Originally published Nov. 3, 2017 in the Baltimore Sun.

Friday morning’s weather was perfect for a run and with beautiful fall leaves as a backdrop, Bel Air Middle School students participated in the school’s 35th annual Turkey Trot, sponsored by the physical education department.

Keeping with tradition, runners finished the approximately 1.15-mile course around the school’s campus at the Bel Air High School’s neighboring Bobcat Stadium, where friends, family and faculty waited to cheer them to the finish.

A group of sixth grade boys takes off from the starting line for the Bel Air Middle School’s Turkey Trot race Friday morning. Matt Button/The Aegis/Baltimore Sun Media Group

Races were broken into boys and girls divisions by grade level.

Some school staff members ran with the students, as did some members of the Bel Air High School Cross Country team. Other staff were stationed along the course wearing stylish turkey hats as they cheered on students.