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Turkey Trot runners start Thanksgiving on the move in Florence

November 23, 2018

FLORENCE, S.C. – More than 80 members of the Florence community chose to begin their Thanksgiving festivities with a 5K run.

According to the results, held in the neighborhood around Briggs Elementary School, 88 runners participated in the Turkey Trot. The top female runners overall were Emily Procik, Ashley Bratton, and Caroline Falcone. The top male runners overall were Ross Procik, Harry Stone III and Matthew Ferguson. The fastest runner was Ross Procik, who finished the course in 17:58.58.

Five kilometers is equivalent to 3.107 miles. The race began about 8:30 a.m. Thursday. The course began at Briggs Elementary School, went down Wysteria Drive to DeBerry Boulevard along Hillside Avenue before returning to Wysteria Drive.

One of the organizers, Stephen Thompson, said the Turkey Trot was in its sixth year. He said the idea started from a conversation between members of the First Presbyterian Church located a few blocks north of Briggs.

He said the trot had become something of a Thanksgiving tradition in Florence, and he has gotten to know several of the participants over the past six years.

“You’ll see moms and dads and kids running in it,” Thompson said. “I guess you can feel a little less guilty about the extra helping of stuffing because you’ve managed to burn some calories in the morning.”

Thompson said some of the proceeds from the race will go to toward missionary activity in Zambia. A couple of the original organizers, he said, were in the country as missionaries.

Zambia is a country in southern Africa. It borders the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the northeast, Malawi to the east, Mozambique to the southeast, Zimbabwe and Botswana to the south, Namibia to the southwest and Angola to the west. Zambia became independent of the United Kingdom in 1964, and its population is estimated at more than 16.5 million people.

This year, the group has raised more than $1,000.

In previous years, some of the proceeds have been donated to the House of Hope and other charities.

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