RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Runners laced up their shoes in Bryan Park on Thursday morning for the 45th Richmond Road Runners Club Turkey Trot.

Each year, racers from all over Virginia, including Roanoke, Midlothian and Washington, D.C., begin their holiday by running 6.2 miles. The Richmond Road Runners Club Turkey Trot consists of two races — a kids run and a 10K. It’s a way for families to gather together before the big meal.

Six year-old Thomas Gray-Perkins has never raced in the Richmond Road Runners Club Turkey Trot’s kids run before. Today, he joined about a hundred other children for the mile and a half race, with one goal.

“I hope I get a medal,” Gray-Perkins tells 8News.

For some runners including Nora Stechsulte and Austin Neaville, this was their first Richmond Road Runners Club 10K.

“My parents just moved to Richmond a couple of months ago so we just kind of wanted something fun, a way to exercise before we stuff ourselves with turkey and all my dad’s pies. We figure it would be a fun time,” says Stechsulte.

Other racers including Robyn Hartley have been running in the Richmond Road Runners Club Turkey Trot for over 15 years.

“I took a break from about 2002-2006 and that was the only time I took a break. I walked it when I was pregnant with my son and I was doing it every year except for that break since 2001,” says Hartley.

Coming in first place was Spencer Hawtorne. Just like Stechsulte and Neaville, Hawthorne has never competed in the Richmond Road Runners Club Turkey Trot before.

“I’ve been sick for the past week a little bit but it was alot of fun. I ran with one of my student athletes at Hermitage High School and he ran and got second place. So we just ran the race together. It was pretty fun,” says Hawthorne.

The races aren’t over yet. On December 11, the Richmond Road Runners Club will host a toy run raising money for Mason’s Toy Box, a non-profit that donates toys to the families of children in hospitals across Virginia.

Proceeds from Thursday’s race go to Richmond Road Runners Club and Feed More.