Each of the winners took home an arrangement donated by Bedford Florist - Image (JMcCT) 2015 all rights reserved

Each of the winners took home an arrangement donated by Bedford Florist – All images (c) JMcCT, 2015 all rights reserved

Compiled by The Bedford Citizen

The 9th annual Turkey Trot to benefit Bedford’s Open Table and Food Pantry set records for participation and for donations. By the time the race began, 397 runners and walkers were on the course, and according to Race Director Rich Hamilton, they raised $10,035, net.

The top female runner was Christa Meyer who completed the course in 18 minutes and 39 seconds, and the top male runner Alex Knapp finished first in the field with a 5K time of 16 minutes and 9 seconds.

Click “Read More” to see the rest of the story, photographs (click each small image to see it at full width), then watch videos of the walkers’ and the runners’ starts.

Last-minute registrations

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Ready to Race

On the Course

 

Runners streaming toward the start line

Runners streaming toward the start line

Finishers

 And these videos

The walkers start

And the runners are off!

The story continues

It turns out that Knapp runs for MIT along with three buddies who finished the race close on his heels. The men found their way to Bedford as guests of a team member whose family is attached to Hanscom Field. According to Knapp, getting home for such a short visit didn’t make as much sense as staying in the area and running the Turkey Trot with his friends and teammates.

The youngest walker to complete the course was Sanders, age 5, and the most-senior was Bedford native, former teacher and school principal Ralph Hammond. The Rubenstein family fielded a team of 15; Greg Barry’s pup was the first canine finisher; Matt Kennedy traveled the longest distance among those who pre-registered, although a voice from among the finishers claimed “PARIS!” she hadn’t pre-registered.  Bill Speciale, celebrating his birthday on Thursday, won an award for the best running costume (a turkey baseball cap).

Race Director Hamilton gave ‘high-5’ thank you salutes to the registration team – Jessica Marshall, Erica Jean Hamilton, Julie Hamilton, Kimberly Bee Oleksinski and Benjamin Oleksinski and volunteer EMT Robert Marshall. Also singled out for appreciation: the event’s “awesome sponsors” Nancy Regonini Tripodi of Bedford Florist and Richard Callahan of Callahan’s Karate.

More thank you wishes go to photographer Jim Kimmell; course safety team members Jackie Coleman, Tyrese Coleman and Ben Oleksinski who were assisted by the Bedford DPW and Police Departments, helping to assure the runners’ safety. The Bedford School Department and the Facilities Department earned kudos for allowing registration to take place indoors at the John Glenn Middle School, and to the Athletic Department for providing a portable public address system.

“FINALLY,” said Hamilton, “a huge THANKS to all that participated in today’s event, especially my fellow Bedford Neighbors….It was an AMAZING DAY and  best of all, we have over $10,000 that we’ll be giving to the BEDFORD COMMUNITY TABLE/FOOD PANTRY to support those less fortunate. THANK YOU….THANK YOU….THANK YOU!!!!

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