9th Annual North Texas Turkey Trot in Frisco
9th Annual North Texas Turkey Trot in Frisco
SHOW NOTES:[02:27] Rain or shine the event is on!
[02:38] How many participants take part in the Turkey Trot?
[04:13] What’s new in 2019 and what are the run options?
[05:36] Who benefits from the North Texas Turkey Trot?
[06:41] What sports does the Miracle League of Frisco provide?
[09:30] Are dogs welcome?
[13:57] Get your picture in front of the step-and-repeat wall.
[15:40] 46 states and 5 countries taking part in the Turkey Trot.
[18:19] Parking and getting around the day of the event.
[19:01] Start times.
[19:40] How to register.
[20:51] Volunteer if you need service hours.
LINKS & RESOURCES:
- North Texas Turkey Trot
- Miracle League of Frisco
- Full article about North Texas Turkey Trot
- Give For Frisco: Miracle League of Frisco
Connect with Lifestyle Frisco on:
Welcome to the Frisco podcast. I’m your host, Scott Ellis, and today we are joined by Alison Byram from the North Texas Turkey Trot. It’s that time of year again. Allison, welcome to the show. Scott, thanks for having me. I cannot believe it’s November already. I know that, uh, the Turkey Trot is going to sneak up on us pretty fast. I know, I honestly can’t believe it. And this is going to be our ninth year doing the North Texas Turkey Trot. Thank you. And yours is a, that’s a bunch in Frisco. That’s a long time in Frisco. We were, you know, we got started before fresco was really getting started or as it was getting started. We’ve really grown with the city. 2010 was the first year, 2011, 2011 was the first year. And I haven’t been involved since the very beginning, but I know a lot of the committee and a lot of our participants have been involved since the beginning.
So it’s excited. It’s exciting to have made it this far. So great segue into the first question and that is how did you become involved in the North Texas Turkey trial? Oh, that’s a really, really good question. When I was out, I own my own PR consulting firm for a while now and I got involved by way of some people that I knew that were on the board of the miracle league of Frisco. And so the North Texas Turkey Trot raises money for the miracle league. So it was just kind of a, a perfect marriage for me. An organization that I really care a lot about. The miracle league of Frisco supports kids with special needs, providing sports opportunities and across seven different sports. And I know we’ll get into that a little bit, but just by way of knowing people in Frisco and got plugged in and found it was a cause that I really cared about.
And what’s more fun than getting up on Thanksgiving with thousands of Frisco residents and people from surrounding suburbs and you know, putting on a cool tee shirt and maybe a Turkey hat and you know, sweating it out before you eat all the Thanksgiving calories. I’ve done a few runs on Thanksgiving morning in my time and I tell you, it is very, uh, satisfying to go burn off those calories before you take them all in again. So absolutely. Wow. I eat double because I cause I’ve earned it. Right. And I encourage everyone to do that too. I’m very good and hopefully we’ll have a good weather again this year for the Turkey Trot. I hope so. Last year was beautiful and I know you and Wendy and the lifestyle Frisco team were out. The weather was perfect and I always say with Texas and our unpredictable weather, you know, some years we’re putting the layers on and some years we’re taking them off who’s to say what this year’s going to look like, but we are a rain or shine event.
So you know, despite, you know, unless crazy ice appears and it’s just not safe to do the rice, we will be there. So want people to know that uh, yeah, something you can depend on and thanks so many people come out to the event. Let me, let me rephrase that. Cause I know a lot of people come out, but how many people run? Sure. So and just, it’s funny, there is this interesting, in 2011 we had 1600 participants and I was saying the race has really grown as Frisco has grown. Last year we had more than 8,000 participants and more than 12,000 on the race site. We’re expecting more than that this year. It way, you know, the grassroots nature of how this event has really grown year over year is so exciting to see. And with all the new families moving to Frisco and surrounding areas, you know, it makes sense that our event is has grown and we’re just really, really excited about it.
