Year after bad clucks, Turkey Trot organizer promises great race

Event a Thanksgiving Day tradition

Margaret Hurley knows Turkey Trot 2013 was a disaster in the minds of many.

That’s why she and other organizers of the annual Ohio River Road Runners Club run/walk held in Miamisburg are making changes to the beloved Thanksgiving Day event, now in its 36th year.

“We want people to give us a try this year,” said Hurley, who is co-chairing the five-mile and one-mile runs with her boyfriend Greg Bell. “We think we’ve got this all fixed.”

The problem

Last year, the event was held for the first time at 480 Vantage Point on the Mound Technologies complex. This led to congestion.

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“We had a hard time getting people out of the start and finish,” Hurley said. “We had two hours to get 10,000 people down one road.

A record, 10,725 people registered for last year’s Turkey Trot.

After enduring a backup on State Route 725 and fighting the crowd and fighting for parking, participants arrived to the race line late or never made it at all.

Read: Turkey Trot trouble: Traffic stops race for hundreds

The fixes

More than 8,000 people are expected to take part in Turkey Trot 2014.

The race has been moved back to downtown Miamisburg, where it was held in previous years. The course will be in a loop, and street parking is available, Hurley said.

It will start at the intersection of Main Street and Linden Avenue and finish in Riverfront Park, approximately one block from the start.

“It is easier to get people in and out of downtown because there are multiple roads,” Hurley said. “We want to avoid all of the congestion and for people have a great experience. We just want people to be happy.”

Why Trot

Registration for the 5 mile run/walk , the 1,600-member running club’s largest fundraiser, is $30 for those age 15 and older. The mile run is $20. The price of the races is $5 less for those younger than age 15.

Participants can register online and by mail until Nov. 20. A registration expo will be held from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 26 in a tent at Riverfront Park.

The race starts at 8:30 a.m.

Try to roll into Miamisburg at 7:30 a.m., Hurley said.

She said Turkey Trot is a tradition for many area families that starts off the holiday season on a healthy note.

“The big focus really for us is family getting out there and having a nice run or walk and doing it together,” Hurley said.

Contact this blogger at arobinson@DaytonDailyNews.com or Twitter.com/DDNSmartMouth

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