On the morning of American Thanksgiving, Friends of the Environment held the first annual Turtle Trot sponsored by the Hope Town Lodge in Hope Town, Abaco. The event featured a 5 K run/walk from the Lodge to the north end of Elbow Cay and a one mile fun run for children under 12. The majority of students from Hope Town Primary participated in the mile run, along with a number of visitor’s children.
Organizers of the event were overwhelmed with the turnout, quickly running out of t- shirts! More were ordered and 45 runners completed the 3.1 mile course along with another 40 walkers! Over 50 children completed the mile fun run with a total of approximately 135 participants!
Thanks to the professional timing of Wild Side Timing Company out of Nassau, Bahamas times were available for the runners after the race and have been posted the the Friends of the Environment website and the Hope Town Lodge’s Facebook page.
Awards were presented on the pool deck of the Lodge while runners and guests enjoyed the new breakfast menu and a mimosa smoothie bar. The results were: First Place: Rusty Heise, 21 minutes, Greg Ickes, 21:06 and Pete Gill, 21:20. Lindsey Ickes was the top female finisher with a time of 23:22. For the children’s mile race the top finisher was Mason Ickes, Robin Jentil of Hope Town School came second and Reef Dellanos came third. The top three in each race received a gift certificate to the Hope Town Lodge.
The race benefited the marine conservation and education work of local nonprofit Friends of the Environment. With recent legislation in the Bahamas protecting turtles from capture, FRIENDS chose the mascot (a turtle dressed as a turkey) to help raise awareness of their new protected status.