Weaver, Turzian win Turkey Trot
A big day of celebration, with a little bit of snow.
For the 30th time, the annual Turkey Day 5k running and walking event welcomed holiday enthusiasts of all ages, shapes, and sizes to the fairways of the Glenwood Springs Golf Club for a scenic 3.1 mile calorie-burning stroll on a sunny Thanksgiving morning.
440 participants were on hand Thursday to get some exercise, sample a bit of good food, and catch up with old friends who were in town for the holiday season. The large turnout, on a chilly November morning, is in stark contrast to the race’s inaugural running in 1986, when 17 locals showed up to begin a tradition that has swelled through the last three decades into Glenwood’s largest fitness gathering.
It’s a tradition that is not lost on longtime native, and race director Steve Vanderhoof.
“We really didn’t have much to with the race in the early years,” said Vanderhoof, who also receives help from Glenwood High School cross country coaches Mike Schneiter and Mark Bauer in putting on the popular event. “It would be nice, down the road, to have our names mentioned along with Bob Willey and Paul Driskill, who were some of the initial runners and pioneers.”
Schneiter views his involvement in much the same light as Vanderhoof.
“It’s an honor to be a part of this. It’s a natural fit for the cross country team to be involved in a running event that is so important to the Glenwood community. It is a lot of work, but it’s work that is worth it, and a lot of fun,” said Schneiter.
Though the focus of the Turkey Day 5k has always been on participation and celebration, there were some pretty fast runners who showed up to test their mettle on the sloping nine-hole golf course that is aptly nicknamed “The Hill.”
Carbondale’s Casey Weaver was able to manage his way around the scenic layout, which was covered with a light dusting of fresh snow in an impressive time of 17 minutes, 14 seconds to claim the overall race victory. Weaver, who specializes in marathons and ultra-trail races, makes Glenwood’s Thanksgiving run a must-do on his calendar each year.
“I grew up in Carbondale, and I first did this race when I was a freshman at Roaring Fork High School,” said Weaver. “This is an awesome community event. It’s one of the few 5k’s that I do each year.” Morgan Elliot (17:32) and Cody Nichol (17:38) rounded out the top three overall.
The top spot for the women went to Alexa Turzian of Ketchum, Idaho. Turzian’s time was 21:09, which was good for 12th place overall. Melissa Goodman recorded a time of 21:36 for second place, with Heather Price coming to the finish line in 22:17 for third among the ladies.
All proceeds from the Turkey Day 5k will go toward helping out the girls and boys of the Glenwood High cross country and swimming teams.
The last local running event on the 2016 calendar will take place on Sunday, December 18 in Carbondale, as Independence Run and Hike will host the annual Jingle Bell 5k Run at 11am.
Top 10 Males: 1. Casey Weaver, 17 minutes, 14 seconds; 2. Morgan Elliot, 17: 32; 3. Cody Nichol, 17:38; 4. Henry Barth, 18:30; 5. Jeason Murphy, 18:58; 6. Kevin Morgan, 19:01; 7. Ian Richardson, 19:02; 8. Jeremy Duncan, 19:09; 9. Gavin Harden, 19:31; 10. Ryan Wilch, 20:02.
Top Ten Females: 1. Alexa Turzian, 21:09; 2. Melissa Goodman, 21:36; 3. Heather Price, 22:17; 4. Amy Rollins, 22:20; 5. Dana Peterson, 22:28; 6. Erica Diemoz, 23:10; 7. Annie Murphy, 24:23; 8. Elle Murphy, 25:39; 9. Else Dodge, 25:44; 10. Matilda Barth, 25:45.
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Amid hundreds of cleat-footed little leaguers casually gathered along the first baseline, the glare of parents’ sunglasses deflecting the early morning sun, coach Troy Phillips began a trip down memory lane.