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2020 Turkey Trot Update

by Colleen Paveglio
Friday, November 13, 2020

The City of Traverse City considers the health and safety of our residents and visitors a top
priority. To reduce transmission of COVID-19, the City has revoked the 2020 Turkey Trot
permit for an in-person race.

“Recognizing that the Turkey Trot is a special racing event that has been held in Traverse City
for the past 12 years and that we are proud to host, the City has made the difficult decision to
revoke the 2020 permit. Safety applies equally to each individual, family, organization, and
employer, and we must do our part to fight COVID-19 together,” says City Manager Martin
Colburn.

The Turkey Trot’s 2020 permit was issued in early March 2020 by the City, just before COVID-
19 became a public health issue. In light of recent CDC guidelines for social distancing and the

potential risk to public health, coupled with the volume of participants at the event, the City must place safety forefront. In recent weeks, Michigan has seen record numbers for those infected with COVID-19. The Grand Traverse Region has experienced a significant increase in COVID-19 infections and seen more COVID-related casualties recently than in the last four months combined.

“Placing the safety and protection of our community must come first. We are saddened to not be able to host this special event, but supportive of the City taking the lead on guidance for safety measures as it relates to COVID-19,” says Mayor Jim Carruthers.

“There is nothing of greater importance than the safety of our residents and visitors. While we
look forward to a time when events such as the Turkey Trot are possible, we encourage our
community to stand in solidarity as we continue to make the right choices to protect human lives and keep people safe,” says City Commissioner and Mayor Pro Tem Amy Shamroe.

The 5K race was slated to take place on Thursday, November 26, 2020 and has approximately
2,800 participants each year. The City is supportive of the Turkey Trot organization hosting a
virtual event.

“This was not an easy or quick decision. Ultimately, the safety of our fellow runners, walkers,
staff and volunteers are most important. Our beloved Traverse City tradition is taking a turn, but
like every year, we will all finish strong,” says Turkey Trot Organizer, Brian Hagerty.