Maybe you’re trying to cut carbs in anticipation of a big Thanksgiving Day meal. Maybe you’re trying to desperately outrun seasonal depression. Or maybe you’re just one of those peculiar individuals who actually enjoys running as a hobby.
Whatever the case may be, it’s once again time for the return of the region’s annual Turkey Trots. These annual events are typically short road races that are designed to give you something to do on Thanksgiving before you make the trek to your in-laws for dinner.
Wherever you find yourself in Central Massachusetts during Thanksgiving week and whatever your skill level, there’s a turkey trot for you out there!
Unless otherwise noted, these events all happen on Thanksgiving morning (November 23rd).
Westborough Turkey Trot (November 18th) – Now in its tenth year, Westborough’s Turkey Trot offers the opportunity to get some steps in before the holidays are in full swing. This year’s event includes a 5K race that begins and ends at Westboro High School. A kids fun run is also scheduled. This particular trot raises funds to support Westborough Public School initiatives. To sign up, head to www.westboroughturkeytrot.com.
Greater Gardner Turkey Trot – If you’re looking to really hit the gravy hard this Thanksgiving, perhaps the Greater Gardner Turkey Trot’s five mile course will help you maximize the amount of carbs you burn. This point-to-point race takes a scenic route from Gardner to Baldwinville, with the proceeds benefiting a few of the local high school cross country teams. You can find more info at www.gardnertrackxc.weebly.com/greaterturkeytrot.html.
Southborough Gobble Wobble Road Race – The 13th annual Gobble Wobble offers participants the option of either a 5K race or two mile walk that involves a loop near the Trotter School, a fittingly named school for such an event. Proceeds will benefit a variety of community projects and organizations in Southborough. More details at www.runsignup.com/Race/MA/Southboro/Southboroughs13thAnnualGobbleWobble.
Holden Turkey Trot – This year’s trot will feature a new course that begins and ends at Seven Saws Brewery. If you find yourself near the front of the pack at the end of the race, you’ll want to reach deep to see if you can find a second wind; $100 will go to the 1st place in both the male and female groups. Proceeds raised this year will benefit the Be Like Brit Foundation and local food pantries. You can sign up at www.raceroster.com/events/2023/78380/2023-holden-turkey-trot.
Hopedale Fire & Police Gobble Wobble – The fifth annual Hopedale’s Gobble Wobble is a 5K on-road/off-road race that begins and ends at the Hopedale Fire Department. This year’s race will benefit the local fire and police departments’ quest to upgrade their equipment. Find more info at www.hopedalegobblewobble.com.
Northborough Turkey Trot – More than 1,000 runners are expected for Northborough’s trot, a 5K race that winds through the town’s idyllic neighborhoods. Northborough’s Turkey Trot raises money for the town’s food pantry, bringing in over $65,000 since the first race in 2008. This year’s proceeds will also help children attend local summer programming. For more info about the race, check out www.northboroughturkeytrot.org.
Philip J. Weihn Turkey Chase 5K – The 22nd running of this 5K event takes participants through the scenic streets of Clinton. Competitors can expect this race to be a bit more intense than your average trot, as the organizers describe the course as “challenging.” This event is limited to 500 runners and does not allow for race day registration, so move quickly! You can sign up at runsignup.com/Race/MA/Clinton/PhilipJWeihnAnnualTurkeyChase5K
Turkey Trot for the Memory – This Shrewsbury-based race is of the five mile variety, featuring a course that starts near Spring Street Elementary School and finishes in downtown Shrewsbury. If that sounds exhausting, a two mile walk is also available as an option. All proceeds directly benefit the MA/NH Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. For more information, check out www.turkeytrotforthememory.org.