Well good. Congratulations on all that growth. Yeah, that’s a lot of, that’s a lot of runners. I know we’re actually the city of Frisco’s largest active lifestyle event, which is great because it’s an industry that has kind of senior, we saw some rapid growth over the years and it’s kind of just spin a little stagnant or even declining in some markets just because you saw so many races pop up. So for ours to continue to grow despite an industry that’s maybe not doing as well, I think just speaks volumes to the team that works behind this. And I think to the dedication of, you know, and the beauty that is tradition, you know, we have all of these families who come out year after year and they’ve, you know, when they started, their kids were teeny tiny and being pushed in a stroller and now they’re able to maybe run the five K on their own.
So, you know, we’re really thankful that the city of Frisco has made this their Thanksgiving day tradition and just continues to come out and, and sweat with us and have some fun. And it is a fun tradition and we love being a part of it. What, uh, what, if anything is changing this year compared to years past? You know, not a lot has changed just because, you know, the event has, has been running so smoothly and we offer three options that people really do enjoy. We’ve got the miracle mile, the five K and the 10 K. so there really is something for everyone. We’re going to have our sponsor village like we did last year. I know you all are going to be out there, lifestyle Frisco with your booth and your step and repeat so people can certainly count on opportunities to interact with your team and get their photo taken.
Our mascot, the Turkey’s going to be around, you know, giving hugs to all of the kids and high fives to purchase. He was very popular last year and he enjoys it. One of our great volunteers that’s dressed up as the Turkey, you know, year after year. So what we’re thankful, you know, some years it can probably get quite a warm inside of that costume. So for his sake, maybe, I hope it’s a little cooler this year, but, um, so no, I think more of the same. Um, we’re going to, like I said, have a, have some of our sponsors out there. We’re going to have lifestyle, Frisco, Frisco, running company, uh, Academy and Dallas sidekicks all on board this year. So we’ve got a really great roster of sponsors and just want to say, you know, without our sponsors, you know, this event is, it wouldn’t be what it is.
And without everyone’s, you know, dedication year after year to coming out our event wouldn’t be what it is. Which leads me to the main reason why do we do this? Well, one, it’s a fun family friendly Thanksgiving tradition too. It’s the time of year for giving back. And so 100% of the proceeds from the North Texas Turkey Trot go to benefit the miracle league of Frisco, which is a nonprofit organization that has been in Frisco since 2005 and offering opportunities for children with special needs. And what’s interesting is the miracle league and Frisco is the largest one in the country by the number of sports that we offer. We offer seven sports. Wow. So you know, the North Texas Turkey Trot is our largest fundraising event of the year. So if it weren’t for our sponsors and everyone coming out, you know, we wouldn’t be able to year after year, offer all of these sports opportunities to these.
Just amazing athletes and scholarships in uniform. So it’s, I kind of call this a twofer. You get out, you have fun and you can leave knowing that you supported a really good Frisco nonprofit who’s just making a huge difference at the end of the day. Right. I’m going to put you on the spot. Okay. You know, the seven sports with the miracle league of Frisco provide. All right, let’s see. Football, basketball, track field, cheerleading, bowling. And if I didn’t say baseball, I’m hoping I hit it with, we didn’t say baseball. Baseball number seven. Okay. So it’s a runs the gamut really. And I personally love the bowling team. It’s just a fun to watch these kids. But it all started with baseball. So, um, former Frisco may or Mike Simpson was a huge influence in reason and helped with spearhead the development of miracle league in the first place back in 2011.
And so I’m Mike Simpson, miracle league field is over it back as park on the East side of town and that’s where we play all of our baseball games. So, um, it’s really where it all started. And you know, there’s such an, I think people are starting to become aware of the growing need for opportunities for special needs, for the special needs populations for these kids and also their families. Um, it’s, it really is such a family affair. These athletes and their parents, um, just, you know, get to network with, with people like them going through same experiences and getting to play sports and settings that are designed for them. And it’s such a joy to see. And um, I know that the track team is starting to train for the Turkey Trot because they kick off the miracle mile. Very nice. So super excited, getting all trained to up and uh, Frisco, I’m running companies, actually the sponsor for our track team this year.
