Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Turkey Trot, Jingle Bell Run raise money for two good causes

The 2014 Turkey Trot, at top, and the 2014 Jingle Bell Run, bottom.
The 2014 Turkey Trot, at top, and the 2014 Jingle Bell Run, bottom.

Those calories really add up between Thanksgiving and Christmas, so why not be proactive and sign up for the Turkey Trot on Nov. 26 and the Jingle Bell Run on Dec. 5 to cancel out the pig-out?

This is the 34th year for the Turkey Trot benefiting the Fort Worth YMCA, and it will once again offer a 10K run, a 5K run/walk and a 1K Gobbler Trot for kids and families. Last year’s event attracted 20,000 spectators and participants combined.

“The Turkey Trot has become a Thanksgiving tradition for so many families in the greater Fort Worth area,” YMCA President and CEO Tony Shuman said.

“Each year, we have participants from nearly every state and multiple generations coming together to enjoy some exercise on Thanksgiving before the big meal. It’s a great way to keep a healthy balance for the holiday and support the YMCA financially as well,” Shuman added.

Registration fees begin at $26 per person for the runs, $21 for the Gobbler Trot and $10 for dogs, and they increase as the race gets closer. Fees include a T-shirt, water and fruit for participants. New this year is a free photo for every registered participant.

All races start at 6115 Camp Bowie Blvd. The Gobbler Trot begins at 8 a.m., the 10K at 8:15 a.m. and the 5K at 8:30 a.m. Prizes will be awarded in various age categories.

Proceeds benefit the scholarship/youth program of the Westside YMCA. Learn more and sign up at www.fwtrot.org, or contact Hope Caldwell at 817-566-1063.

Then on Dec. 5, don your Santa hat, reindeer antlers or Christmas costume and jingle all the way to the finish line at the Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis beginning downtown at Burnett Park, 501 W. Seventh St. The event features a 5K run and a 1-mile Kids Snowman Shuffle, and it benefits the local unit of the Arthritis Foundation.

Who could resist being a part of something ranked among the top 21 Most Incredible Themed Events by Greatist.com, where it was described as the best race to “get into the holiday spirit”? Activities begin at 2 p.m. with a festival, including contests for best costume, best-dressed dog and activities for the entire family.

“The Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis has become a much-anticipated holiday tradition in the Fort Worth community,” said Melissa Gower of the Arthritis Foundation.

“We’re delighted that UNT Health Bone and Joint Institute agreed to join us again this year [as our title sponsor] because the organization is not only a great community partner, it is also closely related to the management and treatment of arthritic conditions.”

The Jingle Bell Run raises awareness and funds to battle arthritis, which afflicts 50 million adults and an estimated 300,000 children in the U.S., including nearly 4 million adults and 25,000 children across Texas who struggle every day with this serious and painful disease.

Registration fees for adults are $32 for timed and $27 for nontimed. Kids’ fees are $20 for timed and $18 for nontimed and include a T-shirt. Fees increase as the race date nears. Learn more and sign up at www.JBR.org/FortWorth or call Gower at 214-818-0359.

Grant money available for arts-related programs

Calling all nonprofit organizations, schools, libraries, PTAs, cities and artists: The Arts Council Northeast, in partnership with Texas Commission on the Arts, is offering grants for these types of groups in Bedford, Colleyville, Euless, Grapevine, Haltom City, Haslet, Hurst, Keller, North Richland Hills, Richland Hills, Roanoke, Saginaw, Southlake, Trophy Club, Watauga and Westlake.

Even if your organization is not in one of these 16 cities but provides an arts-based program that benefits one of them, you can still apply.

“Raising money for the arts is an ongoing commitment and service that Arts Council Northeast provides through matching grants from the Texas Commission on the Arts and fundraising events that occur throughout the year,” arts council director Lee Koch said in a news release.

