Thanksgiving Turkey Trot
On Thanksgiving morning, more than 218 children toed the starting line at the Long Island City YMCA. Kids ranging in age from two years old to 18 raced 100 to 1000 meters to kick off their Turkey Day. The second annual Kids Turkey Fun Run / Walk hosted by Mount Sinai Queens was a family event designed to celebrate healthy living, fun, and our diverse community. Coach Kenneth Young of the LIC Runners Running Club of the Long Island City YMCA said, “Our group wanted to share our passion for running with the community. It’s also a great way for us to help raise awareness and money for the YMCA’s Strong Kids Campaign.” The event raised $3,000 for the YMCA’s annual Strong Kids Campaign which ensures that no child or family is turned away from life-enhancing YMCA programs because of the inability to pay.
YMCA of Greater New York CEO Jack Lund commented, “I am excited about what our branch is doing for raising the awareness of our Strong Kids Campaign and also giving Queens a great Thanksgiving tradition.”
Holding the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning recognizes the partnership between the YMCA and Mount Sinai Queens in standing at the forefront of combating the pediatric obesity epidemic in New York City. A shocking 21.3 percent of the city’s elementary school children are obese compared to 19.6 percent nationally.
One of New York City’s leading medical facilities, Mount Sinai Queens served as the race’s title sponsor. Pediatricians were on hand to quiz children and families using an interactive game, “How much sugar is in your drink?” Activities included a mini Zumba class, a Capoeira warm-up and stretch, face painting, pictures with the Turkey, and a post-race dance and awards celebration. Twenty four trophies were awarded to boys and girls across the age groups.
The event concluded with a few words from City Comptroller John Liu. The YMCA of Greater New York is a community service organization which promotes positive values through programs that build spirit, mind and body, welcoming all people, with a focus on youth.