Despite below-freezing temperatures Thanksgiving morning, runners of all ages turned out bright and early for the 2009 Turkey Trot.
The 1-mile kid's fun run and a 5K run hosted by Fleet Feet Sports Carson City owners Scott and Joy Keith, was held to raise funds for Pinkerton Ballet Theatre, said Molly Walt, a Carson City supervisor and president of Pinkerton.
"We were at rehearsal until 11 last night and were up, back at it, down here this morning at 7:30 for the run," Walt said.
The 21st annual production of "The Nutcracker" ballet plays during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend at Carson City Community Center. Performances are at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 2 p.m. Sunday.
"This is our first year doing the Turkey Trot and we don't really have any expectations. We're just having fun," Walt said.
Fourteen children and 61 adults participated in Thursday's Turkey Trot.
Four-year-old Abbi Girdner said she participated in the Fun Run because "it was fun and my dad signed me up."
"I've been wanting to run in a race for a long time, and my dad found it in the paper," she said.
Her 2-year-old sister Ella wasn't old enough to join in, Abbi said, "because she's too little."
Abbi also said she trained for the race by doing push-ups, jumping jacks and stretches.
Seven-year-old Thomas Gregory was visiting his grandparents from Cocoa Beach, Fla., and joined the race to be part of the fun.
"I love to run and I do it a lot," he said.
Adam Maw, 10, whose parents are both runners, came in first with a time of 7 minutes 21 seconds. His younger brother Ryan Maw placed fourth.
"It was awesome," Adam said.
Jay Session, 10, placed third, and described the experience as challenging.
"It was, like, freezing," Jay said. "I was running so fast that my ears hurt."
The first girl to cross the finish line was Maggie Eason, 8, with a time of 9 minutes, 6 seconds.
"I wanted to come out here to do my very best so I could get strength and energy," she said.
Carson City District Attorney Neal Rombardo's children, Rachel, 10, and Cade, 8, both said they just wanted to do the race because "it's fun."
Participants in the 5K endured the cold for the health benefits.
Stacie Spigar, who grew up in Carson City, but was down from Alaska to celebrate the holiday with her four siblings, said they have been trying to encourage each other to get healthy by participating in half-marathons.
"We saw the ad for the Turkey Trot and thought it would be a perfect way to start our Thanksgiving," she said.
Joining Spigar for the 5K Thursday were her brother Dan Jungwirth from Reno, Barbara Stearns from Gardnerville, Diane Comeaux of Carson City and Debbie Lynd from Fountain Valley, Calif.
Overall male and female winners in the 5K each won a turkey. Winners in each of the five divisions of the 5K won a pumpkin pie, and a box of stuffing was awarded to second place winners in each division. Every winner also received two tickets to a Nutcracker performance of their choice. All participants received an H2O bottle.
More than $2,000 was raised for the ballet company.
Tickets to the Nutcracker are $23.50 general admission and $19.50 for seniors and children.
For a gallery of photos from the Turkey Trot, go to www.nevadaappeal.com/photos.