“Through its grant program, offered yearly, Arts Council Northeast is able to offer financial support for arts-related programs in northern Tarrant and southern Denton counties. Since 1997, Arts Council Northeast has partnered with the Texas Commission on the Arts in generating over $1.5 million in funds spent in support of the arts in our communities,” Koch added.

The submission deadline is Nov. 30. Grants will be awarded in the first quarter of 2016. Direct questions to Bobbie McFarland at 817-283-3406, ext. 301.

Home for the Holidays Dec. 3 benefits homeless families

In the holiday hustle and bustle, it is easy to forget that not everyone has a home for holidays. Fortunately, the folks at the Arlington Life Shelter work continuously to help those who have no home — both during the holidays and all through the year.

To help the Life Shelter continue their work, a gala evening — Home for the Holidays — is planned for Dec. 3 at the Sheraton Arlington Hotel to raise needed funds to “provide warm beds and sweet dreams for homeless children and families” who live at the shelter.

The festive evening will feature a cocktail hour when guests peruse a silent auction and enjoy music by the UTA Jazz Combo followed by dinner and a program. Children from the shelter will sing Christmas carols. Emcee for the evening is Fox4 news anchorwoman Jenny Anchondo.

A spotlight moment be the presentation of the Heroes of the Homeless awards, given to individuals and organizations who have gone above and beyond in service and support to the shelter and its residents.

Congratulations to these award winners: All Pro Fasteners, Brad Cecil & Associates, Rashiwe Madzima, Roger Mangumm, Texas Rangers Baseball Club, Webb Elementary School, Mandy Welch and Corey Wilson.

Watch out for the Rolling Raffle carts that will be roaming about the party so you can take a good look at each one to decide where to put your raffle ticket. Each rolling raffle package is worth at least $750. Buy a ticket for $10 or three for $25.

Wine lovers can donate $20 for the opportunity to pull an ornament from the tree and then take home the bottle of wine with the corresponding number. Or what about a ticket to win the Big Green Egg party package? The outdoor cooker with a slew of accessories is valued at $1,500. The winning ticket will cost $20.

In charge of the event is Kellie Reichert with help from committee members Penny Reichert, Mandy Welch, Debbie Michel, Michelle Duskin, Janet Glaze, Kayla Haun, Shannon Salomaki and Rebekah Garner.

“I’m at the shelter regularly and am reminded each time why I am so involved,” board President James Mihills said. “Recently, volunteers have been asked to sit with the families during dinnertime to make sure the children don’t overeat. Many more children are becoming sick their first week at the shelter because they have not eaten regularly and their stomachs have to adjust. As a father of four, this is painful to hear.”

Tickets for the event are going fast. Contact Reichert at 817-548-9885, ext. 2116, or purchase a ticket for $75 online at www.ArlingtonLifeShelter.org.

Events at a glance

▪ Starlight Symphony opens and the Starlight Run and Party are Nov. 20 in the West 7th district in Fort Worth. The 5K social run finishes with a party that coincides with the opening ceremony of the holiday lights in the area — called Starlight Symphony.

New this year is a sledding hill with real snow from 5 to 8 p.m. It’s free and includes inflatable tube plus a snow-filled play area. The kickoff evening features Santa’s arrival in Fort Worth and the lighting of West 7th along with Victorian carolers and character entertainment. Free horse and carriage rides from Crockett Square offered every Friday and Saturday from 7 to 10 p.m. Nov. 20 through Jan. 2

The run benefits Streams and Valleys. Registration at www.facebook.com/events/884628868283308.

▪ Nutcracker: Short and Suite is Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at Whites Chapel, 185 S. White Chapel Blvd. in Southlake. The Avant Chamber Ballet through the efforts of Apex Arts League is bringing the new one-act Nutcracker with all your favorite characters and live music.

Tickets are available online at www.apex-arts.org or at the door. $20 adults or $15 seniors, students and Apex members.

Please send your SocialEyes news tips to freeder@star-telegram.com. Keep up with even more community news by liking our page on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/SocialEyes.ST. Follow me on Twitter: @FayeReeder

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