Gobble Wobble 5K to raise money for The Arc of Wilson

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Wilson is getting a Gobble Wobble this Thanksgiving.

The inaugural Arc of Wilson County Gobble Wobble 5K run will take place on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 23

“Thanksgiving is the most popular running holiday of the year, and across the country all of these 5Ks take place,” said Erin Vertin, who works at BB&T, presenting sponsor of the event.

“They are called Gobble Wobbles, Turkey Trots. They go by various names. Ours is the Gobble Wobble,” she said. “It’s a 5K and a fun run, but what sets us apart is we are really an event for all ages and abilities.”

All proceeds from this event will go for the benefit of services and projects at The Arc of Wilson.

“The Arc has been here in Wilson for years,” Vertin said. “It is to support the intellectually and developmentally delayed population through inclusion in our community. They do that through a number of ways. There are programs for adults to get them engaged in the community, The Hope Singers. There is a bowling league that is put on for them. The most popular event, which the community is probably most aware of, is Camp Sunshine, a five-week summer camp for children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. There is no other camp like that.”

“We are very excited to bring the Gobble Wobble to Wilson,” Vertin said. “It’s going to be at the Whirligig Park hosted by 217 Brew Works.”

According to Vertin, 217 Brew Works has plans for a beer garden at the event.

“We’ll have a family fun zone, so the grandparents can come out and maybe they hold the baby and stay in the fun zone while the rest of the family goes and runs and walks and races,” Vertin said.

Of course, participants will be urged to dress up in outlandish costumes. Prizes will be awarded for best costumes as well as for top runners.

“We are going to have special needs categories as well,” Vertin said. “It’s going to be a fun event so the families are really going to love coming out and participating.”

The community group with the most participants will get a golden turkey that will adorn the winning office for the year, and the school with the most participants will get $250 toward its exceptional children’s programs.

Vertin said it’s a great way to give back to the community.

“It’s the first time in Wilson. They’ve got one in Greenville, Goldsboro. The one in Charlotte, they have to cap at 15,000. It’s huge. On our first year, we’re not expecting it to be quite as big, but as people become aware that we have this fun family event in Thanksgiving morning, we expect it to be more popular as years go by.

“A new Wilson tradition is what we’re calling it.”

The route has been submitted to the police department for approval.

The start and finish will be near 217 Brew Works adjacent to the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park.

For more information, to join as a sponsor or to offer yourself as a volunteer, call Michael Stanford, executive director at The Arc of Wilson at 252-237-8266 or reach out by email at director@arcofwilsonnc.org.

Sponsor forms must be in by Aug. 1 with logo and payments received by Nov. 1. Sponsorship logos should be emailed as high resolution (300 dpi) PDF or JPG files to director@arcofwilsonnc.org.

dwilson@wilsontimes.com | 265-7818