14 Thanksgiving Day Races to Burn Off That Pecan Pie

Work up an appetite with these Southern turkey trots.

Anna Aguillard
Thanksgiving Races Running
Li Zhongfei
Before you race to the table, lace up your sneakers and run one of these Thanksgiving Day races. Turkey Trots are a national tradition that benefit many nonprofit organizations across the country. Give thanks and give back. Here are the best runs in your neck of the woods.
1. The 49th Annual Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot
Where: Dallas, Texas
Noted as the country's largest 5k run/walk, this race is held at the Dallas City Hall. Proceeds beneft a wide diversity of YMCA programs, including afterschool programs across 80 school sites, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Cancer Collaborative, YMCA Urban Swim and Safety Around Water Programs, Play and Learn Program and scholarships for disabilities. thetrot.org
2. 22nd Annual Turkey Trot 5k Run/Walk
Where: Springfield, Missouri
Attracting more than 7,000 participants, this is Springfield’s largest timed 5K run/walk of the year and the largest Thanksgiving Day 5K in Missouri. Proceeds benefit the Springfield-Greene County Park Board Scholarship Fund and the Developmental Center of the Ozarks. theparkboard.org
3. Thanksgiving Day Half Marathon & 5K
Where: Atlanta, Georgia
This nationally-recognized half marathon is already sold out – but you can still join in the fun and festivities down at Turner Field. Atlanta Track Club, the organization that puts on the race, joins with Atlanta Mission to collect one ton of clothing to donate to those in need. atlantatrackclub.org
4. New Orleans Athletic Club’s 109th Annual Turkey Day Race
Where: New Orleans, Louisiana
One of the oldest races in the country, the NOAC Turkey Day Race is open to all runners. Proceeds benefit Spina Bifida of Greater New Orleans. Cross the finish line and expect to celebrate with beers. runnotc.org
5. 30A 10K
Where: Rosemary Beach, Florida
Race along 30A, the South’s most scenic ocean highway. This year, the race hopes to break the $200,000 donation mark. Proceeds benefit the South Walton Fire District, the Walton County Sheriff’s Department’s Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Anchorage Children’s Home and the Northwest Florida Guardian ad Litem Foundation, Inc. 30a10k.com
6. Charlotte Southpark Turkey Trot 8k
Where: Charlotte, North Carolina
In its 28th annual year, this Charlotte 8k and 1-mile fun run has grown so much that it’s reached a participant cap at 11,000 runners and walkers. Proceeds benefit McClintock Partners in Education and Christ Lutheran. charlotteturkeytrot.com
7. Trot for Hunger
Where: Washington, DC
Taking off from the heart of our nation at Freedom Plaza, this 5k race has a goal of raising $650,000.00 to benefit an organization called SOME (So Others Might Eat) that helps thousands of homeless families and adults, including elderly and mentally ill, by providing them with food, clothing, and healthcare. support.some.org
8. Thanksgiving Up and At ‘Em Turkey Trot
Where: Johnson City, Tennessee
This 5k Road Race and Family Fun Run benefits Up and At ‘Em, a nonprofit dedicated to positively influencing the health and fitness of the community’s youth, donating more than $100,000 to schools and community projects. jcturkeytrot.com
9. 23rd Annual Boulevard Bolt
Where: Nashville, Tennesssee
Participants in this 5-mile course run or walk down Nasville’s famous Belle Mead Boulevard. Proceeds benefit the homeless population of Nashville, including providing “street supplies” for homeless youth, hot breakfasts, and safe houses for victims of domestic violence. boulevardbolt.org
10. 34th Annual Turkey Chase
Where: Bethesda, MD
This Thanksgiving Day 10k benefits the YMCA’s Youth and Family Services, YMCA Bethesda-Chevy Chase, and the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club Foundation. They’ve raised over $4.7 million so far, and counting. turkeychase.com
11. 39th Annual Turkey Day Run and Gobble Wobble 5k
Where: Charleston, South Carolina
Each year, a portion of the proceeds from this fun run go to over 30 charities, including MUSC Children’s Hospital, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Low Country Food Bank. Plus, there’s live music and free beer at the finish line. turkeydayrun.com
12. 9th Annual Turkey Strut 5K
Where: Winston Salem, North Carolina
The course runs near BB&T Field/Stadium, Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, and the Deacon Baseball field stadium. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Second Harvest Food Bank. turkeystrut.com
13. Pensacola Beach Turkey Trot for Thought
Where: Pensacola Beach, Florida
With a course that runs along one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, the Pensacola Beach Turkey Trot is an annual 5k event benefiting brain cancer research and the Preston Robert Tisch Tumor Center at Duke University. pensacolabeachturkeytrot.com
14. Sam Lapidus Montclair Run
Where: Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham’s Thanksgiving Day Race had over 1,200 participants last year. The race benefits the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s of Alabama, and the LJCC Fitness Program samlapidus.org