The Thanksgiving Day Run in Salem, Oregon!

About The Run + Online Registration

Every day that you wake up on this side of the ground is a gift.  And running and walking is a daily celebration of the gift.  It’s a commitment to your health. The Run’ucopia celebrates this. This is not a gaudy race that makes you buy t-shirts and clogs your closet with SWAG.  It is a tradition of friends, family and competitors.  At its very core, running is about pushing yourself to new heights, new records, and charting your progress along the journey.

For some, just getting off the couch is a major victory. For others, maintaining a certain pace is cause for celebration.  All are welcome.  Everyone has to run (or walk) their own race, but the need to keep improving and having fun is a constant force.

Steve Prefontaine said it best. “To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.”  Happy Thanksgiving, and have a great run. Here are the details:

Music, cowbell, good times… Run’ucopia is a Salem tradition. Bring your family and friends and engage in some healthy activity before your feast.  Consider this your “appetite development.”

The 1k kids run is free this year, and is for kids 6 and under. No pre-signup needed for the 1k, just report to the registration desk to sign the waiver & get their bib. This one is just for fun and is self-timed. All kids run finishers get a ribbon.


  • 1K kids run (6 & under)
  • 5K run/walk (3.1 mile)
  • 10K run (6.2 mile)
  • 15k run (9.3 mile)

Location: Riverfront Park, Salem, Oregon.  Start/Finish at the pavilion.

Date & Time:  Thanksgiving morning.  November 26, 2015.  Here is your schedule:

  • 8:00 am Check-in opens at the pavillion
  • 9:00         1k Kids race
  • 9:05         Race start for all distances
  • 9:10         You start to really feel good as you breathe the crisp fall air.
  • 9:15         Endorphins are picking up. “This is nice,” you think. “What a great Salem tradition.”
  • 9:45         5k awards. Hot chocolate is enjoyed. Commemorative photos are taken.
  • 10:15      10k awards and 15k soon thereafter.

Course:  The course is a beautiful 5k loop starting at the pavilion on the south side of Salem Riverfront Park.  Cross the Union Street Pedestrian Bridge and into West Salem before entering Wallace Marine Park for the return to the start.

When you hear the cowbell, it’s time to round the Eco Earth and cross the finish line.  10k and 15k runners will do 2 or 3 laps respectively.  This is a flat and fast course with only 1 short incline onto the bridge.  Strollers are welcome. Please keep dogs at home.

View the course loop here:

Timing: Again this year the Run’ucopia will be chip-timed.  Please be sure to return your timing chip after the race.

Pre-Registration:  $15 for all ages.  From November 12-25, the price is $20. Day-of-Race signup is $25 per person. There is a small online sign up fee. Register early as there is a race limit.

The online registration link is here:

Early packet pickup: Wednesday 11/26 in Downtown Salem at Gallagher’s Fitness Resources (135 Commercial St. SE) from 1pm-5:30pm.  This helps avoid the lines in the morning. Please do not contact Gallagher’s with questions about the race. GFR are sponsors only and questions should be directed to the Race Director at or call/text 503.750.9245.

Age Groups for the 5k, 10k, 15k runs:  10 & under, 11-15, 16-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, 80 & over.  Ribbons for top 3 age group placers. Vintage travelling trophies for men’s and women’s winners in each distance.

Day-of-Race Registration: The price jumps to $25, so we highly recommend you sign up early.

Walking Groups: Walkers are welcome and encouraged to join in the fun!  For safety reasons, we ask walkers to start in the back and stay to the right side of the path to allow runners to pass.

Chart your progress:  One of the great things about running & walking is that the improvements are REAL.  They can be clearly seen by your time on the course. So we encourage everyone to write their time on their bibs to remember it for next year.  Some folks also chart their weight as they see improvement from year-to-year.

Opportunities to contribute to your community: The registration form includes a place to donate to our charity partners.

Please consider a donation to our friends at Network Exchange Club and the E.S.C.A.P.E. Child Abuse Prevention Program.  Donate online or bring a cash donation, as they will be serving hot chocolate.  You can read more about them here:

This year, please consider partnering with Outward Church and their annual Thanksgiving Meal Program.  Each year they arrange, cook and deliver a full meal to many challenged families in our community. Last year they cooked and delivered over 120 meals! Many of them were at least partially sponsored by generous Run’ucopia runners.  To sponsor a family’s full meal, it is $35.  Or please consider just the turkey at $20, or just the sides for $10.  The on-line registration form lets you donate any level you feel able to give. You can read more about it here:

If you would like to join in delivering Thanksgiving meals, all are welcome. Just show up after the run at Richmond Elementary School (466 Richmond Avenue SE Salem, OR).

Deadlines: Sign up early for best prices. Family registration discount ends on November 12. Price goes to $20 on November 12.  Day-of-race registration will be from 8:00am to 9:00am.  Day-of-race price is $25 for all participants. Entry fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Parking: Several good options. 1) At the Pavilion or near The Gilbert House entering from Union Street/Front Street. These are limited and will fill up quickly, so we recommend using 2) the free Salem Parkade (near JC Penney) at Commercial Street & Center Street. It’s a short 300 meter warm up jog to the starting line. 3) The Carrousel, entering from Front Street & State Street.

Questions? Please email the Race Director at or call/text 503.750.9245.  Do not contact Gallagher’s Fitness Resources regarding the race. GFR is a sponsor and early packet pickup location, but questions go to

This is a minimalist & green event, so please use all recycling bins, and keep Salem clean.

Come early, enjoy the music and get pumped up! 

Sign up online here:

Search Terms: Turkey Trot Salem, Thanksgiving race in Salem, Oregon, Thanskgiving Day run in Salem, OR

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