A Thanksgiving Day Tradition: Where the Turkey Just Has to Wait!

For my family, racing has become a part of our Thanksgiving Day tradition. In particular, we run the Flying Feather Four Miler race. This race is so much fun and a great way to spend Thanksgiving morning.
I started running this race two years ago with my Original Running Buddy (Chrissy) and my mom:
Chrissy, Me, Mr. Turkey and Mom before the Flying Feather 2009.
Me and Mom before the race in 2009.
And last year, it was a regular Lucky 13 affair:
The Lucky 13’s after the Flying Feather in 2010.
Organized by M3S Sports, the Flying Feather course tours the Glacier Ridge Metro Park in Dublin, Ohio and is serenely beautiful. I love to run there with the winding trails, rolling hills and peaceful scenery. I usually get a good glimpse of Ohio wildlife in the fall – birds and small critters like squirrels and groundhogs. Runner’s World names Flying Feather as one of the Top 6 Thanksgiving Day races in the country and nothing I have found compares to the awesome race-day swag! All participants get a long sleeve Technical running shirt; hat and gloves; a Finisher’s Medal to show off at the table later; food and beverages at the finish line and – the real favorite – a bottle of Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages wine for your Thanksgiving Table (or cookies for those under 21).
Yes, friends. An entire bottle of wine for each participant:   
Mom, Mollie and Me with the Coveted Bottle of Wine in 2010.
The Flying Feather has made Thanksgiving Day one of my favorite holidays (just second to the Fourth of July when I got engaged to my husband, Michael), and I have beautiful memories of the last two years. It is strange to me that even though I have only participated in this race for two years, is is prevalent in my mind as the only way to spend Thanksgiving.
Even Mom put the Turkey Day preparations on hold for a couple of hours to cross the Finish Line:
My Mom loved this race as much as I do.

In fact, I was recently interviewed by Amy Saunders with The Columbus Dispatch about what this race has become to me and my family. You can find the complete article by Saunders HERE and below is what I had to say:

Mollie and I will run the Flying Feather again this year, along with our friends of the Lucky 13’s. I know it will be bittersweet for me because Mom won’t be there, and I know how badly she would have wanted to be. In fact, all of Thanksgiving won’t be the same without her. I know she is running with me and Mollie, in our hearts, but I will miss her smiling face, her cheering us on, and not to mention her turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes. It will be a different Thanksgiving for our family, and I hope we can still make Mom proud by carrying on the one tradition she became so much a part of – racing on Thanksgiving Day.
As always, my Dad will be there to cheer us on and this year, he is volunteering at the event along with my Aunt Beth, who has never been to one of our races. It is definitely the start of something wonderful, I know, and Mom will be smiling to see us all there.
And, in the spirit of true family tradition, even Beth is putting the turkey day cooking on hold to spend a little time at the races. Mom wouldn’t have it any other way.
Until the next mile marker,   
  

Comments

  1. Jennifer Roe says

    That looks like such a great tradition!

    I’m planning on running a virtual turkey trot this year but if I lived closer, I would do this one with you!

  2. Sara, once again, a lovely story and such a sweet tribute to your Mom and whole family. Enjoy your day! And your dinner after the race… 🙂

  3. runningperseverance says

    SARA! what an incredible tradition. first i just love the name of the race. sounds so fun. second, i know that it will be a tough morning for you…but you are so right in that your mom will be running alongside you all and cheering you on every step of the way! i know she is proud of you for continuing on in your running in her memory! have a wonderful thanksgiving!

  4. RunningMandy says

    I absolutely LOVE this race. We ran it together last year – although we didn’t know each other then. (in face, Mollie and I finished seconds apart!) Weird to think that this time last year we were still a month away from meeting, isn’t it??? Looking forward to running it with you officially!

  5. Suzanne Westenhofer says

    What a great race! You each get a bottle of wine?! That’s awesome!

  6. That sister of yours is wearing a lot of colors. Once I counted 12 colors on her. 12!

    I really need to stop trolling you all the time, but I couldn’t resist it. Have fun with Mandy on Thursday! Avery and I will be sleeping/watching the parade while I eat all of Mandy’s food.

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