Grand Rapids runner Marcia Grajewski looks forward to Thanksgiving for all of the typical reasons — quality time spent with family and friends, enjoying a delicious meal together — and also because she and her 12-year-old daughter Amara start the day off running alongside each other.
“It’s one of the gobwobfbonly races we run entirely together,” says Marcia of the annual Gobble Wobble that takes place each Thanksgiving morning at East Grand Rapids Middle School in Grand Rapids.
The event, organized by Gazelle Sports and now in its 9th year, raises funds for Kids’ Food Basket. This fun run, set for Thursday, Nov. 24 this year, is not timed and strollers and dogs are welcome. The course consists of a full loop around Reeds Lake — a route that is about 4.3 miles from start to finish.
kfb_logo_final_fullcolor-266x300“This distance is the furthest distance for Amara and she loves pushing herself, especially at the end. And, in Amara’s words, ‘for the cider and donuts!'” Marcia says.
This year marks their third year participating in the Gobble Wobble. They’ve run a number of races this year, including the Gazelle Girl 5K this past April. Marcia is a sales floor associate for Gazelle Sports.
Amara and her mom at the 2016 Irish Jig 5K.
Amara and her mom at the 2016 Irish Jig 5K.

Marcia ran track in middle school, though she says she started running as an adult about eight months after having Amara. “I enjoyed running and wanted to lose the lingering baby weight,” she says. “Amara ran her first 5K, at the Fifth Third River Bank Run, at the age of 5. She wanted to be like mom!” In addition to running local 5Ks, Amara runs cross country.

Amara, 12, at her first cross country meet this year.
Amara, 12, at her first cross country meet this year.

Marcia and Amara are eager to to run the Gobble Wobble and say newcomers to the event won’t be disappointed.

“It’s a non-competitive, family-friendly race. All ages and levels are welcome. Push a stroller or have your dog on a leash,” Marcia says. “It’s well run,  organized, and fun — we always have a great time.”

Amara offers this race tip: “Don’t try to run it like a 5K, because it’s not — it’s longer! Pace yourself and have fun with it.”

“I agree with her,” her mom adds. “And I love that all proceeds go to The Kid’s Food Basket. Getting a workout in before the big feast is always a good thing, too.”

Learn more about the 9th annual Gobble Wobble here »

Are you planning to run a turkey trot or other Thanksgiving-themed race this year? Will you run with family members before all sitting down to enjoy a big feast? I’d love to hear all about it — please share in the comments section below, and if you’d interested in being featured on an upcoming Michigan Runner Girl podcast episode, please record a short voice memo (using your smart phone) about your favorite Thanksgiving race and email it to MRG at 

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