Thanksgiving Day Run a Growing Tradition
The Gobble Jog raises funds for MUST Ministries and is a qualifier for the Peachtree Road Race.
Marietta's Gobble Jog has become a Thanksgiving holiday tradition in Cobb County in just eight years.
The race benefits MUST Ministries, which provides such essential services as food, clothing and medical care to families in need. People turn out at Marietta Square by the thousands to enjoy fresh air and exercise before their normal Thanksgiving celebration starts.
Betsy Mathews, the chairwoman of events for MUST Ministries, said the race was the idea of a business owner who wanted something to do for people who didn't go out of town at Thanksgiving.
It's the largest fundraiser for MUST, which expects to net around $200,000 this year.
On race day, 275 volunteers help things go smoothly, while many more work behind the scenes long before Thanksgiving Day rolls around.
Mathews said more than 1,000 children and teens will stretch their legs as they run beside parents and siblings. There is even something for younger kids: The Tot Trot lets kids 5 and younger enjoy themselves as they run to the cheers of their parents.
Businesses also participate in the Gobble Jog. Co-workers mingle, wearing matching T-Shirts while cheering their teammates on to the finish.
Participants can choose to run a 10K, 5K, 1K or the Tot Trot, so there is something for everyone's skill level. The respective distances are 6.2 miles, 3.1 miles, 0.6 mile and around Marietta Square.
The race is a qualifier for the Peachtree Road Race and US 10k Classic, and every participant gets a Gobble Jog T-Shirt.
This year more than 7,000 people from all 50 states are expected to participate, Mathews said. Same-day registration is available.