Participants in the eighth annual Turkey Trot 5K take off from the starting line on a dreary Thanksgiving. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

Participants in the eighth annual Turkey Trot 5K take off from the starting line on a dreary Thanksgiving. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

‘We were ready’: Turkey Trot returns with in-person fun run

Conditions along the trail were more suitable for a trudge than a trot.

Hundreds turned out to participate in the annual Turkey Trot —even if dreary weather made conditions more suitable for a trudge than a trot.

Thursday’s event at the Airport Trail was the first Turkey Trot to happen in person since the pandemic.

“This feels good,” said organizer Tyra MacKinnon. “We were ready.”

Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire 
Winter Osterhout gives a high five near the end of the 1-mile Turkey Trot course on Thursday, Nov. 25.

Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire Winter Osterhout gives a high five near the end of the 1-mile Turkey Trot course on Thursday, Nov. 25.

The eighth annual Turkey Trot benefited the Glacier Swim Club and Thunder Mountain High School cross country team. About 200 people preregistered for the event, MacKinnon said, and she estimated about 100 more registered the day of the race.

That compares to about 200 people who participated in last year’s virtual event.

The Turkey Trot is a fun run that includes both 1-mile and 5-kilometer races. Many of the participants in the mile-long race came wearing costumes.

Among the more elaborate get-ups were those worn by Tami Wahto, Kasey Watts, Todd Schur, Matthew Wendel and Mike and Courtney Kreis. They wore a variety of full-body and inflatable costumes that included all manner of turkeys and one magical unicorn.

Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire 
Matthew Wendel, Mike Kreis, Kasey Watts, Courtney Kreis, Tami Wahto and Todd Schur wore costumes during the Turkey Trot on Thursday. Why’d they wear costumes? “Why not?” asked Schur.

Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire Matthew Wendel, Mike Kreis, Kasey Watts, Courtney Kreis, Tami Wahto and Todd Schur wore costumes during the Turkey Trot on Thursday. Why’d they wear costumes? “Why not?” asked Schur.

Wahto said wearing flamboyant garb has become an annual tradition, although MacKinnon said Wahto’s inflatable turkey jockey costume was a new high.

Why’d the group decide to walk a mile in costumes?

“Why not? asked Schur. “If we’re going to be dumb enough to come out in the rain.”

Watts added they were there to support the sports teams that benefit from the Turkey Trot.

5K top finishers

finisher

■ Kael Nord , 20 minutes and 16 seconds

■ Scott McCain, 21:33

■ Brandon Fost, 22:01

• Contact Ben Hohenstatt at (907)308-4895 or bhohenstatt@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt

Kael Nord crosses the finish line at the eighth annual Turkey Trot 5K with a time of 20 minutes and 16 seconds. Scott McCain finished second with a time of 21:33, and Brandon Fost finished third with a time of 22:01. (Courtesy Photo / Tyra MacKinnon)

Kael Nord crosses the finish line at the eighth annual Turkey Trot 5K with a time of 20 minutes and 16 seconds. Scott McCain finished second with a time of 21:33, and Brandon Fost finished third with a time of 22:01. (Courtesy Photo / Tyra MacKinnon)