First annual Turkey Trot helps kids at holiday

GVL Archive / unknown
Runners can participate in the upcoming 5K Turkey Trot

GVL Archive / unknown Runners can participate in the upcoming 5K Turkey Trot

Chelsea Stoskopf

Just in time for Thanksgiving, the Grand Valley State University running club and organization Kids in Motion will team up to host the first annual Turkey Trot on Nov. 20.

The Turkey Trot is a 5K race around GVSU with proceeds benefiting Kids Food Basket and Kids in Motion organizations. Kids Food Basket provides meals and empowerment programs to underprivileged children in Grand Rapids, and Kids in Motion is a new GVSU student organization focused on coaching sports camps and leagues and providing scholarships to underprivileged kids for sports programs.

“I am really excited to be hosting this event,” said junior Eryn Mickevicius, president of Kids in Motion. “I think it will be a great opportunity to get our name out there and raise money for our organization and for Kids Food Basket as well.”

Mickevicius said Kids in Motion plans to hold a large fundraiser about once a month, including a three-on-three basketball tournament and an all-night swing dance event.

“We thought it would be something that many students and community members would be interested in participating in,” she said. “Since we are a sports-themed organization, many of our fundraisers have to do with sports as well.”

Junior Elizabeth Koltonow, vice president of Kids in Motion, said she thought of the idea for the race over the summer. As a part of the running club, she discovered the club planned to hold a race around the same time.

“They agreed to team up to co-sponsor the race and split the proceeds,” she said. “We have been planning it … for the majority of the semester.”

Kevin Hausfeld, financing coordinator for the Running Club, said the club has not held a race since it first started in 2005.

“We decided on a Turkey Trot in November because we wanted our race to have an element of fun to it and not just be a random race,” he said. “Turkey Trots take place in a lot of different places around Thanksgiving. It is a race that is generally fun. Some runners come to take it seriously, and some come dressed in costumes and have a good time.”

Kids in Motion T-shirts will be sold for $10 on race day, and a raffle will be held. Raffle tickets will be given out for each nonperishable item donated, Koltonow said.

“I think these are both great causes,” Hausfeld said. “Benefiting underprivileged children and helping to ensure they have food on their tables as well as get to enjoy sports are very important to us. We are thrilled to hopefully be making a difference for local kids, especially around the holidays.”

To register, fill out a form found at or at locations around campus. E-mail registration to [email protected]. Registration costs $10 before Nov. 15 or $15 on race day. Registration ends Nov. 15 at 11:59 p.m. Participants will receive their race packets at 7:30 a.m. on Nov. 20 in the Kirkhof Center. The race will begin at 9 a.m. under the Clock tower.

Learn more about the Kids Food Basket at

[email protected]