Who runs Turkey Trot races on Thanksgiving in the United States?

Linley SandersData Journalist
November 23, 2022, 8:32 PM GMT+0

Across the country on Thanksgiving Day, Americans line up and participate in Turkey Trot races — walking or running a specific distance on a pre-set course.

These foot races are especially popular with younger Americans — according to new YouGov data — with nearly half of 31- to 35-year-olds saying they have participated in one before. The races are more commonly done by people who live in the West (25%) than by people in any other region, and men (24%) are more likely than women (14%) to say they have spent part of the holiday participating in a Turkey Trot.

Though 19% of Americans overall have partaken in Thanksgiving recreation, most Americans have no interest in Turkey Trots at all. Americans' aversion to a Thanksgiving-themed race has sparked a series of memes about the perceived horrors of marrying into a family that participates in annual Turkey Trots. Adults 40 and younger are more likely than older Americans to say they definitely or probably would want to participate in a Turkey Trot race, as are people who live in places with warmer November climates, such as the South and the West.

One possible reason for older Americans' greater aversion to Turkey Trots: They are far more likely to say distance running harms runners' joints rather than helps, while adults under 45 are more evenly split.

See the data:

Methodology: This Daily Questions survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 8,439​ U.S. adults interviewed online on November 17 - 18, 2022. The samples were weighted to be representative of the U.S. population, based on gender, age, race, education, U.S. census region, and political party.

Related: What Americans think about Thanksgiving foods and traditions