So it’s super excited to have them on board and because of them we can put those athletes in their uniforms, uh, and really nothing’s a better feeling for these kids. Then getting out there and hearing ready, set, go and, and firing off and the look that you see on their faces when they crossed the finish line. And we’ve got athletes that run on their own. We’ve got athletes being pushed in wheelchairs. I mean, it really runs the gamut and we have a lot of our miracle league volunteers, the buddies that are out there as well, helping their athletes make it through that mile. And uh, those of you who are out there, you’ll stand at the finish line. It’s, it’s certainly inspiring if you’re not running the race yourself, set up camp at the finish line and watch these children’s faces when they, when they crossed some true. That is a very rewarding, rewarding experience. Absolutely. I know that, uh,
anytime we do content that focuses on, uh, kids with special needs, the parents just come out. I mean, the parents come out of the woodwork and they’re so appreciative of knowing about opportunities for their kids that are designed for their kids. Um, and you know, by and large frisk is doing a pretty good job of, of, of nurturing some of those opportunities and creating some of those opportunities. I’m sure we can always do more, but I’m glad to know that uh, the North Texas Turkey Trot has such a strong tie in to the miracle league and helping those kids out with another awesome experience.
Us too. And you know, I was thinking back to um, things that make our events special and something that I want to mention. We’ve talked about families, we’ve talked about the mile, the 5k, the 10 K various opportunities to get involved walking and running. Why didn’t talk about that? We are a canine friendly event and one of my favorite things every year is seeing the dog costumes. So we’ve got adults, I’ve seen Turkey hats of every kind at this point. And we’ve got people that are more ambitious with their, their costumes. I think last year I saw a couple of people in those inflatable dinosaurs that have become quite popular at Halloween. Why not wear it again out at the Trot? Um, and I think that the dog costumes, so you can register your dog. So when you go to Trot frisco.com to sign up for the race, there is a canine signup and they get their own bandana and bib. So, um, it’s always fun for us to see all of the, and I wish that I could bring my dogs. They’re not tame enough to experience the Trot, but if you’ve got dogs that are used to being around people and walking and running and these types of events, bring them along and it’s super fun for the kids as well. Who doesn’t like to see a dog and a bandana? Thanksgiving
really truly is an event for the whole family. Even including the furry kids
and grandparents too. You guys year before last, Scott, one of the top finishers in the five K was a 70 year old man. Awesome. So talk about, we talked about inspiration from the miracle league athletes. Let’s talk about being inspired by our friends and neighbors. Um, and I, it just, it brought a smile to my face when they reported back the results and you see these people go out and get their metals and I get to do a lot of the, um, get the privilege of doing a lot of the social media around the event. So I was quite proud to post this man’s picture year before last and it got great engagement because again, who isn’t refreshed by, you know, seeing people of all ages, you know, dedicated to like I said, supporting a good cause, but also getting a little bit more fit on Thanksgiving.
Again, burning those calories. Absolutely. So you can eat double the mashed potatoes. So how long have you personally been in Frisco? I’ve been in Frisco for nine years now. Um, my husband actually brought us here. He was a teacher and coach in Frisco ISD and we now have, um, two young sons here in Frisco. And uh, it is such a great place to raise a family obviously, as evidenced by the, the growth that we’ve seen, the massive growth over the last decade and beyond and growth. That’s still to come. So I’m really just thankful for all of the various opportunities. It’s such a family friendly town. And I was talking to, um, you know, Wendy about this last year and I think Nicole Baron as well. And we talk about, um, just I think, um, how refreshing it is on any given weekend. I think last weekend, lifestyle for scope put out a piece, all the different things to do this weekend and Frisco, I bet in the, in the city what used to be, you know, we can where two things were going on. Last weekend I had my choice of, you know, you had the, the, the carnival, the fair and you’ve got, you know, the Frisco square trick or treating and you know, this and that and it’s, I mean, who wouldn’t want to raise a family here? And uh, it’s just such a blessing to be able to do it.
Yeah. There is no shortage of things to do in this town on any given week. So, yeah, we published something called this week in Frisco every week. And that’s a rundown of all the events that are happening and kind of what’s going on around town. So
absolutely. And people need to subscribe to that if they haven’t. I see it every week. And like I said, as a parent, I depend on, you know, kids are not, you depend on these resource guides to tell you what the heck is going on and where you should be that weekend and especially during the holiday season and the weather’s been cooling off. And I hope that it stays kind of moderate, um, for the next several weeks before we just get, you know, cold. Um, but I think that, so thank you for that resource that you all put out every week and if you haven’t subscribed, what I encourage everyone to do that. Thank you for that plug. Yes, of course.
