The Rutledge family, owners of Pinch A Penny FishHawk, located at 16715 Fishhawk Blvd. in Lithia, are the title sponsors of the Seeds of Hope FishHawk Turkey Trot taking place in person and virtually on Thursday, November 25.

This year, two of the Thanksgiving season’s greatest traditions are back—the FishHawk Turkey Trot and the generosity of the community that comes along with it.

Seeds of Hope’s largest fundraiser will take place in person or virtually on Thursday, November 25, and thanks to the racers and the many community sponsors, funds raised from the event will provide for thousands at the charity’s weekly food pantry distributions.

Pinch A Penny FishHawk, located across from Newsome High School in the Winn-Dixie shopping plaza, kicked off the season with a generous donation of $10,000 last month, making it the event’s title sponsor.

“It’s important that businesses give back to the community they operate in, and knowing 100 percent of what we give goes directly to those in need makes Seeds of Hope an easy choice,” said Larry Rutledge, owner of Pinch A Penny FishHawk.

With over 2,300 in-person participants two years ago, Seeds of Hope is offering the Turkey Trot two ways this year, in person or virtual, so that everyone can run wherever and whenever they choose.

Race Director Leda Eaton is pleased to be offering the race once again.

“People have missed it,” she said. “My family missed it. It’s the beginning of Thanksgiving … such a family fun event: people taking photos with our mascot turkeys, kids making crafts and dancing the ‘Wobble’ song, families running together—it just makes you smile. After this past year and a half, we all need that.”

New this year, the race will be offering the first 100 across the finish line a goody bag of race-themed prizes in lieu of age group medals.

“It’s a much easier way to distribute prizes and requires less standing around by participants,” said Eaton. “Also, know before you go … It’s a large race, so socially distancing and wearing masks for those unvaccinated will be recommended.”

Get your spot before pricing increases. Don’t delay—registering will ensure you and your family have the coolest shirts at your Thanksgiving table. Keep up to date on race announcements through the Seeds of Hope Facebook page at www.facebook.com/groups/473281026035488.

All proceeds from the race support local charity Seeds of Hope, Inc., which provides weekly distributions of food through a food bank, school backpack of food program and mobile pantry. In addition to providing food, Seeds of Hope also provides meaningful community service hours for students and many local students have received Bright Futures Scholarships based on the work they’ve done through the charity.

For more information, visit www.sohopefl.com.

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Kate Quesada is the Multimedia Manager for the Osprey Observer Newspapers. She has been working for the paper in various positions since 2005 when she graduated with her Masters degree in mass communications. She lives in Valrico with her husband Mike and son Dylan.