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Third annual Thanksgiving Day road race to be held in Collinsville

Runners in the 2013 O'Briley 5K Turkey Trot in Collinsville. (Photo courtesy of Canton Patch)

Runners in the 2013 O’Briley 5K Turkey Trot in Collinsville. (Photo courtesy of Canton Patch)

The Manchester Road Race isn’t the only Thanksgiving Day road race for area runners to burn off a few calories before their afternoon feasts. The third annual O’Briley 5K Turkey Trot and one-mile kids fun run will be held Thanksgiving morning in Collinsville. 

The race will begin near the Crown and Hammer Restaurant in Collinsville and be run along the Farmington River trail. Race proceeds will benefit the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation. Runners are also encouraged to leave donations for the Canton Food Bank. 

The fun run for kids begins at 8:30 a.m. with the 5K (3.1 miles) race beginning at 9:15 a.m. Race day registration will be accepted. However, those runners who register by Wednesday, Nov. 12 will receive a free t-shirt. 

Casey O'Connor won the 2013 O'Breilly Turkey Trot  5K in Collinsville in 20:31.

Casey O’Connor won the 2013 O’Breilly Turkey Trot 5K in Collinsville in 20:31.

It’s not your typical road race. There are no electronic timers in your shoes or your racing bib. If you want to know your race time, turn your head to the right and glance at the digital clock on the ground as you cross the finish line. 

“It’s a very casual event, just a bunch of friends really running for fun,” co-race organizer Michael Riley said. “It’s a race for fun. A lot of people work hard to get great times and get a great trophy donated by Mr. Trophy. And we get to raise a bit of money for charity.” 

About 100 runners participated last November and they raised more than $1,800 that was donated to the American Cancer Society. 

The race is named in recognition of local residents Colin O’Brien and Michael Riley, who organize the race. Learn more and register for the race at the race’s website.

Top 2013 results

  • Men: Casey O’Connor 20:31, Trevor Corallo 21:05, Joe Vacca 21:56
  • Women: Angela Heidgerd 23:23, Belle Magna 24:39, Kelsey Fitzpatrick 25:07

NOTE: Avon’s Marc Robaczynski set the course record in 2012 winning the first race in 17:24. The women’s record was set in 2012 with a winning time of 22:39.

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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