But it is, it’s a good resource and it’s free to subscribe. So just to go out to the lifestyle for cisco.com/subscribe and
please join us. Absolutely. Well, I will say, Scott, thank you to you and Wendy and the entire team at lifestyle Frisco for being involved. This is the second year and I wanted to say, how was your experience last year?
We had a blast last year. Um, it was very cold early in the morning when we were setting up. Um, we’ve got little chili. We didn’t come quite prepared for that, but it did start to warm up pretty quickly once the sun came up. And um, you know, about the time the coffee was running out for us that we had brought. So, uh, it was good for that, that it warmed up a little bit, but the, the step and repeat wall was incredibly popular. I was not, not only grateful, but a little surprised at how many people waited in a very long line to, uh, you know, get there, have an opportunity to take their picture in front of the step and repeat. Uh, certainly when the Turkey was there, people were shooting a picture with him as well. Um, it was a ton of fun and we’re looking forward to having all of that bag out there again this year.
Oh my gosh. Yes. It was a massive line. I want to thank everyone for waiting in that line. I want to encourage you to do it again this year in those step and repeat photos. We’re all over social media. I’m sure everyone was tagging lifestyle Frisco when a lot of them were tagging us on Instagram, where at and Turkey Trot as we’re at Lifestyle Frisco, right on Instagram, on Instagram. And then um, I I w I want to say like I said, those photos were everywhere and want to encourage everyone again tag us in these photos this year we’re on Facebook, North Texas, Turkey Trot. Like I said on Instagram, we want to see these photos and we’ll be reposting them and it’s just a, it’s so great for us to see all of the smiling faces year after year that come to this event. And uh, I wish we could keep up better track of watching.
Now that we have the step and repeat, it would be neat to see if we could start doing some comparison photos year after year so we can show how families really grow with the events. Something maybe to look forward to. But um, I’m just super excited and I know that we got so much great feedback from having you all out last year and I think this is the society we live in. Everyone loves a good step and repeat these days. It’s just fun and exciting and fresh. We really enjoy it and we get to meet a lot of people and interact with a lot of people in Frisco that we might not otherwise. So thank you. Absolutely. And I did want to say something cool about our demographics is that last year we had 46 States represented at our events. So we have a lot of people who live here whose family members come into town and do the event, which is fantastic.
And we had five countries represented last year as well, which isn’t that hard to do. We’re kind of a melting pot here in Frisco. Anyway, those countries were off hand. No I don’t. But I did tell you the seven sports in the miracle league. Just curious. Um, no, that’s, that’s um, really a great question and I need to need to find that out. But um, and another interesting thing, um, 72% of people that come out do the five K 20%, the 10 K and the rest do the miracle mile. So like I said, I think everybody likes that in between option, not too short, not too long. And I know that last year, you know, do want to tell people we do experience some congestion at times just given the nature of the course. But I appreciate everyone bearing with us and just want to say if you are pushing a stroller or something, um, or have a dog, we kind of encourage people kind of go towards the back or to the sides because we do have, it’s a family friendly event, but we do have competitive running groups that participate and um, so want to make sure that we give them room to do their thing as well or there, is it a staggered start?
It is a staggered start last year. I, so I think the miracle mile, don’t quote me, I think it starts around 8:00 AM and then the five K shortly thereafter. And then the 10K last year I stood at the start line for the five K and I think I counted 15 minutes it took to get everybody through the starting line. So again, that’s one of, you know, kind of a blessing and a curse about having such a well attended event. But you know, no complaints, everyone just appreciates the atmosphere. We had a, an exceptional energy last year that I hadn’t felt in previous years. Um, I know that, um, our MC is going to be out again this year and he’s always great at getting the team. Um, just kinda energized. We had the mayor, mayor Cheney came out last year and you know, had some words to say for everyone, so appreciate his support as well.
