The event that starts on the historic downtown Marietta Square features a 5K and 10K walk/run, a 1K walk/run as well as Tot Trot for kids 5 and younger. The event traditionally attracts a number of participants from Cherokee County.
The Gobble Jog 10K is a qualifier for the Peachtree Road Race and the U.S. 10K Classic. All proceeds benefit MUST Ministries, a faith-based nonprofit organization assisting those in poverty since 1971.
The Gobble Jog is a critical part of MUST Ministries’ fundraising efforts that now help almost 34,000 distinct individuals a year — the highest number in the 41-year history of the organization, according to Betsy Mathews, director of Special Events for MUST and wife of Kennesaw Mayor Mark Mathews.
MUST serves six counties, including Cherokee, by providing food, housing, emergency shelter, education and employment services, clothing, summer lunches, toy shops and more.
Right now food supplies at Cherokee MUST are at an unusually low level for this time of year, local workers at the agency say.
“In order to provide help and hope to so many neighbors in need, the ministry relies on generous donations and events. This event is our largest. The Gobble Jog will provide $375,000 of the almost $5 million budget,” Mathews said.
Ten thousand runners are expected to participate in the race.
“This is our 10th annual Gobble Jog. We‘ve grown to be 10th-largest race in Georgia. That’s why it’s also a big deal — to make it 10 years,” she said. “You can get out with strollers, with multi-generations of your family, your puppies. It’s a great way to have guilt-free eating the rest of the day,” she said.
The run that assists MUST
Ministries help people struggling with poverty has established itself as a Thanksgiving tradition.
“(Poverty) looks really different than it used to. MUST does something important. We want to change lives. I think people want to be a part of that on Thanksgiving Day,” she said. “We are thankful. We are grateful. We feel blessed for everything we have. Getting out walking for MUST on Thanksgiving morning helps us to appreciate that.”
For more information, to register, volunteer or make a donation, visit www.gobblejog.org.