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On the Town: Annual Turkey Trot helps support YMCA’s financial-assistance program

On the Town: Annual Turkey Trot helps support YMCA’s financial-assistance program
Among those who trotted on Turkey Day to benefit the YMCA were Michael, from right, Caroline, and her dog, Nobu, Taylor and Tanner Cusumano, joined by Kelsey DeMeire. (David Laurell / Burbank Leader)

When the first rays of morning sun bathe downtown Burbank on Easter, Christmas or New Year’s Day, they illuminate streets that are quiet, peaceful and, for the most part, desolate.

The exact opposite is the case during the dawn of Thanksgiving Day.

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This past week, as celebratory preparations were commencing in homes throughout the city, thousands of Burbankers and visitors from surrounding communities took a few hours of leave from their kitchens and converged for the Burbank Community YMCA’s ninth annual Turkey Trot.

With Bruce Springsteen’s “Born to Run” blaring as the soundtrack, more than 3,000 runners, walkers, strutters and strollers lined up at the starting line at Magnolia Boulevard and Third Street to trot and support the Y’s financial-assistance program.

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The Burbank Community YMCA's ninth annual Turkey Trot hit a new record with more than 3,000 runners participating.
The Burbank Community YMCA's ninth annual Turkey Trot hit a new record with more than 3,000 runners participating. (David Laurell / Burbank Leader)

This year’s event, made possible by presenting sponsors, the Cusumano Real Estate Group and the Worth Real Estate Group, saw participants challenge a 5K or 10K double-loop course, measured to USA Track and Field standards.

While the 10K was designed for competitive runners, the 5K gave casual runners and walkers the opportunity to take the course at their own pace. The morning also included a non-competitive Kids Run.

“It’s a great way to start your Thanksgiving morning,” said Mary Cutone, president and chief executive of the Burbank Community YMCA.

Dan Cole and his wife Talia Gibas celebrated their second wedding anniversary by running in this year's Turkey Trot. "We've done this four time and there's actually three of us running this year," Gibas said as she revealed the couple will be having a baby in 2019.
Dan Cole and his wife Talia Gibas celebrated their second wedding anniversary by running in this year's Turkey Trot. "We've done this four time and there's actually three of us running this year," Gibas said as she revealed the couple will be having a baby in 2019. (David Laurell / Burbank Leader)

“It feels good for the soul to celebrate gratitude in community with a healthy tradition, [and] all of the proceeds will benefit people who want to stay healthy but can’t otherwise afford membership,” she added.

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Along with the presenting sponsors, the turkey day’s event, which also included a pre-race business expo and Kids Fun Zone, were also made possible by Aldrich Taylor Insurance, the Kiwanis Club of Burbank and Woodbury University.

The Burbank YMCA is a nonprofit organization that has been serving the community since 1924, promoting youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.

For more information about the Y and its programs, visit burbankymca.org.

David Laurell may be reached by email at dlaurell@aol.com or (818) 563-1007.

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