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The 10th Annual Zack’s Place Turkey Trot Takes Off!

Nov 09, 2016 03:25PM ● By Kirsten Gehlbach
The Zack's Turkey Trot,
a 5K run and walk held on Thanksgiving Day, was first established in 2007 and has become a dependable annual fundraiser ever since. In 2007, almost 200 people participated. In 2015, over 1,500 people participated and raised $64,000. All proceeds of the race are dedicated to the operational costs of Zack's Place.

This year, on the morning of November 24, the Turkey Trot Run/Walk will take off in Woodstock. As participants line up and register for the race, they’ll be entertained by a band on a flatbed truck. Hot coffee, tea, and hot chocolate will be offered.

The race begins in front of the Woodstock Elementary School at 10am, with the more skilled runners in front and the rest following. The run meanders through the historic village of Woodstock, then on toward Billings Farm, around Mountain Avenue, and back around the Town Green to end at the starting line. An award ceremony, also with refreshments and a band, follows the race, and medals will be presented. Families run together as college kids and relatives gather for the Thanksgiving celebration. Grandparents and young children in strollers participate as walkers, and dogs join in as well.

This has become a tradition for many in the Woodstock area; however, many “satellite participants” who cannot be in Woodstock run with family members wherever they are. Some run in Hawaii, Italy, New York City, and other places to support the mission of Zack’s Place. This is indeed a day of thanks when individuals help support Zack’s enrichment center and give thanks for their own blessings at the same time.

There are many reasons to run. The first is that this event keeps Zack’s Place’s doors open from 9am to 5pm with free programs that enhance the lives of friends with special needs from all over the Upper Valley. These programs include quality field trips, education, art, and fitness. This event raises important funds to make all that happen, and 100 percent goes to Zack’s Place.

7 great reasons to register and run:

1. You’ll get exercise.

2. You’ll be part of a community event.

3. You’ll be giving, and giving feels good.

4. You’ll get a really cool T-shirt.

5. You’ll be a part of something important.

6. You’ll be home by 11:30am (depending on how far you live from Woodstock).

7. You’ll get a chance to spend quality time with neighbors, community members, family, and friends, all for a great cause.

The link to sign up is and the runner entry fee is $30. Contact: (802) 369-0487, [email protected].

Mission of Zack’s Place

Our mission is to provide a setting Monday through Friday for pre- and post-graduates with special needs to explore culture, education, business, and fitness while developing bonds of friendship. Our approach engages participants with the material, their instructors, and one another. Through these programs, ZP participants contribute and benefit from the community.

Inclusive enrichment programs are offered to people with special needs and the community at large. Through these partnership programs, professional instructors and volunteers offer cultural, artistic, musical, theater, adaptive sports, educational, fitness, and fieldtrips.

All are welcome at ZP—regardless of age or ability—and programs are provided at no cost to participants.

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