La Cañada's turkey day 5k draws a big crowd

Beneath bluebird skies and with temperatures in the low 60s, Foothill Boulevard in La Cañada Flintridge was filled with runners, families and pets Thursday morning for the Thanksgiving Day Run and Food Drive.

In the event's 19th year, an estimated 1,500 participants came out to Memorial Park to run or walk for the nonprofit Community Center of La Cañada Flintridge and contribute to a canned food drive.

Community Center Executive Director Deb Jordan said she believed runner and volunteer registration showed an increase from past years.

“About 1,000 people preregistered for the run and a couple hundred came to the park and registered,” Jordan said. “Sponsorship is up, runners are up, we’ve doubled the number of volunteers this year. So everything’s up.”

The center and the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station have collected nearly 35 barrels of non-perishable food and hope to deliver goods to about 120 families in the foothill area, said Sheriff's Deputy Jorge Valdivia, coordinator of the food drive.

“This year, we’re more than OK with the food," Valdivia said. "The Community Center of La Cañada Flintridge did a wonderful job in their promotion and it’s going to help us.”

The winner of the 5k racewas Connor Kamm, who finished with a time of 15:10. Originally from Encino, Kamm flew out from Nashville, Tenn., to participate in the race and to spend Thanksgiving with his family in Sherman Oaks.

“This is the third year [my family’s] done this race. It’s kind of a fun turkey trot towards the end of the year to do,” Kamm said. “I run a lot and I just ran a half marathon last weekend, so this is just something fun.”

-- Anthony Carpio

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