Jasper Track Club president Brad Baugh said this year’s Thanksgiving 5K won’t be like past runs.
“It’s going to be a more relaxed event,” Baugh said.
The Track Club won’t be spending money on T-shirts or prizes, and runners are being asked to donate canned goods in lieu of a registration fee.
The food will be delivered to local needy families by Jasper’s own “Grinch” and other Track Club members following the Jingle Bell Run on Dec. 4.
Baugh said the Club made a last-minute decision to deliver food, including several turkeys, after last year’s Jingle Bell Run.
Baugh said the runners felt so encouraged by the giveaway that some got their local churches involved and organized more drives.
“As we delivered the food, we saw that there was a need for clothing, toys and other things,” he said.
Baugh said Thanksgiving runs usually give athletes an excuse to eat a little more and provide an opportunity to get together with friends on a special holiday.
However, the Jasper Track Club wants to do something more.
“We’re a group of runners who have a community service agenda,” Baugh said.
The Thanksgiving run will be held at 9 a.m. at the Memorial Park Natatorium on Thursday. Registration begins at 8 a.m.