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Don’t be a turkey; join the Gobble for Groceries

SPRINGVILLE — The table-fated turkey will not be the only one running in Springville, this Thanksgiving, as the fourth annual Gobble for Groceries raises both funds and heart rates for the Springville Trading Post Community Care Center’s community kitchen, Thanksgiving morning. Registration for the 3.6-mile run and 2-mile walk will begin at 8 a.m. with the race’s starting at 9.

The entry fee is a bag of non-perishable groceries or a cash donation to the kitchen and commemorative race T-shirts are available, for a donation.

The Trading Post serves approximately 300 families per month and a board member said that there are new families coming in, every day.

“There’s a great need for volunteers, in every capacity,” said Rick Manzone, race organizer. “Anyone who wants to volunteer [at the Trading Post] can call them and they’ll get slotted in somewhere they’ll feel most comfortable.”

Last year, the race raised 250 bags of groceries and $800 and this year, the committee hopes to top that, according to Manzone. He added that they hope to see 150 participants in the race and walk, which has been growing steadily, since its inception.

Refreshments will also be provided, before and after the event, donated by local vendors. Sponsors for the event include WSPQ Radio, Springville Youth Inc, Advantage Signs and Apparel, WalMart, Tops Markets Springville, Spring Creek Athletic, Tim Hortons and Beans To Brew.

Manzone said that the idea came about when he and fellow runners Barb and Denny Fleissner were on their way back from training for a run.

“We wanted to do something close to home,” Manzone said. “And Barb is very active with the community kitchen, so we wanted to benefit them.”

The route starts and ends at the Trading Post, with the run heading up Main Street to North and the walk peeling off at Maple. Manzone did not know why the 3.6-mile distance was instituted, but called it “the scenic route,” through the village of Springville.

“It’s a really nice walk and run through the historic district of Springville,” he said. “It’s not a sanctioned race, just a fun event to start off your day.”

Manzone said that many participants come with more than one bag of food and make the run a “family event.

We have kids come up dragging wagons full of bags, or people with a few bags full who have made it a family tradition,” he said. “It’s a great way to share your good fortune with others, before you go home to eat the big dinner.”

In addition to refreshments, “fun prizes” are awarded in a variety of categories, including oldest runner, youngest runner, biggest group and more. Those prizes include tokens like gift certificates to local merchants. This year, there will also be a live auction for a one-year membership to the Spring Creek Athletic Club, after the race.

“It’s a good value, and if you can pick it up at auction to support a good cause, well, even better,” Manzone said.

Runners, walkers and non-participants may all bid on the auction, which will take place after all racers are back at the Trading Post. Manzone said he expected that to be at about 10 a.m.

The Gobble for Groceries run will be held, rain, snow or shine, on Thanksgiving morning at 9 a.m. For more information or to pre-register, call the Trading Post at 592-4455.

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