Albuquerque welcomed Thanksgiving with its annual Turkey Trot

By: Izabella Kubiak / NM News Port

On Nov. 23, Albuquerque hosted its annual ‘Turkey Trot’ to celebrate Thanksgiving. The Turkey Trot was at Balloon Fiesta Park and had medals for completing the race. 

Families across Albuquerque woke up early on Thanksgiving morning to compete at 7 a.m. The race was an optional run or walk for all competitors.

Saskia Trefethen watched her family compete this year in the turkey trot, which is a tradition for her family. 

 “The Turkey trot is an annual thing for my family. It’s one of those traditions that some families like doing on Thanksgiving. It brings us together,” Trefethen said.

Families of all ages ran the 5k loop; from toddlers to elders, racers dotted the trail. Racers dawned Turkey-themed outfits, some with silly Turkey hats and others in full onesies for the trot. 

Racer dressed in festive Turkey onesie
image by Izabella Kubiak

“It’s fun to see everyone festive for the race,”  Jane Cudney, who was cheering her friends and family on this year but has competed in the past, said. “It’s nice to know that everyone here got up early with their family to bond and have fun on Thanksgiving together.”

An inflatable Turkey marked the finish line and a host announced when racers crossed. Next to the finish were medals for the racers with a Turkey on the front to commemorate the trot.

Medals for completing the race
image by Izabella Kubiak

Those who weren’t racing supported their friends and family competing by cheering loudly at the finish line.

Families at Balloon Fiesta Park took pictures together to celebrate completing the trot. Some dawned their medals and cheered on the sidelines for other racers and encouraged them to finish.

Most trotters enjoyed the race, but some, like Jared Taylor, a UNM student, were not impressed with the trot at first, but the race made a good first impression. 

“I thought that waking up early would suck, you know,” Taylor said. “But it seemed fun for my family that ran today. I think next year I’d definitely run.” 

Racers who finished were encouraged to cheer on other competitors still running their 5k. 

“I think my favorite part was watching racers finish and also cheer on their friends when they finished, too,” said Trefethen. “It really motivates people to really get out there and compete, I saw 9-year-olds sprinting at the end after people cheered.” 

Albuquerque’s next trot will be hosted on Nov. 28, Thanksgiving morning, in 2024. New Mexicans who want to compete in next year’s race are encouraged to spread the word and dress up in costume for the event.