Turkey Trot Participants Walked 1,101 Miles In First-Ever Event


The results are in and the verdict is clear — we have some mighty fit “turkeys” in this town.

Julia Randall Elementary School (JRE) students that participated in the inaugural Turkey Trot Nov. 23 walked on average two miles each and 1,101 miles total, according to students at Payson Center for Success (PCS).

At Monday’s school board meeting, nine PCS students delivered results from the event. High school students tracked third- through fifth-graders’ laps during the daylong trot, where students ran in 45-minute time blocks.

More than 500 elementary students participated, running or walking around Green Valley Park’s upper loop in feathered paper caps.

Fifth-graders covered the most miles for the day, making up 35 percent of all miles walked.

On average, fifth grade classes covered 65 miles each, fourth grade classes, 60 miles and third grade classes, 40 miles.

Although all students did a great job, several classes walked the extra mile. Amongst third grade classes, Pam Jones’ covered the most miles with 54. In fourth grade, Julie Eckhart’s class walked 77 miles and amongst fifth grade classes, Carolyn Crisp’s class walked the most with 73 miles.

PCS students said the event was a great way for elementary students to get exercise and was a fun way for them to spend the afternoon. But they also offered a few suggestions for next year’s Turkey Trot.

“Create a more structured start so that the kids don’t go running around like crazy everywhere when it starts,” one student said.

And have high school students run/walk with the kids to keep them motivated to finish the 45-minute block.

High schoolers said they would also like to help pick out the music played at the event.

PCS teacher Linda Gibson said it is amazing there was music at all. Michael Rose, with Payson Sound, had very short notice of the event, but his tunes “were a huge benefit to its success.”

The idea for the Turkey Trot came from JRE physical education teacher Donna Moore.

PCS students who worked on analyzing the data from the Turkey Trot included: Jeff Kelley, Jeff Pilkington, Matt Harris, Kaylen McBride, Porsha Campbell, Tori Buce, Rhett Bishop, Anaiah Blair, Chris Bickert, Summer Kelley, Blaze Nicholls and Mercedeze Campbell, Gibson said.


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