GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – While Thanksgiving is strictly turkey day to some, it’s also race day to others.
This included more than 5,000 Upstate residents that participated in the 14th annual TreesUpstate Turkey Day run this morning.
Being the third largest race in the state, this is a critical fundraiser for TreesUpstate, who has a focus on planting and protecting trees.
“TreesUpstate is a nonprofit funded in 2005 and our mission is really simple…plant, promote and protect trees,” said Joelle Teachey, executive director of TreesUpstate. “This is a critical fundraiser for the organization, it provides us the funds to do our work.”
The organization said as the city of Greenville continues to grow, so does preparation for this race.
“We start working with the city of Greenville Police Department in February to get our course,” said Teachey. “With Greenville growing there’s so much construction, a racecourse always takes a while.”
From rookies to veteran turkey trotters, the holiday run makes up the third largest race in the state. TreesUpstate said this year stood out.
“By far this year we have had a record turnout, record registrations,” said Teachey. “This is the most beautiful Thanksgiving morning we have had in the past 14 years.”
The new course for the 5k traveled along the Greenville Zoo and the Reedy River, while the 8k included a run around Unity Park.
In an effort to make the Upstate greener, this week runners picked up free trees before the big day, given through the Energy Saving Trees program with Duke Energy.