Network (ASPAN), Arlington Thrive, Bridges to Independence, Offender Aid and Restoration (OAR) and YoungLife. The merchandise sold included masks and long sleeve tees. 

“[It’s great] to get out first thing in the morning and be active and exercise and then you have no guilt when you’re stuffing your face on Thanksgiving dinner,” Ms. Keefe said. “It would not feel like Thanksgiving without it.”

For information, see the website at: https://arlingtonvaturkeytrot.org/ 

To donate to the charities listed above go to: https://secure.givelively.org/donate/christ-church-of-arlington