NRHS SENIOR Olivia Bakr was the winner of the 14th annual Turkey Trot long sleeved shirt design contest held through Brett Kunze’s Graphic Design class. Offering congratulations is Josh Rocco, a member of the Turkey Trot Committee. (Courtesy Photo)


NORTH READING — We are one week away from the return of the 5K Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving here in North Reading and the excitement is building! At press time there remain fewer than 50 spots before online registration is closed at the 1,500 registrant cap. Registration will close as soon as those 50 spots are taken or at midnight on Saturday, Nov. 18, whichever is sooner.

The race is organized by The North Reading Hornet Hall of Fame and is supported by additional sponsors: Farrelly Realty Group, SourcePromo, nuimage Entertainment, Marathon Sports, True North Realty, Horseshoe Grille, The Keyes Family, Aesthetic Dentistry, China Cuisine, Pizza Goddess, CDG Realty & Renovation, Lady Di’s Barbershop, Reading Gymnastics Academy, Denaro Chiropractic, Joker’s Wild, North Reading Diamond Club, North Reading Knights of Columbus, The Carucci family, Cervizzi’s Martial Arts Academy, and Kitty’s Restaurant, Por-Shun, and Torra Law. Check out the race website for links to these sponsors.


The Costume Contest held during the last couple of years has been a big hit! Joker’s Wild has again donated gift certificates to be distributed to three participants running or walking in costume that make the biggest splash. This is in addition to the awards offered from Marathon Sports to the top two finishers in the usual age group and family categories.

The costume winners will receive their award on race day. Those 5K runners finishing in the top two spots in each age-group will have their awards mailed to them this year.


Some notes about pre-race pick-up and the can/food drive:

Pre-race pick-up is Tuesday, Nov. 21, from 4–7 p.m., at North Reading MS/HS, 189 Park Street.

The school campus should be entered at the scoreboard end of the football field, drive up the hill to the parking area behind the school where you will park. Enter the school building by the fitness center. There will be signage inside directing you to the Middle School cafeteria.

Those picking up bibs on Tuesday will need to know the bib number as those will be assigned in the general order in which participants registered. Bib numbers will be emailed next Monday, Nov. 20 prior to pick up. When you enter the cafeteria look for the signs placed over each table indicating the bibs available at that station. After picking up bibs and pins, folks will proceed to the High School cafeteria to pick up long sleeve performance shirts.

The bibs will be available on race day in Ipswich River Park beginning at 6:45 a.m., but please save yourself from added stress by not waiting.

Please feel free to have a friend pick up for you if you cannot make it to the school personally.

All runners who registered by midnight Nov. 5 will receive the shirt size ordered when the bib is picked up.


The NRMS Early Act Club is conducting a can/food drive for the North Reading Food Pantry Tuesday evening. Please consider donating items of need as the holiday season is here. A few of the items that are needed: cereal, flavored instant oatmeal packets, rice/pasta sides, and family sized snacks to name a few. A list of needs can be viewed at


  • Strollers are welcome; this is very much a family event. We ask that the strollers start toward the back of the pack to avoid jostling when the race begins. Your clock will not begin until you cross the mats at the start line.


  • Please, no dogs. There are lots of young children who may not share your love of dogs. Additionally, not all dogs get along with other dogs; the last thing we want is a dog fight in the middle of 1500+ runners. Please leave them at home; you will not be away from your pet for long.
  • No bikes or rollerblades.
  • A new race course has been announced due to the temporary closure of Chestnut Street at Park Street and the maps were published in the Transcript and remain available to view on the Turkey Trot website ( The course starts and ends inside Ipswich River Park, 15 Central St., at 8 a.m., and will be well marked

The race committee is excited to continue the tradition of producing a great start to your Thanksgiving Day. The NRHS Hornet football team is on the road at Lynnfield High School this year and you will have plenty of time to run/walk, get home for a quick clean up, and head to the game for the 10:30 a.m. start to cheer them on!