By Dee Longfellow
Oglethorpe, the official mascot of the Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot, is getting fitted for bifocals because this year, he is turning 40.
The 40th annual Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot is set to step off as usual on Thanksgiving morning from Park and Cottage Hill Aves. in downtown at 9 a.m. Before you tie on that Thanksgiving feedbag, why not come out with the rest of the community – and people from 30 states across the country – and join the fun and fitness.
At the time the Independent caught up with a very busy Dan Gibbons, he said registrations were 14% over last year with 16 days to go.
Bib bids close Friday
His biggest concern was letting people know that there was still time, but running short, to bid on one of the premier bibs. Bidding closes at 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 17. The silent auction is open for bids at DanGibbonsTurkeyTrot.org.
“There are three special bibs being offered in a silent auction this year,” he said. “You can bid on bibs #1, #40 and #2023.”
Go to dangibbonsturkeytrot.org/40years/auctions/ and place a bid on the bib of your choice. The winner will be notified via email and will be able to pay for their bib and pick it up at packet pickup at Knights of Columbus this weekend.
“Bidding will close on Friday, Nov. 17. Good luck!”
As for the “good stuff,” Gibbons said 16 agencies committed to the fight against hunger had applied for grants so far. He anticipates being able to award each of them as much as $200,000.
As for the day itself, it’s worth coming out, even if you’re only a walker (MANY people are!) because you’ll enjoy the National Anthem performed by Jim Cornelison, the Lima Lima Flight Team (weather permitting) and a performance by the Men of Spirito! Then Randy Bronge of ICI will take on his duties as Honorary Starter this year.
If you’re new to the Turkey Trot, you’ll see people in costumes from turkeys to pumpkin pie! It’s a good day to people-watch.
As the day approaches and plans are finalized, Gibbons couldn’t say enough about the outstanding support the race receives from the City in terms of police and fire as well as public works with the road closures.
“We never have any complaints from any of the neighbors in the area, despite as many as 8,000 people descending on the downtown,” he said. “It’s all about communication and the police have been more than helpful with getting the word out.
“I think the fact that we receive no complaints from neighbors is a testament to the residents and to the police and the City notifying everyone. And I’m very proud of that.”
Sponsors of the 40th annual Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot include: Platinum sponsor, JelSert; Premier sponsors, Edward-Elmhurst Healthcare and Kelly Stetler Compass; Gold sponsors: John Noldan/Guaranteed Rate, the Schiller Team @properties, Johnson Wilbur Adams, Inc. Structural Engineering, Tito’s, Unlimited Heating & Cooling, Inc., Midwest Cardiovascular Institute; and Bronze sponsors Duly Health and Care and LW Reedy Real Estate. A full list of all sponsors is available at the web site.