The 2016 Naperville Turkey Trot

Runners, joggers and walkers all came out this morning for the 2016 Turkey Trot.

“Today we’re expecting about 7,950 runners. Our first year was in 1998, we only had 300 people running in the race, so we have become quite the race in Naperville,” said President of the Naperville Noon Lions Club, Stephen Hertzberg.

This was the 19th annual 5k race hosted by the Naperville Noon Lions Club, raising funds that help local people in need get sight and hearing assistance. (the lions hope that this years race is able to raise over 200,000 dollars)

“We hope to make over $200,000 this year. In the last three years alone, we’ve helped over 1,250 individuals at a cost of over $300,000, so a lot of the money we make at this event today is going to go right to that sort of thing,” added Hertzberg.

For many people, this has become a Thanksgiving tradition, with 80 percent of participants running with a family group, and with 66 percent of this year’s runners having previously participated.

“I’ve run it before, it’s kind of personal I try to see if I can do better than I did four years ago. I just wanted to be a part of it. Looking forward to next year as well,” said race participant Natasha Sims.

“It’s become quite a tradition. They start their Thanksgiving day here at the Turkey Trot at 8 o’clock, they have a wonderful time here. Then they can go off and enjoy the rest of their holiday. And they look forward to it year to year. It seems to grow with popularity every year,” said Hertzberg.

A Naperville tradition of giving thanks, and giving back.

Naperville News 17’s Evan Summers reports.

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