And we want to see that same energy back out. I think we’ll have the drone back out again this year. And it’s always great to see that footage and uh, to see also how Frisco has grown from an aerial view over the years. There’s been so much construction in and around, um, Frisco square and now we have the national soccer hall of fame across the street and our, um, our routes go around Toyota stadium and all of that. So it’s also just a cool place in town for maybe people who don’t go to the middle of Frisco is often, um, it’s, it’s a neat experience and they can see how it continues to grow and, and change.
So let’s talk logistics for just a second. What do you, where does everybody park? How do they navigate this whole thing when they come out? Since a lot of people
it is a lot of people and thankfully, um, we get to use the parking lot at Toyota stadium. So that’s where most people, um, decide to park. If you get there early enough, you can maybe squeeze into the garage behind city hall. But we, the streets closed the streets shut down I think around six, six 30. Um, and don’t quote me on that, but most people park across the street at Toyota stadium and walk across the street. Well there’s been plenty of parking every year and haven’t had any issues. So just to encourage people though to get there, get there early, make it a little easier on yourself and save some of that energy for the race versus having to park super far away. Okay. That makes a lot of sense. Yeah. Good deal. And what time does the race start to this year? So miracle mile starts at 8:00 AM and then the, the five K and 10 K just happened right after that.
So encourage people to kind of get out around that same time. Eight, eight 30. Um, and you know, like I said, as we continue to grow, that just means kind of the longer it takes sometimes to get through. So if you’re one of those people that like to be the first out of the gate, we do encourage you to get there and, and line up quickly. But you know, I think that, um, I’m not saying we don’t have a lot of competitive runners, but you know, for the most part, you know, see a lot of families out there who aren’t necessarily, you know, in a hurry. Just like I said, like being with their friends and neighbors and having this Thanksgiving experience.
Good, good. Well it is a great event and I wanna encourage everybody to go out and register. Where do they do that?
So everyone can go and email@example.com. Okay. That’s easy. We’ll make sure to link it up in the show notes. Thank you. And again, find us on Facebook, North Texas, Turkey Trot. We’re also on Instagram and T Turkey Trot. Most people find us on, on Facebook and we get a lot of direct messages there. So if anybody has a question about registration, but it’s all fairly clear on the website and I will mention there is a sleep and option if you want to register your aren’t able to come to the event because you’re, you’re not able, you’re out of town or you just don’t feel like, you know, running that day you can still register and all of that money goes to the miracle league of Frisco’s. So want people to know there is an option to be involved without actually coming out to the event.
Okay, good to know. That’s great that you guys are able to do that. And I’m sure the miracle league very much appreciates that as well.
I know that, like I said, largest fundraising event for the miracle league of Frisco of the year. So we want as many people there as possible and you know, race events like this aren’t cheap to put on. So after we’re done, after they’re done paying for the race, all the remainder of the proceeds, like I said, 100% goes to the miracle league. And one other thing that I do want to say, Scott, is that this is an all volunteer event. So we depend, you know, we’ve got a lot of groups. Our committee is comprised of volunteers or planning committee, but we have a lot of Frisco ISD students that volunteer at our van as a way to get, you know, service hours for honor society and other commitments where they have to, you know, meet a certain amount of hours. So you can also find information about being a firstname.lastname@example.org whether you come out to Academy for packet pickup, we always need volunteers to help with packet pickup and then day of at the water stations and holding signs so that people know where to go. Um, this event wouldn’t be what it is without all of the amazing volunteers. So parents, if you’ve got students who need those volunteer hours, go tell him to go on over to TrotFrisco.com and get them connected with.
Right. That’s a great way to get in those hours and a great cause to support. Well Alison, thank you very much. I appreciate you taking some time to chat with us today and looking forward to the ninth annual North Texas Turkey trial.
Absolutely. Run first, eat later. That’s our motto. So thank you so much for having us look forward to seeing the lifestyle Frisco team out at the event, which is November 28th
we will be there and we will be dressed accordingly. Thank you. Thank you, and thanks to all of you for tuning into the Frisco podcast. As always, you can find us on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, pretty much any place you’re listening to, a podcast. So please go out and subscribe. We really appreciate it. It helps us out a ton and we will talk to you. Okay.