MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. -- With the crack of the starting pistol, 1,100 runners started the final Marine Corps Marathon event of the year aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico on Nov. 23, 2013.
Runners from 19 states found a beautiful autumn morning when they arrived at Lejeune Hall to run either the sixth-annual Turkey Trot 10K or Turkey Trot Miler.
“We sold out this year,” said Amy Sullivan, events coordinator. “We have 1,100 entries for our 10k and 300 entries for the one-mile race.”
Those taking the 6.2-mile challenge varied in age from eight to75 years old. Avah, 9, decided to run even after already participating in three other MCM events this year including a 10K, 3-mile and 4-mile run.
“I ran because I like to inspire other people to run,” she said. “You should run because it’s healthy for you.”
Avah’s advice reflects one of the many reasons the marathon organizers host these events.
“We call it the preemptive strike against Thanksgiving calories,” said Tami Faram, public relations coordinator, MCM, referring to the Turkey Trot 10K. “We really just want everybody to come out and enjoy it.”
Sullivan agreed and said the event helps to fulfill the MCM goals, “to generate community good will, promote physical fitness and showcase the organizational skills of the United States Marine Corps. This [event] gives us a chance to apply all three of those in a smaller, more intimate setting than that of the marathon.”
Frozen turkeys for first place finishers and pumpkin pies for second place finishers weren’t the only awards presented.
For the first time in MCM history, 110 runners received the Distinguished Participant Medal for running in the four following events: one of the Historic Half events, the Crossroads 4-Miler, Run Amuck and the Turkey Trot 10K.
“It really shows we have runners who are dedicated and committed to the Marine Corps Marathon,” said Faram.
The next MCM event is the 17.75K run on April, 12, 2014. Registration opens on Feb. 19. For information, visit www.marinemarathon.com.